Message Number: YG2895 | New FHL Archives Search
Date: 2001-04-24 07:28:00 UTC
Subject: Rascal

I have posted a couple of times about Rascal. He had exploratory
surgery on 3/20 that went well. He ate and drank some that night, but
by morning was having seizures. His glucose level (after glucose
injections) was 29. The vet said his glucose had been normal the day
before. He stayed with the vet for the next 4 days. He was having
frequent seizures and was being tube-fed and given sub-Q fluids.
Other than seizures, he was not moving, just staring into space. His
insulin level was 23.8. The vet said this was not that high, but
apparently enough to cause the severe glucose drop. We started him on
prednisone and he began to walk and eat from a dish after a few days.
It's been five weeks since the surgery. He needs help getting started
eating (his head bobs--he broke one of his long teeth on a ceramic
dish) and only eats "soup." When he walks, it's at a quick pace
around and around the room, usually following along the walls. He has
an anxious stare and seems to be looking past you. Sometimes he is
calm and still likes to cuddle. He doesn't use a litterbox anymore
and walks through and lies in his excrement if no one is home to
clean it up right away, so I keep him in a separate cage. I put him
with my four other ferrets for a little while each day, but he gets
stressed pretty quickly. He seems to be happier walking around in a
room with just humans. He has started making a hissing noise when the
other ferrets get too close or start sniffing him. Actually, he makes
that noise quite a bit now if you do something he doesn't approve of--
I think it gives him a sense of power. (I call him my "fussy boy.")
<G> About a week ago I gradually stopped the prednisone and started
giving him Devil's Club Supreme that I read about on the FHL and
haven't noticed any adverse affects. My vet thinks that I should put
him to sleep. This message may sound like I am tired of taking care
of him, but that couldn't be farther from the truth--I was just
trying (unsuccessfully) to be brief. I still love him very much and
don't mind giving him the special care he needs. My problem is that I
am not sure how to measure his quality of life. I don't want to keep
him alive for selfish reasons if he is miserable. On the other hand,
I don't want to kill him if he can adjust or maybe even recover a
little more and be content. If anyone on the list has ever dealt with
this kind of neurological damage or could shed a little light on this
situation for me, I would be forever grateful.