Ferret Math

Ferret math is a curious mathematical oddity whereby one ferret mysteriously becomes many. It can happen a million different ways, but almost certainly it will happen to most ferret owners. This is how it happened to me just this past weekend.

When last I wrote, my friend Benny had to be put to sleep. They think he had cancer and we knew for sure he had an enlarged spleen and a heart murmur. He sure was a great little fellow though.

Benny’s death left Stinkerbell all alone. Somehow, in the midst of mourning, my wife and I ended up at the local SPCA *just to look*, the idea being that ferrets are such social critters and we didn’t want Stinkerbell to be lonely. Well, it was probably that we were feeling pretty lonely too. Ferrets my be pretty small critters, but they have huge personalities and leave big holes in your heart and life when they are gone.

At the SPCA we found 2 little female ferrets who badly need a home. Unfortunately, my landlord was a little slow on the draw returning their phone call, and they have some other draconian adoption policies which prohibited us from adopting the 2 of them right then and there. The people at the SPCA have their hearts in the right place, but they obviously know nothing about ferrets whatsoever.

Somehow (ferret math here we come), a couple hours after that, I ended up looking at ferrets at the local PetCo with my wife and daughter. After a quick ferret-jedi hand wave, 2 of them were riding home in my car. Don’t ask.

The first of the 2 we called “Cake”. He was a beautiful cream colored ferret with a loving personality. We brought him home, introduced them all together for some good play time and, after the ferrets were finally worn out, we put them to sleep in the cage. They were all happy and getting along famously. Unfortunately, the next morning, Cake would not get up. He wasn’t particularly sick looking, just didn’t want to move. We took him back to the pet store who got him to their vet where he died some 20 minutes later. The vet believes that Cake died of insulinoma and had some tumors as well. And he was just a baby. It was sad.

The other ferret we brought home that day is “Teddy”. He is aptly named because he is just like a big cuddly teddy bear. He’s only 5 months old or so and very affectionate and REALLY soft and nice to hold. I think it is a ploy to get him a good home, and it worked. Although Teddy has not been to our vet yet, he appears to me to be quite healthy and exhibits normal youthful ferret behavior, ie he can’t sit still when he is awake. This is a good sign. He also gets along with Stinkerbell pretty well (although not famously yet).

If your counts are correct, that’s 2 ferrets down in less than 24 hours and 1 pleasant addition.

I had mentioned during this ordeal, I think when we were looking at ferrets at PetCo and picked up Teddy and Cake, that I had always wanted an albino ferret. Well, after I found out the bad news about Cake from the vet on monday afternoon, my wife was calling around to see what ferrets the other local PetCo’s in the area had and the next closest store had 1 ferret there. It was a 9 month (I think – old for a petstore) albino ferret which we learned later was born on my birthday. Of course I went to look at him and, you guessed it, he had to come home with us too. We named him “Puff” because he is SOOO soft, and white like a little powder puff. Although a bit older than Teddy, Puff has crazy energy. Initially I was hoping that he could keep up with Teddy, because Stinkerbell is getting old. I am quickly realizing that it’s Teddy that is going to have to keep up 🙂

I don’t know what more to write about my fuzzies here except I am happy to have them all. One dog, one cat and 3 ferrets. It takes a little patience and a lot of love to be owner of a fuzzy farm like I have, but the rewards are immense. Losing them really sucks, but not having had in my life at all is surely worse.

Now go and pet *your* fuzzy.

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