Ferret Neutering

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Ferrets are a relatively common pet and generally get few problems; except the female or jill ferrets that are prone to severe anaemia. Jills ferrets are unusual in that they will not ovulate until they are mated and so stay in season and maintain a high oestrogen level. This damages the bone marrow and causes irreversible anaemia, which will be fatal.

There are several ways to prevent this;

  1. Jills can be spayed removing all the reproductive organs though it has now been shown that they will develop Cushings disease (where they produce too much of their own steroid) later in life. It also means general anaesthetic and an operation.
  2. A vastectomised ferret can be used to mate the female but not give a pregnancy, which means operating on the male, though one male can be used for several jills.
  3. The jills can be injected with Delvosterone in the spring which usually acts up to 6 months and because ferrets are seasonal breeders but does not always stop all the seasons.
  4. There is now a new implant called Suprelorin, that is licensed for ferrets which can be used and will last up to two years. Though due to the size of the implant a very short anaesthetic or sedation would be needed to insert the implant.

It is important to be aware and manage your jills to prevent future problems.

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