Life Day 25101: Ferreting-out Ferret Facts

April 2, 2016 at 12:01 am | Posted in Today's Reasons To Celebrate | Leave a comment

Good morning domesticated rodent aficionados. Today is April 2nd. The first holiday today is National Ferret Day. National Ferret Day has been celebrated for nearly a quarter century by ferret lovers across America but didn’t become recognized as an ‘official’ holiday in Chase’s Calendar of Events until 2014. It is alway’s celebrated on April 2nd. The purpose of National Ferret Day is to promote the true virtues of this cute, cuddly critter and further the welfare of ferrets everywhere. It seeks to celebrate these remarkable and resilient creatures and to increase awareness about the standards of welfare, nutrition, and care. Ferret Day provides a focus for ferret-lovers to work together and share their passion, as well as educate the wider public about the virtues of ferret ownership.
As members of the weasel family, ferrets are much maligned and misunderstood, widely believed to be quarrelsome, malodorous beasts. However, this stereotype couldn’t be further from the truth. Ferrets are relatively common household pets these days and are known to make loyal and rewarding companions. Ferrets are charismatic pets and are as affectionate and social as puppies and independent and playful as kittens. They are mischievous, interesting, a bit quirky at times, and seem to possess a limitless amount of energy. However, many areas of the country still regard ferrets as exotic pets and require special licensing to own one; while other areas, including Hawaii, California, New York City and Washington D.C. outlaw the ownership of ferrets altogether.  So, I guess that you can add lobbying city, state and federal legislators to remove the ‘exotic pet’ classification from ferrets so they can be enjoyed as pets by everyone, to the list of purposes for this holiday.
In Europe, ferrets are often kept as working animals due to their agility and intelligence. Man first domesticated ferrets about 2,500 years ago. The specific reason is unknown, but historians believe that Romans used them for hunting. When Europeans traveled to the New World, they soon decided to bring ferrets to their colonies to get the rodent problem under control. In modern times, ferrets are still used to manage so-called plague species, such as rabbits. Ferrets have also been used in many areas of research, such as the pathogenesis and treatment of various diseases. Fields such as virology, endocrinology and neuroscience also use ferrets as experimental subjects.
Below are a few ferret facts you’ll find interesting.

  1. Ferrets have been used to run wire in places like Buckingham Palace and Greenwich Park during some of the most important events in England’s history.
  2. Ferrets love to sleep, dozing 14–18 hours a day.
  3. Ferrets are most active from dusk and dawn.
  4. Ferrets cannot catch colds from their humans, but they can catch influenza and sinus infections.
  5. Like cats, ferrets can easily be trained to use a litter box.
  6. A group of ferrets is called a “business”.
  7. The most famous artistic portrayal of a ferret is undoubtedly Leonardo da Vinci’s “Lady with an Ermine” painting that dates back to 1490.
  8. Ferrets express their joy by doing what is called the “Ferret Wardance”, during which they jump around excitedly, often bumping into things in their exuberance.

The next holiday today is National Love Your Produce Manager Day. National Love Your Produce Manager Day was created in 2012 to celebrate all the hard work that produce managers put into bringing us the best and freshest produce to their store.
Is this cilantro or Italian parsley? Are scallions the same thing as green onions? What the heck do I do with a jicama? These questions, as well as any other produce-related questions you may have, can readily be answered by the produce manager in your favorite grocery store.
Although rarely seen, produce managers are members of a grocery stores administrative staff who are responsible for choosing what produce their store is going to carry, and where it is going to be obtained from. The next time you are in the produce section of your grocery store, take a moment to look around and appreciate all the choices you have, and realize that someone has to keep those orders flowing, the shelves stocked, and new selections coming to you every day. In addition to placing orders, produce managers also have to set up the display and worry about the aesthetics of their department to keep customers coming into the store. Just take a look around at the beautiful palette of colors, sizes, flavors, and options presented to you every time you go to the store. Your produce manager is the one who sat down and figured out where everything was going to go and made sure it all got there.
About 50 years ago, it was a produce manager who, upon receiving a requests from customers for a wider variety of fruits in his store, introduced the Kiwi fruit to America. The produce manager brought in the first shipment of [New Zealand grown] kiwifruit and they were an immediate success. Today, kiwifruit is a common staple, available in just about every supermarket in the United States.

The third holiday is International Children’s Book Day.  International Children’s Book Day encourages reading and promotes the love of books for children. One of the fastest and best ways to help your children learn is to teach them to read. By instilling a love of reading early, you are giving them a lifetime of learning and enjoyment. Celebrate today by giving a new book to each of your children or grandchildren. If they are too young to read, spend time reading stories to them. It is a memorable bonding time for you and them.

