Both ate the pumpkin without any complaint for the first time. Small miracles. Hopefully Max improves and we can get him into the vet soon.
Thursday is officially no kibble day since I'll be home all day and can make sure Max eats. It will be an all beef soup so hopefully Max and Mei will eat and be merry and not give me anymore heart attacks. Tomorrow I'll hopefully be taking him to the vet when I get out of class and if he doesn't have to stay I'll do another soup introduction with various mixes and see if he takes to any before Thursday. So far I have straight beef soup first, then with a little dollop of pumpkin on it since he seemed to really like it and if that doesn't work I have some other plots in the works. I'm hoping he eats it on his own tomorrow so he knows he can eat it when Thursday comes around.
I'll keep you posted. No more pellet litter certainly. Did not think Max would think litter was a tasty treat when he won't touch fresh beef. I thought Mei and her pastime as a moth eating all her blankets was weird enough.
I'm sorry for my late reply, I was out of the house for a few hours.
That's really great that they're very accepting of the pumpkin That should make things easier (hopefully) in future if any blockage concerns arise. Remember 1tsp of pumpkin one hour, then the next hour 1tsp of vaseline. They should be swapped every hour for 4 hours to ensure everything (if anything has been ingested) is passed. Keep a good eye on the stools. The most important thing to note is consistency, colour and texture. It should appear like an orange goop from the pumpkin, and is should (hopefully) either be smooth and silky, or chunky in texture if he ingested the pellets and hopefully passed them. Either way, as long as he goes to the toilet and passes some good amounts of stools, then hopefully he should be fine blockage wise but as a rule of thumb: If there is anything that occurs and you or your partner are very very very concerned, then call and head straight to any open vet clinic or emergency vet. I also got the FB message from Lance (I'm sorry for being so delayed with replies) If there is ever a chance that I'm not online when you really need me and it isn't an emergency that needs vet attention, you're more than welcome to tag other mentors. Everyone is aware of the circustances with Max, I've been keeping them up to date incase we have a time where I'm not available online due to time difference. Hopefully Max is also not sick like last time and perks up soon. You've both done fantastic with Max, I'm really proud of you guys!! (dance)
You were certainly a lifesaver for Max. Lance and I hadn't considered the paper could cause a problem and I'm certain now it did cause a potentially very dangerous one. He passed a big wad of mucous that looks suspiciously like a huge chunk of wet paper and now he's back to normal (well, sick poop normal). He's perked up considerably overnight and now he's going down to the bottom floor of his cage again and his walking has improved. We're banning pellet litters after this and going back to the walnut cat litter for the time being. Tonight I'm running the protocol one more time just to be sure I've gotten everything out of his system. It terrifies me I might have gone to bed and woke up to find him in critical condition or worse all over some paper. I'm not sure if his condition declined so much from the paper making him sick or if it was starting to create a blockage but I know he had to have eaten a lot of it.
*Huge sigh of relief* Great work you two! You picked up on those odd symptoms real quick, and because of that you were able to act real quick. Max passing a huge amount of stool and then perking up again is really good news. Blockages are every ferret owners worst nightmare. I'm sure that was a heart attack and a half for you guys. Just as mentioned before, for the time being monitor Max to ensure he's eating/drinking/passing stool. I really wonder what convinced him to eat paper pellets... ferrets are such odd little creatures, so hard to udnerstand at times.
So far he seems back to normal again. He's not struggling to move around or eat this afternoon and other than the original sickness symptoms from the infection he seems like he's back to being his fat, lazy self. I'm about to run him around the house and make sure he's acting and playing normally before I settle in for the night. I have no idea what these two are thinking at any given time, they confuse me with their "logic". I imagine Max was thinking, "Hey...I have a tummy ache. I bet these little white things will help!" Don't self medicate little man, don't do it.
I'll keep a close eye on him. The vet wasn't in today but they're supposed to call me when he comes in and said they had a person there who could handle any emergencies but didn't have a lot of experience with exotics so I can still rush him by before the doc is in if everything goes south. I'm glad they work with me as much as they do considering I'm the only regular client they have currently with ferrets that actually bothers to take them in. I thought that was odd. I know there has to be other people who own ferrets around here because I see them on Craigslist sometimes, I find it weird someone wouldn't regularly take their pet to the vet...well, financial reasons aside that is. I know these two bleed me dry every month.
