What I'm going to recommend for Charlotte is to keep a little poop journal (as weird as that sounds ;D). Record what she is eating, and what her poop looks like afterwards.
Also for her, let's try stick to one protein per meal. A lot of ferrets can have beef sensitivities, so by giving her one protein at a time and then seeing how the stool looks, you might be able to pinpoint the source.
Also if you wouldn't mind posting a picture of her stool when it looks "off" / concerning to you, I can see how bad it is.
All that being said, having off stools during the switch IS quite normal. When I switched Olivia and Sophie, their stools were so awful for a good couple weeks - a month. Charlotte's body may just be adjusting to the raw, and she just might be more sensitive than the other two.
One thing you can do besides the squash to make it a little better is probiotics. Acidophilus is a good one. You can get pet ones or you can get human ones from the refrigerated section of the grocery store (these are the good live ones). Just sprinkle a little powder on her food. Or you can offer a tiny bit of full fat Balkan yogurt (Greek style) that has probiotics in it. Just make sure it's plain, no artificial sweeteners, and that you offer no more than 1/4-1/2 tsp per day for a couple day until things start to clear up. Ferrets are lactose intolerant but the minimal amount of lactose in there won't harm them.
Sounds good on the organ - I know it's a little gross. But the heavy cream makes it smell a little Better and the ferrets seem to really like it.
I actually tried to take a picture of the really icky one last night, I don't think it came out well, but I'll upload it when I'm home tonight. Also, I didn't even think to take a picture from the paper towel, so it's just on the floor. Either way, I'll post to see if it helps any, and I'll watch her butt again tonight.
So tonight should I just give her the hen meat as planned? Or should I do pork again?
This is the icky one I mentioned earlier. Tonight she's been better. Still the hesitant mini-poos and then one smallish go, though. In the box from today is mostly post-bone droppings, so that seems normal enough. I guess just let me know what you think?
Is there any way this could be some sort of protest poo from moving Nate into my room? They still don't have really any direct contact, but both parties are aware of the others presence. She's playing and eating fine, though, so she doesn't seem stressed to me. Just a thought.
So I had the other experts have a look at the poop ;D
It could very well be stress, even though she may not "seem" stressed out from Nate's presence, doesn't mean she isn't. The other mentors and myself highly recommend getting some bach's rescue remedy. You can find it in any health food store. It's natural, perfectly safe and really helps ferrets de-stress. You can add a couple drops a few times a day to everyone's water and even take some yourself as it works great!
Are you still giving Charlotte the egg shell? She may very well just be a ferret that needs more bone. So Sprinkle a few pinches of the egg shell on the pork and beef and let me know if that makes a difference.
As for the seedy poops - one of the other mentors, Sherry, pointed out that you might just be seeing fat/skin balls in the poop. The undigestible parts (skin and some fat) pass right through so that's normal.
It could be a sensitivity, but sensitivities are usually to chicken or beef. She does great on the chicken though. Do her beef poops just look darker?
Try keeping a little journal over this next week and post it for me. That might give me some insight into if the poop is being caused by particular proteins.
All that being said, it might just be regular raw "detox" poops. When they switch to a raw diet, their body usually detoxes during the first couple months. This means it basically is eliminating all the crap that has been put into it from being fed kibble and learning to adjust to the high quality more nutrient filled raw.
She does sound like she's doing okay otherwise so I'm not too worried and you should try not to worry too much for now (easier said than done right? ) Just keep me updated on any further changes and keep going with the switch as planned
Last Edit: Mar 30, 2012 18:15:46 GMT -5 by Deleted
Alright. Thank you. That is reassuring. I actually just got the RR in the mail today! haha I was going to use it for the next round of introducing Baby Nate. I put some in everyone's water tonight. I'll be getting bone meal powder this weekend, we are just about to run out of the eggshell powder I made and I don't feel like doing that again. She won't be getting too much bone/calcium if I'm sprinkling it on her boneless meals? Or will I just reduce the bone meal after she normals out?
Since I can't really tell Charlotte and Wheatley poops apart in the cage litter box, my notes are just when I'm having her out in the morning and at night. I guess I'll post those with my menu on Monday unless something really unusual gets left behind.
Everything else has been going well aside from Charlotte's butt stuff. Everyone's eating nicely and Nate's already growing so fast! *sigh*
Exactly. The extra bone meal will just be stabilize her poops. Make sure you pick up human-grade bone meal, anything of less quality can have bad stuff in it. If you can't find that, cuttle bone from the bird section of the pet store works too.
Don't use more than a pinch or two and of the poops go too far the other way (constipation), ease off. Every ferret is different so it will be some guessing and checking.
