Recently my friend's daughter, Bugs, was in her best friend's dad's truck when she spotted a ferret running by the side of a major road. She asked him to pull over.
At first he refused, because he's apparently afraid of ferrets. However, when Bugs scornfully declared that SHE would pick up the little creature, he turned around and was kind enough to throw a towel over the unprotesting creature and put it into the back of his pickup truck.
Bugs immediately called ME, as we already have a ferret in the household, begging me to foster the little ferret until we could decide what to do with it. I reluctantly agreed and they drove right over.
The moment I got the ferret, I could see that it was a female, and she was in distress. I got up on the pickup truck, leaned over the truck bed, and tentatively picked her up. She didn't attempt to snap or wiggle free. She just lay there limply, eyes glazed, mouth open and panting.
She didn't look good.
So, as they drove off, I rushed into the house to dribble some water down the ferret's throat.
The ferret greedily gulped the water, which I saw as a very good sign. She drank from my fingertips as I called the vet's office to arrange a visit. He told me to come directly over.
On the way to the vet's, I kept the air cool. The ferret was in a box next to me, nestled in a towel, with the air blowing over her. Gradually her eyes became more focused, though she lay there limply.
By the time we'd arrived at the vet's, the ferret was looking somewhat better. She was dirty, had some flea detritus, and the bottoms of her paws were scraped from running along the highway. But, I felt that she was truly in pretty good shape, all things considered, unless there was something I couldn't see.
The vet agreed with me.
I had different options: Call the Humane Society, keep the ferret temporarily, or keep her permanently. I called the Humane Society, but they were closed due to Tropical Storm Fay. So, my only choice was to keep her for a day or so.
I took her home, bathed her, and isolated her in the spare bathroom (she could potentially have some disease that the other animals could get, although it's very unlikely). She has been hungrily eating for 3 days, and has had all the water she can hold.
She is amazingly sweet and gentle.
Sonosaur is now begging me to keep her as a companion for his ferret. Ferrets are social animals, and he should probably have a friend. Happily, she's been fixed, so there will be no worried of little ferrets running around.
And her name? Well, she was found during Tropical Storm Fay. But the name Fay looks very plain by itself, so Bugs and Sonosaur voted to add an "e" to the end as she's a very elegant ferret, apparently.
I'm still mulling it over.