- Ferrets lack a cecum to digest/ process fuits and vegetables.
- A ferrets left lung has 2 lobes, while the right has 4.
- A ferrets body contains 14 or 15 pairs of ribs.
- A kit has 30 baby teeth, while an adult has 34.
- Food fully travels throughout their system in 3 hours.
Home Blood Glucose Testing for Ferrets
below information is not endorsed by any Veterinarian
and is being provided solely from personal experience.
You should consult with your Veterinarian.
Once a ferret is diagnosed with insulinoma,
regardless of treatment option, their glucose values will
need to checked frequently (every 2-3 months). Often times
your Veterinarian will use a veterinarian glucose meter
and/or send out samples to the lab. While the meters they
often use are pretty accurate, they generally run a little
on the low side, so any reading that is questionable will
be sent out to the lab for analysis.
The question arises if the meters sold for
humans can be used in ferrets for home monitoring. The
answer is yes and no. All but one meter requires too large
of a blood sample (1-5 microliters), not making it practical.
The Freestyle meter by TheraSense however, only requires
0.3 (the size of a pin dot), making this option feasible.
(Please note: the use of this meter in this manner
is not approved or endorsed by TheraSense).
It is important to keep in mind that human
glucometers are calibrated to run lower than actual values
(about 20%), providing the individual enough time to react
to the situation. When using for ferrets, this should be
taken into consideration when calculating the value (multiply
your result by 20%), keeping in mind that it will still
run slightly lower than lab values.
If you receive a calculated value (result x 20%)
on a glucometer below 60,
call your Veterinarian at once to discuss. They
will most likely want to see the ferret and run
a lab test to confirm.
Follow these steps to perform the test (one
person job using a back foot pad):
Line up all needed supplies: Freelance glucometer,
Freelance test strips, Freelance lancet (blue
cap for finger set at level "5"),
tissues, q-tips, Vaseline, alcohol and of course
the treat - ferretone ( do NOT use
any sugary treat such as laxatone or nutrical,
you will not get an accurate reading which
defeats the purpose).
Locate your ferret. If he/she was sleeping, rub
the back footpads to increase circulation.
Apply some Vaseline using a q-tip or tissue and
apply a very small amount on the pad which will
allow the small amount of blood to bead, and on
the fur around the pad to grease it back, wipe
Place the lancet up against the foot pad with
moderate pressure and release the trigger (this
will not hurt your ferret, they often don't even
realize anything has happened. If they do, they
will quickly go right back to their treat).
****If you are having a hard time obtaining
blood, try changing the needle in the lancing device, it
might be dull.
- Ferret's normal rectal temperature is between 100 - 104 with 101.9 being the average.
- Heart rate is 180 - 250 bpm with 225 being average.
- Respiration is 33-36 per minute.
- Normal urine pH is 6.5 - 7.5
- Blood volume is 60-80 ml/ kg.
- Ferrets do possess toxoplasmosis in
their systems. However, unlike cats they cannot release/
shed the infected eggs back into the environment, they
hit a dead end, so humans cannot catch the disease.