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Thread: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

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    Default Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Hello! New to this forum, but not new to rehabbing squirrels. I've had several I've raised and released with no issues. I acquired a small female (approximately 4 weeks old the beginning of September) from a client who's dog found her. She had some slight head/face trauma, including a bloody nose. She was having difficulty breathing, so I cleaned her face/nostrils and put her on flow-by oxygen. She seemed to have aspirated some blood, so I was concerned about aspiration pneumonia. She stabilized, and I was able to start her on Fox Valley formula. The next few days were very rough for her, even began agonal breathing at one point, but she pulled through. About a week later (the day after Hurricane Dorian) a friend of mine found a male baby, about 6 weeks old, blown from his nest during the storm. Mom didnt come back for him, so he came home to me. The two of them took to each other immediately. The little boy is thriving, but his "sister" seems to be very "behind the curve"...
    Her body condition and haircoat is much poorer than his. She is literally half the size of him. She is tiny, and circles left everytime she starts moving around the cage. She had a grand mal seizure on saturday evening that lasted about 10 minutes. Her appetite is good, and she had finally started nibbling on soft foods (apples, watermelon, avocado, and a little bit of her Henry's Healthy blocks), but I dont think she is actually consuming it. I still have her on formula, and each time I feed her she actually starts angrily chewing her own front paws and legs like shes super impatient. She even gets mad when I try to move her paws away from her face and introduce the syringe. It's very odd. She is not phased by sights or sounds, and seems to be quite fearless (I think, unfortunately, it's out of sheer stupidity. Bless her heart...).
    I am a vet tech, but the doctors I work for aren't familiar with squirrels, so they're at a loss. Unfortunately, there aren't any in my area that are.
    Any ideas?

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Thanks for helping these babies.

    Someone should be checking in soon to maybe help you.

    Keep checking back often.

    Do you have any video's or recent pics ?

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Quote Originally Posted by RockyPops View Post
    Thanks for helping these babies.

    Someone should be checking in soon to maybe help you.

    Keep checking back often.

    Do you have any video's or recent pics ?
    I do, but I'm not sure how to post them on here 🤷🏼*♀️

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    For pics, click on "insert image" icon at top of message board. Follow instructions.

    For videos you have to upload your vids to youtube and then post a link here.

    Can't believe no ones responding yet. Don't give up. Keep checking here.

    There is a lot of knowledgeable people on here.

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Wow, 10 minutes on a grand mal seizure is pretty severe. Putting molasses on her gums after a seizure will help bring her blood sugar level back up. Sorry if I say something you already know. It most likely is too late to try prednisone to see if it could reduce possible swelling in the brain. Ask your docs if it would be worth a try.

    The only food other than formula that she should be getting is whatever kind of block she will be on until she is super stellar at eating that block. Nothing else. Nada, no no! Most likely this girl is not going to be releaseable. And you want her to be on a good diet.

    How often are you feeding and how much at each time. I wonder if that frantic biting behavior is hunger?
    redwuff
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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Quote Originally Posted by redwuff View Post
    Wow, 10 minutes on a grand mal seizure is pretty severe. Putting molasses on her gums after a seizure will help bring her blood sugar level back up. Sorry if I say something you already know. It most likely is too late to try prednisone to see if it could reduce possible swelling in the brain. Ask your docs if it would be worth a try.

    The only food other than formula that she should be getting is whatever kind of block she will be on until she is super stellar at eating that block. Nothing else. Nada, no no! Most likely this girl is not going to be releaseable. And you want her to be on a good diet.

    How often are you feeding and how much at each time. I wonder if that frantic biting behavior is hunger?
    Yes, her seizure had me very concerned. Will talk to my docs about prednisone. I can probably even have it compounded if need be.
    I do keep Caro syrup on hand for that reason, but her seizure actually began shortly after eating, so I didnt think it had anything to do with low blood sugar, but it's possible. She is eating 9-12ml of Fox Valley formula about 6 times a day. That's about as frequent and much as she wants. I thought maybe she was chewing her legs out of hunger excitement, but she tends to do it anytime I wake her up or first go to pick her up, even shortly after shes eaten.
    I'm just at such a loss... Last night she seemed to be crashing... Cold, despite snuggling with me, exceptionally lethargic. This morning, she acted like her normal self.

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Is she still on heat? If not, she should be - some of them need it forever. If this one is a "Downs" or dwarf squirrel they often have great difficulty thermoregulating.

    Pics would be great. We have a group of people here with these babies - lots of brains to pick.

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Quote Originally Posted by CritterMom View Post
    Is she still on heat? If not, she should be - some of them need it forever. If this one is a "Downs" or dwarf squirrel they often have great difficulty thermoregulating.

