Benefits the Greater Chicago Ferret Association a 501c3 certified Not-For-Profit
Let’s celebrate Valentine’s Day by adding some cookery to our kitchens and raise some “dough” for the shelter ferrets! Do you like cooking or know someone who does? Looking for simpler ways to make yummy things? Need easier storage ideas for your batches of ferret soupies? Or maybe you just tend to ruin the average cookware with use?
During the event our Pampered Chef Consultant will introduce different products and recipes and provide instructions on how to accomplish them. The ferrets challenge you to find at least one item to add to your cooking arsenal and use it to honor your honeys on Valentine’s Day!
Please share the event (links in the dates) with friends, family and co-workers—every purchase helps the ferrets in the shelter.
The GCFA is not participating in The Ferret Giving Tree this year because we’ve been so blessed from generous supporters during our distemper outbreak. Please also consider supporting other shelters via the tree if you can!
The tree is set up for ferrets who would love to have a Santa this Christmas. There are over 300 ferrets from shelters all across the United States on the tree.
This is from their site:
"Please meet some of the wonderful shelter ferrets that need your help to have a happy Holiday Season! Click on their picture to get to know them a little more personally. Each one has his or her own story to tell. These kids are living in the safety of a shelter, where many will stay until their time for the bridge comes. Some are elderly and not considered adoptable while some, due to behaviour problems may not get a home until someone can take the time to teach them how to behave correctly.
Shelter Moms and Dads love these kids, but can only give so much since they have so many they must care for. Please choose a Ferret this year that you can play Santa to. Even the smallest of gifts can mean the world to these special little ones. Give them an extra joyous holiday this year.
There will be a Ferret Santa Form link on each page. Just click on it to fill out the form, click submit and you’re done! That’s all there is to it, so don’t hesitate, fill out the form and make a special Ferret’s Christmas wish come true.”
Greater Chicago Ferret Association, the only no-kill ferret shelter in the Chicago region. Providing adoption services for ferrets as well as a shelter for the delivery of uncared for or unwanted ferrets.
How can I get into volunteering for you guy? I live in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago and would love to know how I can help out donating my time! I love ferrets but am not able to have one at this time!
The best way is to contact Robin or Lila - email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. You could also try calling the shelter at 708.442.8650!
A couple of major announcements regarding the GCFA shelter:
Our ferret sanctuary, the shelter, is still currently quarantined due to an outbreak of Canine Distemper Virus. We are anticipating reopening our shelter on December 1, 2013. Until this date, we can not take in ferrets or adopt ferrets out.
While we prepare for reopening the shelter, as well as its future, I am happy and proud to announce that the GCFA has just received the corner stone for our reopening and future to build on. Susan A. Brown, DVM has agreed to be our medical advisor going forward for the GCFA! If any of you do not know Dr. Susan Brown, in 1986, she co-founded the GCFA and served as medical director from 1986 to 1997.
Dr. Brown has lectured extensively since 1987 to veterinarians and to the general public, both in the United States and Europe, particularly on the veterinary care of rabbits and ferrets. She has written numerous veterinary and non-veterinary articles in a variety of magazines, and has published chapters in a number of veterinary texts as well as co-authoring two veterinary books on small mammals. Dr. Brown also received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Purdue University Veterinary School in 1998. We can not describe how pleased the GCFA is to have Dr. Brown back with us helping care for the ferrets and ensuring quality and compassionate care for all our current ferrets and those to come in our future.
The GCFA is run by all volunteers and has been open caring for homeless, abandoned, and abused ferrets for 26 years. Throughout those years, we as an organization have saved and cared for over 7,100 ferrets. Please keep us in mind during this crisis and don’t abandon us. Together, we can continue caring for thousands more!
I have three ferrets, and mostly they just roam the house and stay away from my bf and I unless we instigate play with them. They don't like to be held and squirm instantly when we pick them up. Admittedly we don't try to pick them up often because of this, should we persist with the holding? Would they warm up to it in a while do you think?
Swinkerpot, It’s very common for ferrets to not want to be held when they’re young. They’re very busy little animals! As they age you may find that they want to snuggle a bit. It could also be an indicator that they feel sick if they’re still young. To be “lap-ferrets” just isn’t in their nature. Once in a great while you may find one that likes to be held for a minute or two and enjoy some scratching on the shoulder blade or neck. But other than that, they prefer to be doing their own thing!
Don’t be discouraged, pick them up and love them for a few precious seconds and then enjoy their energy as they play. Still interact with them and play with them.
Several weeks have passed since this deadly canine distemper virus was detected in our shelter. We have lost many. But thanks to the shelter volunteers and their dedication to these animals, we acted quickly and separated those with signs of infection and as a result we stay cautiously optimistic for the over 40 ferrets we have who are not showing signs of distemper. We are following an aggressive treatment plan for these ferrets provided to us by other shelters and their knowledgeable vets who have gone through this same tragedy. Sadly, almost 30 ferrets have died due to this virus. None suffered.
