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EMERGENCIES ONLY! Please state your emergency with every details possible and somebody will assist you as soon as possible.


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  #1  
Old 05-23-2008, 05:03 PM
MissMuffett MissMuffett is offline
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Default Please help this little squirrel..

Three days ago I took in three baby squirrels who had been wandering in the yard of some friends for two days without their parents. At first one of them could barely move at all, but by the end of that night, I couldn't even tell which one it was. I gave them some sugar water and a little bit of gerbil food before I knew it was bad for them (they didn't eat much of it). I'd say they are about five/six weeks old. They seemed to be doing great up until now.. they all had a lot of energy. Last night one of the squirrels was particularly wild, and ran around the cage for a long time before calming down. This morning she wouldn't eat very much. I came home for her second feeding (I've been feeding them puppy Esbilac, with solid foods as an option, such as strawberries, apples and grapes.. they nibble on these things), and found that she can barely move. She seems absolutely exhausted, and won't drink the formula. I tried getting a little sugar water in her again, and she barely sipped it. She seems really out of it, reaching listlessly for things that aren't there, and when she rolled on her back, she couldn't get back up. I really need some help, I'm afraid she only has an hour or so if I don't help her now..
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Old 05-23-2008, 05:40 PM
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MissDolittle MissDolittle is offline
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

Heyas MissMuffet, can you tell if they are hydrated or not? Any signs of injury, swelling anywhere? Diarrhea?
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Old 05-23-2008, 07:08 PM
MissMuffett MissMuffett is offline
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

They should be hydrated.. I can't really pinch their skin because they're so tiny, and they don't have much to spare. I can feel their bones through their skin pretty easily, so I'm guessing it's a problem with nutrition. Their stools are solid. No other signs of injury.. and they really did seem to be doing great yesterday.

I'm going to try just feeding them every chance I get. They will know when to stop eating, right? Or should I only give them so much? I've been feeding them liquid puppy Esbilac, and I keep a plate of solid food in their dish.. apples, grapes, strawberries. And one piece of walnut, though nobody's touched it yet.

Also, should I still be stimulating them to go to the bathroom? They seem to be going pretty well on their own. Usually all over my clothes. :P
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Old 05-23-2008, 07:14 PM
MissMuffett MissMuffett is offline
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

I should also mention that I found one of the other squirrels is also in rough shape. So two of them seem out of it. Since I posted the original thread, I've just been feeding them whatever they'll take (at first I gave them a few sips of sugar/salt water to get their blood sugar back up or hydrate them if that was the case), and they seem to be doing a little better. They're still definitely not up to par quite yet, but they can move a little faster, and when one of them rolled onto their back, they were able to get up again with relative ease (earlier when it happened, it just writhed on its back slowly, and was unable to get up).

The third squirrel seems to be doing well.. he still has lots of energy and is eating well. He does make a lot of little grunting noises, though. When he's resting he's quiet, but when he's walking around he's always making little grunty noises. Is that normal, or could there be a problem there?
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Old 05-23-2008, 07:39 PM
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

It sounds like you are doing everything right..maybe a bit too much of everything lol. Just keep em warm and feed every 4 hours. Stick with the Esbilac for now, nothing else.

Do you have a letter scale? If you can get their weight, it would be easier to determine how much to feed.

Rule of thumb is 5% of their body weight. Like if one weighs 50 grams, they need to get 2.5 ml of Esbilac, if that makes any sense. Overfeeding can lead to bloating and other complications as well.

Did ever any milk come out of their noses? How or rather with what do you feed them?
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Old 05-23-2008, 07:44 PM
MissMuffett MissMuffett is offline
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

Sadly, I don't have a letter scale. I really don't have much of anything.. there aren't any licensed rehabbers available around here. The closest one is hours away, and didn't want to take them in. I've been trying to find someone to take over for me, but thus far I haven't had any luck.

I have a syringe without the needle that I feed them with. It's a regular-sized one. They do sneeze a lot when I feed them, though I'm trying my best. It's hard to control how much comes out. I usually try to let out as little as possible and let them lap it up, but generally they want to put the whole end of the syringe in their mouth, so it's hard to tell how much is coming out. I think I have seen milk come out of their noses on occasion.
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Old 05-23-2008, 08:05 PM
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

Yes, it's a common problem that they are very eager when it comes to suckling and then aspirate. It's also a deadly game, because it very easily leads to pneumonia and then death.

I'm thinking what else you could use for feeding, or at least something to put on the tip of the syringe...do you have some rubber tubing from a fish tank maybe? Those usually fit over the tip of the syringe you could use something to clamp it up so only minimal flow comes through. Just thinking out loud here.

Can you hear a clicking in the sick squirrels chest area if you put your ear to it? That's one obvious sign of pneumonia. The only thing that helps there is antibiotics..human infant antibiotics such as infant amox. You don't have a baby by any chance or a friend of yours does?

I appreciate your efforts in helping the critters out!!! I really do. Hang in there!
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Old 05-23-2008, 08:13 PM
MissMuffett MissMuffett is offline
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

I do have some straws that came with the syringe that fit over the tip.. that's a great idea. I could maybe.. staple it or use a rubber band or something to block the flow on it. I'll get to work on that.

No clicking, just a grunty noise. Right now he's sleeping, and I don't hear anything at all. But when he's awake, most of the time he grunts.

I do happen to have a friend who may have some infant antibiotics available. If it comes to that. I won't need them quite yet, will I?
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Old 05-23-2008, 08:27 PM
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

Be very careful with sharp edges on the straw. Squirrels suck down that straw all the way into their stomachs if it's long enough. Scared me to death the first time I had a rubber nipple on the syringe almost as long as my finger and before I knew it, it had all but disappeared into the squirrel and she's happily suckling away lol.

It's hard to tell if you will be needing the antibiotics or not. If I had a squirrel that's down and I'm not sure what's going on, I give them antibiotics just in case.
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Old 05-23-2008, 08:41 PM
MissMuffett MissMuffett is offline
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Default Re: Please help this little squirrel..

Great news!! I just found someone who will be able to take good care of them. She has a young daughter who's home all day and is more than willing to help out, and they have experience with rehabbing gray squirrels. This is such a relief.

The two squirrels that were having a tough time just hours ago are already looking a lot better.

Thank you for all of your help!!

Last edited by MissMuffett : 05-24-2008 at 03:17 PM.
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