Giardia In Ferrets

Last week we unfortunately had a serious issue with some of our breeding ferrets, Fatso, The Cow and The Little One – that’s just what they have become known as, what can I say? I just thought I would do a blog so anyone else keeping ferrets can recognise the symptoms and it will hopefully help them get prompt treatment.

The main infection turned out to be Giardia. Giardia is a protozoan parasite that can infect the gut of most mammals. The symptoms are quite severe and include violent and often bloody diarrhoea, excessive gas and bloating, painful stomach and abdominal cramps and nausea. The infection also causes the villi in the gut (microscopic “finger” projections that significantly increase the surface area of the nutrient absorbing gut lining) leading to poor nutrient uptake and lactose intolerance (although that’s not relevant in our case as ferrets should not be fed milk anyway). Without treatment of the symptoms, after infection and recovery, the parasite can remain in the gut and the animal can become a carrier. Some symptoms, such as lactose intolerance, can persist.

The symptoms of Giardia infection are quite severe and as we found out last week, can have a very sudden onset. I went out to our ferret compound on Saturday to feed and water them and to check on their bedding status as they have a tendency to empty it out all over the exercise area and they were fine; trying to escape as I refreshed the food as usual, tucking into it straight away etc. On Sunday they were still asleep when I went out in the morning (not unusual) so I didn’t see them. On Monday Albert went to clean them out and it was like a scene from a horror film. Three very sick ferrets, out in the open, barely able to lift their heads (one was better than the others but even she was obviously in a bad way) and covered in blood and faeces and only barely able to drag themselves along without the use of their back legs. When I saw them I honestly thought I was going to lose all three.

Albert cleaned them up and gave them a bath (they were filthy) and dried them and I booked them straight into the vets. A sample was taken from each of them, they received rehydration treatment (intravenously) and an immediate course of antibiotics was started as a precaution, whilst we waited for the test results. I brought them to the shop, to keep a closer eye on them in our isolation area upstairs. The first day they were not capable of eating or drinking (no energy at all) and again I thought they would not make it (I later found out the vet thought the same). The only upside was that it was easy to administer an oral medicine to them that, I subsequently found out, they really did not like.

The next day the vet called me with preliminary results. They had two gut infections Clostridium (a bacterial infection, often carried in low numbers in the gut with no symptoms) and Giardia. The vet supposed the Clostridium to be secondary to the Giardia infection. Luckily I was able to report that the antibiotics had begun to work almost straight away and there was a marked improvement (although they were still very ill). They were at least now drinking unaided. We suspect this was due to the reduction in Clostridium numbers from the anti biotics. The vet prescribed an alternative medication (metronidazole) now that we knew Giadia was involved and this was started immediately.

giardia in ferrets

Fatso, still feeling sorry for himself but recovering well

They have been receiving treatment for a week now and have pretty much fully recovered. We have to complete the course for another week. After another fortnight we will take a stool sample and have it tested. If Giardia is still present then it’s another two week course of treatment. I hope this is not necessary because they don’t like the taste of the medicine and now they are back to their normal selves it’s  difficult to administer (I am covered in splashes of medicine as I type, where they have all shaken their heads to try to spit it out ).

Of course, an important factor with Giardia is that it infects humans as well (zoonotic). Hygiene and bio security is very important at all times whilst keeping any animal but particularly when they are sick. We always wash our hands and F10 everything (including our clothing) every time we handle them. I have had salmonella (which has similar symptoms) and I don’t want to go through something like that again.

This just leaves how they caught the infection in the first place. Our ferrets are well looked after and kept very clean. I have had these ones for a few years without any issues so it is unlikely one of them was a carrier. The likely culprit is probably either a mouse (we have had them come in the garden after wild bird seed) or a rat (not seen one of these around the garden before but it is a possibility). I am afraid if little Jerry or Roland is the culprit, he is going to get his just desserts. The thought of one (or both) of the dogs getting explosive, bloody diarrhoea just does not bear thinking about!

The Angell Pets Team

Pet Industry Federation Members Charter and How Angell Pets Fulfills Its Obligations.

