From: Steve Austin
Date: 2001-04-04 22:34:00 UTC
Subject: Re: [Ferret-Health-list] ECE/ Low Blood Sugar-Questions
) Lastly, I just discovered that Bandit is probably blind! When I let the
new kit out he can't locate him by sight only by scent and he's been
into things and startles more easily. I asked my vet to do a retinal
and she said you really can't tell with ferrets and there was nothing I
do. Is there a test that can be performed and is it possible because
been on babyfood for so long that he was missing certain nutrients which
caused him to go blind? Is there anything I can do for his condition as
as nutrients or making things easier for him to find his food ect. (If
has a blind ferret could you please e-mail me directly)
6) The vet said Bandit's Blood Chemistry was within normal values except
Hemacretin was 59.5%
and his sodium was 1.34 and his potassium was 4.4 could you comment on
values and tell me what you think they could mean?
Lastly if anyone out there has any suggestions on helping Bandit get
with the new kit. Right now when he gets a whiff of him he chases him
starts biting him when he catches him and the baby kit cries...so I have
keep them separated. The whole reason I got the little guy was to keep
Thank you Dr. Williams and to everyone for you're great advice on how to
and cope with Bandit's ECE.
O.K., I will try to answer some of your questions, because I had a boy go
through ECE. I found that with my boy he just went around kind of "blah"
and lost weight and looked sick for 6 weeks, then he just one day bounced
back and began to perk up, fatten up, and do well.
I am assuming Bandit is on the pred for the ECE- I think that he would be
off of this by now, and then wait a week or two and have the glucose
done. Of course, if there are any starring spells or drooling, etc do it
Now, I actually gave mine the pepcid throughout the problems and he never
had a problem with grinding teeth, or tarry stools, he did have some
signs of nausea (rubbing his face on the ground, pawing at the mouth)
which took about 2 weeks to go away.
I gave him .2cc a day for 6 weeks of the 10mg/10cc- now I didn't know
this, but it isn't good in ECE to change the pH of the stomach, so if it
has been a few weeks since the ECE I guess it would be o.k., but during
the episode should be avoided.
The dose should be based on weight, so i think you can find it in the
archives here, or on ferretcentral.
My guy was very thin after the ECE- went through the wasting, he looked
like a ferret on those cans that want donations. Sunken at he haunches,
and this came back after he started to gain his energy, and eat better,
after 6 weeks. You didn't mention whether Bandit looked this way before
My guy lost so much subcutaneous fat, and had too much loose skin for the
scruff test for dehydration. I looked for the mouth being moist, and
eyes moist. The best indicator may be the amount of urine produced, a
small amount of darker urine would mean not enough water.
Dehydration would be different from lack of calories , he may drink well,
but lose weight from lack of calories. I am not sure the exact amount of
baby food needed, but when his stools are pretty well formed, may still
have a mucousy or green stool once in awhile, could start back on the
kibble, I think science A/D is used a lot because it is bland, I actually
let mine eat some Iams cat food because he found it one day and ate it
well, so I was jsut so happy to see him eating I forgot about everything
else. Also, if he is eating enough he should have good stools, small
stools, or diarrhea would suggest a problem with digesting the food, and
the small or less stool for the day may mean he isn't getting enough to
Unfortunately, ferrets get along well with poor vision,and it may seem
like they are blind overnight. A retinal exam could show any retinal
atrophy or disease, but I am thinking a specialist may have to do this-
if your vet says she doesn't know what to look for, I doubt it would
change too much, by being on baby food for a long time, you mean a few
weeks, it wouldn't cause the problem. Even a few months probably
wouldn't do much harm, just supplement some Ferretone, ferretvite,
nutracal,etc. I have heard about DYne and Stat and there is a thread on
that - or Nupro, for adding calories to the ferrets that aren't eating
well, not sure how hard it is to digest though.
Can't comment on the lab values, except by now they have changed if he
is doing better, they may have been done when he was slightly dehydrated.
The HCT may be altered if the sample was too small, or other factors.
By now I would say if he is ill, vomiting, very lethargic, still all
diarrhea, or other problems he needs another trip to the vet. If he is
status quo, starting to look a little better, or much better it is just a
matter of time, and keeping an eye on him, but realizing the 6 week
period is the typical time for the wasting and recovery.
Well, I think Bandit knows this kit brought in the ECE that made him ill,
and wants nothing to do with him. Just kidding
Bandit has been by himself for 5 years? He may need some time to warm up
to the new one, kits have lots of energy, and Bandit may not be in the
mood for that. Also, it is his job to teach the kit what is acceptable
and what isn't, so he does this by scruffing and dragging the kit. If
the kit is injured, or too scared then separate them, try again when
Bandit is feeling better on neutral grounds. It may take another month,
may take a year. It isn't always easy to introduce a new ferret to an
older ferret. Also, if the kit has some growing to do you may be better
off waiting a month to introduce them. I have never had to intoduce a kit
to my group so I am not sure how to do this.
Well, I tried, maybe now someone will correct all my mistakes and you
will get the "right" answers to your questions. LOL
BTW, sometimes it is easier to get answers if you submit only one or two
questions at a time, just makes it easier for someone else to hit reply
and a quick response.
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