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Thread: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

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    Default SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Use this shortcut method to re-hydrate baby squirrels upon intake, over a period of THREE DAYS. This has proven to be the most effective method for rehydration and success in saving a dehydrated animal's life.


    DAY 1 - Give 3.3% of the baby squirrel's body weight, 3 times in the first 24 hours


    Day 2 - Give 2.5% of the baby squirrel's body weight, 3 times per day


    Day 3 - Give 2.5% of the baby squirrel's body weight, 3 times per day

    Example for a 100gram baby:
    Day 1 - 100g x .033 = 3.3ml x 3 = 9.9ml total/day
    Days 2 and 3 - 100g x .025 = 2.5 ml x 3 = 7.5ml total/day

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Original (Traditional) Method of Fluid Calculation

    M = Maintenance fluids R = Replacement fluids

    Replacement fluids are to be divided over 3 days.....
    Day 1: 50%, Days 2 and 3: 25%

    For a 100g baby squirrel:

    R fluids = 10% of 100g = 10ml (divided over 3 days)
    50% of 10ml = 5ml; 25% of 10ml = 2.5ml

    M fluids = 5% of 100g = 5ml

    Day 1: R 5ml + M 5ml = 10ml (divided into 3 times per day)
    Day 2: R 2.5ml + M 5ml = 7.5ml (divided into 3 times per day)
    Day 3:
    R 2.5ml + M 5ml = 7.5ml (divided into 3 times per day)
    Last edited by island rehabber; 03-24-2015 at 02:03 PM.
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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Does the replacement fluid change from day one to days two & three? As in Pedialyte or the homemade version for the first 24 hours, then a sugar/water solution for the next 48 hours?

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by RobinTN View Post
    Does the replacement fluid change from day one to days two & three? As in Pedialyte or the homemade version for the first 24 hours, then a sugar/water solution for the next 48 hours?
    My understanding is no, it does not change.

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Does this apply to SQ or only oral?

  6. #5
    Kristi S Guest

    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    I've been doing a bunch of reading about treatment of dehydration over the past couple weeks, and have a few things to add. If anyone has suggestions or corrections, please post! This is based on mammalian biology and (others') experience with humans, not experience with squirrels.


    With human babies and young children being treated for moderate to severe malnutrition/dehydration the steps are to address hypothermia, then hypoglycemia, then dehydration. So, get the baby warm, then hydrate with sugar water (first dose lots of sugar, like 1 Tbsp in a cup of water), then hydrate with water with sugar and electrolytes and minerals (Pedialyte if possible, or if not available a cup of water with 1 teaspoon of sugar and a pinch of salt - or better yet, 1 cup water with a tsp. of molasses, which has potassium for electrolytes, which are more likely to be depleted than sodium). The sugar provides energy, but another function is to aid in the absorption of the electrolytes. The third step goes along with slowly adding nourishment.

    This is the case even in the absence of diarrhea, but diarrhea can be a "side effect" of malnutrition/starvation/dehydration.

    (If the dehydration is severe, I personally would begin with very small amounts more frequently than 3 times a day, but then I don't have experience under my belt to say it makes a difference. In humans, though, that is what they suggest because it's easy to overtax the body's ability to handle fluids, yet you have to get them in. In humans they actually suggest small feeds very 30 min.)

    SQ should be likewise be very very slow in order to avoid potential organ failure.

    There's a sticky post saying electrolytes and protein cancel each other out, but I've looked and looked and found no evidence for it. It doesn't make sense to me. The World Health Organization mixes electrolyte (hydration) solution with milk. I don't know, maybe it's different for squirrels? Different enzymes or bacteria in the gut? Does anyone know?

    If diarrhea continues it can be due to temporary lactose intolerance (due to deficiency in lactase, the enzyme that breaks lactose down), in which case it can be best to switch to yogurt for a while, which doesn't have lactose.

    Oh, and btw, gray squirrels do occasionally eat high-protein foods like insects, eggs, baby birds, or even small mammals, amphibians or reptiles when other food is scarce. They are not strict herbivores.


    These are for humans, but similar to what I've seen for rodents:

    http://www.who.int/nutrition/publica...tient_text.pdf
    http://www.merckmanuals.com/professi...nutrition.html
    Last edited by island rehabber; 03-24-2015 at 09:07 AM. Reason: request by author

  7. #6
    Kristi S Guest

    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    I wanted to edit, but was too slow. Sorry!

    Replace the second paragraph of my last post with

    With human babies and young children being treated for moderate to severe malnutrition/dehydration the steps are to address hypothermia, then hypoglycemia, then dehydration. So, get the baby warm, then hydrate with sugar water (first dose lots of sugar, like 1 Tbsp in a cup of water), then hydrate with water with sugar and electrolytes and minerals (Pedialyte if possible, or if not available a cup of water with 1 teaspoon of sugar and a pinch of salt - or better yet, 1 cup water with a tsp. of molasses, which has potassium for electrolytes, which are more likely to be depleted than sodium). The sugar provides energy, but another function is to aid in the absorption of the electrolytes. The third step goes along with slowly adding nourishment.


    Again, if others disagree with anything here, feel free to say so! I recognize that my lack of experience is a problem...but my endless curiosity, biology background, and focus on well-researched material hopefully makes up for some of it. Just want to help.

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by LaurelLynn View Post
    Does this apply to SQ or only oral?
    Either and/or Both

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    I am leaving this version of this thread in NON Life-threatening, open. I closed the version in Life-Threatening because I want it to stay stuck and for the protocol to be the first and only post a member will see in the thread -- not discussions that take us far down the page. Let's keep all discussion of the protocol here, in other words.