Angell Pets has been a member of The Pet Industry Federation since our inception in 2009. Back then the organisation that represents members from a host of animal related businesses and promotes animal welfare within these areas was known as the Pet Care Trust. The Federation structure is split into several associations and we are members of the Pet Retailers Association. The Pet Industry Federation in all of its former guises is celebrating 70 years this year

Pet shop Gloucester PIF logo

Member of

Part of the responsibility of membership to the federation is adherence to its Members Charter. The charter is reproduced below with a brief explanation of how we meet our obligations under these rules.

  1. Strive to improve industry standards. We constantly review our own animal welfare practices, suppliers, breeders and housing. Where we feel a change is appropriate to improve anything at all, we make the change. It is for this reason we refuse to use some of the commercial suppliers used by large chains and tend to stock industry leading, quality pet foods, rather than poorer quality supermarket brands.
  2. Promote responsible pet ownership. This is part of our company strap line or mission statement and always has been – “Promoting Responsible and Ethical Pet Ownership”. We do this by ensuring all our staff are qualified to give advice on any animal or product we sell. Our staff are highly qualified and trained in pet care and nutrition. We advise our customers before purchasing, at the time of purchase and offer after sales care that is second to none. We do not feel it is our job to judge customers but obviously if a member of the public refuses to at least listen to advice, does not wish to purchase (or does not already have) the correct equipment or in any way indicates they are unlikely to care correctly for the animal for its whole life we steer them away from purchasing the animal or, in some extreme cases, refuse to sell and ask them to leave (wanting to buy rats to give to a border terrier to “play with” for example!). We have a responsibility to the animals we sell to do our best to ensure the new owner has the time, information and equipment to care for it or to protect the animal by not selling. The ethical part of our strap line refers to sourcing our animals from responsible breeders and not selling any wild caught animals, helping to protect the wild populations.
  3. Strive to ensure customer satisfaction at all times. We offer the best customer service in the area. We provide a livestock policy document on line and with each animal purchased, informing our customer what to do if dissatisfied with their purchase. We also produce and publish our own care sheets via our website and supply leaflets produced by the Pet Charity. Where customers feel they have made a mistake and cannot care for the animal they have purchased we offer to take it back. We do not claim to be able to satisfy every customer, every time; some requests it is not possible to comply with (like the gentleman who recently tried to return a dog harness that “didn’t fit” but had clearly been well used and was covered in mud and well let’s just say “other substances”). We do try our best, Customers coming back again and again and using our FREE local delivery service year after year tells us that we usually get it right.
  4. Always provide customers with clear and current information about products and services in a polite and professional manner. Most of this is covered in no.3 but in addition our staff have also attended courses on dog and cat nutrition, pet first aid, micro chipping etc. and can talk at length and give the best, up to date advice to anyone wishing to let me waffle on!
  5. Ensure all staff are appropriately trained to carry out their job role and that they have a comprehensive understanding of company products, services and procedures. In addition to the training courses already mentioned above our staff carry the following qualifications between them:- BSc (Hons) in biology, BSc (Hons) in animal science, Professional Certificate of Management, Level 3 Advanced Certificate in Pet Store Management, Level 3 Diploma in Work Based Animal Care (Pet Care And Retail), Level 2 Diploma in Work Based Animal Care (Pet Care And Retail), as well as a host of other related qualifications (such as BTEC Diploma in water treatment) too numerous to list. We also offer supplier product training courses and animal welfare courses to our staff as the need arises. Our two policies over and above what you would expect from any business are our livestock policy and abuse policy.
  6. Minimise the environmental impact of their business wherever possible. We have council approved waste disposal contracts in place including cardboard recycling. Potentially hazardous materials such as fluorescent tubes are recycled via approved facilities and we also take back and recycle customers’ spent tubes.  Both our fire and security alarms are serviced and maintained to a high level by approved contractors to minimise the chance of false, nuisance alarms. Heating is thermostatically controlled to avoid energy waste and store display lighting is automatically controlled to avoid waste and reduced light pollution.
  7. Promote best practice in animal welfare by observing the Five Welfare Needs: Diet, accommodation, wellness, sociability and behaviour. This is the foundation of our business and the source of our mission statement to “Promote responsible and ethical pet ownership”. We are inspected annually by the relevant licencing authority to ensure all of our accommodation and practices meet with these welfare requirements. We have lectured in educational establishments on these and related subjects and hosted prestigious Colleges’ students on our own premises as part of their courses on animal welfare. Our expertise in this area is much sought after.
  8. Maintain their working environment to ensure it is fit for purpose. We are a modern business so our working environment includes the shop, our delivery vehicles and our web presence via our two websites ( and and our Facebook page. Where necessary, equipment is maintained by either skilled contractors or our own staff to ensure it is safe, relevant and operating correctly. Our websites are maintained on a daily basis with security a prime concern. Unfortunately, all websites are constantly under attack but we have the security in place to protect our customers at all times. When any issues occur we have the systems in place to resolve them quickly.
  9. Abide by all current legislation relative to the business. Our business is licensed. Unfortunately there has been a proliferation of illegal, unlicensed sellers in recent years, mainly on line and on social media. We know we adhere to all the laws and regulations relevant to our business. Membership of the federation and possession of our licence are our customers assurances that we do. Sadly there is no guarantee (in fact quite the reverse) that unlicensed sellers, that cannot therefor gain entry to the Pet Industry Trade Federation, follow any guidelines whatsoever. I would write it off with “Buyer Beware” but we are talking about the lives of living creatures here. DO NOT BUY ANIMALS from unlicensed sellers.
  10. Do not bring the pet industry, the Pet Industry Federation or divisional associations into disrepute. Everything we do, every animal we buy or sell is recorded and monitored. If we do something wrong we lose our membership and our licence and would quite rightly go out of business. Far from bringing the industry into disrepute we are regularly consulted on best practice; by other pet businesses, educational establishments, our own customers and the wider public (worldwide).
Pet shop Gloucester PRA logo

