Message Number: FHL11378 | New FHL Archives Search
From: "StaceyJW"
Date: 2010-04-20 02:19:45 UTC
Subject: [ferrethealth] Don't know whats wrong- vomiting frothy saliva, otherwise OK

I need some help figuring out whats wrong with my sick fuzzy. I know you can't diagnose online, but I live in Mexico, and can't bring my baby back to San Diego to see a specialist- I will if needed, but its very dangerous for both of us (they are illegal in CA). My vet in Mexico really cares, he's good and has some modern equipment, but he only sees 5-6 ferrets a week (a lot for Mexico!) The way they do things there is a LOT different.

So PLEASE, if you can suggest ANYTHING that might point me in the right direction, it would be a real lifesaver. I can afford to do tests here that I could not in CA, but even so, don't have too,much to work with.
I won't hold you responsible for any suggestions.

This is LOOOONG, I wanted to post all the info.

Creature, my 5.5 yrs old (rescued, so not sure) ferret has been vomiting frothy saliva for 6 months now. It's like he is overloaded with spit, occasionally it has a little pre and partially digested food in it, but is mostly frothy, white saliva only. The vomiting tires him out. He licks his lips often, more now than ever. Lately, when he vomits, his neck gets ridgid, eyes get a bit squinty, he claws at his throat/mouth and the floor. At first, it was minor, 1 then averaging 4x daily. Each incident he throws up about 5-6x in a 30 min to 1 hour span. LAST WEEK- After starting the Prednisone 1 mg per day he has gotten somewhat better, only throwing up 1 or 2 x and has more energy.

Additionally, some history and current info:
- Good appetite (he eats 8 in 1 now. We though it might be the food, so it was changed, but we're back to what he ate safely for several years)
- Normal stool (solid consistency, normal amount and frequency)
- Normal urine
- He strains a little while going potty. (Was treated 2.5 yr ago, ultra-sound ruled out a mass. But it never stopped, just got less severe after he was treated originally)
- No diarrhea or any other such symptoms.
- His energy level is good 90% of the time, and we take walks outside almost every day.
- He still weighs just over 3#, down 3-4 oz from 09, but this could also be from increased activity outside.
- He does have a solid mass on his tail, about 1/4 from tip. We haven't tested it yet, it's pretty new.
- He's not a chewer at all, lives with 3 cats, 1 chihuahua, has run of 3 ferret proof rooms and a big cage.

Actions taken (4 visits so far):
We first went to our vet in San Diego, then moved to Mexico, and got a new vet there- he's good, but not as experienced as the one in SD. The vets have treated for bacteria, worms, looked for blockage/tumors, and now thinks it could be it IBD. Overall, we've done:

1) San Diego- Antibiotics- a shot* and then amoxsisillan drops 7 days
Ear mite shot
*helped for a few days, then no change
2) Mexico- X-rays (negative for blockages and masses)
Omeprazol- 1x day, 24 days
Anti-vomit (Reglan) shots and liquid- 2x daily, 5
2 types of de-wormer
*He went from vomiting lightly to severe- clawing his neck,etc.
Not sure why, think it was the Reglan.
3) Mexico- Antibiotic shot*, and Enrofloxacina liquid- only made it a
day on the liquid, couldn't keep it down.
Continue Omeprazol
Prednisone @1mg per day,30 days- *HE"S GETTING THIS NOW AND ITS HELPING SOME.
*the shot pepped him up for a day or 2, but the liquid make him vomit harder than before, and he would puke/drool it out immediately.

4) The Mexican vet said the next step is blood work ("senile" ferret panel). I will take him in Saturday and do as much as I can afford.

Have you ever heard of these type of symptoms? I read online and see that other ferrets have the same symptoms, but no one had any ideas what it was. I don't want him to die, and I don't want him to suffer either. When he's not throwing up, he's FINE, which is weird. Seems like it could be the start of MegaE???

I just don't know what to do, and I'm running out of time and money, and I'm worried that this vet won't find out whats wrong because he's not as experienced as my last 2 US vets. If I knew what tests to get done, I could probably get a consult from the SD expert.

I'm so worried!!!!!!!

Thanks for listening,


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