From: Gail Elsey
Date: 2004-04-02 02:24:15 UTC
Subject: Re: [ferrethealth] ADV
Unfortunately, it IS prevalent, especially in TX, NJ and a few other states.
Unfortunately, I tested and came up with 15 positives in the past 18 months
for the shelter. Luckily, we pre-test animals before they come in if
possible, screen and confirm with a United blood tests. What you can do is
contact University of Georgia and see if your ferret is shedding. However,
all this needs to wait until you find out for sure your ferret has ADV. You
can check titer levels (gosh, I hope I am saying this right...) for protein
in the blood to find out if your ferret is fighting the disease. Also, you
can test the urine, blood and stool samples to see if your ferret is
shedding. However, unless you are willing to test every few months to check
for shedding, your ferret could begin shedding the disease at anytime and
you not know it.
You probably do not want to bring a ferret that is positive into your house
unless you are willing to understand that they could have a different, more
active strain and could make your situation worse by also exposing at-risk
ferrets to other viral and bacterial problems. I have several friends who
live with ADV and it is different. I cannot tell you what to do, but this
is something you would need to think about, both with your heart and head.
I am one of the few shelters that has a back up. I work with Yvonne who
runs an ADV positive shelter. She has never turned me down, and is a
wonderful lady. Because of this, I don't have make any decisions regarding
the placement of ADV positive ferrets, though I do have another positive
If you are willing and able to open you home to positive ferrets, be
prepared for financial and emotional hardships...just like opening your home
to many animals of any type is hard, opening your house to special needs is
even harder, but can be very rewarding.
I would suggest that if you do get back a positive result, you confirm with
another United test (blood) and/or a send in Avecon test for saliva (do the
opposite of what you did).
I would also suggest that you do all the research you can on the disease.
ADV study of samples sent in from pet ferrets with ADV:
209A Vet Med Building
Dept. of Small Animal Medicine
UGA College of Veterinary Medicine
Athens, GA 30602-7390
Here is praying you have a negative
Also, if you are confirmed positive, there are many people and groups who
can help and support you. Let me know if I can direct you anywhere.
Scales and Tails, Inc.
Exotic animal rescue, rehab, and adoption.