I am posting this for a friend, as she cannot get onto Glider Central.. But she needs some advice!
Peanut and Hazel were OOP on December 4th, 2005. Their development was normal up until 2 weeks OOP, since then, they have barely grown.
They are nursing from mom and never cried for food. No signs of rejection.
At first I figured that they were on the small side, since momma glider is a little on the small side herself. But then Peanut started losing hair on her back legs and her tail. Before I knew it, their 6 week OOP mark had approached and I started getting worried since I hadn't seen them come out of the pouch to explore or to eat. Even though they hadn't changed in size at all, they were still nursing from mom. I watched them closely and could see no reason for them to be so developmentally behind.
So here we are now, at the 8 week OOP mark, neither joey has come out of the pouch or knows how to eat solid foods. They won't even lick anything. I have put yogurt on my finger and literally nudged their little faces into it... even then, they won't lick it off of their own noses. They are about 2-3 inches long in body length (not including their tails). Peanut is still missing hair on her back legs and tail, Hazel has no hair loss at all and is a tad bigger than Peanut.
They are still nursing from mom, who obviously isn't going to handle that much longer. I am going to start supplementing them, which I should of done sooner, but nursing never was an issue. They are very bright eyed and active when holding them, moving around very well, but have not ventured out on their own.
Any opinions on what could be happening here? Does this sound like a diet issue here even though they haven't had any problems with nursing? Could this be a genetic defect? I have family lineage for both gliders as I bought both of them from breeders, no instances of problems within the lines.
By the looks of the tail, I am thinking to take them in and have them run some tests on them. It is obvious they are way too small for even a chance of blood work, but maybe a parasite problem?? The tail looks like they have been doing some chewing instead of just overgrooming, but it is hard to tell from pics. I really dont think it is just dwarfs or minis, really they dont even look to be in prime health being that small.
Linda, no you would not be able to see the parasites...they would be inside the gut or in the intestinal tract, Im sure there are others as well... Round worm and tape worm are both parasites (not saying this what they have) but both of these if left untreated could cause malnutrition even while they are eating. As far as what can get them eating...well if they need meds they may start on their own once they are over whatever they have....if they even have anything... HTH <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/thumb.gif" alt="" />
IMO, sometimes MOms only have minimal milk for their joeys. They will survive but be very lethargic, small, unhealthy looking, and stunted in development. I think she should supplement with Baby BML and Pedialyte for a few days, watch what happens. This is happened to me a couple of times. I started giving expecting moms pinkies every two days and ensure occasionally as well as waxies and mealies..but not all at the same time and every day. I do this at about 3 weeks before they are estimated to come out. It boosts her milk production and helps a lot. A mom can only do so much and she probably is doing as well as she can, but they possibly are teetering on the edge of starvation from what you have said and the pics I looked at.
Re: Something Is Wrong.. Underdeveloped?
#81079 02/02/0602:20 AM02/02/0602:20 AM
Also, some joeys do not stop nursing until 12 weeks or more. This little one does not look healthy and does need vet attention. There is something going on with this little one that only a vet will be able to determine. I would start feeding baby bml like suggested and hopefully she will catch on about eating.
Best of luck, keep us posted about her.
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I could have missed the pain But I'd of had to miss the dance
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[:"green"]I'm sorry that I didn't see this post right away, but now that I've read through it & looked at the pictures, I thought I would add my 2 cents worth...
I agree with Peggy and Teresa that a vet visit is imperative. This little one obviously has some form of malnourishment that may or may not be caused by a parasite or some other problem. Gliders, unfortunately, can get parasites and not all gliders will be affected by it.
In addition to the vet visit, supplement feeding is definitely in order here. You can make up either Joey Formula or Baby BML. Please check out my page on Hand Raising A Joey for the recipes and further information about how to feed this little one. Since she is not interested in licking anything from your finger, you will have to use either a french catheter #5 or a 1/2 cc syringe. Place a small drop of formula on the joey's lips and she should start licking it off. Since she is already so thin, I would make up the Joey Formula with Pedialyte because she is probably dehydrated as well. The dehydration could also account for the hair loss. As the skin gets dryer, it will get flaky & fall off, taking the fur with it.
