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Thread: possible spinal injury

  1. #1
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    Default possible spinal injury

    Huckleberry arrived yesterday evening, brought by some tree trimmers. He is 6-7 weeks old and has limited movement in his right front limb and left rear limb. He is happy to curl up and rest. If uncovered, he will move into cover, but without using the front right limb and (probably) not the left rear limb either.

    My best guess is he fell and injured his spine. I know from post I have read here at TSB that if this is swelling around the spinal cord that it needs to be addressed quickly, But I do not remember what med, let alone dosage, etc.

    So, any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Prednisone is an anti-inflammatory and relieves any swelling on the spinal cord.
    Someone else will have to give you dosing instructions.

    My Charley Chuckles came to me with spinal injury, he lived a happy 8.5 years with me🥰

    Prayers to this baby 🙏
    Charley Chuckles gone from my arms FOREVER in my heart 8/14/04-3/7/13
    Simon, our time was too short together, but you gave us so much love, be with CC now 3/7/14


    The "CHARLEY CHUCKLES MEMORIAL RAIL TOUR" leaves the station choo chooo
    *Deland,FL. *Washington DC *Boston (Back Bay) *Boston (North Station) *Wells,Maine *Albany,NY *New York (Penn Station) *Back to Deland FL. "July 1- July 22" 2013

    http://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/s...RIAL-RAIL-TOUR Check it out here
    http://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/s...OW-A-NEW-MOMMY!!!!!
    http://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/s...RAINBOW-BRIDGE
    http://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/s...e-called-Simon
    charleychuckles1@gmail.com

    I'm not poof reading any of this

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Quote Originally Posted by Charley Chuckles View Post
    Prednisone is an anti-inflammatory and relieves any swelling on the spinal cord.
    Someone else will have to give you dosing instructions.

    My Charley Chuckles came to me with spinal injury, he lived a happy 8.5 years with me��

    Prayers to this baby ��
    Did he recover fully? Or was he an NR?

    I had Ziggy for 2.5 years, also with a spinal injury. I got him just prior to discovering TSB and did not know of the option of prednison. I have always wondered if it might have made a difference. Ziggy was happy and had a nice life, but still,...

    When I first got Ziggy, I called a rehabber for help. I was basically told that if I brought him in, they would most likely euthanize him. And if I brought him in but then refused to turn him over if euthanasia was their verdict, they would report me. Neither seemed like a good option, so I did my best for Ziggy. (To be fair to the rehabber, I live in a state with really strict laws about caring for squirrels, which they were following to the letter.)

  5. #4
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Quote Originally Posted by olorin19 View Post
    Did he recover fully? Or was he an NR?

    I had Ziggy for 2.5 years, also with a spinal injury. I got him just prior to discovering TSB and did not know of the option of prednison. I have always wondered if it might have made a difference. Ziggy was happy and had a nice life, but still,...

    When I first got Ziggy, I called a rehabber for help. I was basically told that if I brought him in, they would most likely euthanize him. And if I brought him in but then refused to turn him over if euthanasia was their verdict, they would report me. Neither seemed like a good option, so I did my best for Ziggy. (To be fair to the rehabber, I live in a state with really strict laws about caring for squirrels, which they were following to the letter.)
    Same situation here, Charley fell when tree limb broke in my yard 2004 during hurricane Charley. We found him the next morning.
    I didn't even own a computer back then in fact we had no power for a few weeks.
    He was a NR he never recovered completely but I did massage his back legs and did push resistance which I continued his whole life, it was his back legs. He could do everything except hang like a bat upside-down 😁 he never knew he was 'special ' I made him ropes and he could climb with his arms like no ones business 👍
    I never thought of him as handicapped in anyway 🥰
    Charley Chuckles gone from my arms FOREVER in my heart 8/14/04-3/7/13
    Simon, our time was too short together, but you gave us so much love, be with CC now 3/7/14


    The "CHARLEY CHUCKLES MEMORIAL RAIL TOUR" leaves the station choo chooo
    *Deland,FL. *Washington DC *Boston (Back Bay) *Boston (North Station) *Wells,Maine *Albany,NY *New York (Penn Station) *Back to Deland FL. "July 1- July 22" 2013

    http://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/s...RIAL-RAIL-TOUR Check it out here
    http://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/s...OW-A-NEW-MOMMY!!!!!
    http://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/s...RAINBOW-BRIDGE
    http://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/s...e-called-Simon
    charleychuckles1@gmail.com

    I'm not poof reading any of this

  6. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to Charley Chuckles:

    Chirps (10-05-2021), olorin19 (09-18-2021), redwuff (09-18-2021)

  7. #5
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Quote Originally Posted by Charley Chuckles View Post
    Same situation here, Charley fell when tree limb broke in my yard 2004 during hurricane Charley. We found him the next morning.
    I didn't even own a computer back then in fact we had no power for a few weeks.
    He was a NR he never recovered completely but I did massage his back legs and did push resistance which I continued his whole life, it was his back legs. He could do everything except hang like a bat upside-down 😁 he never knew he was 'special ' I made him ropes and he could climb with his arms like no ones business 👍
    I never thought of him as handicapped in anyway 🥰
    I had a hurricane squirrel also - Irene in 2011, whose entire nest was blown out of a tree by Hurricane Irene in 2011, landing at least 25' below on a driveway. Irene was apparently uninjured, despite the fall.

