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Thread: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

  1. #1
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    Default Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    [SIZE=2]Hi everyone! I'm AJ and I live in Malaysia with my family and we're from New Zealand �� We recently found a pair of baby squirrels. An American pal said that one of her friends used this site for help on squirrel raising so she thought it would be good for me to join to help me out ☺️

    So the story... last week, on Nov 1, we found a baby squirrel in our backyard in the morning. It had no injuries, only cold and quiet. We warmed it up and gave it some rehydration fluids. We tried to reunite it with the Mom but she didn't turn up. In the evening, we found another sibling close by! I found some good websites to help and we've had experience handraising kittens/puppies/a rat before so that helped. They were fully furred, two bottom teeth there, but no eyes open so around 4 weeks. We kept them on the fluids to boost them up.

    I contacted the local wildlife center, and they said they'd come by to pick them up before the weekend. But come Friday evening, they didn't contact us. So we bought some puppy formula made from goat's milk for them, and they loved it! We did it gradually so no diarrhea or bloating.

    They did well over the weekend, and we fed them every 3 hours (thru the night too), about 2.5ml, also stimulating them for bathroom, and keeping them warm in a shoebox. They weighed about 50 grams when we first got them, but they're around 100 grams now. They opened their eyes this week, and growing really fast! They're drinking about 4ml and 1-2ml for alternating feeds, and wanting to play more. We've called them Dek (male) and ChiChi (female). We think they're grey-bellied squirrels, as we'd seen a pair running around our garden for the past few months... But we've not seen the pair in the past two weeks :/

    I called the wildlife center again on Monday, and they said they should pick them up later that day.... Unfortunately, it's already Friday (Nov 9), and I've not heard back from them. They do pick up critters, as we rescued a baby civet cat a couple years back and the wildlife center did come and pick it up within 3 days. They may not be interested in a pair of squirrels as they are common here, and on the menu in some South East Asia countries around here, and the wildlife people are pretty busy running around for endangered species. I might call them again on Monday and see if they'll come, or we can find a way to drop them off at the center if the wildlife people would accept them.

    I don't want to keep them as pets because I've seen the articles, and it's not a good idea at all (I have cats and dogs too... So they wouldn't probably get along). We're doing our best to find an expert who can take them... but I'm sure if we will. In that case, we might have to try to rehabilitate them for release.

    So the wildlife people decide if they can take them, here are my questions!

    1) I think they're ready for solid food now as they're around 5/6 weeks, but I don't know if I should give them the petshop rodent food, as they won't find those sort of nuts and fruit here in the tropics. The web also said they ate insects... The squirrel pair ate bananas and their blossoms, palm fruit, and figs, all from trees in my backyard. Should I start them off with tropical fruit and the fruit in my backyard? Or should I use the petshop one? Would mealworms be okay for them?

    2)At the moment, I'm keeping the shoebox in a cat carrier to keep them safe. When should I upgrade them from their shoebox to a cage to live in? Also would it be okay to give them sticks from my garden to climb on sometime?

    3) Does the goat's milk formula I'm using have enough nutrition for them?
    Nutrition info per 100 ml:
    Kcal - 460
    Protein - 22.3g
    Fat - 18.5g
    Carbohydrate - 51g
    Calcium - 885mg
    Iron - 1.1mg
    Vit A - 540 IU
    Vit b1 - 0.1mg
    Vit B2 - 0.2mg
    Sodium - 225mg
    Potassium - 117mg

    Also I've read they need a rodent block, but I've only be able to find "nutrition blocks" for sugar gliders. Is this the same thing?

    4) When would we be able to stretch the time between feedings? And during the night?

    Any other information would be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much!


    I'll post up some pics later.