Member of

So this is why we pay our annual membership fee to belong to the Pet Industry Trade Federation and Pet Retailers Association. It gives our customers confidence that they are dealing with a properly regulated and managed business, adhering to the very latest guidelines and rules and most importantly that the animals we stock are looked after properly before sale and expert advice is available to the customer at point of sale and afterwards.

The Angell Pets Team

Angell Pets January Offer

The New Year is well underway and our January offers are in the store (and on line) and proving very popular (we are having to restock with some products already).

Here is a list of this months offers with price comparisons where possible.

burgess excel adult

Burgess Excel Adult Rabbit Nuggets 2kg ONLY £3.49 SAVE £1

Pets At Home price £5.50 (our normal price is over £1 less than this!)

hills science plan no grain chicken

Hills Science Plan Feline No Grain Adult Chicken 2kg ONLY £1.49 SAVE £6.50

Couldn’t find this size anywhere. Pets at Home only do the little bags.

Arden Grange Salmon and Rice

Arden Grange Adult Dog Salmon And Rice 12kg SAVE OVER £10

Pets at Home Price £42.99. You can save £8 if you buy two bags but that’s still only a saving of £4 a bag compared to our huge £10 a bag without having to multi buy!


pedigree dentastix

Pedigree Dentastix Dog Dental Chews Small 56 Stick Pack ONLY £7.99 SAVE MIN 33%

Pets at Home price £11.79. 

pedigree dentastix medium

Pedigree Dentastix Dog Dental Chews Med 56 Stick Pack ONLY £8.99 SAVE MIN 33%

Pets at Home Price £13.79

pedigree dentastix large

Pedigree Dentastix Dog Dental Chews Large 56 Stick Pack ONLY £9.99 SAVE MIN 33%

Pets at Home Price £17.49. Cheapest I could find in any other supermarket was £10.

