Message Number: YG1944 | New FHL Archives Search
Date: 2001-03-31 21:57:55 UTC
Subject: Re: Gerber chicken food vs "duck soup"

Message: 23
From: "Karen Purcell, DVM" <drkaren@w...>

Thanks for the reply Dr. Karen,

In answer to your questions:

I am treating Mackenzie for insulinoma. We just started the
pediapred today. Her blood sugar was 46 and her last meal was
probably 3-4 hours prior.

No she will not eat any of her regular food except her cookie
treats. Her main symptoms are ANOREXIA and tooth grinding. She has
a history of ulcers so we treated with amoxi and carafate, but after
10 days she had no response, whereas the first time she responded in
less than one week and she was actually much sicker then. So
basically she isn't eating anything at all. She does like cookies a
whole lot, unfortunately, which I will now stop. But other than the
cookies, she wouldn't eat anything, and she really didn't even seem
to be drinking much water as suggested by the amount of urine she was
putting out and how often I was changing her litter box.

But she WILL take the Gerber baby chicken food. I still have to hand
feed it to her, but at least she eats it. And I think she is getting
some fluid from it because her urine output has increased. And as of
now, it's her sole source of nutrition. Although, she does of
course, like the ferretone, but I don't know how much of that she can
have in a day. I'll get some ferretvite and see if she'll eat that.

I am assuming that you feel I should be okay with the baby food at
least for a few months.

Thanks so much for the reply. Double thanks for telling me what I
wanted to hear :)!

Kristy and Mackenzie


You wrote:
> My 7 year old ferret Mackenzie has not been eating for the last 2-3
> weeks. Last week when I first took her to see the vet, he
> recommended feeding her the Hills A/D canned food mixed with
> which I believe is believe is something like the "duck soup" that I
> keep reading about. She hates that stuff. I got on the internet
> read one of Dr. Williams articles about how to feed the Gerber
> chicken food and she has been eating it just fine from my fingers.
> can easily feed her a jar a day.
> I went back to see my vet today because Mackenzie was not improving
> and we did a blood sugar and it looks like she has insulinoma. He
> told me insulinomic ferrets frequently do not eat and that I can't
> sustain her on the Gerber chicken food and I should force feed her
> the Hills A/D canned food mixed with ensure with a syringe. I
> thought I read somewhere, but I can't find the article or email,
> Dr. Williams felt force feeding with a syringe was not a good idea
> because it can lead to aspiration. I also thought he was not a fan
> of the "duck soup" but I can't remember why and I can't remember
> long ferrets can be fed the Gerber chicken food.
Are you treating the insulinoma? I've fed ferrets exclusively baby
food for months, with ferretvite or petinic to supplement, with good

> So far, Mackenzie has not lost any weight on the Gerber baby food.
> She has been on it a week. She may have even gained a bit. It
> seems more kind to give her want she will volunarily eat than to
> force feed her. What I really want to know is: Can I just keep
> feeding her the Gerber baby food? If so, for how long? Or do I
> really need to force feed her the "duck soup"?
Will she eat her usual diet at all? When/if she eats will depend
on how she responds to treatment of her insulinoma. What was her
blood glucose, and was she fasted beforehand?
Hope this helps,
-Dr. Karen
This e-mail is provided for general informational purposes only. It
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should seek the advice of your regular veterinarian as soon as