Shopping trip: I got chicken livers, pork kidney (no other chicken organs), chicken feet (I read that they can eat those? How should they be served?), heavy cream, and the normal hearts and meats.
So liver and other organ is 2oz/ferret/week each, right? How much heavy cream do I use? I thought I'd do 6oz of each organ in the soup for the week, freeze it and feed over a few meals?
I'm still having no luck with chicken neck or the pork side rib/button things. If the butcher is open tomorrow we'll try that.
Also, I found little f/t quails at the asian market. They're a little pricey but the package had 6 or 8 I think? They were de-feathered and headless from what I could tell. Should I try those as well or hold off until we figure out what's making Charlotte icky?
This morning she had soup and a tiny bit of beef, a tiny bit of pumpkin and a few drops of EVOO. She's had a little bit of the RR in her water as well.
This was the first one I found tonight:
Then, not long after that one, she left this:
The quality isn't as good on the second, but towards the bottom right there were a few very tiny red specks. I checked her butt and it's not puckered or anything, and I'm not really sure how to explain this, but some of the normal folds around her butt were dark, and not skin colored like the rest. Just a couple in one area. I wiped her with a baby wipe and nothing came off, and she seemed sensitive about it (more than the usual "stop poking my butt with that cold wipe").
She's eating, playing and acting completely normal aside from her weird poos.
What do I do about this?
EDIT She just passed this. I've never seen a hairball get passed, is this what we've been waiting for?
Last Edit: Mar 31, 2012 21:28:20 GMT -5 by cierva4
You can make up the soup with the 6oz liver and 6oz kidney and 1 1/2 tsp heavy cream (1/2 tsp per ferret). They will hopefully take to it like that, but if not you might have to mix 1/2 organ soup with 1/2 plain chicken soup.
Quail is a fantastic bone-in meat. You can definitely offer it. I honestly think the hairball was causing Charlotte's icky poops. That and/or stress and/or not enough egg shell / bone meal. So as long as you give some extra of that, keep going with the proteins.
We'll see how her poops look after passing that huge hairball too. Maybe things will improve on their own now!
Oh and the chicken feet - take a sharp pair of scissors or butcher's night and chop the toes off. Leave the nails on, those are fine. My ferrets have no issues munching down on the toes. As for the main part of the foot - it's pretty thick so you might have to smash that up.
They are kind of gross ;D but the ferrets enjoy them and they make a good bone source since they are all bone and skin
A mini-update before my big post tonight w/ menu, etc.
-Charlotte's poops are looking nearly normal again. Only another pet parent could understand what a relief this is. Sunday she didn't have a bunch of mini-poos, nothing super seedy or loose. This morning was good as well. -Tried a bit of the organ soup Sunday morning, absolutely no interest from the big ones. Nate snacked on it a little, but wasn't crazy about it. This morning Charlotte and Wheatley did eat about half a cube together, and I left the other half in the cage when I left this morning. Nate did eat a bit more of the soup this morning as well, so I think they're warming to it.
Charlotte Weight: 1lb 13oz Stool Size and consistency: well, you know more than anyone should know about Charlotte's stool size and consistency. Again, yesterday and today have been looking muuuch better. Activity Level: The usual high happy fuzz ball.
Wheatley Weight: 2lb 10oz Stool Size and Consistency: what I've come to expect from bone and then organ meals. He had a loose morning after the big pork meal, but he evened out after that, and I gave him some extra squash. Activity Level: bouncy little boy
Nate Weight: 1lb 11oz Stool Size and Consistency: small dark plops. I noticed he's still going a lot more than Charlotte and Wheatley. He also eats more, which would make sense, I suppose. Activity Level: like evil, Nate never sleeps. It's kinngs, d of cute how he's always ready to go, but he manages to wear both me and Josh out very often. I'm hoping to try another introduction next week, so maybe he'll have more friends to tire soon.
Menu Monday: wings, soup, and a little beef and heart (AM and PM) Tuesday: wings, soup (AM), pork/beef/heart, and then some chix thigh over night (PM) Wednesday: henbones, heart and beef, soup (AM), Pork! (PM) Thursday: henbones and a little beef (AM), pork and wings (PM) Friday: wings and soup (AM), hen meat (PM) Saturday: soupie and some beef (AM) chicken thigh (PM) Sunday: hen meat (AM) wings (PM) -- they also each had a chicken foot in the afternoon, Nate chewed some of the toes off his, Charlotte and Wheatley seemed as weirded out as I was. ;D
If I counted right that's 8 bone meals? Charlotte and Wheatley's PM meals are about 3/4 what their AM meals are, but the plates usually clean in the morning.