Message Number: FHL5070 | New FHL Archives Search
From: "Sukie Crandall"
Date: 2008-06-01 18:22:35 UTC
Subject: [ferrethealth] Re: Coughing ferret

Oh, gosh. Now I am blushing so my face is practically magenta.

What I am going to say is a bit off topic, but maybe not because
it gets across why it's important to take my replies with a grain of
salt and also how to learn more about ferret health.

Okay, there are great reasons why i remind people that I am not
a vet. People like me DO learn a lot when we read vet texts and
have a lot of experience but that approach has holes in it that the
vets simply don't have. I know that I just don't have the same
foundation and I don't know things like how to get the optimal
amount of info from reading the results of tests. Those gaps in
understanding and interpretation just yawn open so widely to me.

My background: okay, I have pretty much the same level of education
as some others here and elsewhere. Actually, what may clarify it
most for others is that it's similar to Bob Church's education but
rustier for me since it was longer ago. I have an undergrad background
with a lot of biology, geology (mostly soft rock), and anthropology.
My grad work was in a similar but different area: primatology and
physical anthropology through an anatomy department but I also had
to cut it short for health reasons before attaining a masters. (Loads of
parallels but certainly not identical, and of course mine was before
the molecular revolution in genetics so what I know of that is
self-taught from periodical subscriptions.). Primatology is the study
of primates and physical anthropology is the study of human ancestors
long ago and primate relations. Mostly, I wanted to investigate certain
types of evolutionary questions through the vantage point of primates.
So, I have worked with apes like chimps, gibbons and a tad with orangs,
with two groups of prosimians, and with a wide range of new World
Monkeys, assisted in a study in Suriname, and several summers were
spend fossil prospecting for teaching collections and museums.

So, I have some related background but have huge -- absolutely huge --
holes in my foundation when it comes to understanding some other
fields which are related but quite different fields of study. That is why
I worry about being wrong or missing things, because those do happen
more often than they would for someone with more related knowledge.
Basically, I know enough to know how much i don't know and to realize
that can be a lot. It's also in my character to notice that.

How I learned about ferret health care is something pretty much anyone
can do: I ask questions and i read, and read, and read, plus I keep
reference materials handy to look up whatever I don't understand and
keep looking those things up as often as I need to. The first vet text
that I got on ferrets would have been the first _Biology and Diseases of
the Ferret_ in 1989. So, it's laborious, but I do not exaggerate when I
say that pretty much anyone here can do the same thing. In fact, I would
just plain love it if more and more others do it, too, because it helps
ferrets and through helping the ferrets it also helps people. A person
can even start by looking in large places that sell books like Amazon
because some of them have some vet texts in their stock. There are names
and publishers of vet texts in the FHL Archives:

If people can get a copy of Dr. Karen Purcell's _Essentials of Ferrets, a guide for
practioners_ even though it is a bit old it is probably the most friendly of the
ferret vet texts I have ever read so highly recommended for non-vets.

--- In, "Bobbi" <shotgunkidz@...> wrote:
> Try and use some ferret lax he may have hair balls if he throws up or
> runs fever take him to vet but wait for the others to respnd also and
> sukie is smart when it comes to things like this so are the others But
> I think she studied or went to med school or someting she really is
> smart lady!!!


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