    Pics would be great. We have a group of people here with these babies - lots of brains to pick.
    Yes, and she's able to move away from it if she wants. I'm not seeing the icon to upload an image. I must be technologically challenged 😂
    I'm definitely thinking she is a "downs" baby.... She fits the description perfectly. I just also am thinking she has a TBI or something to act so neurological.
    We've (my boyfriend and I) have come to terms that she won't ever be a candidate for release, unlike her perfectly normal brother. My boyfriend is already quite smitten with her, which is quite adorable to see a 6ft tall, full sleeve tattooed, prior US Marine and body guard loving on and baby talking to a tiny special needs squirrel... Ugh, my heart! 💓😍🐿

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    When you click on (Reply to Thread) and your new page opens,
    there is about 3 rows of icons at top of your new page.

    Hover your mouse over them until you see the one to post image.

    I think you get a dialog box then to allow you to select which photo you want to upload.

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aublovessquirrels View Post
    Yes, her seizure had me very concerned. Will talk to my docs about prednisone. I can probably even have it compounded if need be.
    I do keep Caro syrup on hand for that reason, but her seizure actually began shortly after eating, so I didnt think it had anything to do with low blood sugar, but it's possible. She is eating 9-12ml of Fox Valley formula about 6 times a day. That's about as frequent and much as she wants. I thought maybe she was chewing her legs out of hunger excitement, but she tends to do it anytime I wake her up or first go to pick her up, even shortly after shes eaten.
    I'm just at such a loss... Last night she seemed to be crashing... Cold, despite snuggling with me, exceptionally lethargic. This morning, she acted like her normal self.
    Would love to see a video of your baby doing the frantic biting. Is she harming herself?
    redwuff
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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Hey guys! Sorry I havent been on. Been super busy with work and taking care of everything on the farm...
    I spoke with one of my Doctors about her and she reached out to some of her colleagues and one of her old professors. She showed them the pics and videos of her and they agreed she was most likely a dwarf with a TBI. Her professor thinks she may have degenerative myelopathy. I found a good portion of her tail chewed off today shortly after I got home from work. Were thinking she must have chewed it off, as her "brother" doesnt chew on her. She has a history of chewing her own front legs/feet, so we're assuming it was self mutilation. My heart is breaking for her...
    She had a mini seizure this morning before I left for work. Mild twitching and acting "spaced out". Her right side was the side twitching. She circles left, so I've been told she must have damage to the right side of her brain. My boyfriend was home with her and kept a close eye on her. She ate well today, according to him. She is still on formula, as it's hard for her to grasp the concept of actually eating food. She is still on Fox Valley formula, and is eating about 12-15ml per feeding, and usually eating about 4 times per day. That's as much as she "wants"... She is about 2 months old now.
    Her "brother" (that's about a week older) is thriving. He is eating mostly real foods now (still a little formula). No issues with him whatsoever, and he loves her. He even pulls her close to snuggle her. Glad I have him to help keep her little self warm and loved!!
    Any advice is appreciated, as this is new to me to have such a special needs baby.
    She is going to work with me tomorrow so we can address her tail better than my med stash at home.
    Please keep my little girl, "Lefty Lucy" in your prayers! And me too! She has my nerves tore all to pieces!! I adore her and want to help her anyway I can!

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Thank you for helping and caring for these babies!

    A special prayer for Lefty Lucy and her sweet little brother for loving her.

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    We would love to help you. Can you post a picture of her and we could tell for sure if she is downs/dwarf.

    I have to tell you that we don't have a ton of experience concerning self mutilation. I wonder if homeopathy would help. i have a friend who had a dog that self mutilated and they put him on a very low dose of Prozac. Let me see what I can find.
    redwuff
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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Update on Lefty Lucy! After starting her on Clavamox drops and Gabapentin, she has improved a lot. She still isn't quite "right", but she seems to be more comfortable. Less chewing on her legs and frantic circling left. She had actually been able to move in somewhat straight lines! Woohoo!!
    I've been trying to post pictures, but for some reason they aren't showing up. Trying to post from my phone, so maybe that's the issue. 🤷🏼*♀️
    Attached Images Attached Images  

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    She does not look like a dwarf to me. She may have had some inner ear issues -- infection, parasite -- that caused her circling and the Clavamox would take care of some of that, as well as Gabapentin. As or her not being 'quite right' yet, bear in mind that the Gapabentin can make them a little dopey or lethargic, too. Hoping she continues to improve!!
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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Bless her little heart. Shes adorable!

    Thank you for the picture.

    Hopefully she'll continue to improve and just be Lucy!

    Please keep us posted on her condition.

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Lucy is precious
    Please keep us updated on her prgress

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    Poor girl hasnt been right since I got her. Very seriously behind the curve. Her "brother" is much further along than she is. She is almost 3 months now and still looks like such a tiny baby. She is half the size of him, and cannot jump. Very wobbly. We just started her on the clavamox and gabapentin tuesday, and I have noticed improvement, but the gabapentin does make her more sleepy. I've been trying to post a comparison picture, but it's been refusing to attach... But I'll keep trying! Thank you for all your help and prayers! She still needs them!

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    Default Re: Special needs baby. Possible neurological issues/dwarfism?

    What a precious baby. Does she rub the left side of her face? ( maybe you mentioned it and I skimmed right on by) Her fur looks a little sparce. The extra special ones are blessings and she is yours

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