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Thread: Nervous Mom

  1. #1
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    Default Nervous Mom

    Hey y'all! My name is Brandi. I'm technically not new to the Squirrel Board. I don't post much but have been squirrel stalking since 2017 when we found our little Jax. The wildlife rescue where we live was closed due to flooding and I had to find out what to feed this little fuzz ball. Thankfully I came across this board! It has been a HUGE help! I have learned so much just reading other members posts and everyone is always so nice and ready to help. You guys truly are amazing! He is now a smart, spunky, and loving 3 year old that owns us. I noticed a few weeks ago that he was hiding a little more of his food than he usually would, but didn't think much of it. I decided to check his teeth and realized that his bottoms have become so long that his top teeth are barely there. He has an appointment with the vet tomorrow for a teeth trim and I am a nervous wreck. He has only had to see the vet once before and there was no sedation. This is his first time being put under anesthesia and I am freaking out! Sorry for rambling on LOL I don't really have any questions just thought it would help my nerves to vent Name:  IMG_20200321_221610469_1584898785576.jpg
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    We had a guinea pig that had to have anesthesia numerus times. His molars would over grow and if left unchecked would trap his tongue. He did just fine.

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    How much confidence do you have in your vet? We have a few pretty amazing vets in Florida that see squirrels, which is why I ask. Anesthesia for small rodents is always a concern. If you need to know of other squirrel vets in Florida that have lots of experience, just ask.

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  6. #4
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    I am taking him to Dr. Emerson at Ravenwood. I try to read all the posts I can and everyone says she is the best. It's only about an hour and a half drive from where I live. So that makes it a little better. I know he will be fine but I might not be

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  8. #5
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    He couldn't be in better hands with Dr Emerson!!!

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  10. #6
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    I was hoping you were going to say you were going to Dr. Emerson. She is the best and well worth the drive.

    Iíll be thinking about you and let us know how it goes.

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  12. #7
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Thank you so much! I will update as soon as we get home. It really makes me feel better that she comes so highly recommended.

  13. #8
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    I meant to update this when we came home yesterday, but I was so sleepy.
    They were so nice and it was pretty quick. I didn't get to go in with him and talk with Dr.Emerson, but she trimmed his lower incisors and said that they were impairing the top incisors from growing. We go back in 3 weeks for another trim. He handled the anesthesia like a champ. A little groggy at first but bounced right back to his spunky self before we even made it home.
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  15. #9
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Iím so glad to hear this. Hopefully Dr. E can get his teeth back on track.

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  17. #10
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Awww, sleepy fluffer! Glad it went well and that you have a great Vet to go to!

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  19. #11
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    I need help. My Jax went back to Dr. Emerson yesterday for what was supposed to be just a teeth trim but they are now saying he has odontoma and needs surgery. I have no idea what to do. I have not even been able to speak to her at all due to the Covid precautions in place. I am once again a nervous wreck and have no idea what to expect.

  20. #12
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    You couldnít be in better hands. Dr Emerson doesnít recommend odontoma surgery unless it absolutely necessary. She tends to want to wait if at all possible. If odontoma are removed too early, they can grow back. Her favorite saying is, ďI donít treat X-Rays... I treat the patient.Ē What this means is just because an odontoma is seen on X-ray, it doesnít necessarily mean it needs removing, especially if it isnít causing symptoms. When symptoms, like respiratory issues, reduced eating due to pain or white tears indicating pain are present, surgery is indicated. Keep in mind the proximity of the odontoma to the brain. Itís not a good place for inflammation or infection which are usually associated with odontoma.

    Jax is young so that is good. I never want to downplay the significance of odontoma surgery. It is an extremely traumatic, invasive surgery. Even in the best hands it is risky. Dr Emerson IS the best and you are lucky to live near her practice. Some donít do well. Some donít survive. Many do extreme well and it is a life saving surgery. When odontoma have reached the point of causing serious symptoms, surgery is the only curative treatment. Anything else, like anti inflammatory meds, antibiotics and pain meds just buy time and prolong life or even suffering.

    I have noted that bad outcomes are in older squirrels AND those that have multiple odontoma removed in a short period of time. Some travel great distances and will have more than one surgery in a few days. In my mind, it multiplies the complications of an already traumatic surgery. Because you are local, that wonít be an issue. If there is more than one, you could space it out.

    You might not be able to speak with her in person but you will be able to speak to her by phone. This is a big decision so speaking directly with her is important.

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  22. #13
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    The thought of this surgery terrifies me for my little Jax. We scheduled the appointment for the 13th of November, but I am definitely not sure about it at all.

  23. #14
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Dr. E is the best at this surgery. Iíve only ever supported other members whose squirrels have gone through the surgery, but I know as odontomas grow they are excruciatingly painful. I personally think that removing them before they get too big and invasive is much better than waiting. Rest assured, Dr. E wouldnít recommend this surgery if she didnít feel it was necessary.

