Outdoor enclosure for ferrets: you have to pay attention to this

The closest you can come to a species-appropriate attitude is an outdoor enclosure for ferrets. Here the little rascals can let off steam and stick their noses in the fresh air. However, there are a few important things to keep in mind when keeping your ferrets outside.

Every ferret needs a warm, weatherproof retreat in the outdoor enclosure - Shutterstock / Chipiko

Every ferret needs a warm, weatherproof retreat in the outdoor enclosure – Shutterstock / Chipiko

There are many things that are essential to a healthy, safe and happy ferret life. When it comes to outdoor ferret enclosures, a number of things are important, including space, security and protection, and proper interior design.

An outdoor enclosure for ferrets must offer sufficient space

Unlike keeping ferrets indoors, the following applies to keeping ferrets outdoors: Ten square meters of walking space for two ferrets is a must. You should add at least two square meters more for each additional animal. In addition to the pure running surface, there is still room for the important elements of the interior design, including sleeping houses, feeding areas, playgrounds and cuddly caves. In general, the following applies to the ferret enclosure: the more space, the better.

Safety first: the burglar and escape-proof ferret enclosure

Ferrets have many enemies in nature, including cats, martens and birds of prey. An outdoor enclosure for ferrets must therefore be designed to be burglar-proof for potential predators. A close-meshed (!) wire should be attached around the enclosure. Regular rabbit wire is too unsafe – anywhere a ferret’s head can fit, the rest of the body will fit as well. Hot-dip galvanized aviary wire, for example, which the clever little creatures cannot bend, is ideal. It is also important that everything is sealed from above to keep cats and birds of prey away, but also to prevent the acrobatic ferrets from climbing out.

The edges of the enclosure should be reinforced with wood or stone for safety. Ferrets can easily burrow 60 centimeters deep, which is why an underground fence made of aviary wire is advisable – not only to prevent escapes, but also to prevent predators from getting in. Even better is a surface made of digging-resistant material such as concrete. Alternatively, you can also use solid wood or stone slabs as a floor for the outdoor enclosure. Advantage of such a uniform floor: you can easily clean it.

Make outdoor enclosures for ferrets weatherproof

An outdoor enclosure for ferrets must be weatherproof. One or more sufficiently large, insulated sleeping cottages with a cozy interior are a must. The animals must be able to withdraw at any time in order to get to safety from wind and weather. In general, the cute marten animals cope better with low than with high temperatures. As a rule, sub-zero temperatures are not a problem as long as there is a warm retreat in the enclosure. However, temperatures around 30 degrees Celsius can be dangerous, as there is a risk of heat stroke. In summer, you should therefore provide your ferrets with plenty of opportunities to cool off, such as a small pool with water and shady places such as cool caves.

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Feeding places and play areas

Of course, if you keep ferrets outside, you must also provide them with food and water year-round and replenish them regularly. Set up feeding places in the outdoor enclosure for this. Tip: To keep swarms of flies away from the bowls in summer, you can build a shelter in which food and water are provided. To do this, use a crate or box with a cloth at the entrance. The flies stay out and the ferrets quickly learn that they can slip through the cloth. In winter it is particularly important that the water does not freeze – so a safe, sheltered place for the bowls is a must. Heated bowls ensure that the water stays free of ice.

Of course, ferrets also need plenty of play opportunities in the outdoor enclosure. Provide caves and pipes for the animals to run through, as well as climbing opportunities in the form of different levels and stairs. Of course, all this should also be safe for the active goblins! There are hardly any limits to your imagination here. Ask your specialist dealer about suitable toys for ferrets. Important: Don’t neglect to entertain your ferrets personally – activity is important and ensures the happiness of your little rascals.

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