Ferrets and rabbits?

We’re looking to adopt 2 ferrets from our local shelter.

Our plan is for them to have mostly free roam of an upstairs bedroom in the back of the house, with a large cage for their litter tray/water/etc.

However, we currently have 3 rabbits that live downstairs. They have a 12ft x 12ft pen inside a full bunny-proofed room at the front of our house. Between them and where the ferrets would live, there are 5 doors. We plan to baby-gate the doors too (with solid wood panel gates, just as a barrier if for whatever reason any of the doors managed to come open which has never happened before). The doors to both their rooms will have outside locks on them. We’ll wash our hands between handling either of them and they’ll never be allowed on the same floor, let alone the same room.

Is this enough to keep all animals happy and safe? Any other precautions anyone can think of would be great. My bunnies are well loved and cared for and I know we could give the ferrets an amazing home, but would hate to do so if it would be unfair to either animal. I know the smell of ferrets can stress rabbits out, but surely this far from each other that wouldn’t be an issue?


The rabbits will, without a doubt, be able to smell the ferrets. This doesn’t necessarily mean it is an impossible situation. Let’s face it, there are probably already many smells around that they find troubling, and it’s no different than the vast number of pet rabbits kept outside with danger all around. You’ll be able to judge whether there has been a change in behaviour which persists after the ferrets arrive, and whether or not they get used to it.

Safety-wise it seems more than adequate.

Thank you for your help. Since posting, I’ve decided that having the ferrets outside may be a better option for all involved, as it means we can convert a full shed for the ferrets and they’ll have more space, plus the rabbits will be overall less stressed. I appreciate your reply though, I wanted to know I wasn’t putting the rabbits in immediate danger and was planning sensibly.