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  25. #15
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Quote Originally Posted by ByrdMan33 View Post
    The thought of this surgery terrifies me for my little Jax.
    We scheduled the appointment for the 13th of November,
    but I am definitely not sure about it at all.
    If the surgery is called for there is no choice, it is life threatening.
    Step-N-Stone
    State Licensed
    Wildlife Master Rehabilitator


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  27. #16
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Here is a few tips that I found helped with our squirrels prior to procedures. Having cared for three squirrels with a total of 4 procedures, our former exotic vet said to feed a normal meal prior to any procedure, but especially when a squirrel is put under. Unlike humans, as rodetns can't vomit, the concern becomes the effect of stress on these wild species; in part because of their high metabolic rate, as they burn up energy very fast when stressed. Dark Molasses (not blackstrap that is too high in iron) works well for this purpose to give with the meal or if you like after it, as it supplies magnesium that lends support to the heart and calming the squirrel and a ready source of energy from the sugar content. Normally sweet sources are not advisable to include in the diet, but in this case it is as they say, the exception to the rule. A drop can really make a difference, and taking a small amount with you should you need to a drop prior to surgery is also advisable. Both our vet and one that was a member of the board said the same thing about supporting blood sugar levels, and magnesium also that is the calming mineral that support the heart under times of stress.

    Bring a cover for the carry cage, keeping light and sound low is supportive of lowering stress. If they anesthetize in a clear box, or if you aren't sure, let them know to cover the box, for our squirrels ran into the sides with their noses thinking they could escape because they could see through it.

    Keep your voice soft slower tone, not excited high fast and/or squeaky)' let the assistants know to do the same soft voice prior to anesthesia. Do not bring your squirrel into the office till there is a room ready so you won't be sitting inside with other pets sniffing the carry cage.. Most offices aren't allowing anyone in with Covid, yet they do this is needful as you don't want the stress of other pest sniffing around the carry cage.
    Keeping the head covered even when you take her out of the cage is advisable, the less they see the better.

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  29. #17
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    I know that this is the only option. It just really stinks. He is the most loving little boy and I don't want him to suffer. He is already having a hard time eating all the things he loves and it breaks my heart. I am very worried about the after care. It just looks so traumatic and scary. We have an appointment set for the 13th and I am hoping to get a call this week so maybe they can explain more to me about how many teeth need to be removed and what his x-rays looked like. Thank you all so much for all the advice and concern for my little Jax.

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  31. #18
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Hi! I don't know if you've already read any of the other stories here of squirrels who had this surgery, but it might ease your mind some to see how others weathered this particular storm, and give you an idea of what to expect, including the funky haircut, which I imagine is disturbing in its own right.
    "I hope everyone got or gets their Baby Love today"~Shewhosweptforest

    https://www.henryspets.com/1-baby-squirrel-care-guide/

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  33. #19
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Byrdman, odontoma affect the incisors which are large front teeth (4) that you can see. The small teeth in the back are the molars. There can be anywhere from 1 to 4 odontoma. It is usually odontoma on the top incisors that cause the most problems because the bony growth extends into the sinus cavity. Thatís when you begin to see respiratory symptoms. It would be rare for 4 odontoma to need to be removed at the same time. Usually the most advanced odontoma is removed first. There might be a long period of time (if ever) before the next one would need removing assuming there is more than one. Personally I would want to wait a period of time before doing a second surgery but of course I would defer to Dr Emersonís expert opinion.

    She makes an incision on the top of the face (nose) directly over the odontoma. She usually has to cut the tooth with odontoma into two pieces because the odontoma can be large. The tooth is removed. A metal stint (port) is placed in the opening and the incision is closed. The port allows the squirrel to breath through this opening because inflammation might make breathing difficult. It also allows for medications to be placed directly into the traumatized area. Several days later the port is removed and the incision heals.

    I never want to underestimate the impact of this surgery. It is a traumatic surgery. Some do very well. Others donít do well at all. The problem is that you really donít have a lot of choices. Odontoma are painful and you will see a steady decline as the inflammation, pain and infection progress.

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  35. #20
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    Default Re: Nervous Mom

    Hi Brydaman,
    I know firsthand how truly terrifying this sx is. Went through it twice, 2 months apart, for upper incisors. I would have to look but I think they were Nov 2015 and Jan 2016.
    Dr E was the vet who did the surgeries, in fact I drove almost 19 hrs to her.
    My girl Resilie was 3-4 at the time and extremely sick. I credit Dr E with giving us more years together. There is little doubt in my mind that without the sx Resilie might not have made it through another couple of months. I'm very thankful that she did really well with healing after the surgeries.
    I will be praying and sending good thoughts for you and Jax.

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