Ferret breeding is a very difficult task, although it may seem otherwise at first glance. Before deciding on such a responsible matter, you should very seriously consider all the pros and cons.
Ferret puberty can occur in 5-7 months. Male ferrets are capable of fruitful mating up to 5 years. Females, as a rule, successfully breed annually for 3-4 years. Ferris usually run from March to September. Knit (cover) the female should be approximately two weeks after the start of estrus.
At the beginning of estrus, the female especially needs vitamins! If her diet consists of natural products, calcium, phosphorus, vitamins D, A, B, and yeast should be added to the feed.
When choosing a pair, it is worth sticking to the same color for both manufacturers. The ferrets should meet on the territory of the male. Ferret mating is a stormy and noisy process, accompanied by screeching, screaming and fighting.
Pregnancy in ferrets lasts 40-45 days. A pregnant female eats, drinks, sleeps more, actively molts, and tries to exercise caution in movements. The pregnant female ferret is fed twice as much as usual.
During pregnancy, the female needs to prepare a nest. For these purposes, a wooden box with smooth walls, a plastic container, a ferret house, a large cage can be used. It is better to put small rags in the house (the material for the nest must be selected so that the choricha can find her puppies in it). Sawdust and hay are not suitable for bedding. The nest needs to be kept clean – this is one of the rules that allows you to grow healthy young animals.
Normal ferrets give birth no longer than 12 hours. If a day after the onset of labor, not all babies are still born, you must consult a veterinarian. The female begins to feed the babies only after she gives birth to the last of them. She puts the newborns in one place and lays down around them with her arms, hugging the kids with their paws. In this case, the female does not need to be disturbed; she does everything right. Usually soon the cubs themselves begin to suck milk.
Puppies are born completely helpless: bald, blind, toothless, with closed ear openings. Puppies should not be taken in hand unless absolutely necessary.
After giving birth, it is better to close the female in the cage (house) so that she cannot drag the puppies to another place. At this time, the female’s appetite may be reduced, so the diet is not changed, i.e. give the same as during pregnancy. And after 3-5 days, the diet and number of feeds of the animal is regulated depending on the number of puppies. To enhance lactation, females can be offered some water with honey or milk, a rosehip broth, slightly salted broths.
You can start feeding puppies from day 20. Begin with minced meat, which will be supplemented with vitamins A, B, yeast, and especially the calcium complex. The eyes of the babies open on the 30-35 day. By 45-50 days, ferrets are already playing with each other and their mother, learning to walk in the tray, running and jumping.
It is worth saying that raising puppies is a crucial step and a very serious job. Some breeders even take vacations for the first time. It is important to understand that breeding rarely brings financial profit. often, it is on the verge of self-sufficiency or brings direct financial losses. Think about it for you, and be sure to consult experienced breeders.