The ermine is the smallest of the mustelids, but it is perhaps the most aggressive of them all. It weighs between 100 and 300 grams and is ferocious, which together with its agility and dizzying speed of movements makes it an annoying super-predator; able to face and defeat prey ten or twenty times heavier than they.
The ermine is distributed by the northern areas of the Eurasian and North American continents, lives in steppes and wooded alpine areas of low altitude. Is not threatened.
Find out in this AnimalWised article the ermine as a pet and if it is advisable or not to have one ... Read on to know everything about the ermine.You may also be interested in: The gerbil as a pet Index
- Is the ermine a recommended pet?
- Adoption of an ermine
- The little orphan at home
- Ermine morphology
- Stoat feeding
- The ermine and other pets
Is the ermine a recommended pet?
If one is attracted to living dangerously, perhaps yes. But if you are a person who is not fascinated by being bitten by a kind of hairy ray that moves brilliantly, ermine is not the best of alternatives. To do this, it is better to adopt a ferret since they are somewhat similar in their aesthetics, but it has been living as a pet with man for thousands of years. The ermine no.
However, if there are no children in the house and your dog or cat tends to flee in the face of looming danger, perhaps you can adopt one of the most beautiful beasts in the world..
The specialty of the ermine consists of bite the nape of its prey and bleed it out. It does not matter whether it is a rabbit or an eagle. It clings with nails and teeth to an area on the back of the attacked animal that is difficult to access with the legs or claws of the victim, who desperately tries to get away from the deadly prey of the ermine. The ermine enlarges the wound until the blood flows unstoppable.
Cats have a better chance of survival than dogs against an ermine. This mustelid does not climb, and the cat reaches its neck with its hooked nails while the dog does not have it so easy.
Adoption of an ermine
I strongly discourage the adoption of an ermine. I am not aware of stoat farms, although many uninformed people confuse mink farms with stoat farms for the simple fact that they are both mustelids. The stoats that we find in the market usually come from illegal capture of wild specimens, and this execrable trade must be avoided.
However, it is not uncommon to find an orphan ermine. This happens when for some reason the pup stoat (a tiny being) is lost or its mother is killed by a car. In these cases, it is legal to save the little one and adopt it, although the best option is undoubtedly to go to a wildlife recovery center..
Before picking it up, you have to wait for the ermine to call its mother. If after a while it does not appear, it will be time to save the life of the orphan ermine.
The little orphan at home
The highest priority will be give the puppy ferret milk to hydrate and satiate him. If you already have some teeth, you have to complete your diet with tiny pieces of meat, whether they are slices of turkey or chicken..
An immature stoat can be tamed in a similar way to a ferret. He should be taught to bite softly during his games and to use kitty litter to fulfill his needs. It should be noted that the ermine is much more active than the ferret, therefore, much more time should be devoted to games and activity.
There are more than 30 subspecies of ermine, but generalizing a lot we could group them in two columns:
- cold weather stoats
- temperate stoats
The cold weather stoats they have two types of colorations through the shedding of hair. During winter this first type of ermine turns totally snowy white, except for the tip of its tail which is deep black. During the summer the ermine is dressed in a tan color from head to tail, and ivory white from its jaw to the genitals. It is a beautiful animal.
The temperate stoats they retain their summer appearance throughout the year. They never turn white. However, naturally, during winter the silky coat of hair becomes denser and warmer..
The tip of the stoat's tail is always black.
The wild ermine is basically carnivorous, although it does consume berries eventually. It also devours insects, large and small birds, rabbits, hares, rats and mice, frogs and any prey that crosses its path..
If you have a domesticated ermine, your veterinarian will be the one who will give you the appropriate feeding guideline. It is very important to be recommended by a professional.
The ermine and other pets
If you have an ermine raised from a young age maybe he will be able to empathize with your dog or cat, although the boss will always be him. Although you will hardly get him to stop looking greedily at the frightened parakeet or canary, whose appetizing and throbbing appearance will be a magnet for the ermine, which does not climb but lavishes on some prodigious jumps.
If the ermine has been captured as an adult, you will never be able to tame it and it will become a very dangerous host for you, your families, and your pets.. ¡Do not adopt him, he prefers to live freedom!