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Thread: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

  1. #1
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    Default Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    I am new to this forum. I had a juvenile female squirrel come to me about 3-4 weeks ago. She has been doing fantastic until the last few days. About two days ago I notice she had blood in her urine. I also thought it seemed as through her body temperature was higher than normal. She has been eating, drinking, and acting normal...until tonight. Right now she is shaking uncontrollably. Her heart is beating so fast....so much faster than normal. She cannot hold her little feet still. What is wrong with her, what should I do?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    Keep her calm. Blood in the urine may be a urinary tract infection. Call around to family and friends to see if you can locate any antibiotics in case needed. Let us know what you find.

    Does the shaking seem like a seizure? Apply a little corn syrup, maple syrup or honey to her gums/mouth. Sometimes seizures can be the result of low blood sugar. If this is not the case the syrup wonít hurt her.

    Aside from these things Iím not sure what may be going on with her. Check back here often to see if others have any insight.

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    Thank you for taking care of this sweetheart.

    Could you provide us with more info about her, to help us try to figure out what the root of this may be.

    Under what circumstances did she come to you? Someone brought her? Hit by a car? Wandering around the yard or woods, lost? Fell from a tree?

    How old is she - juvenile but more precisely? If you cold provide us with a photo that could help us evaluate her age.

    What has she been eating? What do you feed her? How often? Any other squirrels around inside your house?
    Cats, dogs?

    As mel said, do try the syrup on the gums, can't hurt.

    Any info you can give us could help.

    And do make sure she has plenty of water to drink.
    "In the midst of our lives we must find the magic that makes our souls soar."
    My darling Scooter, beloved Hami, sweet gentle Simon... YOU are the ones who brought that magic in my life. You've changed the way I see all things around me now and, because of you, I want to be a better person. This is not goodbye, my sweethearts. You be at peace, your work here on earth is done... now you are finally, truly free. Until we meet at the Bridge again, please remember that I will always love you.
    The greatness of a nation can be measured by the way it treats its animals.
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  6. #4
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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    Regarding her age, I'm not completely sure. We found her about 3-4 weeks ago when she was making a high pitched scream. She came to us and we have had her since.

    Regarding her food, she eats cucumbers, various nuts, blue berries (on occasion, not really her favorite), carrots, fresh corn on the cob, and bananas. We have tried lots of recommended veggies but these are the ones she primarily eats. She has food available at all times and eats whenever she wants. She also has water available to her at all times. She is the only squirrel in our home. We also have two cats that don't pay a lot of attention to her. She is supervised 100% of the time, specifically because of the cats. She hangs out with me most of the time.

    I have been trying to take her outside each day so she can re-acclimate to the "wild". In the picture I added, she is standing by a dried corn stalk; however, she does not like to eat dried corn. I would love any thoughts about her current age.


    She has stopped shaking today, but I am concerned about what caused that.

    It was mentioned that I may need to give her an antibiotic for a possible urinary track infection. What kind of antibiotic are we talking about. I do have penicillin that I can give via IV syringe. Name:  Ferris.jpg
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  8. #5
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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    Does she eat any type of rodent block? Did you ever feed her formula? Her diet doesnít look great and Iím concerned the shaking could be a result. Squirrels require a proper calcium to phosphorous ratio in their diet. If they are given too many foods high in phosphorous (nuts, corn on the cob) and not enough foods high in calcium (kale, rodent blocks) the body wants to maintain the needed calcium to phosphorous ratio and will pull the calcium from the bones. The bones become brittle as a result. The accompanying illness is called Metabolic Bone Disease. The effects of MBD are rear end paralysis, seizures and death if itís not treated.

    Have you noticed any hind end issues with regard to movement? Was the shaking enough that it could have been a seizure?

    MBD is treated by regularly dosing calcium via syringe. If it is MBD it will take awhile for her bones to recover so she couldnít be released for some time.

    I hope others will voice their opinions about your girl.

    As for her age, Iím not good at that, especially with Fox squirrels as we donít have them in Florida.

    Taking her outside without a cage is risky. She could go up a tree and not come back down. You should prepare her for a life in the trees by doing a proper soft release.

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  10. #6
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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    I came here to say the same thing. If the diet you described is pretty much the entire diet, it is almost certain this baby has MBD. The diet is far too high in phosphorus and far too low in calcium. To be healthy they need to maintain a 2 to 1 ratio of calcium to phosphorus. This diet is "upside down " in the least. It is very common - unfortunately the foods that everyone associates with squirrels - nuts, corn and seeds - are three of the unhealthiest things you can feed them. They love them but they are not good for them.

    This baby needs to be treated for MBD. The easiest, fastest way to initially start getting the proper calcium into your squirrel is with Tums (or similar store brand). If you read the label, the active ingredient is calcium!

    I am linking to our MBD protocol: https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/...dated-3-31-09)

    Do read it.

    The bestsquirrel block to give this baby is what most of us feed: https://www.henryspets.com/diets/ The first three items are just great - most of them love the hazelnut blocks. Feeding 2-3 of these per day with a new diet of healthy veggies and limited fruit along with the MBD additional calcium protocol is your best bet right now. As your squirrel gets better the additional calcium can be slowly reduced until you are not giving any extra at all. The blocks have the proper amount of all vitamins and minerals for a healthy squirrel in them already.

    While at the Henry's site, pick up a packet of calcium powder: https://www.henryspets.com/calcium-c...eficiency-mbd/ You can use that in place of the Tums once you get it. It has the benefit of having very little flavor so you can hide it in other foods more easily.

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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    Wow. Thanks everyone for the information. I will get right on this issue. I don't want her to die or have any issues. I will change her diet and get some of the recommended things. The link for the nutrition did not work. I got the food information regarding the food from various sites on the internet. What should I be feeding her instead. I will get the Henry's blocks, but is there other things I need to feed her?

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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat


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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    Thanks everyone for all the great advice and resources. I got the new link for Nutrition to work and I printed it to make sure I can review it often. I will not be taking her outside anymore without attempting to do a soft release. I learned more about this. It seems possible her shaking was due to anxiety due to taking her outside. She is not shaking today and has been acting perfectly normal. I already ordered blocks and calcium from Henry's. I gave her tums in the mean time to prevent MBD. I'm glad to know about this concern as I don't want anything to cause her to be unwell.

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  18. #10
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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    Follow the MDB protocol. It wonít hurt her to have the additional calcium.

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  20. #11
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    Default Re: Shaking squirrel with faster than normal heart beat

    When you have a chance for another pic - one whwere we can see her tail and maybe something nearby to judge her six - for us to get maybe a better idea of her age.
    "In the midst of our lives we must find the magic that makes our souls soar."
    My darling Scooter, beloved Hami, sweet gentle Simon... YOU are the ones who brought that magic in my life. You've changed the way I see all things around me now and, because of you, I want to be a better person. This is not goodbye, my sweethearts. You be at peace, your work here on earth is done... now you are finally, truly free. Until we meet at the Bridge again, please remember that I will always love you.
    The greatness of a nation can be measured by the way it treats its animals.
    - Gandhi -

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