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The Strange Items That Ferrets Stash

Ferret owners have many tales to tell about the strange items found in their ferrets’ stash.

By Rebecca Stout
Posted: August 1, 2010, 5 a.m. EDT

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Rebecca Stout reveals the most outlandish thing her ferrets ever stashed and the weirdest thing ever reported to be stolen by ferrets. Click Here>> 

Ferrets Many Uses For Food
Ferrets love the challenge of raiding a trashcan. Trashcans are an abyss of glorious items for ferrets. Surprisingly food isn’t always taken to eat, but to collect or even serve another purpose all together. Veteran ferret owner Laurel Dittman shared her trash tale. “My ferret Sylvia once stole a pound of bacon and a package of hot dogs and arranged them neatly in her nest with her "babies." I think she was bringing it home to feed her stuffed animals.” However such items are often chewed on or eaten sooner or later, and there are many dangerous things found there besides an occasional apple core or French fry.

Click image to enlarge
Photo Courtesy Kristina Brink
Garrison Bear steals the house land-line phone, along with credit cards and ID. He tried stealing the phone while his owner was using it. "Some ferrets store food for their apocalypse plan," owner Kristina Brink said, "Garrison thinks he'll order pizza.".

Bad Medicine For Ferrets
Medicines are very attractive to ferrets because they can be smelly and often come in attractive wrappings. Deborah Cottrell, DVM, of Newberry, Florida, recounts a fascinating case regarding a very young ferret brought in with extreme adrenal symptoms that were unresponsive to conventional treatment. The ferret was scheduled for exploratory surgery until Dr. Cottrell received a surprising call from its owner. “She'd found the answer,” Cottrell said. “Her ferret had been getting into the bathroom trash can and stealing the owner's used estrogen patches. The owner had found a stash in the back of the sofa where the ferret had made a little "getaway" lined with estrogen patches that she'd been sleeping on! Thanks to a vigilant owner, this ferret avoided surgery, and I've learned to always ask owners about this possibility.”

Click image to enlarge
Photo Courtesy Stephanie Currier
Tauvi is more than 8 years old, and her favorite thing to steal is small, velvet jewelry boxes.

Your Ferret Stole What?!
The following is a list of some of the stranger or funnier items stolen by ferrets: iPhone, Wii remote, Metamucil wafers, tubes of Neosporin, tub of wood putty, Windows XP, bra, a Craft doll head, Swiffers, green Uno cards, and a collection of tiny velvet jewelry boxes.

Lisa Hoover reported that the strangest things found in her ferret Thumbalina's stash were a toilet brush, 38 ink pens and false teeth. I have visions of some poor soul in Tennessee walking around toothless now because of a ferret.

A very commonly taken item is also one of the most peculiar reported. Many ferret owners have found that their ferrets love to take tampons and sanitary pads. Shelter volunteer and ferret owner Dianna Desrochers paints a comical picture, “The strangest thing I ever found in my ferrets’ stash ... was tampons. The ferrets had apparently found a box of them and proceeded to remove them, not only from the box, but also from the wrappers and the cardboard tubes. They had made themselves a nice little nest with them. And the only reason I found them was because one ferret decided to move the stash, and I saw him running across the room with one ... dragging it by the string.”

Click image to enlarge
small items from a ferret's stash
Photo Courtesy Kristina Borgstrom
A ferret named Fitch managed to stash all this: 15 socks, 12 pens, scraps of fabric, a hat, a hanger, a stuffed toy, a bra, 2 chapsticks, a baby food jar lid, a cheese knife, a packet of tissues, a monkey dish, a rib bone, an apple core, cat food, an empty bag of dried apricots, a baggie with vitamins in it and a tube of ferretvite!.

Fran Prager of Florida decided to give in to her ferrets’ compulsion and shares her unusual way of accommodating her ferrets. “At Christmas, I would buy him his own package of pads, tie each individual one up with ribbon and hang them very low on the tree. The wonderful gleam in his eyes when he stole the pads was worth having people question me about my somewhat odd tree decorations.”

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Rebecca Stout resides in rural Tennessee with her husband, two sons and beloved pets. Ferrets have been in her heart and life for 30 years. She enjoys writing, photography, animals and being a strong advocate for her autistic son.

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The Strange Items That Ferrets Stash

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Reader Comments
My furkids banded together and stole a full, sealed can of pop. They had to take it out of the box, move it around the dog kennel and the storage crate in order to get it under the couch.
Terry, Red Deer
Posted: 8/11/2010 5:28:20 PM
Silly humans. You just have to understand. We are not stealing or stashing your items. We are very smart. You are our human and you are too large to put in our den. So we take the items that smell like you and then put them away. Also everything that is yours is no longer yours. It's ours
Titus Spirito, South Hadley, MA
Posted: 8/11/2010 5:18:16 PM
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