Your Thieving Ferret

Do you have a pet ferret? If so, you have a very cute and curious little pet. We’re guessing that it’s probably safe to say that things sometimes go missing in your home, only to turn up in your ferret’s cage. These cute little guys are known for stealing! In this article, your local veterinarian Milford goes over some interesting facts about ferrets and their favorite misdemeanor.


Ferrets have long been notorious for thieving. In fact, the very word ‘ferret’ is Latin for ‘Little thief!’ Historically, these have been the favored pets of pickpockets, who sometimes trained their little four-footed partners in crime to steal people’s wallets! The ancient philosopher Aristotle even warned about ferrets stealing honey and beehives.


Each individual ferret has own favorite items to pilfer. One ferret may like rubber, another might prefer plastic, while a third may be attracted to shiny things. A few of the more common items ferrets have been known to steal include socks, jewelry, coins, food, and utensils. Some ferrets are more ambitious than others, however: ferrets have also been caught ‘red-pawed’ stealing potatoes, cough drops, pens, bras, Christmas tree ornaments, money, wallets, and pretty much anything light enough for them to move! Ferrets have even been known to try to drag other ferrets back to their nests. One sneaky ferret even tried to steal a lady’s purse!


Ferrets don’t know they’re breaking laws when they steal your keys or cell phone. These little ones are natural tunnelers, and it is simply in their nature to bring food back to their dens. Some ferrets will take a treat they don’t like, hide it, then run back and beg for another, hoping to get something different. That doesn’t quite explain why ferrets steal remote controls and lipstick cases though, does it? No one is entirely sure, but the logical explanation is that somewhere down the line, ferrets may have gotten their signals a bit crossed when it comes to hoarding. Maybe they steal things so they can later pry them open in the hopes that there will be food inside. It’s also possible that ferrets have been rewarded for stealing jewelry and shiny things so often it’s become a built-in behavior. Whatever the reason, chances are, your cute little pet will charm you so much you’ll forgive his crimes in fairly short order.

Do you have any questions about caring for a pet ferret? We are happy to help. As your local vet clinic Milford, we are here to help with all of your pet care needs.

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