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Shaking Ferret

What causes a ferret to shake like it's vibrating?

By Ailigh Vanderbush
Posted: May 1, 2008, 5 a.m. EST

Q: My 1-year-old little girl ferret, Kara, is always shaking. It’s like she's vibrating. Why does she do this?

A: Ferrets do have some interesting behaviors and shaking is one of them. If she is shivering after waking up, eating or relaxing, then it is quite normal.

We often think this shivering is because they are cold or afraid, however, most ferrets prefer cooler temperatures so they don’t get cold like we might and fear is usually shown in different ways.

Once your ferret is awake and running around for a few minutes, she probably no longer shivers or vibrates. When a ferret sleeps, its usually high metabolic rate slows down to conserve and replenish energy. The shivering behavior is a natural way to raise their metabolic rate and their heart rate after their previous burst of energy.

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Reader Comments
I have an awesome vet here close to Denver. His name is Dr. LaBonde, he specializes in exotic animal care. I think it is important that you get your little guy seen ASAP because it could be something pretty serious. I had a little girl who shook like that and began being lethargic and it was because she had low glucose. She is being treated a low dose of prednisone and is doing fairly good.
Homestead Animal Hospital
6900 S. Holly Circle  Centennial, CO  80112
Nico, Aurora, CO
Posted: 12/10/2013 10:33:22 AM
I'm pretty concerned about this as well. I've only had Bandit for a few months, he's only about seven months old. After his first 2 baths he seems traumatized or something. Since then, every time I pick him up he starts shaking and his limbs get all stiff with toes splayed. He also has ceased playing with his cage-mate or any of his toys and runs when i try and pick him up. WHAT DID I DO?
Posted: 12/5/2013 1:01:09 PM
My two year old female ferret, Fannie-Mae, does this same exact thing, usually after I squeak her toy to call her for a treat or for food, or to put her to bed for the night. I find this quite entertaining as it calls for a little more snuggle time before feeding or before bedtime.
Delores, Hiawassee, GA
Posted: 5/3/2008 8:29:15 AM
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