Message Number: YG1989 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Pam Sessoms
Date: 2001-04-01 13:32:00 UTC
Subject: Re: [Ferret-Health-list] Question for vets re: Aleutian
disease symptoms

I'm not one of the good doctors, but I have an anecdote and a possible
request for a favor...

On Sun, 1 Apr 2001 Outlaw50@a... wrote:
> As some of you know, we believe White Russian and Charmin' Charlie
> have Aleutian Disease. [snip] Both eat chicken gravy with
> ground bone and egg shells,
> [snip]
> Also, I have been testing their urine with "Multistix 10 SG - Regeant
> strips for urinalysis. The problem is I'm not sure what's normal for
> ferrets. Everything is at the lowest level, except for the ph, which
> is at about 7.8 [snip]

I'm curious about the urine pH and their diet of Bob's gravy. I've
written about my Sonic here before. She was producing rather alkaline
urine (up to 8 sometimes) on a diet of Bob's gravy. This seems to run
contrary to the conventional wisdom that a high-quality meat protein diet
should produce acidic urine in a ferret. She's had several urinalyses
showing no infections. My others, who get Totally Ferret Senior which
includes an addition of dl-methionine (acidifier), produce acidic urine
with a pH of around 6. Sonic has some other problems and is very picky,
but she's recently been accepting TF Senior kibble gruel with just a tiny
bit of gravy mixed in. Her urine pH is lower now - it varies between 6.5
and 7.5.

Sonic has indeed had struvite crystals in the past, so I do watch her.
Can you please post back to the list (or at least me individually) if you
get a full urinalysis done on these guys to rule out bacterial infection?
I'd love to know if Sonic isn't the only one who seems to produce alkaline
urine while on gravy...

Note: I'm not speaking ill of Bob's gravy in any way, shape, or form - I'm
a big fan of that stuff and it's made caring for my old crew of
insulinomics MUCH easier. Sonic had the same high urine pH on Gerber's
chicken baby food - still the only possible explanation I've found is that
idea I mentioned earlier about dogs fed meaty diets producing lots of urea
which somehow raised their urine pH (see my earlier FHL messages 1160,
1211, 1226 for longer history if interested).

And it's nice to know I'm not the only one running around dipsticking
weasel pee at home!!! >:-)

Best wishes,

-Pam S.