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Thread: Stomach won't empty in 3 wk old squirrel

  1. #1
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    Default Stomach won't empty in 3 wk old squirrel

    I am posting for an experienced rehabber I help during baby season who needs suggestions.

    3 wk old, had for a few days, 1 of 3 in the litter. No apparent injuries. She did the usual protocol, rehydrated, introduced the correct Esbilac formula (no 32/40) which rested overnight, gradually introduced esbilac diluted with water.

    She said the most recent lot of Esbilac mixed up a little thicker than usual. Dilute it?

    Feeding 5% of weight 5 x a day, 3 hrs apart. Milk line is still present at beginning of next feeding.

    Spine has become more pronounced, seems less interested in eating, and formula isn't being completely digested even after 3 hrs.

    No bloat, no abnormalities in stool except being a little paler and has more of an olive tint to it but no odor. Has aspirated today, not sure why or when it happened. Will start doxycycline.

    Should she give a few oral feedings of a rehydrating fluid, such as pedialyte or LRS? And / or subQ LRS? Or should she only give water orally as was suggested in a thread to someone who had used 32/40?

    Thanks in advance for your advice.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Stomach won't empty in 3 wk old squirrel

    First off, just to make extra sure, is she using the Esbilac with the white puppy on it?
    I only ask because you mentioned that it seemed thicker when she made it.

    I would start Duckman's protocol of trying to empty his tummy.
    I would also suggest to start this little one on the temporary goat's milk
    formula written below. For whatever reason a few little ones have
    problems digesting the Esbilac formula.

    Please keep us posted.


    Quote Originally Posted by Duckman View Post

    The trick for me seemed to be getting in as much water, as quickly as possible, once you see and feel the hardness in the belly. Not sugar water or Pedilyte, but plain water. I did this every hour (giving about .2-.3 ml) and ensure you stimulate after each, for 2 reasons. 1. You have to get that water out of the bladder, and it will burst if you don't. 2. You want that water to start working on the crud in the belly. After 8-10 hours, you should start seeing some movement out of the bowel (they will continue to poop, but you will start to see it more watery, which is what you want). At that time, start introducing diluted formula at the ratio of 25% Esbilac, 75% water. Feed this for the first half day. The second half day, I bumped up the ration to 50/50. I fed this for a day and then went to 75% Esbilac, 25% water and introduced full food the next day (and the blockage was gone!). So far, I am at 100% success rate. One note though. I check my pinkies after every feeding, so see if their bellies are hard or squishy. I would suggest everyone get in the habit of checking them after every feeding as habit and you can't go wrong in catching them before they bloat up. Once they take on that angry red color on their bellies (this is when their system goes septic), they are gone and can't be saved, so the trick is to catch them before this happens (hence, getting in the habit to see if their tummies are hard or not).



    Quote Originally Posted by island rehabber View Post
    TEMPORARY GOAT'S MILK FORMULA:


    3 parts goat’s milk
    1 part heavy whipping cream*
    1 part vanilla yogurt

    Formula will last 48 hours in refrigerator.

    Goat’s Milk
    This can be purchased at natural food stores such as Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods, and at most health food stores that sell groceries. It is a product for humans. Do not substitute commercial formula made for baby goats or other livestock sold at feed stores.

    Goat’s milk is available fresh in a carton; evaporated in a can; and as a powdered milk. If you purchase either the evaporated or powdered versions, please blend them with water according to the package directions before using to make the formula.

    Heavy Whipping Cream
    This is found in small cartons in the grocery store near the coffee creamers and half and half. Regular heavy cream may be substituted if it is unavailable, but the heavy whipping cream has the highest fat content, and is preferred.

    Yogurt
    Yogurt has beneficial bacteria in it that soothes and settles digestion. Full fat yogurt is best, and a good choice that is very widely available is Stoneyfield Yobaby yogurt. However if it is unavailable, a low fat vanilla yogurt may be substituted. Avoid those that have artificial sweeteners in them. Vanilla and banana are both popular flavors, and the sweet taste of the yogurt helps to convince the baby to accept it.

    It has been recently discovered that very small pinky squirrels do better with the ESBILAC PUPPY FORMULA, with probiotics, instead of Fox Valley. If the Goat's Milk formula is used, omit the heavy whipping cream for the first two weeks of life.

  3. Serious fuzzy thank you's to Nancy in New York from:

    Grinderhead (08-07-2019)

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    Default Re: Stomach won't empty in 3 wk old squirrel

    Yes, he was using the correct esbilac, the one with the puppy.

    Thanks for all the replies. I will share them with her.

  5. Serious fuzzy thank you's to debk from:

    Nancy in New York (08-07-2019)

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    Default Re: Stomach won't empty in 3 wk old squirrel

    The little one passed away this afternoon. She saved your information for future reference.

    She said she also had problems with stomach not emptying resulting in deaths in very young opossum this past season.

    She's been a permitted rehabber of most indigenous wildlife for 25+ years and has a high record of success. Could these two occurrences be related? If there are issues with Esbilac in the future, I suppose it will become a trend.

    I remember squirrel babies dying in 2009, 2010 from problems with Esbilac. I hope Pet Ag hasn't changed something again that will be detrimental to wildlife. The goat's milk recipe is good to have as an alternative.

    I appreciate the prompt responses from all of you.

  7. #5
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    Default Re: Stomach won't empty in 3 wk old squirrel

    Oh yeah - the bad old days...

    Is it possible that the Esbilac powder - not the made up formula, but the powder in the can - was left out - not kept refrigerated? The POWDER itself goes bad very quickly once the can is opened. I know this for a fact - I nearly killed my first baby that way.

    Keep ALL formula powders in the freezer. They mix exactly the same way regardless if the powder is room temperature or ice cold when you begin.

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