For all of those who have donated money to us, thank you! Those donations are going directly to ensuring that we can give the remaining ferrets a fighting chance and that we can give a humane and dignified release to those infected with this killer virus. Your moral support goes directly to the all-volunteer staff who have to deal with watching the little ones they loved, cared for, and played with, getting sick and then having to send them to be put to sleep forever.
A special thank you to the Xavier: a Ferret Abroad Fund and FACT (The Ferret Association of Connecticut) for their immediate action of sending us needed supplies to combat the spread of this virus and vaccines which we will be using this week as a booster shot for all the ferrets not displaying signs of distemper. This act of unselfish kindness and support allowed the GCFA to hit the ground running with our quarantine and care.
To date we have incurred over $5000 in medical bills including supportive drugs and needed equipment to treat and care for the ferrets infected by this virus. We can still use any help you can give us. Please donate. We are also going through supplies like water which help us keep the virus isolated. We can use hair covers, shoe covers, non-latex gloves, masks, bleach, and paper towels. If you can donate any of these supplies, that would be most welcome also.
Thank you again for your ongoing support and please continue to send your well wishes to our ferrets and our volunteer staff who continue to fight for these tiny, voiceless creatures we all love.
GCFA Board of Directors Moria Koppe, Shelter Director
The Greatest Ferret Show On Earth #25 is approximately five weeks away. I know this is a difficult time for many with the current distemper outbreak in the shelter. It has not been the practice in past years for GCFA shelter ferrets to attend any ferret shows and the main reason was to prevent impulse adoptions. Having said that, we understand the angst it may cause at the thought of volunteers carrying the virus with them to and from the shelter. Please be assured, volunteers are taking the utmost sanitation precautions to not only protect the public, but their own beloved fur butts at home. There is nothing more driven than a parent wanting to protect their babies! Also, no volunteer who has been at the shelter the previous 12 hours, or the day of, will be attending the show. Distemper cannot survive once dried and dies within 2-3 hours without a host. Most of you know the show hall, the Odeum, is at least 30 minutes from the shelter and has no affiliation. Traveling through Chicago to the show venue in Villa Park, or whichever way you decide to take, should not be any less safe than in previous years. Actually due to awareness, it may be safer. It is important for everyone, when traveling with their ferrets and all pets, to be sure they are properly immunized. Distemper is a concern for every individual, town, suburb and city everywhere.
Prior shows have only requested the Distemper Waiver be completed and signed by all that enter the show hall. Due to the concerns and added peace of mind there is one change we will need to implement for this year’s show and possibly for all future shows. All ferrets entering the show hall will need to provide proof of Distemper vaccination or acceptable titer results (64 or above). Each vaccination must have been administered between October 13th, 2012 and September 30th, 2013. Titer test and results must have also taken place after October 13th, 2012. A Distemper booster within 2 weeks of the show is acceptable, but proof of previous vaccination within the last two years or proper titer results (as noted above) will also be required. If the Distemper vaccination is administered by your vet, proof must be in writing, from your veterinarian’s office either as a bill or on their letter head, including date, ferret’s name and type of vaccine used. If, as a private breeder or individual, you vaccinate your ferrets yourself or you purchased yours from a private breeder, your paperwork must have the original vaccination number off the vaccine bottle, along with each ferret’s name and date of vaccination. If you are not the breeder, please make sure the breeder’s name is included. Distemper waivers, due to previous reaction provided by your veterinarian, are still acceptable, HOWEVER, you will need to provide proof of Distemper vaccination within the past 2 years, or acceptable titer results. This will help verify a pattern of vaccination. Titer testing results can take 2-3 weeks, so please make your appointment as soon as possible if you choose to titer. Each proof of proper titer should be original documentation and include date, ferret’s name and titer result. Remember, up-to-date vaccinations, acceptable titer results, and/or reaction waivers are required at all American Ferret Association shows, we are simply taking further precaution by verifying this information upon show check-in.
The GCFA is grateful for the tremendous response and support it has received during this trial. The proceeds from this show will assist in paying rent, utilities, food and general necessities while the shelter is closed to intakes and adoptions. We are hopeful that by implementing the above protocol, those who may have been unsure about attending will make the decision to come, but understand if that is not possible.
Please plan to get to the show hall early; check-in will start at 7:15. We ask for your patience if check-in takes a little longer than usual. Due to time limitations, judging will start promptly at 9:00am.
If you have questions, please email Lynn Toole at registrar.GFSOE@gmail.com for registrar questions, or Valerie.Michalski@GCFA.com for general show questions. If we do not know the answers, we will certainly find them or direct you to the right person.