Again, please, please, please get these joeys to a vet ASAP! Please also keep us updated on what happens with these joeys... <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/hug2.gif" alt="" />
[:"green"]Linda, I didn't forget that you were posting for a friend, it's just easier to type messages in the first person (as your post was typed). I'm glad to hear that she started supplement-feeding. I hope all goes well for her & please keep us updated... <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/hug2.gif" alt="" />
I can answer a few of your questions. Yes, some types of parasites can be contagious to you. They ARE contagious to your other animals. Yes, it is treatable. My girl had them when I brought her home and my vet gave me a liquid med which looks like orange juice. It got rid of the parasites within a week. It was hard getting the siringe into her mouth so I kept her in her pouch and gave her a treat to nibble on, while she was nibbling, I got the meds in her mouth and she never even knew it he he he <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />
</font><blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr /> I started giving expecting moms pinkies every two days and ensure occasionally as well as waxies and mealies..but not all at the same time and every day.
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Do not feed sugar gliders pinkies. This is how sugar gliders can get parasites. Once a sugar glider gets round worms, for example, they are never rid of them. The cists remain in the muscles and hatch out when they are bred. If this glider is suspected of having parasites then take the mother and father to the vet as well.
Parasites are highly contagious. If you bring them back into your facility you risk an outbreak with your own gliders. Parasites can be transmitted to people though this is uncommon. If you suspect that they have a certain you may need to get tested too. Gliders that are stunted by malnutrition at critical stages of growth may never be normal in size. Depending on the parasite it may or may not be treatable. If they have round worms, they should be neutered and spayed. Test all your gliders and spay and neuter all the infected gliders. This will prevent the re-infestation otherwise every time they go into heat they will re-infest your gliders. Treating them involves taking an oral medication or at worst injections. It can be very difficult to get rid of a parasite. I would never willingly take in a glider that has parasites. Even with quarantine it is very possible to pass it on to other gliders. If you have a parasite outbreak in your facility soak everything in a bleach solution wash all your clothes in bleach. Mop your floor with disinfectant. Do this every day throughout the course of the treatments. Parasites are very difficult to get rid of and are not something that is to be taken casually. You can transmit parasites by handling an infected animal then any other animal that is susceptible to that parasite can get it. The same is true for bacteria and viruses.
Re: Something Is Wrong.. Underdeveloped?
#81087 02/09/0609:23 AM02/09/0609:23 AM
Well, “parasites” encompasses a wide variety of life forms, many of which are very dissimilar to each other. The signs, symptoms, treatments and prevention methods are different depending on what parasite one may be dealing with. Isolation is easy and might fit many situations, but not all. For example, when my son got Giardia, I let him rejoin the “colony.” It was easier to treat the Giardia when I kept him out of the tadpole pond and made sure he followed our hand washing rules if he’d been to the creek. (And he never ate pinkies – at least that I know of.)
I can’t comment as an absolute truth about pinkie parasite loads, because I don’t know where everyone is getting their pinkies and how they were obtained. But in general, pinkies should be relatively sterile for bacterial disease and a lower risk for some parasites like Giardia than many plants and saps eaten in the wild, or water obtained from untreated and unfiltered sources in the wild. Eating the parent of the pinkie would be more risky for encysted larvae. Any Sushi fans out there? Yuck!
