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Chocolate Ferret

Nicole Cosgrove

Ferrets are quickly gaining popularity as pets and many people are taking an interest in owning one. Ferrets are great pets for owners who have experience caring for other types of exotic pets. Ferrets can be aggressive and make great escape artists which can make them difficult to handle.

Ferrets come in a variety of different colors and patterns. The chocolate ferret is becoming a quick favorite and they have a stunning coloration when compared to other types of ferrets. Chocolate ferrets are not a specific species of ferret, and the term ‘chocolate’ is used to describe their coloration and breed.

This article will provide you with all the information you need to know about this color form.

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Chocolate Ferret Information Sheet

Height: 18-24 inches long
Weight:  1-4 pounds
Color:  Brown, white and tan, grey
Diet:  Carnivore
Care level:  Difficult
Companionship:  Alone or in same-sex groups
Lifespan:  5-10 years

The Difference Between a Ferret, Polecat, and The North American Ferret

There is often confusion when it comes to determining the differences between these three species. Although they have many similarities and belong to the weasel family, they do have a few distinct differences that will be explained below.

Ferrets

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Image credit: christels, Pixabay

Ferrets have a stocky body with a small and slender head. The snout is pointed and narrows near the nose. Ferrets have various color variations from dark brown to creamy white. They also come in three different body types.


Polecats

European polecat
Image Credit: Edwin Godinho, Shutterstock

Polecats have larger heads than the common ferret. Their bodies are slender and can easily be confused as a ferret. Polecats are an ancestor of the domesticated ferret, and the fur marking extends to their nose and does not form a banded mask on their head.


North America Ferret

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Image Credit: Daniel Steinke, Pixabay

They are also referred to as the American polecat or the Prairie dog hunter. They have slight differences from the standard ferret. They are the size of minks and are primarily nocturnal and solitary which means that you cannot keep them together in captivity as you can do with other types of ferrets. The body is slender with dark bands on its legs. They also have short hind legs and snouts. The ears are large and orbicular when compared to the typical ferret.

divider-foodHow Was the Chocolate Ferret Bred?

There are more than 20 different colors and variations of pet ferrets. The name refers to the overall coloration and pattern of the ferret. Each ferret has a different hue to its fur which divides them into various color categories. The chocolate coloration is a variation of the sable ferret and the color has been further developed to produce significant differences between the two colors.

There are a few types of ferrets that are labeled according to their size:

  • Whippet: they have an elongated head and are significantly smaller than other types of ferrets. Whippets are commonly kept as pets in the United States.
  • Standard: this ferret originates from Europe and is medium size. They are the most common type of ferret kept as a pet.
  • Bulldog: the bulldog ferret is the largest growing ferret. They have a long and sturdy body with short hind legs.

The chocolate ferret can also come in various coat types such as short hair, long hair, and angora fur type.

Features of a Chocolate Ferret

Chocolate ferrets are the same type of color as the sable ferret breed, except for a banded mask on the face and a dark brown tail with a dark shade of red. They also have dark brown hairs covering their neck and cream under-coat. Chocolate ferrets have a light body that can appear as gold or tan and the rest forms a rich dark brown color. The underbelly has whitened hairs and some golden-toned speckles of fur throughout. These ferrets have black eyes that can appear red or ruby under bright lights. The nose forms an outline in the form of a banded mask and their snout is a cream color. The nose is typically a light pink color, but it may also be a darker beige color.

How Much Do Chocolate Ferrets Cost?

Chocolate ferrets cost the same as other standard ferret varieties. Since they are exotic pets, they are primarily sold by ferret breeders or sold in high-chain pet stores if the region allows for ferrets to legally be kept as pets. You can expect to pay between $150 to $300 depending on the age and size of the ferret. Breeders will typically have high-quality bred lines which makes them more expensive.

How Rare are Chocolate Ferrets?

These ferrets are not particularly rare. They are commonly sold in the pet trade and can be found both in pet stores and breeders. When compared to other types of ferrets, the chocolate coat form is not unusual and can easily be produced through crossbreeding. It is easy to mix up the sable and chocolate coat color because they look so similar, however, chocolate is less common than sable.

7 Interesting Facts About Chocolate Ferrets

  • The ferret’s colors are homogenous in appearance in comparison to dogs or cats.
  • Ferrets come in 20 different unique colors and patterns.
  • Ferrets have now become one of the most popular extreme exotic pets in the United States since 450 BC.
  • Ferrets are extremely flexible, and their slender bodies allow them to enter small spaces with ease. This helps them to hunt in narrow burrows.
  • Ferrets were first domesticated to help humans hunt in areas that are too narrow for dogs, like rodent burrows.
  • Chocolate ferrets were bred from the sable coloration, and these two colors are easily confused.
  • There is another coloration of this ferret called the chocolate mitt which has four light-colored mitts on their paws.

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Chocolate ferrets make appealing and attractive pets. They form close bonds with their owners and are highly active. They require a large enclosure where they have space to climb, and they also need a variety of toys to keep their mind active. Once they have formed a close bond with their owner, they will enjoy sitting on your shoulder. Tamed chocolate ferrets should also get a few minutes of free to roam time under supervision.

We hope this article has helped you understand the chocolate ferret better!


Featured Image Credit: MichaelSehlmeyer, Pixabay

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.