For most animals being close to water can present dangers.
Being able to survive and deal with water is a crucial skill for almost every creature and that includes ferrets.
Helping your ferret to become familiar with water and encouraging him to swim can be a lifesaver if he were to ever fall into water unsupervised.
Ferrets are good swimmers and, in the wild, will swim to cross water to escape predators, to find food and, to recover safely if they fall into water. Generally ferrets do not swim for fun but for survival needs and out of natural instincts.
How well can a ferret swim?
If you are letting your ferret swim then you should supervise him to make sure that he doesn’t get into trouble or too tired.
Although ferrets are good swimmers they are land animals and swimming is something that they do out of necessity as opposed to choice, so be mindful of your ferret if you do let him swim.
How to teach your ferret to swim?
You do not need to teach your ferret to swim although you may need to help him to become confident in the water.
Ferrets will often be pleased if you let them play or swim in a pool but they are unlikely to initiate this themselves.
If you would like to teach your ferret how to swim then it is easily done with a gentle introduction and plenty of praise.
You’ll need a shallow and safe source of water, such as a small paddling pool that will give your ferret a chance to become familiar with the water.
These dog paddling pools on Amazon are tough and are ideal for ferrets to use for swimming.
Encourage your ferret to get into the water by playing or using toys, such as a ball that he will enjoy chasing.
If possible do this on a warm day when the prospect of a cooling dip will be more attractive to your pet.
Keep the session short and make sure that he has a good dry off and food when you have finished.
Over time you can gradually increase the depth of the water which will encourage your ferret to float and swim.
It’s best not to rush and be too hasty ad allow him time to get comfortable with swimming.
As with all animals, ferrets have different personalities and some will take to water more easily than others.
If your ferret is frightened or distressed then stop and try another day.
What if my ferret is struggling in the water?
If you are letting your ferret swim or play with toys in shallow water and notice that he is becoming distressed then you should immediately remove him from the water.
Try to make sure that you only ever offer your ferret water in a safe shallow place so that he has a chance to escape if he needs to.
Don’t ever let your ferret loose in open water, the sea, swimming pools or anywhere else where he could get into difficulty and drown.
Always supervise your pets ( regardless of type ) when they are in or near any water.
What you need to know about ferret swimming
Ferrets do often swim in water if they are playing with a toy or chasing prey.
Most of the time they will not swim for fun, but more because it’s an instinctive reaction ( and perhaps also for prey )
That being said ferrets generally enjoy playing or chasing toys in shallow water but never let your ferret loose in open water !
Ferrets are good swimmers but they tire easily and you should supervise any swimming sessions.
Ferrets are generally good swimmers, but put them in a pool and things can change quickly.
They tire easily so supervision is advised especially while you are teaching him how to swim.
Water is a fun place for most ferrets but it’s important that your pet only ever let your ferret have access to water where he can easily get out if he needs to.
Remember that, just like children, some ferrets can swim better than others and safety is the most important thing that should be on your mind whenever your ferret is playing in water or swimming.
You should always supervise your pets when they are swimming.