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Thread: New to board...questions, questions, questions

  1. #1
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    Default New to board...questions, questions, questions

    Hello, These are my babies...Hoss, Finn, Gidget, and Georgia. I have had them since they were, I'm guessing a week or so old. They are now about 6 weeks old. I am SO happy there is this board to read and ask questions. My squirlies are doing great...but, I am now on to new territory with them needing to eat food..potty train, playing. The easy part was the round the clock feeding and taking care of like newborns...now it is teaching/showing them new things. I worry about how aggressive they play together..especially when they want to suckle on each others lil bits (drives me NUTS) I worry because they all eat different amounts of formula but are all pretty much the same size. Worry about them chocking on food...one got a grape stuck in her mouth..I thought her tongue was dried out and another one had bit her bad in the face...until, after prying her mouth open a half of a grape came popping out...no skin on grapes from then on! I live in Orange County, CA and am worried sick about letting them free, but know I should...what about cats, dogs, opossum, raccoon, cars, squirrel hating humans!! I have fallen so madly in love with each one...letting them free is going to make me crazy searching for them, counting heads. Does anyone know of a tagging system for squirrels..at least when I let them go I could keep better track of them if I can see a tag of some form on them. I tried a leg band, but, they slip right out. Any suggestions on all my questions would be much appreciated.

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    A proper healthy diet is essential, what is the formula you have had them on?
    Eyes open they need to be introduced to a good quality rodent block suitable for a squirrel's nutrition.
    This is the first solid food they should be eating and eating well before other solids are introduced.
    I'm going to attach the link to baby squirrel care even though you are past some of the stages and
    also the link to the healthy diet for captive squirrels.

    Baby squirrel care: Go to this link it can be a HUGE help.

    https://www.henryspets.com/1-basic-setup/
    It's 6 pages long with the next button on the top right corner.

    Link to Healthy diet:
    https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/...-Pet-Squirrels
    Step-N-Stone
    State Licensed
    Wildlife Master Rehabilitator


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  5. #3
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    I'm no expert but IMHO, the single best thing you can to for your babies is to pay close attention to their diet. Raise healthy babies and give the best chance for living free.

    As for tagging them, I don't know if there is a way that would not tend to compromise their safety. If you can easily spot them so can a predator. The best way to keep up with them is their continued interaction with you after release. Which could be a lot or none at all.

    And with four, you need a pretty large cage as they need room to run and jump and play. They will play with each other and learn survival skills. Keep reading others posts on this board for insight on raising them.

    Your babies are just beautiful!

    Thank you for caring for them!

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  7. #4
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    Welcome to TheSquirrelBoard

    Your babies are precious. Can I ask which formula you are using?
    There have been serious issues with Esbilac puppy formula this year so I wanted to make sure you arenít using it.

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  9. #5
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    I had them on Fox Valley Day One 32/40 formula for squirrels for the first few weeks and then changed them to Fox Valley One 20/50. They are very healthy..Thank God...my heart would break if I lost one due to anything I was doing wrong.
    It is amazing how each one has it's own distinct personality. Ginger is a gentle and sweet baby...loves to cuddle. Georgia and Hoss are gentle but have a lot of energy, and my Finn is a pistol...he keeps me on my feet. He has just started jumping and has caught me in the face a few times with his claws...he also had the audacity to run up a tree the other day (I got him right away) ...you would think he was a squirrel or something!

    I am still hoping I can come up with a way to tag them when I release them...I want to take them around to show them to my neighbors in the hope they will watch out for them and not harm them or freak out if they come close to them. Anyone have any suggestions on potty training?

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  11. #6
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    Default Re HELP!! ADVICE!!

    I just got home from work and my poor Finn has been accosted by his sister....his bits look like they have been either sucked so hard or bitten...he looks like he's been circumcised. I would post a picture but it might be offensive to some. WHAT DO I DO to help him other than move him out of the same area as his siblings? Is there medication I can put on or???

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  13. #7
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    You're welcome to post a photo. It will help determine what topical, if any, would be best. In the past, with other species that this has happened to, I found a bit of vaseline useful to keep the opening from scabbing over.

    He should be moved to a different enclosure for two reasons. One, so that you can be sure the swelling isn't keeping him from passing urine. You should be watching closely that he can eliminate. Secondly, so that he can heal without further injury.

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  15. #8
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    Quote Originally Posted by cava View Post
    You're welcome to post a photo. It will help determine what topical, if any, would be best. In the past, with other species that this has happened to, I found a bit of vaseline useful to keep the opening from scabbing over.

    He should be moved to a different enclosure for two reasons. One, so that you can be sure the swelling isn't keeping him from passing urine. You should be watching closely that he can eliminate. Secondly, so that he can heal without further injury.
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    It looks so very painful...what would you suggest...and THANK YOU!

