Message Number: YG6046 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Bruce Williams, DVM
Date: 2001-08-01 23:06:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Would like vets input and ideas

--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., "Margie" <dookdook@h...> wrote:
> Scenario:
> Here is the sequence of events with Bubba, 12 yr old ferret.
> On July 17, 2001, Bubba had surgery to remove 2 tumors from his
> leg. (Biopsy shows both are cancerous). Left adrenal gland
> was plasticixed (sp) but not cancerous.
> He came home and was doing fine. Eating, drinking and recovering
> nicely.
> On July 25, 2001, around 2 PM. I noticed a stitch came open and
> was oozing. Took him back to clinic, Dr. Ivan, Ferret vet, not in.
> The vet on duty cleaned him up and sent him home.
> Same evening around 7:30 PM, I came back from shopping and noticed
> small amount of blood on the bedding. Looking at the incision, it
> open and leaking.
> Took him to the ER vet clinic in St. Louis, MO. There they locally
> numbed (I think) the incision area and flushed out the wound. Put
> on Baytryl. They said the wound was infected.
> July 26, 2001, took Bubba back to my vet, Dr. Ivan. She rinsed the
> area and was able to push out only blood clots. No signs of
> infection.
> Directions were to keep him on Batryl and rinse the area off
> times a day.
> Bubba at this time had an appetite but his teeth were grinding. He
> was then put on 1/8 tablet of pepcid a/c.
> Saturday, he started to refuse to eat. I requested a prescription
> Carafate. He is on carafate 1/8 tablet once day.
> Sunday, he started getting lethargic. Called the doctor and we
> sugar (which I had forgot) and pedialyte to his diet.
> Monday, July 30, back for a recheck. Stitches came out. He is on
> Sub-q of Ringers 4Xs a day. And the Baytril is being given by
> injection. Dr. Ivan has add A/D to his diet. Which was just baby
> food, honey, and Ensure or Deliver 2.0.
> Since the ER visit when he is soaked I massage the incision site to
> "bring out any remenants of infection."
> At this point and time, he is fighting any attempts to give him
> ------------ Questions -----------
> Can be be grinding his teeth for any other reason than ulcers?
> Is there anything more, I can do to ease his discomfort?

Dear Margie:

Ulcers are certainly the most likely cause of the tooth grinding
here, although it is generally a non-speific sign of abdominal pain.
I would imagine that there is a bit of pain associated ith rubbin
ghte incision - I always preferred hot moist heat to releive
information rather than pressing on a wound - that hurts - and you
may also cause a little peritonitis as well.

The dosage of Carafate is also not what has worked for me in the
past. I dose with Carafate liquid at 75 mg/lb 10 minuts before every
meal. Carafate is a coating agent which simply patches the holes
inthe stomach lining for a short while. When only given once, it
tends to dissipate within a short while, and the ulcers are left

You also don't mention what type of diet you are feeding. I prefer a
bland diet with no kibble initially for ulcers, with ground kibble
added over time.

You can find more about ulcers in ferrets and feeding sick ferrets at
my Web stie at

With kindest regards,

Bruce Williams DVM