My Ferret Won’t Use His Litter Tray

My ferret keeps going to the bathroom on the floor of his cage and only uses his litter box sometimes - I can't keep up and his cage smells awful - what can I do?

Ferrets can be trained to use a litter pan, but unlike cats, they don’t take to it automatically. When your ferret seems to be having difficulty learning, keep a little dirty litter in it when you clean it to mark it as a bathroom and to deter him from digging in it. Don’t let it get too dirty, though; some ferrets can be pretty finicky about their pans. Most ferrets won’t mess up their beds or food, so put towels or food bowls in all the non-litter corners until your ferret is used to making the effort to find a pan.

Bedding that has been slept in a few times and smells like sleeping ferret will be even better than clean bedding for convincing a ferret that a corner is a bedroom instead of a bathroom. Ferrets generally use their pans within fifteen minutes of waking up, so make sure yours uses the pan before you let him out, or put him back in the cage five or ten minutes after you wake him up to come play. When he’s out running around for playtime, keep a close eye on him, and put him in his litter pan every half hour or so. Whenever your ferret uses a litter pan, whether you had to carry him to it or not, give him lots of praise and a little treat right away. Ferrets will do almost anything for treats, and they’re fast learners.