Ferret Smell is ferret smell. Just like dog smell is dog smell (especially when wet), horse smell is horse smell, chin smell is chin, and… you get the picture. It’s frustrating, sometimes, when we do everything to keep our kids clean, but we always have the “hold your nose” instinct. We do what we can, right?
Without proper info, it’s nearly impossible to keep your ferry smelling fresh. So what causes that funky funk smell?
WHY DON’T YOU SMELL LIKE A ROSE?
Ferrets mark their territory with their sebaceous Glands, which naturally omit a very potent, musky odor. It’s the oil in their glands (actually concentrated around their faces… weird, right?). The animal’s anal scent glands, too, tend to spray… well… just like a skunk’s. Because they are members of the Pepe Le Pew fam, they have extremely well developed musk glands in the epidermis. Again, bizarre, but true! However, fear not. If you’re a ferret owner (or potential adoptive parent (congrats if you are!)), it’s actually probably not your little guy who stinks, but what’s on (or coming out of) him or her.
HERE… LET ME HELP YOU
What can we do if we feel like our precious little lovers just can. not. smell. nice. Well… there’s actually a lot.
- DIET!! Ferrets are carnivores. No secret here. And carnivores are not built to digest fiber. They need meat, protein and fat (I wish I could live on that). This being said, look at the ingredients in the food you buy your bud. Higher quality food will result in a less stinky ferret (Wysong is a great choice). If food is higher quality, they will likely eat less of it, and we all know what that means. Less food = less poop = less odor. #WINNING
- Bathing. Seems kinda counterintuitive, but the more you bathe ‘em, the more they’ll stink. Protective oils get washed out… and we do NOT want that. I promise, you’ll regret it. If bathed too often, their oil glands will go into overdrive in order to replace those protective oils, causing (ugh…) additional odor. Only bathe when dirty. Like, seriously dirty. Every 1-2 months is plenty, but less is honestly ideal.
- Clean my cage, PLEASE! If you want a non-stinky ferret, changing litter on a daily basis is a must. Daily. Seven days a week, not six or five. These cuddly critters require a lot of upkeep (like any small pet). But it’s worth it. Regardless of the litter you choose, it’s going to smell if you go potty on it. Seems pretty simple, and will make your ferret so fond of you.
- Can you wash my bedding? It’s so important to wash their “sheets.” Ferrets, like any other animal or hooman, leave odors. If, on a weekly basis, we take care to wash and disinfect blankets, hammocks and other soft materials in cages (no toxins, please!), odors will decrease… really, they will.
So, we know what causes the stinkers to stink and how to help them out. Let’s keep our ferrets smelling fine! …and divine.
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