Ferrets and birds are both amazing pets to have. There is no this or that between them as they both are completely different types of animals. Bird care and ferret care is not the same at all and both types of animals have their own unique kind of needs. There are many things that you should consider before purchasing a bird or a ferret.
Should I get a ferret or a bird? Getting a ferret or a bird is completely dependent or what you are looking for in a pet. Comparing birds and ferrets is like comparing a dog with a parrot, they are everything but similar. Ferrets are a combination of cats and dogs, are active, playful but need constant supervision. Birds, on the other hand, are kept mostly in cages, and they do not need a lot of supervision.
So if you have loads on time on your hand, then ferrets are definitely your kind if pet but if you have a busy schedule then birds will do. Let’s check out the things you need to know before purchasing a feathered friend
No smoking in the house
You should not and cannot smoke when you are a bird owner. If you are a chain smoker you need to stop altogether or go outside and smoke. Cigarettes are not just bad for humans; they are incredibly catastrophic when it comes to the health of birds. You really need to wash your hands after smoking even if you want to touch the bird.
Say goodbye to air fresheners and candles
Birds have extremely sensitive respiratory systems so Teflon and other fumes, scented oils, scented candles, and air fresheners are a serious hazard to their health. Their systems are easily overcome by fumes and chemicals.
Birds can be messy
Potential bird owners should be aware of the fact that birds can be rather messy. They will most probably waste a good portion of their food and they will have an amazing time throwing tidbits from their cage floor to the room floor below. In the wild birds provide food to the little creatures by being messy eaters and this behavior does not change when they are domesticated. That’s just how Mother Nature wanted them to be. Not many people have the time or energy to clean their bird’s cage daily. The good thing about this kind of mess is that it can be easily cleaned by a few strokes or a broom or a vacuum. There are products that help reduce the mess of your birds such as cage skirts.
You have to watch what you wear
Birds have a tendency to be attracted to all things that are shiny which means that your jewelry and sequined dresses are a potential target. Before handling a bird, you would need to take care of all these things to protect your things yourself as well as your pet. Also, be prepared to lose the majority of your buttons to your friend with wings. It helps to have a small sewing kit and some spare buttons close by.
Birds are not the most social animals
Birds are moody and if they get along with one person that does not mean that they will welcome everyone with open arms or in case of birds open wings. Birds can get attached to the person feeding them and taking care of them. This does depend from species to species; some are one person birds while others are fine with more than one person. If you are buying a bird for the whole family, then make sure that the entire family chips in, in taking care of the bird and feeding it. The bird has to get comfortable with each and every person. Otherwise, the bird will begin to play favorites which will end in some hurt feelings and sore fingers.
Birds require specialized diets
Owning a bird is more than just keeping some seeds in a bird. It is much more complicated than that. You need to provide your feathery friend with a diet that consists of a lot of fresh vegetables and fruits in order to keep with happy and healthy. Fresh foods not only offer amazing nutritional benefits but also play a key role in stimulating your bird’s mind, which in turn effects psychological benefits. Here are some of the reasons why birds make amazing pets:
They are low maintenance
Compared to animals like dogs, cats, and ferrets that roam free within the homes of their owners, birds are rather easy to care for. They can be placed inside their cage when the owners are busy or need to work. Birds do not require walks outside and do not need to be housebroken. Many pet owners actually prefer cleaning the birdcage once a day over going to walks every couple of hours.
Feeding birds are cheap
Birds do require a healthy pellet of food, but they can also greatly benefit from the food that their human friends share with them. When you eat fresh vegetables and fruits in your homes, you can set some parts of them aside for your feathery buddy to munch on. This not only provides the birds with additional nutrients but also bring variety into their daily diet. The only thing to make sure is that the food you feed them is in no way toxic for their health as each and every kind of bird has its own needs.
Birds are long living companions
Many people love having pets that they can keep for a long period of time. Many bird species and long living and some even live for more than 100 years. This fact often puts people at ease when they want a pet that they can enjoy and love for a very long time. Here are some things you need to know about ferrets before you adopt when
Ferrets need a lot of exercises
Ferrets are very active and they are mostly tumbling, skidding across the floor and running around. They do take naps in between the chaos. Young ferrets have a thing for chasing toys, nibbling on your toes and jumping around. If you do not let your ferret out of the cage, you put it at risk of getting obese and they tend to overheat. So in order to keep your ferret healthy, you need to provide it with lots of playtimes.
Keeping ferrets is illegal in some areas
Before you purchase or adopt a ferret, take a lot at your local laws. In some places like New York City, Hawaii or California you will discover that your furry friends are banned. Many vets in this area might not be able to treat your sick ferret and as they do not have the required experience or knowledge. Therefore, if you live in such areas, you should opt for some other kind of pet.
Ferrets are escape artists
Ferrets have a tendency to get into anything and everything. Keeping an eye on them at all times is really important as they can squeeze their bodies into the weirdest places. They also have a knack of hiding things. After getting a ferret you may start losing keys, pens, soaps, spoons, watches, rings, paper and almost anything that is not nailed to the floor. The worst part is that they will hide your things in places that are impossible to reach. Food will begin to rot and smell and you will want to pull out your hair because of the stink which you have no idea where it is coming from.
- How long do ferrets live? Ferrets typically live between six to seven years assuming they get the correct physical and mental attention that they need. Most people do not have the time or patience to train ferrets, so they adopt three to four years old.
- Should I get more than one ferret? Ferrets are social animals and they require companionship of not just people but also other ferrets. At the minimum, you should consider getting two ferrets so that they can keep each other entertained when you are not around or are busy.
- What are some of the advantages of getting a ferret? They are loving, friendly, playful and inquisitive. Watching them is very entertaining. They have both the qualities of cats and dogs.
- What are some disadvantages of getting a ferret? They are a flight risk, are sometimes smelly, and are rather expensive and not suitable for very young children.
- What are some examples of ferret-proofing your home? You have to make sure that there are no spaces to get under for example under doors. They have the ability to weasel their way through the smallest gaps. You can also use temporary solutions such as stuffing towels under the gap or you can even go ahead and buy plastic pieces that can be used to cover the gap and go down to the floor. Also, make sure that the entire place has been enclosed properly and that the door or window are not even slightly open.