    From my understanding, per UDoWhat, it was Erica Miller, DVM who developed this schedule for rehydration. Dr Miller is an esteemed wildlife veterinarian and frequent lecturer at professional Wildlife Rehabilitation conferences all over the US. She is amazingly down to earth and helpful and would most likely answer any questions we put to her via email.
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  10. #9
    Kristi S Guest

    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Did she talk about what the hydration solutions should be? I didn't mean to disagree, only to add detail. I'll PM you for her email address; I'd like to hear what she says. It's important to note that there are different degrees and causes of dehydration/malnourishment, with different treatments - I should have said in my post that I was mainly talking about moderate to severe cases, where diarrhea is not the principle cause.

    Thanks for editing my post!

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by Milo's Mom View Post
    Either and/or Both
    Thank you! I always knew warm hydrate and then feed but I was using the process for the first day and then just playing it by observation after that, so this is helpful

    I thought (and might be totally wrong) that the main reason to give oral fluids without formula was that food triggers the digestive process which interferes with absorption of fluids and pulls the water to digest? Which is a big issue in dehydration. I didn't know if this applied to SQ absorbtion since it doesn't rely on absorbtion in the digestive tract.

    And I usually use lactated ringers for hydrating... is this acceptable?

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by LaurelLynn View Post
    Thank you! I always knew warm hydrate and then feed but I was using the process for the first day and then just playing it by observation after that, so this is helpful

    I thought (and might be totally wrong) that the main reason to give oral fluids without formula was that food triggers the digestive process which interferes with absorption of fluids and pulls the water to digest? Which is a big issue in dehydration. I didn't know if this applied to SQ absorbtion since it doesn't rely on absorbtion in the digestive tract.

    And I usually use lactated ringers for hydrating... is this acceptable?
    LRS is for hydrating via sub-Q and can be used orally, but squirrels generally prefer a sweeter fluid like honey water, sugar water, or Pedialyte. I have only had one baby in years who actually preferred LRS....I discovered this after trying every single thing I had in the house with no success.
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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by island rehabber View Post
    LRS is for hydrating via sub-Q and can be used orally, but squirrels generally prefer a sweeter fluid like honey water, sugar water, or Pedialyte. I have only had one baby in years who actually preferred LRS....I discovered this after trying every single thing I had in the house with no success.
    Everyone so for has hated it lol

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by LaurelLynn View Post
    Everyone so for has hated it lol
    Yep that's what I discovered. What everyone seems to love is a mixture of 2 cups very warm water with a quarter TEAspoon of honey.
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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by RobinTN View Post
    Does the replacement fluid change from day one to days two & three? As in Pedialyte or the homemade version for the first 24 hours, then a sugar/water solution for the next 48 hours?
    Quote Originally Posted by Milo's Mom View Post
    My understanding is no, it does not change.
    OK I'm confused (big surprise there)

    So... it would be acceptable to give pedialyte or a solution that includes salt for up to 72 hours as long as the total quantity is based on sqrls body weight?

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by RobinTN View Post
    OK I'm confused (big surprise there)

    So... it would be acceptable to give pedialyte or a solution that includes salt for up to 72 hours as long as the total quantity is based on sqrls body weight?
    My understanding is yes, it is absolutely okay. The salt is functioning as the electrolyte in the homemade hydration fluid. Keep in mind the R&M hydration is done while they are also being fed formula (after the first 12 hours or so - depending on the level of dehydration and emaciation).

    I sent a PM offering assistance in getting the presentation in a format conducive to posting on our board...this way we can all see it. I think it is in the works. I've been out of it since late yesterday afternoon...couple more tears left to cry then I'll pick up the pieces and follow up.

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    I wonder if 72 hours of electrolyte hydration would be needed/desirable if the dehydration is just primary dehydration from reduced water intake as opposed to secondary hydration (loss of water and salts) due to injuries, Diarrhea etc.?
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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Quote Originally Posted by Milo's Mom View Post
    My understanding is yes, it is absolutely okay. The salt is functioning as the electrolyte in the homemade hydration fluid. Keep in mind the R&M hydration is done while they are also being fed formula (after the first 12 hours or so - depending on the level of dehydration and emaciation).

    I sent a PM offering assistance in getting the presentation in a format conducive to posting on our board...this way we can all see it. I think it is in the works. I've been out of it since late yesterday afternoon...couple more tears left to cry then I'll pick up the pieces and follow up.
    Thank you for clarifying, & hang in there.

    Tears of sadness will eventually turn to tears of happy memories

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    Based upon the presentation and the recommendation of the presenter it is best to always assume a 10% level of dehydration. Remember at 12% you're dealing with death.

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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION


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    Default Re: SHORTCUT METHOD OF FLUID CALCULATION

    According to the IWRC Dr. Erica Miller changed or nuanced some of the details in Fluid Therapy calcs.

    She added Pathological loss and increase the % of Daily Maintenance fluids.

    She now says 6% of Body weight= DMF

    Path Loss is something due to Diarrhea or blood loss. ( For those who don't know what that is ) Which can be hard to estimate.

    They are now also calling for the 100% of the Fluid Deficit ( dehydration) to be given on DAY ONE.


    Day 2 & 3 are only 100% of Daily Maintenance fluids and daily pathological loss.

    I have the handouts from the IWRC training Dec 2014 If you would like me to scan them or what not.

    I don't imagine that the new way is any " better" than the old way persay.. but they stressed that dehydration should be treated right away since lots of animals come in at 6-10% dehydrated and should not be left in that state. Cause like ya said.. 12% usually = death
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