Date: 2004-04-02 20:08:35 UTC
Subject: RE: ADV
The only way to tackle this is one step at a time. The only way. Let's
take a look at your situation:
1) Breath. The test(s) is not back yet. Do you have any idea how many times
ADV is suspected and mimiced by other diseases but tests results come back
that there is no ADV? Much of the time. You are doing everything right. You
are self educating yourself and you are being proactive in case your vet is
right. But first, do not panic. Prepare for ADV, but know it's not the
likeliest of things.
2) Isolate your ferret from other ferrets. Yes, if you have ferrets in the
home they've been exposed most probably, but in case there is that ray of hope
that they've not picked up ADV, why invite trouble? Please do not have other
peoples ferrets in the home, and be careful not to spread ADV to other ferret
homes (yes it can even be brought in by the soles of your shoes
theoretically). You can contact shelters or people only that deal with ADV who are used to
the regimens and can give you practical and specific steps to take in this
3) Educate yourself online. You are already doing a bang up job of this.
4) You might want to go on and give your ferret a back up ADV test right
away. United's blood CEP test is probably the most tried right now. Another one
that tests differently might be a good back up such as Avecons Saliva tests
(Elisa). Best yet would be to send off blood to the U. of Ga for their tests.
Be prepared and do know that either way, you should get a back up test as soon
as you can. There are small numbers of false negatives. It's uncommon,
perhaps rare, but there are even isolated cases of false positives (when saliva
tests pick up other proteins for example).
5) Do not worry about the other animals in your home. As far as we know this
disease does not affect them or have anything to do with them.
6) We dont know how long this virus can live on surfaces. It is said that
it's possible for it to live on a solid surface for at least two years. So who
knows how long. And can these microbes even get into the pores of cement,
furniture, etc and how long can they live? It's very upsetting, I understand. I
have hope however that it takes more than a couple microbes to infect a
ferret. Unfortunately we all know how much ferrets salivate, mouth things,
urinate, defacate, etc, in the home and it's very hard to get that all up. You've
said this animal has been in your home for quite a while now. IF this pet has
ADV... can you ever have ADV negative ferrets again? I'm not qualified to
answer. But there is a wonderful ADV egroup out there with very experiened people
who have some ideas about this. For now, put this thought on hold until you
7) Being an ADV mom.... put this on hold. When you decide, know this. Know
that it is costly. I know that it can go into the thousands if you put your
all into these animals. But that is one end of the spectrum. You might have
it in your mind to give supportive care until the end and not heroic measures.
This gets to be a hot issue, and its a personal decision. But this is the
very last thing you should consider. If the ferret comes back with ADV, you
need to just take one step and day at a time, get support of friends, get support
from the wonderful ADV community out there, take time to adjust to things and
to look at things locically. Then down the line maybe you can decide on
something like this.