Ferret Distemper Vaccine

Ferret in a Purse

Most of you may be aware that ferrets are susceptible to canine distemper.  This airborne virus causes severe respiratory, gastrointestinal and neurological signs in ferrets.  Once acquired it is usually fatal.  In addition to dogs and ferrets, the virus can be carried by foxes, raccoons, skunks, otters and seals to name just a few species.  Vaccination is the best way to protect your ferrets from this deadly disease.  Unfortunately, the only vaccine licensed in the United States to prevent distemper in ferrets has been on manufacturer back-order for several years now.  With no end to the back-order in sight, we have had to seek out an alternative.  While the new vaccine we will be recommending is labeled for use in dogs, not ferrets, it has been used in ferrets for many years in both Europe and the United States.  It appears to be both safe and effective in preventing distemper.  Please feel free to call our office if you’d like to schedule an appointment to have your ferret vaccinated or if you have any additional questions.

-Tony Poutous, VMD