With respect to growth failure, there are a number of possibilities: 1. Poor nutritional intake – As pointed out above, ”nursing” does not guarantee that the joey is getting milk. I would test that by offering (almost forcing) alternate nutritional sources or supplements. Perhaps Ensure or Darcy’s diet would be one choice since it is a liquid and thus easier to push at a reluctant recipient. Frequent, accurate weights would be helpful to follow. Ask your veterinarian. A single source like nursing leaves one with suspicion about that source. 2. Hormonal – If there was growth hormone or thyroid hormone deficiency, growth will be stunted. That is harder to test for. 3. bonding - There is a psychosocial deprivation in some species. If mom is continuing to let these guys in the pouch, that seems less likely. 4. Congenital heart disease - Organ failure such as congestive heart failure can cause poor weight gain in the young. We are used to seeing heart failure in the elderly (a different issue) cause fluid and weight gain. But in a baby, a hole between heart chambers will cause the heart to become very inefficient. Because blood can travel through the hole and follow the “wrong” pathway, the blood may circle through the right heart 4 or 5 times for every one time it went correctly through the left heart. That causes a pump that just doesn’t get the job done. So congenital heart disease often presents as poor or no weight gain. 5. Mal-absorption - Excessive calorie loss from mal-absorption, diarrhea, or competing parasitic calorie loss could occur. Usually diarrhea and change in stool consistency is noted with mal-absorption and the secretory diarrheas. There would usually be decreased urine output due to dehydration as well. 6. Infectious Disease - Infections with a virus or various bacterial pathogens can lead to diarrhea and weight loss or failure to grow. Often those leave loose stools, blood in stools, and typical signs that don’t go unnoticed. 7. Parasites - I tend not to be as afraid of parasites as many here on GliderCENTRAL are. Many parasitic infestations will make an animal unthrifty, perhaps gain weight poorly, and ultimately make them less healthy and more susceptible to infections. But bacterial sepsis is the culprit that can take a life in a hurry. This is just one opinion, but parasites are overemphasized and bacterial infections not treated aggressively enough. There are many here on GliderCENTRAL who will not agree, and they have more experience with such matters than I. I yield to their vast experience and try not to respond to those posts. But I have seen loss of many lives and limbs and organs from bacterial sepsis and rarely viral infections, but I have never had a parasitic related death – not one. I know people are different, and I have asked veterinarians, and those I’ve asked hold the same opinion that parasites do not cause the lethargic crash to death that bacteria do, and would also not obsess on parasites so much. My main concern about parasites is when a simple, normally non-threatening infestation turns into something tragic – like when simple pinworms that make your toddler dig at their undies makes their glider self-mutilate. (To follow will undoubtedly be posts on the worries of parasites from the other side of the fence. Here it comes…)
I hope you and your veterinarian figure out something that will help these little guys gain weight.
That was a lot to absorb Chris. But many parasites are host specific. When transmitted to a human or another animal the new host is called a dead host. It dosen't mean the new host will die but it means the parasite will die on this host. All animals are carriers of certain parasites but the healthy immune system usually keeps them under control. For instance all of us have mites in our eyebrows. Believe it or not! Healthy gliders are carriers of giardia. It is kept under control by the immune system but something as simple as stress can bring on an explosion and cause the glider to become ill.
There could be any number of things that have led to the underdevelopement of these joeys. Parasites are a possibility but if that were the case they would probably have diahrrea. I would think that the mother's milk is not rich enough or she is not producing enough. This could be diet related or it could be that she is just a mom that does not produce the proper amount of milk.
I would hand feed the joeys several times a day with the Baby BML with a little apple juice or water added to it to thin it a bit. Give them water after feeding and since they are so small I would stimulate them for a BM after feeding. Some use the catheters to feed the joeys but we use a simple eye dropper.
It would be a good idea to have them checked by a vet as well as the mom and dad.
Help me out here. We don't feed pinkies but does anyone know of a glider becoming sick as a result of eating them? I can't remember a case. Charlie H
Ushuaia has had many joeys, only 2 have survived. Ushuaia got round worms shortly after eating a pinky. I stopped that practice abruptly. It should be noted that Ushuaia has lost 9 joeys to date. She is not being bred any more. There are deaths related to round worms and there are deaths related to other parasites as well. Bacteria might be a larger issue I agree; but infestation with parasites can be and has been fatal. I am going to work at a facility that breeds mice for research. I will never be able to own rodents or animals that consume rodents because I might become a carrier of a parasite or bacteria or virus that could kill off these important million dollar mice. Human to animal transmission of diseases and parasites is possible and should not be underestimated. One only has to look at the flu virus to see what a devistating effect it can have not only on the animal but the humans as well. While the chance for this in sugar gliders might be small it is still a possibility, therefore you should not place an infected individual into a room with healthy animals. This is common sence stuff. Wash your hands. Bleach your cages and toys. Quarentee your animals. It is a bad idea to take in known infected animals into your colony, you are just asking for it.
