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Thread: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Hello,

    Not sure whether this is life-threatening or not.My girlfriend and I have an Eastern Grey, 6 years old, who she has raised successfully since its birth. Until two weeks ago, he's never had any health or behavioral issues. Last week he was squeaking a lot and not eating or drinking, and being extremely lethargic and putting his little head down, do we took him to the vet. They did x-rays and did not see anything to write home about -- no injuries, no trouble spots. They believed it to be respiratory issue and gave us antibiotics to give him. We had to deliver these by force, through a syringe, for the first three nights. After that he rested a lot but seemed to be getting better and better. About 3 days in, he was acting mostly normal again, and eating almost as much as always before. So she started syringing the medicine into a grape which he has been eating every morning and night since. He started eating his daily Henry's blocks and regular nutritious food (daily lettuce, carrots, mushroom). Occasionally we gave him a little slice of (cleaned) apple or a few grains of oatmeal, but nothing junky or bad for him. Yesterday he was making growling noises at us and anyone who would listen but he was still eating. This morning, he refused to eat the grape, he refused to eat the block, and when I tried to feed him a little banana, he squeaked as if in pain while he was nibbling at it, before seeming to just give up. He ran back into his nest and I let him rest. A few hours later, I tried to give him a walnut, and he accepted it, jumped up on his perch where he usually eats, and nibbled at it, squeaking the whole time as if in pain. Eventually, he gave up on that, too and dropped it and went back into his nest. We're going to try to force feed him with the syringe again tonight to make sure he is getting the antibiotics, and probably go to the vet again.

    There is no MBD because he's been eating Henry's blocks daily for his entire life. Is it possible he's just super reactive to apples, which he doesn't eat as often? Is he constipated or experiencing digestion distress? Is it that the grape, even when infused with antibiotics (which he has always eaten completely) isn't being as effective and he's relapsed back to whatever respiratory issues he's having?

    I've looked everywhere online, even on this very amazing and helpful site, and I don't see anything about a squirrel making those squeals while accepting or trying to eat food. It's truly awful seeing him suffer and not knowing how to help him or what even is wrong. He's always been the friendliest, sweetest natured little guy. I don't know why he seems to be in so much pain.

    Please, if anyone has seen this kind of behavior, let me know your experience. We are just completely lost and anything you could share would give us hope, comfort, or the ability to brace ourselves -- all of the above.

    Thank you all in advance for your kindness.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Is he overgrooming or clawing around his groin area?

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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Quote Originally Posted by Diggie's Friend View Post
    Is he overgrooming or clawing around his groin area?
    Thank you for responding! No, he's not overgrooming or clawing anywhere near his groin -- or anywhere else.

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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Those squeals could be pneumonia. Can you take a video and upload it to YouTube? I recall that certain antibiotics lose their potency when they get hit with the acid in a (human) stomach. That's why some of them come in acid resistant capsules, which resolve only once they leave the stomach. Grapes sit at pH 2.90–3.82, so they are pretty acidic.

    I'd go back to force feeding the antibiotics with a syringe, and you have to start over with the full treatment duration if the pneumonia indeed came back, or you will risk developing resistant bacteria. Be very religiously with the schedule for medication. Just missing a couple times can cause the bacteria to take over again.

    Antibiotics are hard on the digestive tract. I'm sure others will soon suggest some probiotics to help with that issue.

    Please also call the vet and explain what is going on.

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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Quote Originally Posted by McCarthy View Post
    Those squeals could be pneumonia. Can you take a video and upload it to YouTube? I recall that certain antibiotics lose their potency when they get hit with the acid in a (human) stomach. That's why some of them come in acid resistant capsules, which resolve only once they leave the stomach. Grapes sit at pH 2.90Ė3.82, so they are pretty acidic.

    I'd go back to force feeding the antibiotics with a syringe, and you have to start over with the full treatment duration if the pneumonia indeed came back, or you will risk developing resistant bacteria. Be very religiously with the schedule for medication. Just missing a couple times can cause the bacteria to take over again.

    Antibiotics are hard on the digestive tract. I'm sure others will soon suggest some probiotics to help with that issue.

    Please also call the vet and explain what is going on.
    Thank you for responding! This is very useful information to know. I'll see what I can do with YouTube, but I bet the grapes aren't a good vessel for the medicine. I hope that's what's going on, because he seemed to be completely fine after a few days of (force-fed) antibiotics. We'll definitely call the vet, of course. I'll follow up of course, too. Thank you again for this, truly.

  8. #6
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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Quote Originally Posted by GMami View Post
    Hello,

