Weasel war dance
The weasel war dance is a colloquial term for a behavior of excited ferrets and weasels. In wild animals, it is speculated that this dance is used to confuse or disorient prey. In domestic animals, the war dance usually follows play or the successful capture of a toy or a stolen object and is commonly held to mean that the ferret is thoroughly enjoying itself. It consists of a frenzied series of sideways and backwards hops, often accompanied by an arched back, and a frizzy tail. Ferrets are notoriously clumsy in their surroundings during their dance and will often bump into or fall over objects and furniture. Most often, the act includes a clucking vocalization, commonly known as "dooking". It normally indicates happiness. Although the weasel war dance may make a ferret appear frightened or angry, they are often just excited and are usually harmless to humans. The stoat (also known as the ermine or the short-tailed weasel) often employs a "war dance" when attacking rabbits.
- King, Carolyn M. et al The Natural History of Weasels and Stoats , P. 120
- Balmain, David (2008). Ferret. O'Reilly Media, Inc. p. 101. Retrieved June 9, 2011.
- Ferret doing war dance in snow
- Pet weasel doing war dance against fur garment
- Wild Stoat performing a war dance while hunting rabbits
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