We're still going through with the plan tomorrow to take the kibble out and try to coax them to eat soup from their bowl over the course of the day. Getting Max off of kibble would help his tummy anyway so I'm hoping he just kinda goes with it.
Both are up for their 4 month vaccines (I never got Mei's vaccination records and Marshall's refused to return my calls and emails so we agreed putting her on Max's schedule would be best since we have no idea if she's had anything past her first baby shots or not) so I'm hoping Max clears up soon. They recommended we let him recover before packing him full of vaccine so he's going to be a little late on them. I'm hoping to start harness training them as soon as the weather cools off some. It's been a hot October and it's just now getting cool.
Fantastic to hear that you have a back up plan for emergencies when your usual vet isn't in. Looking into these things is one of the most important aspects of owning a ferret. Ferrets are so strange, and as lovely and amazing as they are, they still manage to get into so much trouble, they just don't get that it is dangerous sometimes to be doing troublesome things... but at least you know that you can still take him to an emergency vet and that they can help him regardless of how much experience they have with handling exotics. Building a great relationship with your local vet clinic can be rewarding in the long run as well.
I look forward to hearing how you go tomorrow with the no kibble day.
Random tips: Try hand or soup feeding for 2-3 minutes at a time every half an hour to an hour. I personally found that the shorter the exposure time with the more frequent exposures helped more than trying it for half an hour or more at any given time. You can also try hand feeding some slices of muscle meat if you would like.
Wow... How unprofessional for Marshalls to refuse to return emails or calls. I guess we can't expect too much from a mill factory when it comes to customers and such. Apparently the first vaccination they recieve at Marshalls is a dud anyway, so putting her on Max's schedule sounds like the best idea on your part. I also hope that Max feels better soon. This little guy has been having it tough the past month.
Good luck with harness training! I've been trying to tain my boys to use one, but they just run around like a rodeo horse trying to buck off the harness. I see so many people using them and I just don't get how some people manage it. My guys absolutely HATE the harness. hahaha! Max and Mei are young, so maybe you'll get them used it easier due to the age difference compared to my business.
It took me the entire day, a shoulder of scratch marks, and I was up till nearly 3 am but MAX WILL EAT HIS DANG SOUP
And he loves it, the little turd. He ate 3.4 oz last night and probably would have eaten more. He even tried to eat Mei's that I had to make for just so she could eat and he tried to eat that too. Mei ate about 0.9 oz altogether yesterday but I'm not totally sure because she wouldn't eat off the plate at first so I was trying to feed her while Max was trying to weasel his way under my arm to eat her food himself.
At this point I feel so accomplished I feel like I should throw a party I even found them practically sleeping in their plate waiting for breakfast this morning. They're both looking at me now wondering why I'm on my computer and not gracing them with beefy heaven.
Now to check out stools and make sure everyone gets enough to eat. Should Max eat more than 3.4oz? He wanted more but I didn't have any available and I planned on doing breakfast in four hours anyway so I went to bed for the night. I'm worried about Mei eating enough since Max just kind of inhales everything haha. I'm about to see how breakfast goes and if Mei eats on her own instead of making me hand feed her I'll be slightly less worried.
I took some pictures, will upload them when I get home.
I'm so tired but I feel great. I hope the fuzzbutts do too.
I wonder if my neighbors saw me fling a bag and a half empty bag of kibble off my balcony if they'd care...just kidding. Will probably drop that off at the animal shelter. It would be a shame to waste it.
