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Ferret Bites Cause Confusion

Why is a ferret biting some people but not others?

By Ailigh Vanderbush
Posted: June 1, 2012, 11 a.m. EDT

Q: I have two ferrets, a 4-year-old boy and a 1-year-old girl. My girl ferret bites a lot and my boy ferret really bites, but no blood ever comes out. Is he teaching the girl ferret to do this, or is she just playing? A lot of the time she will only bite certain people, like she won’t bite me, but she bites my mom. My mom plays with both ferrets, so I don’t get it.

A: Bites are simply a form of communication for ferrets. Your female ferret is probably biting the male as part of play (I presume they are spayed/neutered or it is a whole different issue). Ferrets generally play pretty roughly, and they don’t understand that biting hurts us. If only we could explain we have thinner skin than they do!

Ferrets are capable of identifying who will let them bite (your mom versus you) or it could be that you play differently. Whoever your ferret bites needs to immediately stop playing with her and only play/handle her when she isn’t biting people.

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