Ferrets and Heat Don’t Mix: Creating a Summer Backup Plan

by amy brockman · 2 comments ===> Tags: , , ,

How would you deal with a ferret heat emergency?

Let’s assume for a minute it’s peak summer and you’re suddenly faced with complete loss of air-conditioning in your home. Maybe the central air conditioning unit itself suddenly quit or you just had a storm and lines are down? Perhaps electricity is in such high demand your locality is facing rolling blackouts as we did here in the Dallas area this past summer? Or did you just forgot to pay the bill? Whichever the case may be, heat above 85 degrees can be deadly to a ferret.

What would you do without air-conditioning? Every ferret owner needs a plan for both short and long-term outages.

Easy and Cheap Options

The quickest, easiest, and cheapest short-term plan may be to load all animals into an air-conditioned vehicle and drive them to the home of a friend, neighbor or relative who still has power and air-conditioning and is willing to keep them. Think ahead who this could be and make a plan to discuss it with them ahead of time.

Removing pets from the home is not always an option. If you must keep your ferrets at home through an air-conditioner outage there are things you can do to help keep them cool.

  • Keep bottles of water in the freezer and frozen to be used for cooling if needed. Place bottles under a blanket or towel for ferrets to lay on.
  • If electricity is still available, place bottles of ice in front of the fan to create a cool breeze.
  • Give ice water and ice cubes for them to drink.

Generator and Window Air

If you can afford to do so, keeping a small window air-conditioner handy as a backup plan should your central air-conditioning fail is a good idea. If you can add to that a small gas powered generator, you’ll be prepared for electrical outages as well.

Small portable window air-conditioning units are fairly cheap and are asy to install. Prices start around $100. If you watch locally for sales or online places such as CraigsList you can find new or used units for less.

A small gas powered generator is powerful enough to operate a single window air-conditioner and should be all that is needed. All pets can be moved into one room until the heat emergency is over. Prices have declined significantly in the last few years for generators. A small portable unit can be found new for around $299. If you’re willing to wait and watch for deals or shop for used you can do better.

When You Can’t Be There

The planning we’ve just talked about is great if you’re at home when loss of power happens, but what if you’re not? What would happen if power went out or the air-conditioner died suddenly when you were away from home either at work or just out for the day?

Backup generators which detect power outages and start up automatically are one option, although quite an expensive one. These generators are hard-wired into the wiring of the house and cost thousands of dollars.

A more feasible option may be to invest in an internet enabled thermostat. Smart thermostats monitor climate conditions within your home and alert you by text or email when things change. If you’re away from home frequently for long periods of time these special thermostats can give you peace of mind knowing should anything happen you’ll be able to get back home and take care of things.

Electric Company and Electricians

Last but not least, talk to your electric provider and your electrician. Make sure they understand your situation. Many are willing to add your name to a list of customers who must be serviced first in case of outages.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Honeysuckle October 9, 2011 at 12:45 pm

I found just what I was needed, and it was enettraiinng!

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amy brockman October 22, 2011 at 7:43 pm

Thanks Honeysuckle. I’m glad to know this article was of help to you. 🙂

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