Some highlights of the night I wish I'd gotten on film were: -Mei learning how to jump onto my shoulder and nearly flinging herself across the room with her own momentum -Max screaming and hiding under my leg during the third hour soup introduction that probably sounded like I was trying to kill him to anyone passing by -Me finally breaking down and mixing pumpkin into some of his soup only for him to realize he didn't think the soup was gross after all and eat all of it regardless -Mei sticking her face into a bowl of olive oil thinking it was water. That one was my bad -Cage rage. Lots and lots and cage rage. Especially when Mei saw I'd cleaned out her stashes -Sleeping in the plate but always moving before I can get a picture -Ferret war over if it was time to play or sleep when tensions were high (Max sat on Mei and wouldn't let her get up until I liberated her after much whining and crying) -My face when I found pieces of meat I'd overlooked in the fray last night and being thankful the maintenance guy hasn't come by yet
I must say, you just about scared the crap out of me. Its 12:40am and i got a notification from tapatalk saying the first bit about wanting to cry and I'm thinking "NO. MAX CAN'T BE SICK AGAIN... NO" I come obline read everything and thank goodness it is incredible news. Omg. I feel like throwing a party too! Great work!! I'm so proud of you guys! If Max wants to eat, feed as much as his little baby belly can handle! (He'll be eating you out of the house but hey, he's eating the raw and that's the bessst!! ) !! Mei and Max!!
They're both fine thankfully. Max seems to have improved a lot over the last 24hrs sickness-wise too. I have a few questions concerning them though:
Mei's stools were green this morning but I don't think she's had them since. They've both been having what I guess is transition poops? It's kind of diarrhea but doesn't smell and is the color of toffee. I tried to look up the poop chart but images won't load on the forum for me for some reason and the google image result is blurry >_< Internet probs.
I'm not really sure if Mei is eating enough. I haven't witnessed her eating anything I didn't spoon feed her and I can't spoon feed her in the mornings. Are there any early undernourishment warning signs I should look out for in case she really isn't eating it? She's so small and doesn't eat much in the first place so I worry. I'm going to watch her weight carefully as well to make sure she isn't dropping any.
I'm going to introduce a chicken wing coated in soup tomorrow. I doubt Mei will try to eat it but if I can get Max to eat bone I'll be extremely pleased. This can also hint at if he is slightly intolerant to chicken since I know the beef hasn't bothered him.
Green stools, (especially if it is watery consistency or like diarrhea) can sometimes indicate stress. If they happen sometimes but go back to normal, then it shouldn't be too much concern. For this case, It would seem like it is a transition "funky" poop. This is understandable since they were on kibble not too long ago, and are now starting to go right into the soup (Great progress, this is so great!) This may happen with new proteins as well and usually takes about a week for the body to adjust. Even after ferrets adjust, you may sometimes notice stress poops here and there but usually they're nothing to worry about. They do happen at times. As long as there is no other worrisome symptoms (such as lethargy, ongoing diarrhea, sudden concerning weightloss etc) then for now you can just monitor.
Female ferrets tend to eat in small portions compared to males, it can be quite frightening at first. I was shocked when Haru started cutting back on her food but in general, ferrets tend to eat enough food for their nutrient requirements. As long as Mei is playing, has energy and not showing any signs of concerning weightloss or lethargy, then she should be good.
I look forward to hearing how they go with the bone in meat. Especially Max, Hopefully he's not intolerant~~
I was too excited to wait until tomorrow, so short update-
He ate part of the chicken wing! We didn't think he was going to so we were just watching tv when Lance asked if I heard a crunching sound and sure enough it was Max eating the tip of the wing. Now to see what his poo looks like to see if he has an intolerance or not. He didn't eat much of it but we'd also given him soup so maybe he'll eat more of it if we give him mostly wing next time.
Quick question: Does poop that has an almost marbled look (like mostly brown but with some lighter to white stuff in it) mean they are eating too much fat? We cut back a little on the fat for the next round of soup just in case.
My next mission is getting Max to try a whole organ and Mei to eat slivers since she's going at a slower pace than little man now. I'm shocked Max went from no progress at all to the point I could probably start getting him on a meal menu in only a few days. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't totally shocked lol.
Aaaand as I'm posting this he's going back for more
That is fantastic !! Great great news to hear. Considering he tried the wing, it may be a whole lot easier to get him onto bone in meats. Keep up the great work!
