In captivity, ferrets can survive somewhere between 4 to 6 years. This is double the life a ferret has in the wild due to predators, disease, and injuries. Ferrets are very sensitive and they need the best care and frequent vet visits to keep them healthy for as long as possible. With excellent care, you can get your little furry pet to live 7-9 years, and in extremely rare cases to even 14 years old. But this is very uncommon.
In this article, we’ll talk about how long does a ferret lives and what you can do to prolong its healthy life as much as possible.
How Long Do Ferrets Live As Pets?
A pet ferret’s lifespan can depend on a very wide range of factors. Even the healthiest ferrets don’t end up living too long. In most cases, a house ferret lives around 5-6 years in captivity. There can be lots of health complications as well. And sadly, there’s not enough research done on them to find ways to save them as easily as you would a dog.
Some ferrets that come from very healthy backgrounds can actually live happily for around 10 years. There are also some very rare occasions where they live up to 14 years. But you should be ready to say goodbye in 5 years or so, just in case. Ferrets are not for people that are looking for a pet that lives more than 10 years as the chances of that happening are very slim.
You might also have to deal with the heartbreaking situation of your ferret losing its mate. They form very close bonds with other ferrets, especially if they are kept in pairs. Losing their mate can put them through serious depression. They might stop eating and drinking water. It’s not unheard of for a ferret to die soon after their mate, even if it was healthy.
How Long Is Life For a Ferret In The Wild?
In the wilderness, ferrets have a very short lifespan. Typically, they live around 1 year, maybe two if they are excellent hunters and good at running from predators. There are also some cases where some ferrets make it to three years, but it’s not very common. This is a good thing as they breed a lot and make large litters. This can create a very serious problem for any ecosystem as they’d quickly end without food.
When it comes to a pet ferret escaping into the wilderness, the chances of it surviving more than two days are very slim. This is because they basically have no survival skills and have no idea how to hide from predators. Owls and other ferret hunters catch them long before they start losing strength because they struggle to catch their own food.
What Is The Longest Living Ferret?
In the wilderness, ferrets have almost no chance of living long enough to even match the lifespan of a sick pet ferret. This is why the best way to find the oldest living ferret is to look in captivity. There’s a debate whether the oldest ferret on record was 15 or 14, but it lived to be around that age. This means that getting a wild ferret is not a good idea if you’re looking for long-living ferrets.
The domesticated ferrets that are found on the market today live the longest among all types of ferrets. Albino ferrets might have some extra health complications and they might not be the best choice. But generally, most domesticated ferrets can live much longer than the wild-caught ones. This is because the wild-caught ones often already have some serious injury, disease, or genetic health issue.
Ways To Make Sure Your Ferret Lives a Long and Healthy Life – Diet & Health Check-ups
Exercising is very important for ferrets as they are highly active animals. You should always offer at least a few hours of playtime each day for your pets. This includes letting them out of their cage and allowing them to run and chase one another until they pass out again. That’s what ferrets do, they eat, run around, and sleep.
You will need a special room for your ferrets that is 100% ferret-proof. This means that there’s no way for the ferret to hurt itself or ruin something important or expensive. Keeping them caged all the time can have some very serious health consequences. More than that, they become much less sociable, angry, and aggressive.
Don’t even consider getting a ferret if you don’t have the money for vet visits, You should expect to pay at least $1,500 in vet bills over the course of a ferret’s life. They need their regular checkups as some health issues come very unexpected and hit very hard. It’s best to try and prevent or catch the issue as soon as possible.
Lymphoma, Insulinoma, and Adrenal Disease are just a few of the very serious health problems a ferret can develop.
When it comes to their diet, you need to understand that they are carnivorous creatures and they need their own special food. Dog and cat food is not good enough for them. In an emergency, you can use kitten food that is high in protein. High-protein food sources are extremely important.
The easiest way to feed a ferret is by giving it commercial food. It usually comes in pallet form and is easy to eat. But if you have the time, you can learn about raw diets and how to prepare each meal for your ferret. It’s recommended to leave the bowl of pallets inside their cage as ferrets can eat between 8 and 10 times a day because of how fast their metabolism is.
How To Calculate a Ferret’s Age In Human Years
As humans, we are often very curious how old would our pets be in “human” years. The good news is that veterinarians have made a pretty reliable correlation table that shows the equivalent in human age. This age chart can help you understand your pet a bit better.
A 6-month old ferret is 18 years in human age, 1 ferret year equals 22 human years, 2 ferret years equal 22 human years, 2 ferret years equal 32 human years, 3 ferret years equal 42 human years, 4 ferret years equal 52 human years, 5 ferret years equal 62 human years, 6 ferret years equal 72 human years, 7 ferret years equal 82 human years, 8 ferret years equal 88 human years, 9 ferret years equal 98 human years, and 10 ferret years equal 110 human years.