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Thread: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

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    Default Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Hello everyone,

    I have a baby squirrel. The guy I got him from told me he were 1 month and a few days old, 2 days ago he was playing and climbing my bedroom curtain as always when he tried jumping on my back, he slipped and fell on the floor, there was no cry of pain or anything but he seemed paralysed right after that, as when he started to move he would use his front claws to drag himself on the ground, I panicked, and took him to a vet immediately fearing something horrible might have happened, the vet told me (after taking radiograph(?) photos - sorry I live in Iran and my English isn't perfect - ) that there is nothing wrong with his bones and either there is an inflammation near his spinal cord or he has spinal cord which can only be diagnosed with (MRI or X-ray I don't remember exactly, but which one or two hospitals here only had the equipment to do it and he didn't know where). He prescribed some anti-inflammation medicine plus calcium and vitamin A and D, I took him home, tried giving him the medicine which he didn't do voluntarily so I had to force feed him a portion of it until I gave up cause I didn't want to stress him too much.

    Then I began searching the internet for the causes of paralysis in squirrels and came upon the definition of MBD, now I fear this may be his case, I am not sure though, but since yesterday when I force fed him the drugs he has lost appetite, or at least when I'm near him he doesn't eat, so I took the advice of one of the posts on treatment of MBD and took a calcium pill and mixed it with water and force fed him a portion of it, no improvement yet. And the worst part is he doesn't seem to know he has problems with his legs as he still likes to climb on things, so I have put him in a small box and only let him out when I'm around and I have to monitor him so when he gets close to the curtains or sheets or stuff he can climb from I pick him up and put him far, I don't want him to go up there and fall down and injure himself.

    unfortunately where I live there are no rehab centers or specialists from squirrels, or at least there is none to my knowledge,

    even today in 2 hours I'm taking him to another vet whom a friend who has a squirrel introduced, but I'm so worried for him, is there anyone here who has a good advice on what I can do to improve his condition given the location I live in and the limited options of help I can get?

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    What was the anti inflammatory drug that was prescribed? If, as the Dr. has said, the injury has caused some swelling around the spinal cord an anti inflammatory is his best chance at recovery. He will have to get the medicine consistently for it to make a difference.

    Did the vet seem concerned about thin bones on the X-ray? Thin bones could indicate a calcium deficiency and if hed had broken bones after the fall that would be one thing, but the Dr. said there were no broken bones, correct?

    There have been folks on here that have had some amazing recoveries from spinal injuries by treating with anti inflammatory drugs.

    Please let us know what drugs you were prescribed and what this new Dr. says.

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    So this is a very young squirrel, right? Has he been eating a baby formula of some kind? If so, MBD is not likely and this is an injury caused by the fall.

    A round of prednisone or prednisolone would be a good thing to try. Steroids like this are the fastest anti-inflammatories and sometimes it can work wonders. If you can get either of these meds - they are used in humans all the time - we can help you to properly dilute and dose it. We would need the weight of the baby in grams and the size of the pills in milligrams. YOU will need a 1cc or smaller syringe without the needle in order to both measure the dilution and to feed it to the squirrel.

    Keep him as quiet and still as you can to try to limit further injury.

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Quote Originally Posted by Mel1959 View Post
    What was the anti inflammatory drug that was prescribed? If, as the Dr. has said, the injury has caused some swelling around the spinal cord an anti inflammatory is his best chance at recovery. He will have to get the medicine consistently for it to make a difference.

    Did the vet seem concerned about thin bones on the X-ray? Thin bones could indicate a calcium deficiency and if hed had broken bones after the fall that would be one thing, but the Dr. said there were no broken bones, correct?

    There have been folks on here that have had some amazing recoveries from spinal injuries by treating with anti inflammatory drugs.

    Please let us know what drugs you were prescribed and what this new Dr. says.
    The drug is called Meloxicam (but sometimes drugs here in Iran are commercialized under different brands and names than in US so I don't know if you know this name)

    The vet looked at the pictures closely and said there were no injuries to the bones, but he said he couldn't say the same for the spinal cord although he didn't see anything showing that either. The new doctor told me that he has probabely had no permanents spinal cord injury because as I said, he sometimes moves his tail or hind legs or feet, but it comes and goes... but when he is trying to move he only does so with his claws and his legs and tail are limp at those times, but other times when he is still he sometimes moves them.

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Quote Originally Posted by CritterMom View Post
    So this is a very young squirrel, right? Has he been eating a baby formula of some kind? If so, MBD is not likely and this is an injury caused by the fall.

    A round of prednisone or prednisolone would be a good thing to try. Steroids like this are the fastest anti-inflammatories and sometimes it can work wonders. If you can get either of these meds - they are used in humans all the time - we can help you to properly dilute and dose it. We would need the weight of the baby in grams and the size of the pills in milligrams. YOU will need a 1cc or smaller syringe without the needle in order to both measure the dilution and to feed it to the squirrel.