The stools you describe may be due to fat, especially if it is smelly. Smelly light coloured stoole can indicate a little too much fat in the diet but also keep in mind "white or light" stools can also be from bone in meat, egg shell or bone meal. If the stools look seedy, it can indicate a new protein that they need adjusting to or if it is seedy and dry looking then too much bone in meat/egg shell or bone meal in the diet.
1. Ferret's name: Mei 2. Ferret's weight: 1Ib 7oz 3. Ferret has eaten "X" amount on average per meal: Around 1-1 1/2 teaspoons 4. Stools on various proteins: Stools light/dark green, seedy, and mucousy 5. Activity levels: Higher than normal 6. Weekly menu: Beef soup for most meals with an attempt at a chicken wing every couple of days
I'm actually pretty concerned with Mei's poop. She's been having mostly those kinds of poos and occasionally they are dark enough to really concern me. Not black, but a very dark green. Out of the two of them I was certain Max would be the one with concerning poop, not Mei. She's also been having severe behavioral problems since we put her on the soup. I'll say more about this below.
1. Ferret's name: Max 2. Ferret's weight: 2Ibs 13oz 3. Ferret has eaten "X" amount on average per meal: Around 4oz 4. Stools on various proteins: Stools are varying shades of light brown with solid or wet consistencies 5. Activity levels: Normal - High 6. Weekly menu: Beef soup for most meals with a chicken wing every couple of days and I'm going to attempt feeding him a whole organ later in the week
Mei has been destroying her blankets the last few days. We've had to do blockage protocols after finding huge chunks of blanket missing. I've already taken nearly everything but a couple of blankets out of the cage and we've started giving her more out time. I checked her teeth and didn't see any obvious problems and I thought she was past her teething so I'm not sure why she won't stop. I try to give her food but she refuses to eat it even if she's trembling a little bit. I'm keeping as close an eye on her as possible but I'm extremely worried.
Max has been speedbumping a lot today and laughing constantly. I'm not sure if it's laughing or panting at this point though...I assume they get hot faster with a lot of fat/hair? He's chilling on some cold plastic now so I'll see how he's doing later. I'm hoping he just got overheated.
Also, is it normal for ferrets to be nearly bald in their front "armpits"? The inner parts of Max's front legs have only some peach fuzz on them but no long hair. The outer parts are fluffy, though. I can't remember if his legs were always like that but I feel like I would have noticed if they were...I know adrenal starts at the tail and other than those two spots on his arms he's fluffy everywhere else.
I've also started to notice some obvious changes in their health. Their coats are so fluffy and they smell almost like...grape? Mei does at least, Max just smells nice in general. I had to bathe them yesterday (litter box diving. Little weirdos) and I was expecting them to smell gross and oily like they usually do, but they didn't. I also noticed that for the first time since I got them my living room doesn't smell like poop all the time. I used to have to turn a scentsy on every day and now I've forgotten about it completely. They poop considerably less, which I know is normal since they process the meat more efficiently than plants. Overall they seem like they have much more life to them than before.
I'm sorry I haven't posted any pictures yet, every time I post one it comes up as a URL instead of the image so I'm trying to fix that now. I have so many cute pictures to share!
Basic summary of what happened within Facebook Chat in regards to Mei:
Mei is an almost 8 month old female ferret who chewed and ingested some of her new polyester blanket. She has been fidgity lately, possibly due to boredom. It was mentioned that she loves thin cloth, toy stuffing, and carpet. She vomited around 5 times, but from then on was generally stable. She did not experience any other concerning symptoms during that time. At one stage she showed symptoms of nausea (licking lips) which indicated a possibility of vomiting again but she didn't seem to vomit again at that current time as far as I'm aware. She was accepting to food/water, and was active after the ingestion of fabric/vomiting. Any fabric pieces found were removed.
Mei underwent blockage protocol. She passed a thick, bile filled stool after the first round. Not a lot of blanket was found. A couple of hours after another round, Mei passed a couple more stools which had some cloth. There was a small bit of blood, possibly from some irritation. A third round she passed another stool which appeared to be free from cloth
Went to vet after not passing stool for a period of time. Had barium done, passed stools and came home blockage free.
