Hi- I’m having a hard time getting answers on our ferret. We have seen the exotic vet twice. We noticed severe weight loss, hair falling out and lethargy. The vet put her on antibiotics because her spleen was enlarged. That did nothing. We brought her back again. Symptoms had worsened. They checked blood sugar and said she was fine. They assumed she had cancer. I took her home, started syringe feeding her and giving electrolytes. I realized every time I gave her electrolytes she perked up and started acting more herself. Called the vet this time. The vet said that maybe it WAS actually insulinoma and prescribed prednisone. So- she started doing much better, gaining weight, tummy has been bloated but soft and squishy. I’m thinking from the prednisone? Almost a month has gone by now and just yesterday I started noticing her breathing was weird. It’s hot here. I got her to a cooler room in the house. She seemed a bit better. Now she is breathing hard and fast. Still alert but the breathing is scary. We do not have an emergency vet for ferrets so I’m reaching out to people. Is this an acidosis? Can I do anything??? This is heartbreaking.
The most common diseases ferrets get are insulinoma and adrenal disease. The hair falling out is a sign of adrenal disease and the weight loss and lethargy is from insulinoma. The bloated tummy is from the prednisone, yes, that can happen. Not sure what the fast and hard breathing is from. I haven't experienced any of this with my ferret yet and doing everything in my power to avoid it. You may want to contact an emergency vet even though it's not for ferrets.
Charlie Sept. 13/17-Feb. 16/23 DIP my little buddy
How hot is it? I lived in Florida and mine were ok up to about 92F. Above that I would not let them outside even tho they grew up in Florida. I took a couple to a shelter adoption event in July years ago, and they started panting when it got to 94 so I packed them up and got them home. A ferret panting is a sign of overheating.
Post by Corvidophile on Jul 31, 2022 7:03:21 GMT -5
I agree with Charlie’s suppositions, that your ferret might have a combo of insulinoma and adrenal disease. It sounds like your current vet is inexperienced with ferrets if they didn’t do a glucose check off the bat with those symptoms, as it is inexpensive and has test results in seconds. I hope you’re able to either educate them or find another… but for now, I don’t know what the panting could be. It’s scary, I know. Do keep an eye on ambient temperature as UncleJoe said, they overheat easily when ill. Pred belly happened to my own ferret, it’s a harmless retention of fat in the abdomen instead of all over the rest of the body.
She is in a cool room. It has been a hot summer here in Ohio, but if it gets too hot we keep the animals cool (we have a couple rooms with window air conditioners. All through the night she has been doing this panting and I’m honestly surprised she made it through the night. She just wanted to lay on my lap all night, but then after a few hours started crawling down my leg and bite me. Multiple times. I figured she was uncomfortable so I’d put her down and she’d climb right back up onto my lap! The panting isn’t a pant like a dog would. It’s real jerky and hard. She doesn’t seem to be in any kind of pain. The vet did check her glucose and said it was fine, but after she started perking up with electrolytes the vet told me it was most likely insulinoma so that’s when we started prednisone. I’m so frustrated. We have an emergency vet about an hour away, but they won’t take any exotics. We live in a farming area where most vets just handle cats, dogs and livestock. I’m kind of stuck until Monday morning. I’ll call first thing, but I’m just worried there’s nothing we can do. 😥 On a side note- after starting prednisone her hair did stop falling out. Her appetite came back and she seemed to be on the road to recovery. I guess that’s why this is so weird to me. For the time being I’m just trying to keep her comfortable but it’s killing me. I’m totally open for suggestions. It’s just so frustrating when there’s nowhere to go for emergencies like this. Our old exotic vet was great, but she retired so we have this new one 😕Every time I’ve taken our ferret to her it’s a minimum of $350. I asked to get additional bloodwork done and they said it would be around $500 just for the bloodwork because they’d have to sedate her. Every year I set aside several thousand dollars just for animal emergencies. I had to hold off on the bloodwork because I had a dog needing emergency surgery. It’s been a rough few months. Ugh. I’m now getting worried about our other exotic animals if THEY need a vet at some point too!!
wow. I don't think any of my ferrets have been sedated for blood. 1 or 2 got gassed, but that's pretty minor. If needed, my vet charges like $28 for gas. University of Tennessee is less than 100 miles from here so I am fortunate to have a choice of exotic vets, including the emergency vet.
Blood glucose is teased ideally after 4 hours of fasting. Do you know what the value was? 80-120 mg/dL is a good range to go by. Also, if you could get prednisolone vs. prednisone, it is easier on the liver.
Post by Sherry Stone on Aug 9, 2022 7:09:51 GMT -5
First, what was her bg reading? Some vets believe if the levels are over 60 they are fine. Actually they need to be medicated if under 80. Also, fairly sure you are also dealing with adrenal disease and will need a delorelin implant.
Owned by 2 kitties Oskar and Bastet. RIP Spunky, Mr. Stubbs, Ligiea, Herne, Watson. DIP Sinnead, Vincent, Boris, Zeus and Athena, Willow, Mr. Frodo, Indie, Lucrezia, Judge, Odin, Miss Emily, Suki, Cody, Aristotle, Butterscotch, Frankenfurter, and lastly Contessa.