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Ferrets often do not get their due in American society because, well, they are far out numbered by cats and dogs in the world of pets.
But nevertheless, ferrets make wonderful pets and, because they require a little more attention than their feline and canine counterparts, they often inspire more emotion from their owners. So, when they are gone, memorializing them properly becomes an important consideration from an emotional point of view.
Here are a few tips.
One of the first things to consider when memorializng ferrets is a plan. Ferrets live much shorter lives than many other pets (8 years is an incredibly long life span. Most live to be no more than 4 years old), and they are much more accident prone as well. (One of the leading causes of ferret death is being crushed in a reclining chair. Many ferrets also die from being trapped in refrigerators or dryers and falling from window ledges.) So, even while a ferret is living, owners would do well to have a plan for properly memorializing their beloved pet, in the event of a sudden death. Having a plan will assure that the family memories left behind by a ferret will remain alive for decades even if the pet should pass unexpectedly at an inopportune time, when the temptation might be to simply dispose of the body haphazardly and build a less-than-fitting memorial (or no memorial at all).
The next thing to consider is that, even though ferrets are not as popular as other animals in the United States, their loss can evoke the same feelings of grief and sadness as any other type of pet. So ferret owners should not be ashamed to build the memorial that their heart desires. Some cremation urns and grave markers are designed especially for ferrets, and others that are designed generically to suit any species will be appropriate for any ferret. Ferret owners may feel pressure from others to downplay their ferret’s loss and to not show their grief publicly. This pressure comes about simply because ferrets are not as commonly thought of as “real” pets and because ferrets have shorter lives than “real” pets. But the loss felt by a grieving ferret owner is the same as that felt by someone who owns a cat or dog. So any type of memorial that suites the ferret owners desires is appropriate -- and healthy. Fortunately, the memorial industry has a wide variety of products to help in this situation.
The most important thing to keep in mind when memorializing a ferret is that , as with any pet, your ferret is like a member of your family. Losing such a beloved figure is difficult. Grieving is appropriate. And building an honorable memorial can be an important and healthy thing to do.
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