I'll also mention, don't beat yourself up about not being able to let her out as much as you would like. Kits are young and demanding, and life can happen. You guys have been doing your best with them too! You're great ferrents. I've even had times when Haru was 8mths and Yuuki 6mths and they too would carry on with tantrums because I couldn't attend to their every need for more than 2-3 hours a day at one time. (It was mainly my boy Yuuki though. He's still a brat hahaha) You'll find as they grow, they will tend to become better with how they behave. Kits also chew... I wonder if it is because of teeth (Kits have 30 teeth which should be in by 3 months of age and then replaced with adult teeth by 9 months of age.)
This is all for now anyway, I just thought I would throw up a summary before I run off to bed. Take care!
I skimmed your last reply briefly after getting the message on FB yesterday about Mei, so now I'll go through it more thoroughly. I'm relieved that there were a few other mentors online yesterday, I would have felt so horrible if my contact was unstable while traveling and somethign were to happen. Thank goodness Mei is alright now. You really dodged a bullet!
I notice you mentioned in the questionaire that Mei is more active lately. This could be related to the raw, ferrets tend to have a boost of energy further in a transition, but then again she's still young and young ferrets can be a handful in general. The green stools may be due to stress, which can have multiple causes. Monitor stools for now, especially after that blockage scare, you'd probably have to monitor her in general for the time being especially around bedding or toys.
Beef is said to have a really strong flavour- red meats in general tend to have a strong flavour. Now would be a great time to start introducing new proteins. A good one would be Pork. Pork has a lighter flavour so Mei might prefer that over to Beef. For the next couple of weeks, it would be good to try and push slivers onto Max and Mei a little more. (I know it can be really sad having to push something onto them and they make it look like you're trying to murder them or something, but this will benefit them in the long run.) With slivers, you can go a head and use chicken if you like, and cut them up into tiny pieces (smaller than a pinky finger nail) Try and offer these when ever you can, possibly in between soupie times. You can offer them on your hand, maybe one at a time, or you can simply pop it in their mouths when they least expect it.
I just had to go talk about the Laughing you mentioned since I've never heard it before- Jason, another mentor sent me a video and I now realise my boy Beavis does this when he is excited or playing. (It is so interesting.) If he laughs while playing, then it may be from excitement. Apparently ferrets who overheat tend to pant as well, but that is often accompanied by lack of activity. Speed bumping is common during play. Sometimes it's like a break time. My boy Beavis speed bumps often, mainly when he's bored and no one wants to paly with him so he bumps and lets out a long sigh.)
Can you tell me the following: >What is the current schedule for the soup? (Is it fed morning/night/in between/etc) >Are they still getting kibble at all or are they 100% off kibble and on the soup? >How has Max been so far with Chicken? (Are there any signs that would make you think he's potentially sensitive?)
Is Max in the process of shedding? The bald part may be due to that, or simply a little bit of a thin coat and he'll grow it out when he grows. When Haru and Yuuki were kits, they had somewhat patchy shedding. Certain areas would thin out, but then grow back within the next couple of weeks. Adrenal wouldn't be something to worry over at this stage. Both Max and Mei are still very young and common ferret health issues are more likely to occur in older ferrets. Adrenal tends to have typical loss of hair around the base of the tail, but that also comes along with other symptoms a majority of the time.
Wooooo!! You smell the grape tail! This is by far the most interesting aspect of raw feeding. I never smelt it before I started raw, and was so excited when I first realised my guys had it. Raw fed ferrets tend to smell less in general and the coats make them even better to snuggle with. I'll tell you a little story about when yuuki was a kit, when he was around 6-7months, He managed to smear his poop all over his face, and back right after he had a cage rage and tantrum for being put to bed. (ha... it was a joy having to clean.... Ferrets are hilarious sometimes.)
I use an app called Tapatalk for posting photos, feel free to check it out if you like. It makes posting photos a breeze since it hosts the photos itself and you can post directly to this forum and thread.
I hope Mei is feeling well and behaves for you guys~~ Once more, great work!