Did you know the smell that your Ferret produces actually has a purpose?
The smell actually helps the ferrets to mark their territory in the wild, but the odor becomes a problem when you have to live in the same house as them.
Ferrets have a natural musky smell that is generally produced by scent sacs located near their anus. Getting rid of the odor is difficult but not impossible.
How to get rid of ferret odor in a room?
You can keep the ferret odor in check by cleaning the ferret’s cage frequently, washing its bedding, cleaning your house and cleaning your ferret’s litter box at least twice a day. You can even get your ferret’s sac surgically removed.
In order to keep your room from stinking up, you need to make sure that the odor does not occur in the first place. You need to nip the problem in the bud.
1. Keep Your Ferret Clean!
You should start by bathing your ferret once a month.
But keep in mind:
Over-bathing your ferret will only make the smell situation worse as water strips away the oils from the skin of the ferret. The body of the ferret begins to produce more oils in order to fill the gap which ultimately produces more smell.
The best way to bathe your ferret is:
- Fill a tub with water and then submerge your ferret in the water.
- Keep your ferret’s head above the water at all times and make sure that the water is warm.
- Scrub your fuzzy fella with a shampoo that is safe for your ferret; you can easily purchase ferret friendly shampoos from pet stores or even the vet.
The thing you should remember is never to use human conditioner or shampoo on your fuzzy buddy as they can be very toxic for them, and do not bathe your ferret more than once a month unless it is excessively dirty.
2. Clean the ears of the ferret every week
The proper way to clean your ferret’s ears is:
- Pour a small amount of ear cleaning solution into a bowl.
- Dip the cotton swab into the liquid.
- Take the cotton swab and rub it along the outer ear of your ferret.
- Gently move the cotton swab deeper into the ear of your ferret and rotate it as you clean.
You can easily purchase an ear cleaning solution at any pet store or even online. When you swirl the cotton swab around you prevent the wax from going in deeper and always replace a dirty cotton bud with a new fresh one.
You should always be able to see part of the swab even when you are managing your pet’s inner ear. Otherwise, you might go in too deep and damage the poor guy’s ear.
3. Brush the teeth of your ferret at least once a week
Invest in a soft toothbrush and toothpaste that is made for kittens and cats.
Try following these steps to brush your ferret’s teeth:
- Hold your ferret in your lap
- Use your hand to pull the gums of the ferret on a single side of its mouth.
- Apply toothpaste onto the brush and then gently rotate the brush against the ferret’s gums in small circles.
Your ferret will hate getting its teeth brushed at first but slowly and gradually it will get used to it after a couple of times.
If you are scared that your ferret might bite, you always have an option of taking the little bud to the vet to get its teeth professionally cleaned.
4. Neuter your ferret at a young age
The hormones of a ferret go into overdrive once they reach maturity.
This can actually lead to an uptick in the musky odor of both the females and the males. Neutering or spraying can actually reduce the ferret’s odor making potential and make them overall healthier.
Females stay in heat until they mate and can even suffer from anemia!
Getting them neutered helps prevent this. Neutering a male ferret, on the other hand, is another story as neutering a male ferret can increase the risk of the ferret developing adrenal gland disease.
Before making a decision, you should discuss the advantages and disadvantages of neutering your pet ferret with your vet.
5. Train your ferret to make use of the litter box
Observe your ferret and see where in the cage does the ferret goes to carry out its business. You should put the litter box in the same place.
Then pick up a few dropping and place them in the litter box so that it smells like a restroom or your ferret.
Most of the ferrets will immediately begin using the litter box after that. If your ferret is causing problems and not using the litter box, then try changing the type of litter to another kind of plant fiber. Ferrets like cats will not completely let go of their pooping habit, but the problem will decrease by about 90 percent.
6. Clean the litter box twice a day
You should remember to keep the litter box very clean. Try using a scoop to pick up the droppings from your ferret’s litter box.
Leave some of the droppings behind every time in order to remind the ferret what the litter box is for. Whenever the litter box seems low on granules or paper, just add some fresh ones.
Never allow the poop to pile up as then the ferret will begin digging and there will be litter everywhere. Also, remember not to move the litter box when you are cleaning it as the ferret might stop using it altogether. Only use granules or pelleted paper in your litter box as clay pellets are very bad for ferrets if ingested.
7. Clean the cage of your ferret once a week
The best way to clean your ferret’s cage is by removing the toys, litter box and any other item from the cage and then taking it outside.
Use warm water and dish soap to scrub the cage down. Let the cage dry on its own and in the meantime, you can wipe down the toys and the box.
Try purchasing a metal cage rather than a wooden one as coated wire cages can be cleaned much more easily than wooden ones plus the wood absorbs the odor of the ferret. It is also very important to clean the ferret’s cage in order to remove stale food from attached to the surface of the cage.
8. Vacuum and dust you’re home on a weekly basis
When your ferrets play and roam around the house, they tend to transfer the oils from their body onto the nearby furniture, couches, pillows, rugs, and curtains, etc. The odor begins to linger there until you wipe it down.
So in order to prevent the building up of the musky odor, you need to vacuum and dust your house frequently.
A better way to keep the odor at bay is to allow the ferrets to roam around in a defined space or specific rooms so that it is easier for you to just clean those specific places and be done with it.
9. Feed your ferret a high-quality protein-packed diet
You can easily purchase ferret food from your local pet store or even online. Try buying food that lists lean meat such as chicken, and this is mostly the first ingredient on the ingredient list on the box.
You need to avoid feeding your ferret food that contains vegetables, grains, fat or fruits. If you feed your ferret the right kind of food, you can help reduce its odor.
Foods that contain corn and sugar products are a big no. They can easily upset the digestive system of the ferret and offer nutritional benefits to the fuzzy creature at all. Many people feed their ferret’s fish to cater to their lean meat needs, but fish just make the ferret poop even smellier.
In extreme conditions, you can get the scent glands surgically removed
Many of the vets today actually consider the de-scenting surgery as a very normal cosmetic procedure although the surgery itself can be very painful for the ferret and may present potential complications. Your vet will only carry out surgery if the glands of your ferret are infected or there are any other major problems with the animal.
Ferret FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Q: Can I spritz my ferret lightly with lemon water to lighten the odor?
A: No, you should never spritz your ferret with lemon water. It ends up getting in their nose or their eyes. Ferrets naturally have a musky odor and there is nothing you can really do about it. The lemon will probably make your ferret smell like a treat for a few hours, but then the smell will come back again like normal.
Q: How do I get rid of ferret smell from my body and my hands?
A: In order to get the ferret smell off your hands and your body, you need to wash your body with warm water and soap. Try making use of dish soap as it has a very strong scent and so it would do wonders to cover up the musky odor on your body and hands.
Q: Do I need to apply sunscreen on my ferret?
A: Ferrets do not need sunscreen. By applying sunscreen to your ferret, you will do more harm than good. The chemicals present in the sunscreens can be very harmful and toxic for your little fuzzy friend. The fur of the ferret does a great job of protecting it from the sun.