Ferret Distemper


Distemper in ferrets is caused by the Canine Distemper Virus, which is transmitted via aerosolized respiratory secretions of infected animals.1 In addition to dogs (and other canids) and ferrets, other mustelids can also become infected; as can raccoons and other procyonids.2 In ferrets, symptoms typically follow presentation of a rash on the chin;23 and can include anorexia, depression, pyrexia, photophobia, and abundant mucopurulent ocular and nasal discharge.2 The disease is nearly always fatal in ferrets, where there remains no specific treatment.23


Ferret distemper vaccines are administered according to the following schedule:

Schedule Vaccine(s)
Eight (8) Weeks Initial Ferret Distemper Vaccination
12 Weeks Second Ferret Distemper Vaccination
15 Weeks Ferret Distemper Vaccine Booster
Every Year Thereafter Ferret Distemper Vaccine Booster

We currently have a very limited supply of ferret distemper vaccine. Supply from the manufacturer remains restricted, so please call in advance to ensure we have an adequate number of doses available to vaccinate your ferret(s) according to the above schedule.


  1. ^ Vandevelde M, Zurbriggen A. The neurobiology of canine distemper virus infection. Vet Microbiol. 1995; 44(2–4): 271–280.
  2. ^ Rosenthal KL. Respiratory Diseases in Ferrets, Rabbits, and Rodents. St. Louis, MO: Saunders; 2004: 72.
  3. ^ Lewington JH. Ferret Husbandry, Medicine & Surgery. Woburn, MA: Butterworth-Heinemann; 2000: 107-108.