    [
    /SIZE]

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    I'll try to answer them all. You can take a feed break overnight now. Eyes open at around 5 weeks and they are over 100 g. We feed by weight so that would be 5 ml per feeding. and you can feed every 3.5-4 hours as long as you're feeding enough based on weight.&nbsp; We recommend 5-7% of their body weight in grams.&nbsp;<br>
    <br>
    The goat's milk puppy formula isn't the best option. Esbilac Puppy formula with pre and probiotics is the best store brand. You can also order a product called Fox Valley 20/50 squirrel formula online. Made the same and fed based on weight. Not sure where they ship.<br>
    <br>
    Depending on the weather, we recommend release no earlier than 16 weeks but the longer you hold on to them, the better success. If the rehab doesn't take them, can you release them on your property?<br>
    <br>
    Here is a list of healthy foods for captive squirrels. Rodent blocks includes rat block sold online or at pet stores. It should be the first food they are eating. (wild squirrel food, gerbil or hamster food is NOT good stuff). You can also look up boo ball recipes on the site for how to crush rodent blocks and add oil and flavored baby food to get them to take them. <a href="https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/showthread.php?44440-Healthy-Diet-for-Pet-Squirrels" target="_blank">https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/showthread.php?44440-Healthy-Diet-for-Pet-Squirrels</a><br>
    <br>
    Here's a 6 page on basics when handling babies. <a href="https://www.henryspets.com/baby-squirrel-care/" target="_blank">https://www.henryspets.com/baby-squirrel-care/</a><br>
    <br>
    You can search on indoor cage, release cage, toys, diet, exercise and enrichment. You can look at the nursery for stories from babies to fully grown and release stories. <br>
    <br>
    Keep asking questions and welcome.

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Thank you for your great reply! Okay, we'll make sure they drink enough. So far they're drinking 4ml or more almost every time now. We'll let them sleep through the night too. They have been pretty sleepy for the midnight feeds!

    Alright, I'll see if my local pet shop can get the milk quickly it for me, as trying to ship things in myself here is a challenge and often take weeks to get past customs.

    We may be able to release them, but we could be moving house soon so we'd have to see. I don't mind keeping them until they're older though. I'll check out the forums on how to rehabilitate them.

    Thanks for the great diet chart! It's really helpful. I'll have a look around and see if I can buy the rodent blocks here to start them off on.

    And yes, I will definitely keep reading this forum! There are so many good tips here for a first timer like me.

    I was worried about Dek this afternoon as he didn't want to eat although he was active and no signs of illness. I was concerned that he had the aspiration pneumonia, so I called my vet to see if I could bring him in but they said they can't help squirrels... I rang several other vets but they said they couldn't help either (maybe they aren't allowed to handle wildlife?) So I had to look for other options. I checked the forums, and there was a vid of what pneumonia sounds like, and Dek definitely didn't sound like that! I then had a look at the Henry's pets link and it said that around his age they start teething again. That would also explain why he's been non stop chewing everything. So that was a relief for me, and he's back to drinking again this evening!

    A couple more questions:

    - When will they no longer need thier hot water bottle to keep them toasty?
    - Sometimes they stretch their front arms out and try to grab?? the air? Is it anything to be concerned about?
    - They tend to suck their nest fabric sometimes. Is this a problem?
    - what could I do if I can't find or buy rodent blocks?

    I'm sure I'll have more questions as time goes by xD

    Thank you so much for your help, and for all the experts help here. It's really helped me out and a true blessing!

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    Question Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    "Okay, so I'm still searching for rodent blocks. I've found an exotic pet shop that I'll ask if they'd be able to get them in for me. I know Henry's ones are the best, but I'm concerned about having "squirrel" on them for reasons. I saw there is zupreem primate biscuits or mazuri rodent blocks. Are they any good or is there another brand that's okay and doesn't mention squirrels?"

    I'm still trying to get the esbiliac puppy formula. In the meantime, is there anything I can add to their milk? I saw something about cream or yogurt.

    Dek and ChiChi are very active, and I've set up a small dog carrier with sticks and cardboard rolls for them to play in during the day, while I look at getting a big cage for them. Ice also bought a small gram scale so I can accuratly keep an eye on their weight. A kind person on this forum has given me details for another local contact who may be able to help, so I'm praying that they can soon.

