So, I know there are a few on here that breed, a few that show and a few (or at least one) that judge at shows and many that just love ferrets.
I wondered what people looked for in a hob. What I noticed when I first started breeding mini ferrets is that the hobs were very jill-like, lacked the broad head and stocky build that I have associated with a really 'typey' hob.
I have been very excited to see my home-bred hobs mature this year, and although they're not by any means a perfect type, my home-bred mini boys are really stocky, broad and typey hobs in stark contrast to all the other mini hobs I have seen
Here is a picture of one of my older boys, a typical mini hob ... and you can see he looks very jill-like with a long narrow face
And here are some (rather rubbish sorry - hurried pics on my phone) pics of Eli and Ash, last year's homebred kits ... (they are the same size and weight as Sydney above, but completely different!)
They are half brothers so although you don't get a good impression of Ash, he has the same big, broad head!
I like my hobs to be masculine and 'hobby' in contrast to my jills which should be lean and elegant with smaller narrow heads and longer noses. So, my question ... what do you all look/breed for in a hob?
I prefer a strong boned, broad head on my hobs, bulldog. It has to balance the body though. The body still has to be a good representation of what the ferret was created for. One of the problems that I've seen with the micros is the fine bone of even the hobs, similar issues can be seen with the self breedings. They seem to create an almost petite look in the hobs. A hob can be a whippet style without giving up on the more masculine appearance. It appears that you're starting to get that broader spacing between the ears and across the nose with your hobs. It may be the photo but your bottom hob appears to be a bit short in the face (from nose to base of skull). Again perspective from a photo can be misleading. I would say that from what you've mentioned you're looking for and what you're kits might be able to offer, it appears that you're going in the right direction. The thing would be to match up with a jill who carries those characteristics or at least her male siblings carry those characteristics. ciao
I know that the judges at shows prefer a shorter broader face, Bandit has quite a broad, short face for a jill, she's very stocky too, Vinnie on the other hand has a jill like face like your older boy but he isn't a mini, he's the same size as a large jill. He's never won anything at shows other than racing as he's a great racer but I've noticed that his kits have got much broader faces compared to him now that they're fully grown, I'm not sure if this has anything to do with my jills, Nancy has a broader shorter head like Bandit, Whisper has a pointy face but not a long one. Jimmy on the other hand has a very short and broad head, he's a large hob and makes Vinnie look small and I look forward to seeing the kits he produces with Willow and Bandit
Vinnie when he won racing, this photo shows off his head shape
A photo of Jimmy's head, much broader than Vinnie's head, Jimmy is a very muscular hob too
Eli and Ash are still finer boned than any standard hob as they are in proportion but they are much bigger boned than their counterpart jills so I am actually seeing obvious sexual dimorphism in this generation as you would usually see in standard ferrets.
Eli's nose does look very short in that photo, but it's the same length as Ash's nose, they would be identical if they weren't different in colour. I certainly wouldn't want their noses any shorter anyway.
Eli or Ash are going back to their grandma this year hopefully, so that may lengthen up the nose a touch. Sydney is their Dad BUT they look more like their grandad who was a very chunky little hob ...
@frolickingferrets - is Vinnie your half micro hob? I personally just really don't find overly long noses aesthetically pleasing, especially in a hob. But when it has come to minis, I haven't exactly had a whole lot of choice in what I start with, and Syd has super lines w/r health and temperament...
@vickiann I brought Vinnie as a half micro vesectomised hob to bring my jills out of season, he wasn't vesectomised so I got scammed on that part but the micro half I'm not sure about, he's a little bigger than a standard jill.
Hi what I first look at in the the skull is the width between the ears the position/ spacing of the eyes and length from centre of eyes to end of nose then I look at the placement of ears and size of ears in proportion to the rest of the head are the teeth correctly placed in the jaw does the jaw close correctly then you move on to the neck and the rest of the skeletal frame are they all in proportion and does the body look balanced ( is the tail in proportion to the length of body or is it short )you then look at the bones in the legs and feet how does a ferret stand and move is the back arched when moving is it flat footed or is it walking correctly ( if a ferret walks for a long time with really short nails the arches in its feet can drop and it looses its natural gait which should be an arched back ) hope this helps take care bye for now Bev