Message Number: YG4955 | New FHL Archives Search
Date: 2001-06-28 14:13:00 UTC
Subject: renal failure, or human failure?

i've got a dying ferret on my hands--likely just of old age, but i
still feel like it's my fault...

biscuit's nine years old--for the past seven years he had lived with
a friend of mine in another city, who didn't have anywhere in her
house for him to run. he came here to live early this year, at which
point he was perfectly healthy... january or february, not certain
which--and about three days after his arrival, he got diarrhea,
started going off his food, etc.--i suspected ECE at the time. he
started teeth-grinding, was treated for helicobacter and GI
ulceration... no improvement, really. i've been feeding him soup more
or less ever since--he's periodically voluntarily eaten crunchies for
a few days every so often, then stopped again. a few weeks ago, he
got a urinary infection, and an ulcer was noticed on the roof of his
mouth. antibiotics helped with those--he then got an ear infection,
which is being treated still... last weekend he stared getting weak
on his hind legs. now he's very very weak, can barely walk a few
steps at a time, and holds his head sideways (probably due to the ear
infection)--insulinoma has been ruled out now, so basically i'm
looking at one of a few options...

-kidney (or possibly liver) failure. i could pay 50 dollars for the
test, which might at least give me an answer, but which i really
can't afford at this point.

-ADV, he had it before he got here, and it only became symptomatic
afterward. i realize this is unlikely, especially as i think before
he got here he had not been around other ferrets for a few years at

-stress-related ulcers and sickness weakened his immune system to the
point where he's just undergoing massive system failure. this is what
i'm afraid of. i feel like if i hadn't brought him down in the first
place, this would never have been triggered.

i guess my question is, does this sound like the latter stages of
renal failure to you? i'm just scared as hell of running the tests,
and having them come back negative... leaving me with a dying ferret
and no answers.