    One problem I'm having with Dek is that sometimes he only wants 1 or 2 ml for a feed. I can give the formula to him drop by drop with the syringe (being careful not to get it in his nose) up to an extra 1ml if he lets me, as I'm concerned about his fluids. I have given him rehydration fluid when he is 2+ fussy feeds, though I can only give it drop by drop. They have 6 feeds a day with both of them drinking 4-5ml, but he can be fussy for up to 3 feeds. ChiChi rarely fusses and she drinks her full amount (4-5ml). I don't know if it's his teething still, or something else. He's active and no signs of illness though, so I'm puzzled.
    Last edited by Bravo; 11-13-2018 at 09:52 AM. Reason: At member's request

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Make sure the formula is warm enough and fresh each time. If you make those changes and baby still doesn't want to eat it may be time to try an antibiotic. They are at risk when using a syringe larger than 3 ml to feed, or a nursing bottle. What human antibiotics do you have at home? We will need a weight in grams and the type and name of the antibiotic tablet you have to give you dosing instructions.

    Sucking on the bedding...what is their bedding? Cotton and fleece is good. Towels are bad because they can snag their little nails.

    Stretching front paws out is them actually stretching. Like we do in the morning.

    They will need a heat source until they are around 7-9 weeks and then they will most likely sleep away from it unless the surrounding environment is very cold.

    If you're going to make your own blocks that's fine. There are recipes on the board. If you stumble on a site called Squirrelnutrition, don't buy their block powder. It's not a healthy option.

    Rat block is suitable for squirrels. Not hamster or gerbil food. Rat block. You can usually find some at a pet store that sells rat supplies. Some people crush and add a bit of veggie baby food and roll it into balls to make them more enticing. We call those boo balls on this site so you can search.

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    We would love to see a picture of your babies. I have no idea what Malaysians squirrels look like.

    You can drop back to five feedings a day cos your babies are close to six weeks old now. Then in 2 wks drop back to 4 feedings. But as you drop these feedings, they need to have the rat block to transition to. That might help your boy who is not eating as much. Watch out for any lethargy in Dek. Lethargy, anorexia, and regular clicking are all signs of AP.

    It is getting to a point when you need to have rat block to transition them to when they start to wean themselves off of formula. A goats milk formula we often use is 3 parts goats milk, 1 part full fat heavy whipping crime, 1 part full fat yogurt. I start all my pinkies on this formula and transition them to FV 20/50 around 4 weeks depending on condition of the baby. But I have kept a group of babies on the GMF till weaning. Goat milk does not have enough fat for baby squirrels.
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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    If I may make a suggestion... If you're going to start them on solid foods do so gradually, and do start them on the rodent blocks before anything else - to make sure they develop a liking for their blocks. Also try to avoid giving them fruit until after they get used to their high calcium veggies - like kale etc. No nuts. They're like human babies: if you start them on the great tasting stuff, the dessert foods, then they'll be turning their noses up at you when you show up with the healthy stuff. E.g. Ever tried to give a 7 mos old kid some spinach when he's been eating nothing but apple sauce and carrots?

    I can't wait to see pics of your kiddies either!
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    My sweet Scooter... YOU brought that magic in my life. You've changed the way I see all things around me now and, because of you, I want to be a better person. This is not goodbye, sweetheart. You be at peace, enjoy your freedom, we'll meet at the Bridge again some day. I'll always love you.
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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Wow, thank you for the all great info, guys! I'll need to make a little note book to keep all these good tips xD

    Hehe, I'll post up some pics in my next post! They are pretty cute ;3c

    @cava we're making sure we give Dek his milk hot and fresh, and he seems to like that much better. We'll keep an eye on him though. I have found some antibiotic human tablets. Should we put him on some or see if the hot milk makes the difference?

    Their bedding is an old t-shirt and a kitchen cloth. I change it every couple of days as it gets stinky. They also have a sock over their hot water bottle. Okay, I'll keep their hottie with them. It can get quite warm here (32C+) but they still like to snuggle it... I make sure they are warm when it's raining and cold (yep, <26C is considered cold here!)

