“There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.”

― Frank Herbert

Monday, August 26, 2013

Quest for Ferret Food

Note the Royal Ferret's gold collar.

I doubt Queen Elizabeth had much trouble feeding her ferrets.  She could just send her flunkies out for whatever the Royal Ferrets dined on.

No such luck here.  I have six ferrets.  Ferrets "imprint" on food when they are kits.  Whatever they start eating,  that's what they want all their lives.

Two of my ferrets eat "Kitten Chow."   Two of them eat regular cat food.   But the two really old ferrets will only eat Marshal's Premium Ferret Chow.  They are ferrets of discriminating palates and will only condescend  to dine upon ferret haute cuisine. The cat food eaten by the hoi polloi will not do.

There are three pet stores within a 50 mile radius.  That's 50 miles straight line distance, which equates to a lot longer journey here in the mountains, over windy and twisting roads that never go anywhere straight.

Through a combination of being busy and just poor planning, I found myself with an empty jar today where there should have been a bounty of Marshal's Premium Ferret Chow.  So I called around, and the two closest places were out.  Set out for the pet store up across the state line, and immediately ran into a detour. The road was closed.  The detour consisted of a big loop through the countryside, and added another 22 miles to the trip, one way.

Once I finally got to the pet shop, I bought their only bag of Ferret Chow,  a tube of ferret vitamin paste, and a bottle of ferret "supplement."  I figure I spent $24.00 on gas, and another $ 30.00 on ferret supplies.  I asked the proprietor to order me four bags of  Marshal's Premium Ferret Chow for my supply room. It comes in a sealed mylar bag and stays fresh a long time.  When I'm making my pre-checks for winter, I always include the animals. With dogs and cats, if you run out of food you can boil up big pots of rice, mix in a can of corned beef hash or gravy, and they will eat.  Chickens, I can put corn in the grain mill, bust it up, and they are taken care of.  But with ferrets, you have to have exactly what they eat. They don't accept substitutes.

It was nice to get out and I enjoyed the trip. Haven't been up that way for a good long while. The weather was beautiful, and the mountains looked like a picture post card.

18 comments:

  1. Harry, we need to get you on that show "Mountain Men" thstd on the History Channel on Sunday nights.

    You have the prerequisite beard, lived on a mountain top for decades, and love the hermit life.

    Most of them on the show ramble around the mountains in the forest watching out for predators which you do as wellTheir big moment of rama is when something breaks

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    1. And your big drama moment is when you run out of ferret food and the travails you endure to get them what they demand in order to not go eat your gun stocks.

      Interested?

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    2. I saw that show once. There are plenty of people in this county who would fit right in. I don't trap or hunt though, so I am not sure I would fit the mold.

      Everybody who lives in the woods is scared of walking up on something or other that will tear them up. I seriously doubt I could live out West where the Grizzly is, black bears are enough of a worry.

      I can understand why something breaking is a big deal. Probably it's something they really need, and most people living way in the sticks don't have the money to buy a new widget, or have some slick come in and fix it, so they have to "engineer" a fix themselves.

      You're right about that. Ragnar the stock nibbler eats cat food so I can keep him placated. He's a bad one though, he chases the girl ferrets and beats up on them. To distract him I give him extra rations of oil, and he goes to sleep. He needs a little "wife beater" t shirt.

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  2. I rambled around yesterday too. I always try and find side attractions, like gunshops, flea markets and the like, but to travel on Sunday in the deep south and find the odd shops open is not unlike seeking Spanish gold. Sunday, whole towns close. Perhaps you should raise mice.

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    1. Haven't the heart. I had two rats my daughter got off some guy who was going to feed them to his snake. One of the rats passed away, but the other one tries to bite me when I clean her cage. Rats don't have a lot of personality in my experience. Never have raised mice...

      Not much open here on Sunday either except Walmart. I meant to go up and go to that big flea market this past Sunday to look for a hand drill for Pioneer Preppy, but wound up doing nothing.

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    2. I have a nice hand drill, with bits. A really nice one. What's he got to swap, I wonder.

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    3. I don't know, but he's been looking for one. I was going to try to go up to the big flea market this weekend and see what was on offer, but I'm feeling kind of washed out.

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  3. So what happens if Marshal's goes out of business or change their formula?

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    1. It'll never happen. They are an institution. But the question is valid, if the supply of food was cut off I am afraid once I ran out of their brand the ferrets would just starve to death. I tried to get them to eat little bits of meat once, as a backup, but they wouldn't touch it. They can't have peanuts, which they adore, because they can't digest them and they get intestinal blockages. They will eat cheese, but can't digest it. Maybe I could trade ammo for ferret food, if I could find any ferret food. ;-)

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  4. Before winter I will grab a 25 lb bag of cats food for my 3 boys and some canned moist. We must always remember our furry friends. How is your ill ferret??

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    1. 25 lbs? WOW we got through 25 pounds here in about two days. Honestly the cats are going to get thin come a collapse. Or learn to actually hunt for a change and maybe take out some of those mice they just look at right now.

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    2. Send those mice to Harry. He will start a shelter for those lonely. orphaned, or abandoned critters.

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    3. I use up a sixteen pound bag of cat food every three days.

      Yeah, that's what I need all right, more little animals. At least my daughter hasn't asked me about taking in the horse yet.

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  5. She is not doing so well. She goes in for pre-op on Wednesday afternoon and her operation is Friday. I hate the time lag but this is as quick as I could get it done. We only have two vets in the county now, and one of them won't work on ferrets. Even the one who will has to have an exotic vet specialist from further South on the monitor with her while she works on my ferrets. But she is kind to them and does her best, so that's all I can do. She tried like the dickens to save my ferret who died, but we could just never figure out what was wrong and nothing worked. I wound up with him gone and nearly a grand poorer. Still, at least I know I did all I could for him and that matters to me.

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  6. oh Harry - poor little Rowena. i sure do hope that the vet can fix her up right good after her surgery. i am also sorry that they couldn't do anything for your other little ferret!

    i have looked up a million recipes for cat food on the net, in the event of a collapse, regardless of how it starts. my cats are pretty finicky - my oldest needs food with gravy as he only licks the gravy off of food. my 2 others are finicky but in different ways. this fall i am going to start trying to make their food and get them used to it, if possible. we actually have more cat food in our preps than people food, if you can believe it!

    again - i hope everything goes well for little Rowena. you are a good man for spending so much money, time and love on your ferrets. you and yours are always in our prayers. your friend,
    kymber

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    1. Actually, I'm sure it is another idiosyncrasy that indicates I am a bit off. But since I live on the mountain and don't mix with people much, they haven't come to take me to the rest home for overly active seniors yet. ;-)

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    2. buddy - before that happens...we are getting some official injunction to take you here first. and all of yours are coming with us.

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    3. I appreciate it. When my dad went crazy he only lasted 7 days, so maybe I will get lucky and not get involved with nursing homes anyway.

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