    Keep him as quiet and still as you can to try to limit further injury.
    Thank you for the reply! I will try to find the drugs you mentioned and I will try to find a way to weigh him

    I have put him in a shoe box with many air holes so he can't get out or climb or anything, and I have put some formula in the box, but since yesterday when I had to force feed him the calcium he has stopped eating, and today the vet injected him some stuff and when we were home he vomited a little, I don't know if it was the formula I fed him yesterday or because of the injections... later he slept... then I had to wash him very gently with just water because he had urine all near his legs and abdomen, (I didn't use shampoo cause I feared it may hurt him) and now I have put him in his box to sleep, as the doctor told me I also put his box on a heating pad so his surroundings are a little warmer as he seems to have some signs of pneumonia too (he makes the clicking sound when he breathes, but not always, only at times)

    I hope he drinks the formula himself tonight as I don't want to have to force feed him again tomorrow...

    I don't know how much formula he has had, so given that he has also become lethargic and lost his appetite, aren't these all signs of MBD?

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    A baby squirrel won’t drink formula on their own. They have to be fed the formula with a syringe and nipple. If they aspirate they will get aspiration pneumonia. The baby needs either Ciprofloxacin or Baytril to treat the aspiration pneumonia if you hear clicking. We can dose it for you. You might be able to get Baytril from the vet.

    If you can give us the milligrams of the Meloxicam we can help you dose it. The volume given should be very small. You use a syringe and slip it in the corner of the mouth. Quickly administer the dose. They don’t like it but it must be done. If you can’t get the prednisone the Meloxicam is a good second choice but you must give it. Don’t give up.

    This is a link about baby squirrel care. https://www.henryspets.com/1-basic-setup/

    A plastic bin with holes would be MUCH better than a shoe box.

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    What kind of squirrel is this? How old is he? What are you currently feeding him? Can you share some pictures?

    Meloxicam is good, but Prednisone is much better BUT BUT you can't give them together. No squirrel is going to take Meloxicam or Prednisone voluntarily, so you just have to stick the syringe in their mouth and push the plunger. The amount you give depends on the weight of the squirrel. You must wait 24 hours from the dose of Meloxicam to the dose of Prednisone. Can you get that? If yes, we will help you mix it up right and how much to give him. Just to be sure this is understood I'll say it again you can not/should not give Melodxicam and Prednisone at the same time, they need 24 hours between each other.

    Please do not keep him in a shoe box. That would be horrible for him. Do you have a cage he can stay in? If not we can help you put something together, but a closed box is not it. If he is a baby, you could get a plastic bin and keep him in it for now.

    If you pinch his toes does he pull them away? Is he moving his tail?

    Once you answer these questions we can go from there.
    Kim Cassidy
    Licensed NY Wildlife Rehabilitator

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Quote Originally Posted by HRT4SQRLS View Post
    A baby squirrel wont drink formula on their own. They have to be fed the formula with a syringe and nipple. If they aspirate they will get aspiration pneumonia. The baby needs either Ciprofloxacin or Baytril to treat the aspiration pneumonia if you hear clicking. We can dose it for you. You might be able to get Baytril from the vet.

    If you can give us the milligrams of the Meloxicam we can help you dose it. The volume given should be very small. You use a syringe and slip it in the corner of the mouth. Quickly administer the dose. They dont like it but it must be done. If you cant get the prednisone the Meloxicam is a good second choice but you must give it. Dont give up.

    This is a link about baby squirrel care. https://www.henryspets.com/1-basic-setup/

    A plastic bin with holes would be MUCH better than a shoe box.
    Thanks for the reply, the first vet I had brought him too did prescribe baytril in case his clicking worsened, I will go get it from a drugstore.

    As for the meloxicam, can I mix it with formula and then give it to them so they dislike it less? As for the dosage, the vet gave me a dosage... the meloxicam I have is 7.5(it's all that's written on it), the doctor told me to solve one eights of a pill in 15 cc water and feed 0.5 cc of the substance to the baby, he gave me the dosage after having weighted him, but I fear he may have weighted him wrong cause I heard him telling the nurse that the baby weighted 100 grams whereas the previous vet a few days prior to this had told me they weighted 50 grams... I still haven't found a way to weigh him myself...


    Thanks for the link it's very informative.

    A plastic bin, isn't it too tall for the baby, wouldn't he be able to climb out of it? and would he want a very small surface or medium, as the shoe box is more spacious whereas a bin is much smaller?

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Quote Originally Posted by kcassidy View Post
    What kind of squirrel is this? How old is he? What are you currently feeding him? Can you share some pictures?

