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Thread: Infant squirrel with stiff arms

  1. #1
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    Default Infant squirrel with stiff arms

    Hello All!

    I'm hoping someone can help me determine next steps. I got these baby squirrels in on Sunday evening, we had high winds here and their nest was blowing down the road that day, 3 babies in it but ine was already dead. These two have been doing great and then yesterday the little girl's arms started getting stiff.

    She holds them straight down. I can move them, and bend them gently but they go back to being stiff. She also has a dark spot right between her shoulder blades so I'm thinking this has come on from injury. She eats well and goes to the bathroom.

    Any ideas? I'm open to any suggestions to help her!

    Thank you all in advance for your help!

    Here is their picture, she is in front, you can see her little arms down straight.

    [IMG][/IMG]

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Infant squirrel with stiff arms

    Quote Originally Posted by FlFarmGirl79 View Post
    Hello All!
    I'm hoping someone can help me determine next steps. I got these baby squirrels in on Sunday evening, we had high winds here and their nest was blowing down the road that day, 3 babies in it but ine was already dead. These two have been doing great and then yesterday the little girl's arms started getting stiff.
    She holds them straight down. I can move them, and bend them gently but they go back to being stiff. She also has a dark spot right between her shoulder blades so I'm thinking this has come on from injury. She eats well and goes to the bathroom.
    Any ideas? I'm open to any suggestions to help her!
    Thank you all in advance for your help!
    Here is their picture, she is in front, you can see her little arms down straight.
    Possibly could be a condition known as high muscle tone. (hypertonia) What this suggests is there is too much muscle tone
    resulting in her legs being stiff. One's muscle tone is regulated by it's own signals that go from brain to nerves and tell the
    muscles to contract. The most common treatment is physical therapy, which loosens and stretches overactive muscles.
    Step-N-Stone
    State Licensed
    Wildlife Master Rehabilitator


  3. #3
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    Default Re: Infant squirrel with stiff arms

    I had a little guy with a more severe case a year and a half ago. Vet said likely nerve damage and to hobble arms. Then lots of PT. Mr. Tawki Face (the squirrel...cause he talked constantly) was raised, over wintered, and released. Ended up coming home with coccidia, hookworms, and a badly abscessed hind leg a few months later. But come Spring he's going back to the trees.
    Good luck with your little one.

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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Infant squirrel with stiff arms

    Not sure if these will help or not but here are a few pics of Mr. Tawki Face in his little brace. He's older in these pics, but I got him as a 2 day old pinkie....

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    island rehabber (12-26-2018)

  6. #5
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    Default Re: Infant squirrel with stiff arms

    Has this baby ever moved on itís own? Does it crawl? Does it move its legs at all on its own? I would not hobble or do any PT on this baby until I found out if it has broken legs and /or a broken spine. Do you have a veterinarian that could do some imaging to see if itís spine or legs are broken? Thatís the route I would take first.
    redwuff
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    SammysMom (12-26-2018)

  8. #6
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    Default Re: Infant squirrel with stiff arms

    Quote Originally Posted by redwuff View Post
    Has this baby ever moved on itís own? Does it crawl? Does it move its legs at all on its own? I would not hobble or do any PT on this baby until I found out if it has broken legs and /or a broken spine. Do you have a veterinarian that could do some imaging to see if itís spine or legs are broken? Thatís the route I would take first.
    She said they were both doing great and then her arms started getting stiff....exact path Mr. Tawki Face took. Of course she shouldn't hobble without veterinary advice, that's a given. But even with a hobble the arms will continue to collapse, just like Tawki did, and then she'll have to get them up to proper position, which is why I shared the pics....so she had something to show vet and aim towards.

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  9. #7
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    Default Re: Infant squirrel with stiff arms

    Thanks guys for all the info. My regular vet is out of town until after New Year's so that's why I was seeking some advice here. I have one other vet I can try tomorrow so I will call him, just not sure he can do squirrels but he is my primate and backup exotic vet so worth a shot.

    She crawled on day 1. But then that dark spot, purple-ish, looked like a strong bruise, appeared between her shoulder blades and that's when she started having trouble. It is slowly disappearing now, lighter and lighter each day.

    I was kinda hoping it was just something less common in squirrels that I just didn't know about. And another rehabber told me she'd have to be put down but I wanna try to give her a chance.

    Thanks for all your help!
    Please let me know of anything else as well and I will keep you posted on her progress.

  10. Serious fuzzy thank you's to FlFarmGirl79 from:

    Milo's Mom (12-27-2018)

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