Q: How long do ferrets live? Does being the runt of the litter affect a ferret’s life span or health?
A: Ferrets usually live six to eight years, with appropriate medical care, exercise, mental stimulation and quality nutrition. Ferrets are prone to a variety of cancers which can end their lives early, but they can also live to be age 9 or so.
I know of no reason that being a runt in the litter would affect a ferret’s health or longevity, unless it was due to poor breeding or a genetic condition. In the United States, most ferrets are from large farm breeders, and you would never know or be able to identify their littermates.