    With Ziggy, all four limbs were impacted as well as his core muscles. He was never able to sit without leaning or walk. He got around by a combination of belly crawling and slide slithering. Ziggy spent much of his time inside my sweatshirt. I would tuck the bottom into my sweatpants so he did not fall out, and he would move around in there - into my sleeves, onto my shoulder, etc.

    I never figured out a way for him to drink on his own, as he lacked the coordination and strength to get in position for a dish or bottle. So I gave him FV 20/50 and water his whole life with a dropper. Ziggy could pee and poop on his own, but would not do so in his cage. He was pretty adamant about only going outside on grass. I tried growing grass in flats so he did not have to go outside in the winter, but he resisted this and we rarely succeeded. So, outside we went.

    Ziggy never managed to crack a whole nut open on his own, but if I cracked a hazel or pecan for him, then he was able to eat it on his own.

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  9. #6
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Just got off the phone with the vet and will have liquid prednisone in the next few hours. l will post details when I get it, and hopefully someone willbe able to advise on dosage.

  10. #7
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Let us know his arrival and strength of med
    redwuff
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  12. #8
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Quote Originally Posted by redwuff View Post
    Let us know his arrival and strength of med
    Just got back from the vet with liquid prednisone with this on bottle:

    "15mg/15mL per mL"

    Dosage per vet is 0.1 mL every 12 hours

    Huckleberry is 6+ weeks (eyes open and tail starting to fluff) and weighs 154 g.

    I
    Thanks!

  13. #9
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Follow the vet dosage. How long did he recommend giving it? Does your baby have any pain response to a pinch test on the effected limbs?
    redwuff
    State Licensed
    Master Wildlife Rehabilitator

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  15. #10
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Quote Originally Posted by redwuff View Post
    Follow the vet dosage. How long did he recommend giving it? Does your baby have any pain response to a pinch test on the effected limbs?
    Thanks redwuff

    Just gave first dose

    Judging by response, I am guessing this does not have a horrible taste, as he did not fight swallowing it.

    Not 100% sure on pain response, but Huck is moving his right front limb better than he was. Left rear limb seems about the same where it is hard to tell if he is able to move it. If I extend the leg, it will eventually flex back into a bend, but maybe that is jsut a reflex.

    The dosage provided by the vet just says every 12 hours but not for how long.

    I have worked with this vet for over 5 years, and she is willing to defer to the experts at TSB like yourself, as she knows you all know more about squirrels than she does. She is willing to provide me with whatever meds you guys recommend, which is great..

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  17. #11
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Does liquid prednisone require refrigeration?

    It does not say on the bottle, vet is closed until Monday, and I neglected to ask when I picked it up.

    The little I have found online suggests some versions do while others do not.

    Hmmmm....

  18. #12
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    I have never refrigerated it.

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  20. #13
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Quote Originally Posted by Mel1959 View Post
    I have never refrigerated it.
    Thanks Mel

    Bottle has expiration of Oct 2022. Does it actually keep after opening? While I hope not to need it, an emergency supply is good just in case.

  21. #14
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Yes, it will keep. Many meds are good long after their expiration date. The exception is the antibiotic Doxycycline. It should be disposed of once it has expired as the composition changes and it can be quite harmful.

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  23. #15
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Quote Originally Posted by Mel1959 View Post
    Yes, it will keep. Many meds are good long after their expiration date. The exception is the antibiotic Doxycycline. It should be disposed of once it has expired as the composition changes and it can be quite harmful.
    Thanks, Mel, good to know

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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Update -

    Huckleberry continues to improve. Today is Day 4 of prednisone.

    The left back leg showed earlier signs of improvement than the right front leg. Huck would climb up my shirt, and even though the right back leg was doing most of the work, the left back leg was involved.

    When I first placed him in a large dish with mulch in the bottom to pee and poop (yes, squirrels quickly adapt to this), he was only using the other two limbs. So, the left rear leg was just dragging on the ground while the right front leg was held up against his side. He started using the left rear leg to support himself in there a day or two before he also started putting any weight on the right front leg.

    Since I am working from home, I have him either in a pouch on my lap. Huck likes to play with my hand and fingers. Yesterday, he was batting at my fingers playfully but it seemed like this was mostly with the left front paw.

    Anyways, just a few minutes ago Huck absolutely batted at my fingers with his right front paw!

    So while he still favors the left back and right front, Huck is doing well and continues to improve.

  26. #17
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Huckleberry just grabbed the dropper with both front paws!

  27. #18
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    How exciting! Way to go squirrel momma! It always helps to hear good news…
    redwuff
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  29. #19
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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Quote Originally Posted by redwuff View Post
    How exciting! Way to go squirrel momma! It always helps to hear good news…
    Technically, Squirrel Dad, but close enough!

    How long should I continue prednisone? Happy to go as long as needed.

    I've been watching the right front paw closely, as I have a hard time imagining Huck being released without full use of both front paws, as I am not sure how he would eat, etc.

    He will be with me until spring either way, but hoping being a free squirrel is in Huck's future.

    Thanks redwuff

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    Default Re: possible spinal injury

    Continue the pred as long as you’re seeing improvement. Only then will you begin the taper off process.

    I had a released girl that injured herself in a fall and developed a head tilt. I had her on prednisolone for many weeks while she continued to improve before tapering off. It worked like a champ.

    Glad to hear little Huck is improving.

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