    Ahh, okay thanks. I thought they might just be stretching as they usually do it when they wake up xD

    Alright, I'll get the rat blocks for them and check out those recipes. The exotic pet shop may have them, as the local ones just seem to have hamster and sugar glider food -_-

    @scooterzmom haha, so true! I've read thru the forums and we'll definitely make sure they're eating the blocks first. Don't want to have fussy squirrels like you guys say! Okay, so I'll get them onto blocks first, then their high calcium greens, then dessert food later. I'm guessing I give them the veges raw?

    @redwuff okay, I'll see if I can get the pet shop to order in FV 50/50 for me. I can buy the whipped cream and full fat yogurt at the expat supermarket so I'll get that asap.

    We're letting them sleep during the night now. They have their last feed around 9pm and next feed at 5am (when my mum wakes up). Thanks for the feeding tips! They seem to drink more when we stretch out the feeds to every 3.5 hours. Would it be okay to keep up the six feeds until I can get the rat block?

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Alrighty, here are the pics! I kinda have a bunch so I hope it's okay I've included pics of their play carrier too and some pics of when we first got them.
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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Quote Originally Posted by pinkspacecat15 View Post
    \

    @cava we're making sure we give Dek his milk hot and fresh, and he seems to like that much better. We'll keep an eye on him though. I have found some antibiotic human tablets. Should we put him on some or see if the hot milk makes the difference?

    Wow, they are adorable and look fat and have a healthy looking coat. Keep up the great work.

    It depends on how he's eating and what his energy level is like. If he is eating much better since you stretched out feedings and he seems bright and alert and is continuing to gain weight then you don't need to, but if he seems "off" or tired, not hungry, not playful then yes, I would suggest it.

    If you want to start antibiotics, tell us the exact weight of the baby, if you have a tablet or liquid, how many milligrams the tablet is (it's strength) and exactly WHAT the antibiotic is. It also helps to know the expiration date of the antibiotic.

    Until then, keep them fed and warm and allow them to safely exercise. Being held and stroked by you is always great for them too.

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Quote Originally Posted by pinkspacecat15 View Post

    @redwuff okay, I'll see if I can get the pet shop to order in FV 50/50 for me. I can buy the whipped cream and full fat yogurt at the expat supermarket so I'll get that asap.

    If you are going to change their formula by adding the heavy whipping cream and yogurt, do a small amount first, see how their poops and bellies handle the new ingredients. They will probably love the taste and want to gobble it up. If they are handling it well, you can add amounts given in the recipe to full strength (to the goat milk you are already feeding) over the course of a day or so. If they get gassy, diarrhea or any other problems, back up to the last additions you made and wait there to let them even out. It's a lot more fat so it may take a little time for them to adjust.

    Yes, you can continue your feeds until you get the block. They seem to be growing and maintaining weight well. Do they have teeth yet? They look "all gums" still in the photos.

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Search online for a block called Envigo Harlan Teklad 2018. It is a top quality rodent block and very common for feeding rats. It can usually be purchased from mulitiple sources like Amazon, eBay and places in the United Kingdom. The block isnít expensive but the shipping might be so see if you can find the closest source or if the local exotic pet shop can order it, that would be great.

    Your babies look wonderful! Keep up the good work!

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    @cava and mel1959 - Haha, thanks! They're really starting to look like mini adult squirrels now ^_^

    Okay, he is still active and playful, so we'll keep an eye out for those symptoms. We weighed him and his sister yesterday, and they were about 80 grams. We've written it down in their notebook and we'll keep weighing them. They do like to snuggle in our hands for a snooze after feeding time

    If he does start acting up, I'll come on here with the antibiotics I have and get the proper dose from you guys.

    Thanks for the reminder to do it gradually! We'll see if we can start them slowly this weekend to get them used to it. They do have bottom teeth, and I think their top teeth are through... I can't get a good look inside their mouths!

