Message Number: YG2573 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Mary R. Shefferman
Date: 2001-04-15 11:28:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Big belly question - sick ferret

Thank you, Dr. Williams. We'll get an x-ray on Monday and see if we
can figure out what's going on in there. At least she's happily
taking the baby food now.

I'm always a little leary of biopsy results that are unusual for
ferrets. But I saw the path report & it said peritonitis. (Our vet
just changed labs because he wasn't happy with some of the lab
reports from the previous lab he was using. Who knows if this one is
better or worse.) I thought the peritonitis finding was a bit unusual
because Knuks wasn't lethargic prior to the biopsy (or after it
either, she's only gotten inactive over the last week or so). She was
active and eating -- just having that intermittent diarrhea thing &
we thought maybe partial blockage (vet thought poss. lymphoma because
of the "nodule" he felt). I was under the impression that with
peritonitis you have a *sick* animal who's in pain. The same with
pancreatitis. These are both, as far as my understanding in humans at
least, very painful conditions. At the time of the biopsies Knuks was
feeling pretty good; now she's more like a ferret with one of these
conditions. Hopefully, we'll know more tomorrow.

Thank you again for your input. Oh -- Eric and I are both doing well,
thank you for asking. :o)

--Mary & the Fuzzies

--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., "Bruce Williams, DVM" <williams@e...>
> Dear Mary:
> Right now, I don't think that there is a lot more you can really do
> until Monday. I think that an X-ray is probably a better way to
> screen for abdominal fluid than a 4-quad stick, and gives you a lot
> more information. An X-ray can tell you whether the swelling is
> fluid, gas, or fat, which is a common occurrence in older animals
> with adrenal disease. These animals put on a lot of fat in the
> abdomen, giving them a pear-shaped look.
> Another concern that I have in your history is the diagnosis of
> peritonitis - especially in light of a negative abdominocentesis
> the history of previous abdominal surgery. The presence of pockets
> inflamed tissue is not uncommon following surgery, and I would
> if this is not what we have seen. These areas of mesenteric
> inflammation are usually well-contained by the body, and would not
> result in abdominal distention.
> On Monday, I would suggest bloodwork and that X-ray. True
> peritonitis will often show up on both - as a fuzziness to the
> abdomen on the X-ray, and with an elevated WBC count on the blood
> count.
> Hope all is well with you and Eric,
> Bruce Williams, dVM