That's fantastic progress! It sounds like Molly is getting the hang of the pieces of meat!
If you want to try leaving the soup out for the day, I would just put 3 or 4 plates of it around the cage. It's hard to say exactly how much they would eat at this point, because ferrets eat quite a bit more than the "average" raw amounts during the initial switching stage.
You will just have to play around with amounts until you figure it out. Don't worry if you come home and they have eaten it all, raw fills them up and keeps their blood sugars stable enough that they can go without food for a while (unlike kibble).
Ideally, you want to feed them enough so that there is a little bit left over each time.
If you want, try taking the kibble away at night and leaving them some plates of soup in the cage overnight as a test. This should roughly give you an idea of how much they eat in a 8-10 hour period. And that way you will be sleeping, instead of at school worrying about them eating
As for the slivers of meat, there's no set amount either, just mix a decent amount into the soup
This is Saturdays update, I just suck and didn't post anything! Been trying to phase out kibble completely. Everything seems to be going well they had some diarrhea this morning but now it seems to have gone away. Play time was good but not long as I got them to eat first. They deffs play better on empty tums. I've also noticed some cotton in stitch's poop, most likely from him tearing up a puppy pad. I'll continue to watch him but the most recent poop so 3am on Sunday morning (lol) seems fine. There's about 1tbsp of ground pork in the soup mix at the moment. I've broke it up a bit but the pieces are getting a bit bigger. Molly seems to be taking the hint that those bits are food as well I'm thinking I will buy a small package of ground chicken tomorrow just to mix it up a bit for them once they are fine with larger bits of the ground I will start cutting up the actual breast meat since I'm assuming that is a bit harder to chew up!
Also as I am writing this I witnessed Stitch eat all by himself without any egg mixed in! Made my day
That's fantastic! The ground chicken sounds like a good plan to me
I wouldn't worry about the diarrhea if its just a one time thing. If it continues though, you may need a bit more egg shell. Remember to take the pork / ground chicken into account when calculating the proportions (8oz meat to 1/2 tsp egg shell).
As for the cotton, I would give some plain canned pumpkin for a day or two to be safe. It will push any remaining cotton out.
Is pumpkin something that can just be picked up in a can I'm guessing? I'll look when I get some chicken play time was slow today but they played super hard and for a long time yesterday so I'm not too concerned. Poop is looking better today Molly weighs 850g Stitch weighs 1185g I think I may have made a mistake or something last week when he weighed 1255g because looking at the steady increase of weight with both of them it seems that way. Unless I didn't do it perfect today as he was a bit wiggly. I'll try again next time when he passes out before I go to bed just to make sure!
LOL just noticed you wrote canned pumpkin in your message! How much pumpkin show I give him? A tsp? Also I've noticed he's been having some bad breath lately. Is this from switching his diet or his dental health? He does have some tarter in his mouth. I will probably be calling my vet to talk about it this week but I know when I go in if I mention they are eating raw he's going to try blame it on that even though I know it's from carbs and grain from previous diets. Just wanted to make sure that it's not from him eating a new diet and is a dental problem.
Last Edit: Oct 27, 2013 23:38:01 GMT -5 by Deleted
Yes plain canned pumpkin from the grocery store, usually in the baking aisle. Just make sure it's not the spiced pumpkin pie filling.
I would give 1 tsp every hour until you see a nice big orange pumpkin poop, with no more cotton in it. Then you can stop. Pumpkin does have sugar in it so we only recommend using it for possible blockages. It just helps push any remaining pieces out.
The ground chicken sounds like a good idea to me, especially since they are doing well with the ground pork. Get them used to eating that and then we can increase the sizes of the pieces from there. Some ferrets just need a slower increase in size to get their jaws used to it
Yes the tartar buildup is from the kibble for sure. Unfortunately the raw wont begin to help with that until we get them eating bone. If your vet tries to talk you out of raw, just stand your ground. tartar build up is the kibbles fault 100%.
In the mean time, have you ever tried brushing your ferrets teeth? Oxyfresh pet gel is an amazing toothpaste, can usually be found at a vet's office or ordered online, or you can make your own toothpaste with bone meal and olive oil. A piece of gauze works well if you can find a small enough toothbrush.
