These ferrets are used to hunt rabbits back in the days but It has now become a trend to keep them as pets. The first thing that happens after some animal becomes a pet is many people ask many questions about it. They usually question what food should I feed them and how I should keep them like things. But some people ask about their bodies. Here we going to answer one of those questions. Do ferrets have spines?
The short answer to do ferrets have spines
Yes, ferrets have spines. But their spines are not like spines in your imagination. Their spines not like humans. Studying animals’ skeleton systems is an interesting subject. We should study the evolution of them. All bones, spines, and others adapt for something.
The flexibility of a ferret and its spines
If you already have one or more ferrets, you must know they are bendy. Some funny stories about that. Some people did videos folding their ferrets. Go to youtube and search you will see. The interesting thing is you can fold them together and twist their bodies. To the pretty bizarre shapes. It is kind of weird because they have spines but they are very bendy. But that is not a weird thing. There are reasons for that.
First, I am going to explain what are spines and their purpose. Spines can find in both vertebrate and invertebrate species. They are hard, needle-like anatomical structures but the structure can change animal to animal. Mammal spines include the prices of hedgehogs and also among rodents.
Why animals have spines? The main purpose is to protect animals from predators. So it is a defense mechanism then. Spines are sharp things. If a predator attacks an animal and tries to bite they can puncture the skin and inflict pain and damage. So predators avoid that spice. You may question right now then why humans got spines? Human spines protect the spinal cord runs through them.
So what about ferrets. I told you ferrets spines, unlike humans. They are extremely flexible. Are you wonder why is that? I have told you they used to hunt rabbits. Animals like rabbits live underground. To hunt them ferrets had to chase them in their burrows and tunnels. They are small. So ferrets had to fold. With extremely flexible spines they can easily go through tunnels and hunt animals.
Amazing facts about ferrets bones and spines
- The ferret skeletal system is made up of around 200 bones.
- There are three main parts of a ferret’s skeleton. The axial skeleton, appendicular skeleton, heterotopic skeleton are those.
- In the adult ferret, it is hard to tell apart the individual bones of the skull because between the bones, there are no fusion lines.
- The skull of the ferret is almost half as wide as it is long. The top of it is flat.
- The jaws adapted to make a very strong bite. They are short and are almost impossible to dislocate. That is very important for catching and eating prey animals.
- Their braincase is larger than the skull.
- They have unique vertebral columns. The neck is long and the seven vertebrae in the neck are longer and bigger than the vertebrae in the chest.
- There is common cancer that occurs at the tip of the ferret tail. It is called chordomas and it is a malignant cancer.
- They have bones very light in the rear legs but they are longer than the bones in the front arm.
- Osteomas are another cancer related to the ferret’s skeletal system. It is a beginning cancer seen on the flat bones of the skull.
- Young ferrets frequently hurt themselves by jumping off of high places. If they land on their front arms, they can dislocate their elbow or elbows.
Are ferret bones unbreakable?
Of course not. Why do people ask questions like that? Ferrets have extremely flexible spines and are very bendy. That is right but that is not mean their bones can not break. Not in any way. Every animal bone is breakable.
Wild ferrets break their bones frequently. But often they manage to survive. A wild animal has their ways to heal. If your ferret has broken a bone, please take it to a veterinarian quickly. Don’t be afraid. With proper medicines, they will recover.
Nutritions to keep your ferrets bones and spines healthy
You should be familiar with this. Yes like humans ferrets need calcium for their skeletons. Calcium is a major element of skeletons. Veterinarians say ferrets need roughly the same amount of calcium that cats need. Cats need 0.6% of their total diet to be calcium.
Potassium is the other major element in the skeleton. Your ferret needs potassium and calcium 1:1. Specific ferret foods include the required potassium amount. Also banana is a good potassium source but there are some problems with bananas. We did an entire article about it.
Magnesium stimulates the hormone calcitonin and it helps to preserve bone structure by drawing calcium out of the blood and soft tissues back into the bones. This helps ferrets a lot.
Arthritis, heart attack, and kidney stones will be avoided. There are magnesium sulfate treatments for ferrets. Some foods are rich in magnesium.
Vitamin D is good for both strong bones and muscles. Also, vitamin K helps for healthy bones. It is important in the coagulation cascade. Dark green leafy vegetables such as kale, collard greens, spinach, mustard greens, turnip greens, and brussel sprouts are rich in vitamin K but we don’t recommend them because they are veggies.
Ferrets have spines. Unlike humans, their spines are extremely flexible. That’s why we can fold them. They helped ferrets to go true underground tunnels. But the flexibility of their spines does not mean they unbreakable. Ferrets break their bones sometimes. If that happens to your dog please get it to a vet immediately.
I hope this article will help you. There are more articles about ferrets from us. Check them too