    Meloxicam is good, but Prednisone is much better BUT BUT you can't give them together. No squirrel is going to take Meloxicam or Prednisone voluntarily, so you just have to stick the syringe in their mouth and push the plunger. The amount you give depends on the weight of the squirrel. You must wait 24 hours from the dose of Meloxicam to the dose of Prednisone. Can you get that? If yes, we will help you mix it up right and how much to give him. Just to be sure this is understood I'll say it again you can not/should not give Melodxicam and Prednisone at the same time, they need 24 hours between each other.

    Please do not keep him in a shoe box. That would be horrible for him. Do you have a cage he can stay in? If not we can help you put something together, but a closed box is not it. If he is a baby, you could get a plastic bin and keep him in it for now.

    If you pinch his toes does he pull them away? Is he moving his tail?

    Once you answer these questions we can go from there.
    The guy I took him from told me he's a Canadian squirrel but I'm not sure, he could also be Iranian squirrel, I will post a pick maybe you can tell? he must be 5-6 weeks old. the first two days I had to feed him cow milk cause all pet stores were closed, but I switched to puppy milk replacement after that.

    I will try to find Prednisone. The cage I have is very spacious and tall and I can't put him there because he might climb up and fall down and injure himself. Of course I have cut so many holes in the box. I can try putting him in a plastic bin but should the lid be closed or open? wouldn't he want to be in a confined space where they like to sleep and cuddle?

    I haven't pinched his toes, but as I said he sometimes moves both his feet and his tail, but only when sitting for a while, but when he starts to move they go limb.

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    okay first off the meloxicam preperation by the doctor is wrong.
    Is there any writing on the pill itself? usually it is 22.7mg/ml I've not heard of 7.5 (but I don't know everything )

    We usually use the whole pill and dilute with water based on the strength (that 22.7 is the strength). Then you give a certain amount based on teh weight of the squirrel. You need a kitchen scale to weigh him, here in the US we can get them from Amazon or Walmart for cheap.

    Yes pictures would be a huge help.

    The bin won't need a lid if he is really little, as he gets bigger you'll probably need it with lots of holes drilled in it.

    so he moves his legs and tail but can't use them. That's odd, but it could be MDB, we really need to see pix please. Do you know how to upload them? If not you can email them to me irishcas66@gmail.com and I'll upload for you.

    Are you on Facebook, you can send me a friend request and I can get the pix from there too. my name is Kim Cassidy and my profile pix is a white squirrel.
    Kim Cassidy
    Licensed NY Wildlife Rehabilitator

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Quote Originally Posted by kcassidy View Post
    okay first off the meloxicam preperation by the doctor is wrong.
    Is there any writing on the pill itself? usually it is 22.7mg/ml I've not heard of 7.5 (but I don't know everything )

    We usually use the whole pill and dilute with water based on the strength (that 22.7 is the strength). Then you give a certain amount based on teh weight of the squirrel. You need a kitchen scale to weigh him, here in the US we can get them from Amazon or Walmart for cheap.

    Yes pictures would be a huge help.

    The bin won't need a lid if he is really little, as he gets bigger you'll probably need it with lots of holes drilled in it.

    so he moves his legs and tail but can't use them. That's odd, but it could be MDB, we really need to see pix please. Do you know how to upload them? If not you can email them to me irishcas66@gmail.com and I'll upload for you.

    Are you on Facebook, you can send me a friend request and I can get the pix from there too. my name is Kim Cassidy and my profile pix is a white squirrel.
    Thanks for the reply,

    I will try to buy a kitchen scale to weigh him. he is not very little as in he can climb stuff so yesterday I bought a medium lizard carrier with holes on top to put him there instead of the shoe box.

    I have iPhone and I can take pics using my phone but I can't upload them on my computer to be able to send them here, do you have WhatsApp or Instagram? I have accounts there, and I can send you videos and photos there, but in the meantime I'm gonna try facebook but since it's filtered in my country I'm not sure I can use it, I'm gonna try though

    update on his health: yesterday I went to another vet who gave me some antibiotics and asked me to solve one drop in one glass of water, and feed him that, I did this and tried keeping him warm using a heat pad which seems to have reduced his clicking sound,

    The vet also gave me a topical ointment that is anti-inflammatory and I used it to massage his back and spinal cord area a couple of times today, I try to massage all the area in his back because I don't know where the inflammation is and the vets didn't know either.

    I'm still worried that he might have MBD because he refuses to eat formula and most if not all of my efforts to give him some calcium have failed. He is pooping like before which is a good thing, he urinates too I guess, but not much because he drinks little water, and I think the water he gets is from the apple he ate today (which was a relief to me that he at least ate something)

    My main concern and worry is that he refuses to open his mouth when I approach the formula syringe and he becomes frantic and tries to climb my fingers to escape... even when I pour some on his lips he refuses to lick it and starts to rub his lips on the ground or whatever he finds to dry them.
    The other thing that worries me is that he makes some shivering sound with his mouth sometimes for a few seconds and then stops...