Another holiday today is Reconciliation Day. Reconciliation Day is a day to patch-up broken relationships, be they with family, friends, couples, or co-workers. Life is simply too short to hold petty grudges. Reach out to those in your life with whom you have a broken relationship. Who knows, that might be all it takes to fix it, but if it is not, at least, you tried.

The fifth holiday today is Every Day Is Tag Day™. Every Day Is Tag Day™ does not refer to the popular childhood game of ‘tag’. Instead, Every Day Is Tag Day™ urges pet owners to make sure that their pets have ID tags (and also microchip ID’s). You may think that Fido or Fluffy will never run away, yet millions of stray pets each year turn up in shelters across America. Sadly, only about 15 percent of dogs and 2 percent of cats who end up in shelters without an ID tag or microchip are ever reunited with their owners. Accidents, natural disasters, or even a moment of inattention can cause you to be separated from your beloved fur baby.
The American Humane Association sets aside the first Saturday in April each year as Every Day Is Tag Day™ — to encourage all pet owners to tag and microchip their companion animals.

The final holiday today is World Autism Awareness Day. World Autism Awareness Day is a day to do what you can to raise awareness about Autism. Autism is a developmental disability that usually manifests itself within the first three years of life. Autism affects information processing in the brain by altering how nerve cells and their synapses connect and organize. The number of people diagnosed with autism has been increasing dramatically since the 1980’s. Researchers are still trying to determine the reason(s) for this increase.

The food-related holiday today is National Peanut Butter and Jelly (PBJ) Day. America has been enjoying peanut butter and jelly sandwiches since the early 1900’s. The first reference of peanut butter paired with jelly on bread was rumored to be published in the United States by Julia Davis Chandler in 1901. Originally, peanut butter was considered a delicacy, and only served in the finest culinary establishments. By the late 1920’s, however, the PBJ sandwich eventually moved down the class structure as the price of peanut butter decreased. It soon became a lunchtime favorite for young and old alike. Enjoy a PBJ sandwich (or two) for lunch today.

On this date in 1792 – The U.S. Congress passed the Coinage Act to regulate the coins of the United States. The act authorized $10 Eagle, $5 half-Eagle & 2.50 quarter-Eagle gold coins & silver dollar, dollar, quarter, dime & half-dime to be minted.

Other noteworthy historical events which occurred on this date are:

  • In 1513 – Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon sighted Florida.
  • In 1865 – Confederate President Davis and most of his Cabinet fled the Confederate capital of Richmond, VA.
  • In 1872 – G.B. Brayton received a patent for the gas-powered streetcar.
  • In 1877 – The first Easter Egg Roll was held on the grounds of the White House in Washington, DC.
  • In 1889 – Charles Hall patented aluminum.
  • In 1902 – The first motion picture theater opened in Los Angeles with the name Electric Theatre.
  • In 1910 – Karl Harris perfected the process for the artificial synthesis of rubber.
  • In 1917 – President Woodrow Wilson presented a declaration of war against Germany to the U.S. Congress.
  • In 1932 – A $50,000 ransom was paid for the infant son of Charles and Anna Lindbergh. He child was not returned and was found dead the next month.
  • In 1935 – Sir Watson-Watt was granted a patent for RADAR.
  • In 1958 – The National Advisory Council on Aeronautics was renamed NASA.
  • In 1963 – Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King began the first non-violent campaign in Birmingham, AL.
  • In 1972 – Burt Reynolds appeared nude in “Cosmopolitan” magazine.
  • In 1978 – The first episode of “Dallas” aired on CBS.
  • In 1982 – Argentina invaded the British-owned Falkland Islands. The following June Britain took the islands back.
  • In 1984 – John Thompson became the first black coach to lead his team to the NCAA college basketball championship.
  • In 1985 – The NCAA Rules Committee adopted the 45-second shot clock for men’s basketball to begin in the 1986 season.
  • In 1987 – The speed limit on U.S. interstate highways was increased to 65 miles per hour in limited areas.
  • In 1988 – U.S. Special Prosecutor James McKay declined to indict Attorney General Edwin Meese for criminal wrongdoing.
  • In 1989 – An editorial in the “New York Times” declared that the Cold War was over.
  • In 1992 – Mob boss John Gotti was convicted in New York of murder and racketeering. He was later sentenced to life in prison.
  • In 1995 – The costliest strike in professional sports history ended when baseball owners agreed to let players play without a contract.
  • In 1996 – Lech Walesa resumed his old job as an electrician at the Gdansk shipyard. He was the former Solidarity union leader who became Poland’s first post-war democratic president.

If you were born on this date, you share a birthday with the following illustrious individuals:

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