Ferrets and Litter Boxes
Ferrets are naturally clean critters and should be trained to use a litter box. Teaching your ferret the purpose of the litter box is easy, getting him to use it consistently, for the intended purpose, is another matter.
Just like house training a dog, litter training a ferret takes time, attention and patience. These tips and steps will help make the process less frustrating.
5 Tips to Train Your Ferret to Use a Litter Box
1. Limit ferrets just learning to use a litter box to smaller cages and areas.
After he is fully litter box trained, he can be moved to a larger cage and larger free areas. As you expand the free area, add more litter boxes. Corners are best, as they are preferred bathroom locations. If there is a litter box near by, he is more likely to use it. If you pay attention, he will show you where he prefers his bathroom to be. Be sure to pick him up and put him in the litter box frequently until he goes. If he doesn’t, let him play a few minutes and try again.
2. Keep the litter box in the corner of the cage away from eating and sleeping areas.
Ferrets naturally prefer to back into their bathroom, and they generally select corners. Plus, they do not like to eat, sleep and do their business in the same area (who does?).
3. When you wake your ferret for play, immediately place her in her litter box.
Ferrets usually need to do their business as soon as they wake up. Do not let her out until she has finished.
4. Until your ferret is consistently using the litter box for its intended purpose, do not keep it too clean.
You want your ferret to recognize what it is for.
5. If you catch your ferret backing into corner, immediately pick her up and say a firm “NO” and put her in her litter box until she goes.
Then give her lots of love and praise.
Now you know how to train your ferret to use a litter box, but there are a few things that you should not do as well.
- Never punish or hit your ferret for having an accident.
- Never rub his nose in it.
- Don’t offer him a food treat for going in his litter box–he will then learn to pretend!