Message Number: YG5426 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Steve1
Date: 2001-07-12 10:24:00 UTC
Subject: [Ferret-Health-list] Re: prescription drugs

Hi Kathrine,
Please don't stop giving advice on drug dosages or anything
else as you may have saved a ferret from an incorrect dose and
possibly a harmful reaction. I have read your posts and must
congradulate you on your helpfulness and acuracy. Keep up the
good work.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, July 12, 2001 8:49 AM

--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., ferretsonly@h... wrote:
> Aren't Biaxin & Amoxicillin both prescription drugs that
> be dispensed by a licensed veterinarian after they examine
> Shouldn't laypeople refrain from giving advice about drug
> avoid practicing veterinary medicine without a license?

Well, since I think I'm the only non-veterinarian who
addressed the
drug dosages directly, I would suspect this is directed to
me. Debi
had already figured the drug dosages and decided what drugs
she was
using. That is her responsibility. She was just asking for

confirmation, absolutely the right thing to do (especially
in this
case since she confused the conversion of lbs. to kg). I
suspect that most shelter operators don't have the luxury of
every ferret to the vet (I believe Debi is a shelter
Many decisions must be made at the shelter. Her first
response was
from Dr. Williams, a veterinarian. I piped in and said that
I liked
to practice doing the calculations and my dosages agreed
with Dr.
Williams. At no time did I recommend what drugs to use (I
have a clue). I only concurred with what dosages were
recommended by
a veterinarian.

You would be astounded at how much of this goes on on the
rehab lists. Making assessments, determining what drugs to
calculating dosages, and adminstering the drugs is a way of
life. If
you were to ever get into wildlife rehab, you would be doing
this all
of the time. Few vets have the time to see every animal who
comes in
to us, and they come to us because they are ill, injured, or

orphaned, not because they're good and healthy. They all
problems of some sort, some much worse than others. There
veterinary oversight but very little hands/eye on unless the
is in dire straits. For instance, I administer antiobiotics
to all incoming opossum babies as a preventive measure (try
calculating the dosage for a 15-20g baby!!). This is on the

recommendation of a veterinarian who has studied the opossum
for over
20 years. She's clear across the country from me but I have
to follow her protocols for opossum care. No veterinarian
each of these babies. Many rehabbers (with a lot more
than I) make decisions, calculate dosages, and administer
stronger drugs for things such as head injuries. And, just
there's no confusion here...I consider these wild animals to
be no
less important or worthy than my personal "pets".

I'm glad you posted, though. I forgot to remind Debi (and
else) that many antibiotics, such as Amoxicillin, are only
good for
14 days after they are mixed. That's why I keep the
by a veterinarian)and just mix what I need.

BTW, my vets occasionally give me advice/drug
recommendations over
the phone for my personal ferrets. They know that I can
describe symptoms and usually know what the problem is. I
will then
tell them what drugs I have available (usually leftover from
previous illness). They do this to save me money (and
they're so nice )and don't require that I bring the ferret
every single time. This, of course, is only for the "little
such as Amoxi. They wouldn't do it for the "big gun" drugs
illnesses. They know I have enough sense to know when a
examination is needed. I've even had the after-hours
emergency vets
help me in this way (over the phone) so that I don't incur a
emergency room bill. They will help me get the ferret
through the
night until I can go to my regular vet in the morning, a
service, in my opinion. Please keep in mind that this is
just for
"little" stuff, not major illnesses or emergencies.

Don't assume that all of the drugs prescribed by your vet
are, in
fact, prescription. Many can be ordered through places like
as "over the counter".

But, your point is well taken. I will try to refrain from
into drug dosages on the list in the future.


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