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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    First, you must separate them. Second, how much and how often are you feeding them? And what formula are you feeding them?

    Sometimes the suckling can be due to hunger....however 2 of the last 4 babies I raised were sucklers. It didnít matter that they had full tummies or not. Two of them just liked to suckle. I removed the two sucklers and put them in separate bins but would allow them to be all together right after I fed them and while I was sitting with them and watching. I didnít want to keep them apart indefinitely because I didnít want to break the sibling bond.

    For Finn, make sure a scab doesnít form on the tip of his penis. If it does itís imperative that you use a warm cotton ball to soften it and remove it. Watch how he urinates and make sure he can. Apply a little desitin to the penis and rub it in several times a day.

    It took a fairly long time for my guys to stop the suckling. I think they eventually stopped when there was other food offered that they could chew on to satisfy their oral fixation.

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  19. #10
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Mel1959 View Post
    First, you must separate them. Second, how much and how often are you feeding them? And what formula are you feeding them?

    Sometimes the suckling can be due to hunger....however 2 of the last 4 babies I raised were sucklers. It didnít matter that they had full tummies or not. Two of them just liked to suckle. I removed the two sucklers and put them in separate bins but would allow them to be all together right after I fed them and while I was sitting with them and watching. I didnít want to keep them apart indefinitely because I didnít want to break the sibling bond.

    For Finn, make sure a scab doesnít form on the tip of his penis. If it does itís imperative that you use a warm cotton ball to soften it and remove it. Watch how he urinates and make sure he can. Apply a little desitin to the penis and rub it in several times a day.

    It took a fairly long time for my guys to stop the suckling. I think they eventually stopped when there was other food offered that they could chew on to satisfy their oral fixation.
    Thank You so much!!! I'm feeding them Fox Valley Day One 20/50...Its strange because the three that are drinking the most formula...about 15ml a feeding are not doing the sucking...Gidget is the culprit and she drinks the least of everyone about 12 ml. They are each in their own beds but Finn likes to get in bed with Gidget and then she suckles. They are being pretty stubborn about eating foods yet...they nibble at walnuts, grapes, apple, broccoli and rodent blocks but are not really eating anything substantial. I split them up...Finn is now in a different area...going to go buy some desitin as you suggested now. Any ideas on potty training?? I have a tri level cage and have beds on top, food/water in middle and potty on bottom. I put cat litter at first...they didn't like it at all...I am not trying dirt from where I had them going potty outside after feeding them with some small rocks on top...but, they don't seem to be going in it either?? Thank You so much for the advice!!!

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  21. #11
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    WOW!!! You are so lucky to have been chosen to be there new Mom. They are absolutely beautiful !!!!!!

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  23. #12
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    They are adorable! . As I said it didnít seem to matter whether my guys had full bellies or not. It could just be an oral thing. I think if you donít separate Gidget from the others, she will just suckle someone else if Finns not there. Separate her from them. Are they in a bin or a cage?

    Since they havenít weaned yet (we donít advise weaning them, let them wean themselves) the first, and only, food item they should have is a rodent block. What rodent block are you feeding? Donít offer any other foods, especially nuts, until you see they are eating the rodent block....and eating it well. Giving them nuts is like giving a toddler ice cream and then expecting him to eat spinach! Squirrels will choose nuts over any other food 99.9% of the time!

    Do they eat till they donít want anymore or do you stop them? Our recommendation of feeding 5-7% of their weight at each feeding is only a guideline. Some little guys will work up to eating 10% or more of their weight. It has to be a gradual increase. Loose stools is a sign that theyíre eating too much.

    As for litter box training. Some squirrels will go in one particular place and others wonít. We recommend carefresh bedding placed in a pan with a hardware cloth grate over top. You can bend the hardware cloth so it sits inside the shallow pan and then put screws into the pan and through the hardware cloth to hold it in place. Iíve attached some pictures for you to see.
    Attached Images Attached Images   

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  25. #13
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    Default Re: New to board...questions, questions, questions

    [QUOTE=Mel1959;1304308]They are adorable! . As I said it didnít seem to matter whether my guys had full bellies or not. It could just be an oral thing. I think if you donít separate Gidget from the others, she will just suckle someone else if Finns not there. Separate her from them. Are they in a bin or a cage?

    Since they havenít weaned yet (we donít advise weaning them, let them wean themselves) the first, and only, food item they should have is a rodent block. What rodent block are you feeding? Donít offer any other foods, especially nuts, until you see they are eating the rodent block....and eating it well. Giving them nuts is like giving a toddler ice cream and then expecting him to eat spinach! Squirrels will choose nuts over any other food 99.9% of the time!


    Great posting!!! Just want to reiterate that the only food that should be given is rodent block besides regular formula feeding. Mel said it great.
    redwuff
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