harringtons cat chicken and rice

Harringtons Cat Chicken And Rice 2kg ONLY £3.49 SAVE 30%

Morrisons OFFER price £5, Asda £4.50, Sainsbury £5.50

harringtons cat salmon and rice

Harringtons Cat Salmon And Rice 2kg ONLY £3.49 SAVE 30%

Morrisons OFFER price £5, Asda £4.50, Sainsbury £5.50

pedigree complete beef and vegetable

Pedigree Complete Dry Dog Food Beef And Vegetable 12kg ONLY £13.99 SAVE £7

Couldn’t find this size bag anywhere

Pedigree complete chicken and vegetable

Pedigree Complete Dry Dog Food Chicken And Vegetable 12kg ONLY £13.99 SAVE £7

Couldn’t find this size bag anywhere

barking heads fat dog slim

Barking Heads Fat Dog Slim 2kg ONLY £7.99 SAVE £4

Pet Supermarket price £11.39

barking heads tender loving care

Barking Heads Tender Loving Care 2kg ONLY £7.99 SAVE £4

Pet Supermarket price £11.29

vetzyme high strength flexible joint

Vetzyme High Strength Flexible Joint Tablets 90 Pack ONLY £9.99 SAVE £4.50

Pets at Home price £16

simple solutions training pads

Simple Solutions Training Pads 56 Pack ONLY £15.99 SAVE £6

Pets At Home price £23.00

Pro Plan Medium Dog

Pro Plan Adult Medium Dog Chicken 3kg ONLY £9.99 SAVE OVER £5

Pets At Home price £15.39

Coachies Naturals training treats

Coachies Training Treats Naturals 200g ONLY £1.99 SAVE £1.50

Pets At Home price £4.00

king british goldfish flake

King British Goldfish Flake 55g ONLY £2.49 SAVE OVER 35%

Pets At Home price £4.50, Jolley’s price £3.89

burns penlan farm chicken and vegetables

Burns Penlan Farm Chicken 6x400g ONLY £8.49 SAVE OVER £1.75

Pets At Home price £11.99

burns penlan farm lamb and vegetables

Burns Penlan Farm Lamb 6x400g ONLY £8.49 SAVE OVER £1.75

Pets At Home price £11.99

burns penlan farm multi flavour

Burns Penlan Farm Multipack 6x400g ONLY £8.49 SAVE OVER £1.75

Pets At Home price £11.99

gourmet perle country medley

Gourmet Perle Country Medley In Jelly 12x85g ONLY £3.49 SAVE 34%

Pets At Home price £4.69. Jolley’s price £5.30, Morrisons price £4.80, Sainsbury price £4.80

gourmet perle ocean delicacies

Gourmet Perle Ocean Delicacies 12x85g ONLY £3.49 SAVE 34%

Pets At Home price £4.69. Jolley’s price £5.30, Morrison’s price £4.80, Sainsbury price £4.80

Enjoy this months offers. Don’t forget we do FREE LOCAL DELIVERY (minimum order only £5).

The Angell Pets Team


New Year – New Stock

The New Year is well underway and we have a lot of new livestock in store and even more available to order. Every now and then I post what we have in our shop so now would be a good time for an update.


red canary

African grey (Timneh)

Cockatiels (coloured)

Budgies (rainbow)

Canary (green)

Canary (red)

Java sparrows (silver)

Zebra finches

Chinese painted quail female (white)




Rabbits (mini lop)

Guinea pigs

Rats (dumbo and top eared)



Syrian hamsters


cave gecko

Cornsnake (amelanistic)

Cornsnake (ghost)


Common boas

Kenyan sand boa

Carpet python

Royal python (pastel)

Bearded dragon

Leopard gecko

Flame crested gecko

Chinese cave gecko

Kotschys gecko

Madagascan giant day gecko

Yemen chameleon

Marginated tortoise

Red Eared Slider Turtle

Yellow Belly Turtle

Musk Turtle



phantasmal dart frog

Phantasmal Arrow Frog

Whites Tree Frog



brazilian black

Brazilian black (juvenile)

Brazilian red rump (sub adult)

Costa Rican big bstd (sub adult)

Curly hair (spiderling)

Giant white knee (juvenile)

Haitian brown (spiderling – large)

Hati Hati purple (spiderlings – large)

Mexican red rump (spiderling)

Mexican red leg (spiderling, sub adult)

Mexican pink (sub adult)

Mexican rose grey (spiderling)

Socotra Island blue baboon (juvenile)

Thai zebra (adult female)

Togo starburst (spiderling – large)

Trinidad chevron (spiderling – large)




Deaths head cockroach

Fruit beetle

Giant spiny stick insect

Indian stick insect

Cameroon Mantis

Griffin Mantis

Other Invertebrates

Yellow rabbit snail

Red onion snail

Fish – Coldwater

Assorted Goldfish

Zebra Danio

Leopard Danio

Pearl Danio

Glowlight Danio

Butterfly Plec

Fish – Tropical

Bronze Corydora

Endler Guppy

Splendid Rasbora

Galaxy Rasbora

Albino Halfbeak


Cherry Barb

Glowlight tetra

Blonde Guppy Female

Clown Loach

Black Lyre Tail Molly

Orange Lyre Tail Molly

Mixed Lyre Tail Molly

We will be getting more fish stock soon.

The Angell Pets Team