It is no surprise that dogs are one of the most popular pets in the world. On the other hand, ferrets are gaining more popularity as pets each day. The good news is that it is possible to have dogs and ferrets in the same household. These two types of animals can get along, but with supervision.
Keep in mind that some dog breeds and ferrets are not a good combination due to the dog’s nature. There are certain dogs like terriers, pointers, or setters that love to hunt. These dog breeds probably wouldn’t be the best match for a ferret. There are other dog breeds which possess a high prey instinct and may confuse the ferret with prey and go in for the attack. Please know and understand your dog breed and temperaments before bringing other animals into the house!
You may be wondering how to introduce dogs to ferrets. The most important thing you can do in a relationship between a ferret and a dog is to gradually introduce them. The introduction should always be supervised, and it last a couple of days. Ensure that the first time they meet is on neutral ground so that they don’t need to feel like they must defend their territory.
Let the dog and ferret be near each other. Put the ferret in a cage and let the dog come near the cage so they can smell each other. Having your dog on their leash would be helpful during this step. Give them time to smell each other and see if you notice any signs of aggression. If they are relaxed and curious about each other, you may remove the ferret from their cage. Hold the ferret in your arms and come near the dog in a slow manner. If you see any sign of aggression or fear, go back to the first step of keeping the ferret in their cage.
Continue working towards getting your dog and ferret comfortable with each other. You should be able to put the ferret on the ground and unleash the dog to determine a good interaction. No matter how comfortable they are, you should always ensure that they are supervised. Why? Anything is possible! For example, a game of chase can result in the dog accidently stepping, sitting, or laying on the ferret which may cause bone damage.
There is a chance that it is not a good match. This is okay. Every pet has a unique personality so there is always a possibility that it doesn’t work out. If you must keep the ferret, you may create a separate space for them which is not accessible by the dog. Either way, a little patience and a lot of consistency can go a long way!