It is proven that this is how it was contracted, why do you doubt this. Ushuaia ate a pinky then got sick, tested positive for round worms, then the facility that the pinkies came from had an out break of round worms. What more proof do you need? As for the joey’s deaths, the round worms did play a role in their death, weather it was the direct cause or a secondary cause is not important. What is, is to say that you should never and I mean, even to save a gliders life, knowingly bring into your colony, glider room, ect... a glider that is from an outside breeder that is sick due to a parasite, virus, or bacteria. You risk all your gliders lives. Keep the animal at a separate location in quarantine. This is basic husbandry. The same is true that you do not take a person with an unknown virus or illness that is showing signs of illness and drop them off at a daycare center. You are risking more than just your child’s life. If it is doing this to one glider it can do it to another if there is the right mechanism for conveyance. This is a bad idea. Why cant you see that. Parasites Kill. Viruses Kill. Bacteria Kill. If a glider is suspected of these they must be quarantined and limit the spread.
Re: Something Is Wrong.. Underdeveloped?
#81094 02/10/0604:08 AM02/10/0604:08 AM
I'm not doubting you, I just wondered how it was determined where the worms came from. Rarely do we have the information clearly nailed down as to the source, but theories abound. Your story sounds good.
The comment that I questioned was that gliders should not eat pinkies. My point was more along the lines of this - one bad pinkie shouldn't exclude all pinkies forever. I got sick once from sour milk. That doesn't mean people shouldn't drink milk. (Perhaps it would be fair to say don't drink sour milk or feed worm-infested pinkies.) Certainly many have used pinkies for a long time without problems. (I have never used them.) But having your glider get Giardia from water or veggies doesn't mean don't feed water or veggies, does it?
I would be curious about the connection between a round worm leading to glider death. Do you have any more information on this?
No one is suggesting that one intentionally expose their pets to any potential danger. I just see many parasitic problems that are treatable and not the sort of problems that lead to rapid organ system failure and death. From reading many posts about parasites on this board one would come away with an impression that a bout of parasites is likely fatal, which often isn't the case.
Re: Something Is Wrong.. Underdeveloped?
#81095 02/10/0608:08 AM02/10/0608:08 AM
Also, Chris wasn't it established in a past post that mating would not trigger the release of roundworm once it was treated? I've heard you repeatedly mention that, but I just don't see how one would have effect on the other... What does mating have to do with roundworms?
Re: Something Is Wrong.. Underdeveloped?
#81096 02/10/0609:23 AM02/10/0609:23 AM
I do not think that I have mentioned that they cannot be passed on by breeding. The act of mating is not the means of passing the worms on it it the male licking the cloace area of the female.
As for how I know that the joeys all died from round worms, I can never be certian of that. I can get them tested fro the worms though. I have saved two of the joeys so that I could get some accurate bone measurments. The have remained frozen since their deaths. If there are round worms present then that would suggest that as a primary or secondary cause. All my joeys died severly underweight. There is some evidence that they may be allergic to the mothers milk too. If the round worms did not kill them, then at least they prevented them from recovering and kept them sick.
Another question.....if pinkies are frozen for a length of time, will that kill any parasites present, and is it then safe to feed to your gliders? If so, then maybe freezing is the safest way to feed pinkies.
Not all bacteria, viruses, and parasites are killed by the freezing. Why risk it. Pinkies are not a requirement of any diet plan. Mealworms can subsitute for the protien. There is no reason to chance it. Most breeders no longer feed crickets because of aflotoxins, so why should we continue to feed pinkies.