Squamous Cell Carcinoma in Ferrets


This is the most common tumor of the ferret jaw and affects both the upper and lower jaws.

Symptoms include:

Red gums
Bad breath
Tooth loss
Loss of appetite
Difficulty eating dry food

If you suspect your ferret has this problem, take it to the vet immediately as early intervention is vital for your ferret’s survival.

Sadly I knew someone who had two ferrets and both contracted this cancer! Poor girl was shattered – bad enough that one of her ferrets got it but after she buried her boy, she noticed a lump on her girl’s face  ? Both cancers were very fast-acting and there wasn’t much that the vet could do apart from trying to make them as comfortable as possible until they had to be put to sleep ?

© Pathology of the Domestic Ferret by Matti Kiupel
© Pathology of the Domestic Ferret by Matti
Kiupel (used with permission) – Ferret Health Advancement at MSU


More information about Squamous Cell Carcinoma in Ferrets can be found on the following sites …

Squamous cell carcinoma (VetBook)

Multicentric Squamous Cell Carcinoma In Situ Associated With Papillomavirus in a Ferret (Texas A&M University) (Technical paper)

Spontaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma in a Ferret (PDF) (Journal of Wildlife Diseases)



(Last updated November 2019)



DISCLAIMER: The information contained on this page is not meant to replace seeing a veterinarian if you think your ferret is ill.
It’s only meant to supply general information on a particular illness which was obtained either from personal experience with my sick ferrets, or from books and/or the Internet.

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