    @mel1959 thanks, I've had a look but I'm not sure if I can order it myself. So I'll call up the exotic pet shop and they should be able to order some in for me ^_^

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    I managed to get some snaps of their mouth/teeth when they were sleepy after their latest feed... And gently held them with my sister got some good snaps. First pic is ChiChi, 2nd is Dek. They do like to nibble their blankets and gnaw in the sticks I have put in their play carrier.
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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    I can see those top nubbins coming in! They can have sea shells, femur bone (like a bone you would buy a dog, stripped clean, not flavored), elk antlers (like what you would buy a dog), cuttle bone (in the bird section) and pieces of wood. All these things can help the wear their teeth, as they continually grow, and help with teething.

    Looking forward to updates. They will eventually need more space, a larger habitat. Do you already have plans for that?

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Oh great! I've given them some seashells from our shell collection, and we'll get cuttlefish bone for them as it's easy to get. How long will it take for their top teeth to come through?

    Yes, I've read through the forum on cages, etc. Their current day carrier is 2x1.5x1.5 feet which they scurry around in. I have a big white cat cage (about 3.5 wide x2.5 long x 3 feet high) with top and side doors, more ground space than height. I have some 1/2 inch plastic coated wire mesh which we'll put on it to stop them chewing the bars or escaping (should I put it on the inside or outside of the cage?). Would that be enough space for them? I'm thinking I might get a big tall cat cage, maybe 4 feet high or so, for either their next cage or when they're older, depending on when I can get one.

    For feeding, so far they're having 4-5.5 ml during the day, with their biggest feeds early morning and just before bed. They drank 6ml this morning! They seem to have a big feed, then a small one the next feed, then another big, then small, etc. They're active and very playful. They love to run around on us after feeds! Last night they were very vocal before bed, singing and chirping a lot. It was very sweet, and I managed to get a recording of it. Also they're starting to be able to go bathroom by themselves... which is causing some chaos xD we still stimulate them after every feed though. We change their t-shirt//bedding every day ish and wash it. Should we buy some straw bedding or something similar for them instead?

    I noticed sometimes after they wake up, they're trembling or shaking a bit? But then it stops once they start running around and having their feeds. Is it something to be concerned about?

    I'll keep posting updates on how they're going! And thank you for the advice and tips

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    If they are alternating big and small feedings, you may want to cut down to 4x a day or 3x a day, as they are old enough for that now.

    No straw -- it tends to grow molds that can actually make the babies ill. Shredded paper, cut up pieces of fleece and cotton are best unless you can get a product like CareFresh, which is bedding for small mammals made from recycled paper. It is wonderful: absorbs pee and odors and only needs to be changed every few days.
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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Remember, if you're dropping formula feedings you want to replace them with some solids (like rodent block). The goal is to keep them gaining weight while they grow and transition from liquid to solid foods. Were you able to buy rodent block?

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Thanks! I'll check the petshop for the bedding, I think I've seen recycled paper bedding sold there.

    True, I think they'd probably like larger gaps between meals. But, like cava says, they need to have solids first... which is a bit of a challenge at the moment.

    I'm still trying to get the rat block Envigo Harlan Teklad 2018 but I haven't found a place near me that ships for a reasonable price yet. And the exotic pet shop hasn't come back on if they can get it in.

    I found another forum thread that mentioned other rat blocks - https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/...hp?61684-Block

    They suggested a couple of different blocks, including Mazuri and Oxbow. I did a google search and Mazuri have a supplier in Singapore so the exotic pet shop should be able to get it in for me. For the other brand, Oxbow, my local petshop actually stocks it but not the rat food. So it should be easy to get them to order it in for me.

    If I can't get the Envigo brand, which brand is better or are they both pretty good?

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    Default Re: Need help with orphaned Malaysian Squirrels!

    Yes, you're at a disadvantage with location and shipping. Do your best and just get a rat block. At this point you can't be choosy. We can help you make it tasty if they aren't interested, but it has proper nutrition so having it is essential.

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