Fur care

Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair?

Mariana Castanheira
By Mariana Castanheira, Licensed vet. Updated: February 22, 2018
Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair?

The ferret is a lovely but delicate pet. They must be treated with great care and always following your veterinarian's guidelines, provided they are specialized in ferrets.

The ferret is a very small mustelidae with a great capacity to sneak through very small holes and cracks. They are natural explorers and do not know the meaning of fear when moved by their almost infinite curiosity. Consequently, hair tends to get very dirty after their excursions in unlikely places.

This is one of the main reasons why ferrets lose a lot of hair. If you continue reading this AnimalWised article, you can find out the causes and learn about the remedies to prevent your ferret from losing a lot of hair.

You may also be interested in: My Cat's Hair Is Not Growing Back


  1. What are the negative effects of dirt on our Ferret's fur?
  2. Why should you limit the number of baths you give your ferret?
  3. Dry cleaning
  4. Nutrient deficiency
  5. Diseases
  6. Heat stroke
  7. Prevention

What are the negative effects of dirt on our Ferret's fur?

In our article on bathing a ferret we specify that this small animal should not be bathed more than once a month. However, it is more than likely that, unconscious as they can be sometimes, they will crawl through some place that would seem horrifyingly dirty to us, but will be a place full of mystery and adventure in their eyes.

Do we have to bathe them every time they come back totally dirty? The answer is a resounding no.

However, the dirt accumulated in the hair is the cause of the blackheads, which is the previous anticipation sign of extreme hair loss in our ferret. How to solve this dilemma? Read on, because in AnimalWised you will find the solution.

Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair? - What are the negative effects of dirt on our Ferret's fur?

Why should you limit the number of baths you give your ferret?

One of the main reasons for not exceeding the frequency in our ferret's bathing is to prevent the protective oils that secrete glands distributed throughout their body from disappearing. These oils are essential to protect your ferret's hair and dermis.

These oils are part of the cause of our friend's strong smell. If we bathe our ferret in excess, their body will immediately regenerate the oil removed, whose odor will be more penetrating than the old oil. Also, find out some tips to get rid of the bad smell of ferrets.

Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair? - Why should you limit the number of baths you give your ferret?

Dry cleaning

Exactly, dry cleaning is a good solution to remove the adventurous dirt of our demented explorer and save them from likely body baldness. There are three products for ferret dry cleaning:

  • Dry detergent
  • Dry foam
  • Wet wipes

Cleaning powders look like talcum powder. They are distributed over the body or dirty area and then removed with a thick brush with soft bristles. We must not apply them to the face or genitals.

The dry foam will be applied to your hand, massaging the dirty areas with it. To remove it we will rub it with a clean cloth or towel. Then we'll pass the soft brush through their fur. The face and genitals should be exempt from such application.

Baby wipes are the simplest and most comfortable way to clean our little explorer. After rubbing the dirty areas we will dry them with a cloth or towel and brush them all over. We should not apply it to the face and genitals either.

Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair? - Dry cleaning

Nutrient deficiency

A dietary deficiency caused by an excess or defect of the various components in their diet, is a very frequent cause for extreme hair loss in ferrets. Find out more about their ideal diet in ferret care.

Your veterinarian should correct inadequate feeding and control excessive hair loss. They may also prescribe vitamins or other remedies to invigorate their coat. It is essential to feed them with specific foods and the right proportions to preserve their health.


Dirt and insect bites can lead to dermal diseases, which affect your ferret's skin and hair. It is very important that you have all the vaccinations up to date. If you notice your ferret is acting aloof, it is imperative to visit the vet.

Sleep deprivation is a heavy burden on the health of domestic ferrets, and is one of the reasons for excessive hair loss. This problem can cause death.

Remember that the ferret has nocturnal habits. If you make them play outside of their comfort hours, you will be seriously damaging their health. They may also suffer from a particular ferret disease that causes hair loss.

Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair? - Diseases

Heat stroke

Ferrets have a rather poor body temperature thermoregulatory system. This causes them to be very exposed to heat stroke during the summer, which can be fatal.

You should not bathe them, but spray them with water to cool them, or put a wet towel on their cage. Obviously during the summer they shed their hair and get "naked", losing a lot of density in their winter coat.

Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair? - Heat stroke


Prevention is better than cure, as the saying goes. If you get used to brushing your ferret every day for a minute, you will remove dead hair and adhering dirt.

You will also control your ferret's dermis, immediately warning of any anomaly. A well-kept ferret is a very happy animal.

Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair? - Prevention

If you want to read similar articles to Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair?, we recommend you visit our Fur care category.

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Why Is my Ferret Losing Hair?