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Older Ferret Suddenly Attacks Younger Ferrets In Household

Why would an older ferret suddenly attack the younger ferrets in its household?

By Ailigh Vanderbush
Posted: October 1, 2011, 5 a.m. EDT

Q: I have an older ferret that has just recently become very aggressive with my other ferrets. The aggressive ferret has attacked my other ferrets by violently biting their throats and trying to harm them. This behavior is not in play, because the ferrets that are being attacked scream out in fear. The whole event is very frightening. I need a solution to help bring peace back to my home. With each attack my older ferret becomes more aggressive. I have now separated the other ferrets from the older ferret, and I supervise all activity and encounters with him.

A: Sudden aggression in an older ferret can be a result of a number of things, but the biggest culprit is adrenal gland disease, which requires a trip to the veterinarian. Usually once the adrenal gland disease is treated, the aggression stops. There may be a few other medical issues that could be a possible cause, so before assuming a behavior problem, please have your ferret checked over by a veterinarian.

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