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Ferret Not Drinking

What to do if your ferret is not drinking?

By Alicia Drakiotes

What can you do if your ferret refuses to drink?

1. Check to make sure the water is fresh.

2. Make sure the water is not cold. We believe cold water is refreshing, but a ferret’s body temperature is higher than a human’s, so ingesting cold water can irritate gastrointestinal tissues.

3. Check the water bottle or dish to make sure it is clean.

4. If you’re offering tap water, check that no water cautions are in effect. Ferrets have a keen sense of smell and may pick up a foul odor we cannot discern.

5. If a water caution is in effect, boil and cool tap water before supplying it to your ferret.

6. If you are using a plastic bowl or bottle, try substituting with a glass (ceramic) bowl or bottle. At times petroleum products can cause allergic reactions or may taint the smell of the water.

7. If you notice the ferret refusing to drink from its bottle after checking all of the above tips, try offering water in a bowl. If it still does not drink on its own, offer it water using a dropper.

8. If your ferret is still not drinking, is lethargic and appears dehydrated, see your veterinarian right away.


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Reader Comments
How can you tell if your ferret is pregnant? Id this dangerous for the ferret?
Carol, San Antonio, TX
Posted: 3/22/2010 9:44:45 AM
Thanks for the tips. I don't have a ferret. but if my rabbit does the same thing, I will try simalar tips. One time my rabbit refused to drink water. We found out it was just because he was not yet used to his new outside cage.
Aiyanna, Eugene, OR
Posted: 7/10/2009 1:17:58 PM
Good article.
Mary, Ptld, ME
Posted: 9/22/2008 3:59:33 AM
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