Message Number: YG2405 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Mike Janke
Date: 2001-04-10 05:40:00 UTC
Subject: Re: ECE

I agree that there are no absolutes when dealing with ECE (or any
disease for that matter). I suppose it is possible that a ferret
that has never had ECE not to become infected when exposed to the
virus. Whether that's because of a natural immunity or just luck,
we'll never know. However, I would have to say that this would
definitely be the rare exception.

Very young ferrets with ECE can be asymptomatic, or at the very
least, have one or two unusual stools and symptoms so minor that one
may write it off to an upset stomach or some other minor occurance.

Who has ever seen a pet store kits show signs of ECE at 6 weeks of
age? (Now that I've said that, I'm sure someone here will pop in and
say they have! :-)) Pet store kits seem to be a major cause of
introducing ECE into households, but I've never heard of anyone that
had a kit that was being treated for ECE or even diagnosed with ECE.
Because of this, I don't think you can positively say that Champ
never had ECE. Why he wouldn't have passed it on to your other
ferrets when you brought him home would be one sign that he didn't.


--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., katharine <shurcool@i...> wrote:
> Mike Janke wrote:
> <ECE is definitely highly contagious. A ferret that comes in
> with another ferret that is an active carrier will come down with
> within 48-72 hours of that contact.
> I guess the next question is... are you sure the others haven't
> had ECE and that's why they have not presented with symptoms?<
> Mike:
> I don't think you can say that a ferret WILL come down with ECE
when coming
> in contact with an active carrier. Maybe some ferrets have a
> immunity to ECE? Or, is it possible for a ferret to have ECE and
> show symptoms? When Dillon and/or Chester (rescues) brought ECE
into my
> house
> in September, only Cedes and Lany came down with it. Champ never
> one
> single symptom, not even a loose stool (I've had Champ since he was
7 weeks
> old so I know he's never had ECE). Champ and Lany live together
and I
> didn't separate them during this time. Cedes lives with Dillon and
> Chester. Cedes first showed symptoms a good 2 weeks after Dillon and
> Chester
> arrived. At first, I thought it was stress. Cedes had always been
an only
> ferret
> and the symptoms first appeared shortly after I put Cedes, Dillon
> Chester
> (Da Boyz) together. Though they were housed separately the first
> weeks, there was contact. Cedes came down with it a week or so
before Lany
> did.
> ECE was diagnosed through process of elimination, bloodwork,
> urinalysis, X-rays, and, finally, a consultation with a vet at the
Univ. of
> Fla. vet school. That is definitely what they had (or as sure as
we can
> be, given there's no definitive test). Dillon and Chester had been
> together (after being separately picked up off the street) for
> weeks at a wildlife rehab facility prior to them coming to my
home. They
> showed
> no signs of it there. I'm not sure who the carrier was (or both of
> but neither of them had any symptoms when it was active in my
home. So,
> it's possible one of them also has a natural immunity.
> Now, I can't say for sure that Dillon and/or Chester were the
carriers but
> the
> timing sure fits. Comments?
> Katharine