Message Number: YG278 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Dr. Bruce Williams
Date: 2001-02-26 14:20:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Suzy

--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., "Larry McFarlane" <pndragon@l...>
> Suzy had her radiographs today, and she has ruptured tendons in her
back legs! The vets said that I should give her limited activity
(yep, this is the ferret who thinks I'm her own personal tree) and
put her on baby aspirin. so I cut the aspirin into 4ths, then shave
part of the 1/8 piece off, give it to her in hair ball medicine.
> So that's why she's limping. I have no idea how she did this
unless in one of her climbing episodes she fell or pulled herself up
harder than normal. Anyone else ever had this happen?
> They also said no surgery, which is fine, as Fang's adrenal surgery
is scheduled for March 27.

Dear Rebecca:

did they mention which tendons - ferret legs have a number of tendons
and ligaments, and in a case this unusual, it is nice to have all of
the details.

Yes, surgery is rarely an option for tendon damage in small mammals,
due to the difficulty in tendon healing - the low vascularity of
tendons makes cleanup by the body problematic, and regrowth of new
tendon almost impossible. Even in humans, tendon surgery has a very
long recovery and rehabilitation period. It is not an uncommon
sports injury in humans with rehab times of up to a year.

I have not heard of spontaneous rupture of tendons in ferrets - we do
see problems in horses which are known as "bowed tendon". When a
racehorse is diagnoses with a "bowed tendon" it generally means its
racing days are over. With prolonged rest, these animals may be
serviceable for pleasure riding or stud, but that's about it.

You'll have to break the news to Suzy that her racing days are over.

With kindest regards,

Bruce H. Williams, DVM
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