I'm guessing the bad breath is from the tartar. But it wouldn't hurt to get it checked out as there are other things, mainly kidney problems, that can cause changes in the breath odour. And it's always good to make sure
I have tried brushing their teeth, I found it super super difficult with only my two hands. I'll call the vet and inquire about the kidney problems just incase. I may just spend the money and have their teeth cleaned depending on how expensive it is as I have been debating it for a while anyways, just more so with his bad breath coming into the picture.
Molly is still having some diarrhea so I have started adding a bit more eggshell into each of their meals, about a pinch with every bowl or so. I was supposed to clean the water dishes this weekend and that has caused her to have an upset tummy before so I will be cleaning them tonight after school.
If you're still seeing the diarrhea, give them both a little canned pumpkin. It will help firm up the stool.
You may just have to do the teeth cleaning if the tartar is bad enough to the point of causing bad breath unfortunately anesthetic always poses a risk for ferrets, but so does an unhealthy mouth. Definitely have a chat with your vet about it.
There's also a product (an expensive one but not as expensive as surgery) you could try.
It's called Leba III and what it does is loosen the tartar over time so that you can just brush it off with your finger or a toothbrush (or bones would get it off onces it's loose too). I have some I am using for my cat, it is safe for ferrets too, and I am going to start doing my guys who have tartar. I will let you know how it goes!
The good news is that Once the tartar is off, either by surgery or products, feeding a raw diet with bones will prevent it from coming back
Is it working so far with your kitty? I may buy it and if it doesn't work for the ferrets or I do go with surgery I can just use it with him
Also Molly's diarrhea has stopped. I haven't gotten Stitch to eat more then the first tsp and then a little bit more the hour after that but he had a good poop after and there wasn't any cotton. If you think I should try again when I get home from school again I will I froze the rest, hopefully freezing pumpkin is okay, don't see why it wouldn't be
So I called the vet and have an appointment at 1020 to talk about their teeth, also found more cotton in Stitchs poop they are out for playtime right now and hes refusing to eat more pumpkin so I will probably make him after they are done running around and playing
Oh awesome! I must have missed that! That is fantastic news though
Since you are still seeing cotton, I think you should treat this as a blockage.
Do you have any Vaseline (petroleum jelly) as well?
You may have to syringe the pumpkin or cover it in oil or anything tasty he likes.
What you need to do is alternate 1 tsp Vaseline and 1 tsp pumpkin every hour until you get nice big fat solid pure orange poops.
The good news is that because he is eating raw soup and not kibble, he shouldn't get blocked up completely or dehydrated. What needs to be done now is to just push the remaining cotton out.
Does he have access to puppy pads still? If so, I would remove them completely. He probably shouldn't have them anymore.
As long as he is still eating, drinking, and pooping, he is doing okay. But I would give the Vaseline and pumpkin until you see that orange solid poop. Blockages can float around inside of ferrets for months, causing issues.
If you notice any bad symptoms like lethargy, not eating, diarrhea, skinny poops, pawing at the mouth, vomiting, etc. then see a vet ASAP.
You may have to get a barium X-ray. This will check for any remaining cotton and the barium will actually push the cotton out, removing the need for surgery.
However try the Vaseline and pumpkin first as long as there's none of the warning symptoms I mentioned above. This may do the trick on its own.
I don't have any vasaline at my house and my boyfriend is at work at the moment. I have the ferret lube that I will give him even if it's full of sugar I figure it's better then letting the cotton stay in there. He only ripped it up when I just put the bag on the ground and he pulled them out and around the room. He thankfully doesn't attack the ones I keep on the ground. I have checked all his toys just to be sure and it must have just been when he did that. He has still been having normal looking poop for the most part. I will buy vasaline tomorrow for sure. Should I give him some pumpkin as well with the ferret lube or wait? I'll keep an eye on him and his poops for the night
He's not dehydrated, his capillary refill time is normal and his gums are not tacky. I just got him to eat plain soup without any slivers and he ate well. Now we play the poop waiting game. Seriously is probably the game I play most often since getting these rascals. And by rascals I mean Stitch haha all my ferret troubles/stress are from him
Thankfully that didn't take long his poop is a little runny but not full on diarrhea, it does have a bit of shape. There isn't cotton in there either. I'll continue to keep an eye on him. Thankfully during the night Molly chooses to use the puppy pads (not really thankfully but I guess in this situation it is) so it will be easy to tell who's poop is who when I'm half asleep I'll keep you updated. Thank you for the help so far!
Last Edit: Oct 29, 2013 22:30:35 GMT -5 by Deleted