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    this is my phone number on WhatsApp: +98 912 347 82 41
    this is my Instagram: mana.swan

    If you send me a message there I will send you the videos and photos,

    I'm trying to mail them to you but their size on disk is large and internet speed is slow here, but I will try nonetheless,

    Thanks again for everything, I just want him to live and heal

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    his clicking sound has improved, he doesn't make it almost anymore, but he still doesn't take any formula, pushes the formula syringe away and tries to run away from my hand,

    even his legs have improved, he has started using his hind legs even more, but he can't walk perfectly yet,

    I'm still dead worried for him because he is making this shivering/quivering sound with his mouth more often, what does that mean?

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    They "shiver" their teeth that's not a big deal but could be a sign of stress.

    Why is fur all wet?

    What are you using to feed the formula? Is it a bottle or a syringe/nipple?

    You haven't given me the details on the Meloxicam, you really need to get that in him correctly. I'm not an MDB expert but there are a few folks here who are. I do know you can give him Tums but let me get one of them over here to give you advice. Did the vet get an xray? Can you have one done?

    You should keep trying to feed him formula, he is very young and still needs it.

    Here is the best of the 3 videos you sent me

    Kim Cassidy
    Licensed NY Wildlife Rehabilitator

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Quote Originally Posted by kcassidy View Post
    They "shiver" their teeth that's not a big deal but could be a sign of stress.

    Why is fur all wet?

    What are you using to feed the formula? Is it a bottle or a syringe/nipple?

    You haven't given me the details on the Meloxicam, you really need to get that in him correctly. I'm not an MDB expert but there are a few folks here who are. I do know you can give him Tums but let me get one of them over here to give you advice. Did the vet get an xray? Can you have one done?

    You should keep trying to feed him formula, he is very young and still needs it.

    Here is the best of the 3 videos you sent me

    Hello Kim

    Thank you for your help and your reply, I really appreciate it,

    His back could seem wet because I used that ointment on him, but his front and feet are covered in urine, I wanted to bathe him but the vet told me not to since he may have pneumonia, I did use a wet cloth to clean him though but I guess I should bathe him sometime to clean him thoroughly but I don't want to stress him more, he is better now.

    Regarding meloxicam, I took some photos I'm gonna post here of the drug that the vet prescribed for me, as for Calcium, I have liquid calcium which the vet prescribed, and tums, both of which I will post pictures from.

    Unfornately no x-ray available, but as I said, he has started using his legs and tail, and he can stand on them and he walks, but they are weak, still they have improved a lot...

    If I don't give him anything to it, and after making him hungry put some formula near him would he eat it out of hunger? cause he absolutely doesn't let me feed him, I'm gonna send you a video of my failed efforts to feed him

    Mani

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Name:  IMG_1563.jpg
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    This is the Meloxicam the vet prescribed,

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    And these are the calcium pills I have at home:

    Name:  IMG_1564.jpg
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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    how much does your squirrel way.

    okay on the Meloxicam, you need to add 5ml of water to the meloxicam, once you give me the weight I can tell you how much to give. It looks like he is a small squirrel, I'm guessing he weighs 150 - 200grams. If he is close to 150 you will give him .03cc's once a day.

    He needs to be kept hydrated, so make sure he is either eating formula or you're giving him water.

    As for the formula, try adding some Honey to the mix and see if that entices him.
    Kim Cassidy
    Licensed NY Wildlife Rehabilitator

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Quote Originally Posted by kcassidy View Post
    how much does your squirrel way.

    okay on the Meloxicam, you need to add 5ml of water to the meloxicam, once you give me the weight I can tell you how much to give. It looks like he is a small squirrel, I'm guessing he weighs 150 - 200grams. If he is close to 150 you will give him .03cc's once a day.

    He needs to be kept hydrated, so make sure he is either eating formula or you're giving him water.

    As for the formula, try adding some Honey to the mix and see if that entices him.
    Hello and thanks for the reply,

    He was getting better I mean he had started to use his legs for walking and all, but as I was trying to give him the medicine he panicked and his legs went limp again, could this be a sign of MBD? because he refuses to get calcium anyway I try to feed him, I only could give him a bit by mixing some with almond powder, because he never refuses almonds, but I guess the almond itself negated the effect of the calcium?

    I've seen him drinking water so I guess he is ok there,

    I will try mixing honey with the formula, thanks for the tip

    Mani

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    Default Re: Advice needed on paralysed baby squirrel

    Have you tried adding a single tiny drop of 100 % organic maple syrup?

    or organic Vanilla extract?

    https://www.amazon.com/Simply-Organi.../dp/B00I6CV8FK

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