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Ferret Names

Explore the origins and inspirations for ferret names, from the scientific to the whimsical.

Laura Doering
Posted: April 25, 2014, 4 a.m. EDT

Remember when you first scooped up your ferret, petting her tenderly while you mused about finding a name befitting of such a precious critter companion? Or was it more like you caught your new ferret doing something mischievous, like stealing your sock and making a beeline for under the couch — just out of reach? A look at some of the names of ferrets on SmallAnimalChannel gives some insight on their personality and their many looks.

Outlaws And Bandits
Ferrets seem to lend themselves to renegade names. Bandit, for example, is one of the more common ferret names. Ferrets certainly sport an outlaw look with their dark-haired mask. And some ferret names hint of a rebellious personality to match — Rascal, Havoc, Rebel, Trouble, Houdini, Mayhem, Mischief and Trouble Makers are the names of real-life ferrets no doubt living real-life adventures in their loving ferret homes.

Not all ferrets go looking for trouble. Ferrets also have a snuggle-into-the-hand-warmer-part-of-your-hoody side. For these ferret personalities a moniker like Teddy (as in your snuggly teddy bear), Flower, Angel, Daisy and Baby all hint at the ferret’s softer side.

Many ferrets boast names that hint of a furry critter that demands respect and the people’s full attention. Prince, Captain Jack, Napoleon Bonafert, Caesar, Princess Koko, Snow White and Vader are all names of ferrets on SmallAnimalChannel and, with names like those, I imagine that they all expect the royal treatment from their people — "I see you’re eating eggs for breakfast; where are my eggs?”

white ferret lying on towel
Ferret Milli Vanilli/© Courtesy Mary Cruse
Many different things can serve as inspiration for a ferret's name, including a music group!

What’s In A Name?
Before naming your new furry friend, it might be helpful to know if you have a hob or a jill. That’s ferret-speak for male or female. Or maybe you have a wee-little kit, aka a baby ferret. You might even have a little business of ferrets, meaning you share your home with a group of ferrets. (Dogs run in packs, cats congregate in a clowder, birds fly in flocks, and for ferrets it’s all business!)

Your ferret also has a scientific name: Mustela furo or M. putorius furo. Mustela is Latin for weasel, putorius is a derivative of the Latin word putor, meaning a stench or stink, and furo translates to "thief.” (I can only imagine that whomever bestowed the scientific name must have had a ferret steal something he or she liked very much, and that said ferret liked whatever he took so much that he left his scent behind as a way of claiming the area his!)

For long-time ferret owner Priscilla Gabrielle finding the right names for her ferrets came rather effortlessly. She named her first ferret Blossom (a sable panda blaze), because, according to Gabrielle, she looked just like a flower blossom.

"She was so tiny and cute! Thus her name was Blossom from that very first moment,” Gabrielle said.

And, like a lot of other ferret owners, Gabrielle had a trickster ferret, which she appropriately named Trixie. "She was always up to something. Trixie just fit her spitfire fearless personality,” Gabrielle said.

Another ferret reminded her of one of the meerkats on the Animal Planet show Meerkat Manor, so she named him Zaphod, after the Whiskers’ mob dominant male. "He looked just like a meerkat with his coloring and markings.”

She currently shares her life with a ferret named Buddha. "When I saw him for the first time, he was lying on his back. His lighter [colored] and ample belly stood out,” Gabrielle said. "I asked him where he got his Buddha belly. His name was Buddha from that point on. He’s the joy of my life!”

Famous Ferrets
If you are looking toward popular culture for naming inspiration, here are some interesting ferret characters found on the big screen: Jasper was the name of the ferret in the 2011 movie short Jake & Jasper: A Ferret Tale; the movie The Golden Compass (2007) had a ferret named Pan. The 2004 movie Along Came Polly featured a ferret named Rodolfo. Probably the most famous ferrets are from the 1982 movie The Beastmaster and follow-up TV series, which featured two ferrets named Kodo and Podo.

Of course, there are many popular people names from the silver screen that are pet names too: Twilight movie franchise fans have Bella, Edward and Jacob, and if you’re a fan of Lego, The Lego Movie from 2014 has a fitting name for a ferret — Wyldstyle is this animated movie’s heroine.

Like this article? Check out:
Top Small Animal Names, click here>>
Ferret Names With Flair, click here>>
Guinea Pig Names, click here>>

Posted: April 25, 2014, 4 a.m. EDT

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