    Not sure whether this is life-threatening or not.My girlfriend and I have an Eastern Grey, 6 years old, who she has raised successfully since its birth. Until two weeks ago, he's never had any health or behavioral issues. Last week he was squeaking a lot and not eating or drinking, and being extremely lethargic and putting his little head down, do we took him to the vet. They did x-rays and did not see anything to write home about -- no injuries, no trouble spots. They believed it to be respiratory issue and gave us antibiotics to give him. We had to deliver these by force, through a syringe, for the first three nights. After that he rested a lot but seemed to be getting better and better. About 3 days in, he was acting mostly normal again, and eating almost as much as always before. So she started syringing the medicine into a grape which he has been eating every morning and night since. He started eating his daily Henry's blocks and regular nutritious food (daily lettuce, carrots, mushroom). Occasionally we gave him a little slice of (cleaned) apple or a few grains of oatmeal, but nothing junky or bad for him. Yesterday he was making growling noises at us and anyone who would listen but he was still eating. This morning, he refused to eat the grape, he refused to eat the block, and when I tried to feed him a little banana, he squeaked as if in pain while he was nibbling at it, before seeming to just give up. He ran back into his nest and I let him rest. A few hours later, I tried to give him a walnut, and he accepted it, jumped up on his perch where he usually eats, and nibbled at it, squeaking the whole time as if in pain. Eventually, he gave up on that, too and dropped it and went back into his nest. We're going to try to force feed him with the syringe again tonight to make sure he is getting the antibiotics, and probably go to the vet again.

    There is no MBD because he's been eating Henry's blocks daily for his entire life. Is it possible he's just super reactive to apples, which he doesn't eat as often? Is he constipated or experiencing digestion distress? Is it that the grape, even when infused with antibiotics (which he has always eaten completely) isn't being as effective and he's relapsed back to whatever respiratory issues he's having?

    I've looked everywhere online, even on this very amazing and helpful site, and I don't see anything about a squirrel making those squeals while accepting or trying to eat food. It's truly awful seeing him suffer and not knowing how to help him or what even is wrong. He's always been the friendliest, sweetest natured little guy. I don't know why he seems to be in so much pain.

    Please, if anyone has seen this kind of behavior, let me know your experience. We are just completely lost and anything you could share would give us hope, comfort, or the ability to brace ourselves -- all of the above.

    Thank you all in advance for your kindness.
    Henry's does not guarantee squirrels will not get MBD if the rest of the diet is not balanced, but it sounds like his is... how often does he get nuts?

    Did the vet rule out MBD based upon his X-rays? X-rays will show weakened bones from lack of calcium... or more accurately as a result of calcium stealing foods.

    Were his teeth checked by you or the vet? Did the X-rays include shots of his head... asking because that could be used to rule out odontomas.


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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    GMami, Definitely posting a video of his behavior could give us a better idea of what you are seeing.

    Although I wouldn't think a grape is the best way to hide meds, I seriously doubt it caused an issue.
    I disagree that Ab's "lose their potency" in stomach acid. What can result is gastric acid secretion may influence
    drug ionisation and solubility of pH-sensitive drugs, thereby impairing absorption.
    For example, Clarithromycin degrades rapidly at normal gastric pH (1.0-2.0) but amoxycillin and metronidazole are
    sufficiently stable at this pH to maintain an antibacterial concentration in the stomach.

    Please post the weight of your boy, the antibiotic the vet prescribed, the amounts to be administered and how often.
    It is always recommended to provide an extra probiotic 2 hours before or 2 hours after administering any antibiotic.
    This helps to protect the digestive tract and gut flora.

    Did the vet say why he suspected a respiratory issue? What was this based on?

    Has his teeth been evaluated? What you describe is often related to teeth issues.
    An antibiotic can help with teeth issues but depending on why and condition it's often a temporary fix.
    If you can post a picture of his teeth it may help to get an idea of their condition.
    Step-N-Stone
    State Licensed
    Wildlife Master Rehabilitator


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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    I make my own squirrel treats on a weekly basis! I add ground up eggs shells from my chickens to the treats as that is the most readily available form of calcium and quite pure. These guys get treats in the am and a few in the evening. I mix peanut butter, cranberries and a bird seed mix in my mixer and then I smoosh it into a silicone ice tray. I pop them out and put them on wax paper on a tray and freeze them. I give them to them frozen so that they are hard and donít melt as fast. They LOVE them. I ground my egg shells
    Up in a small coffee grinder and bagged them up so that I have it when I make a new batch each time.

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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Quote Originally Posted by Spanky View Post
    Henry's does not guarantee squirrels will not get MBD if the rest of the diet is not balanced, but it sounds like his is... how often does he get nuts?

    Did the vet rule out MBD based upon his X-rays? X-rays will show weakened bones from lack of calcium... or more accurately as a result of calcium stealing foods.

    Were his teeth checked by you or the vet? Did the X-rays include shots of his head... asking because that could be used to rule out odontomas.

    Thank you for responding. He has a very balanced diet, and he gets nuts every so often. The vet ruled out MBD and his teeth were fine as well.

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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Quote Originally Posted by stepnstone View Post
    GMami, Definitely posting a video of his behavior could give us a better idea of what you are seeing.

    Although I wouldn't think a grape is the best way to hide meds, I seriously doubt it caused an issue.
    I disagree that Ab's "lose their potency" in stomach acid. What can result is gastric acid secretion may influence
    drug ionisation and solubility of pH-sensitive drugs, thereby impairing absorption.
    For example, Clarithromycin degrades rapidly at normal gastric pH (1.0-2.0) but amoxycillin and metronidazole are
    sufficiently stable at this pH to maintain an antibacterial concentration in the stomach.

    Please post the weight of your boy, the antibiotic the vet prescribed, the amounts to be administered and how often.
    It is always recommended to provide an extra probiotic 2 hours before or 2 hours after administering any antibiotic.
    This helps to protect the digestive tract and gut flora.

    Did the vet say why he suspected a respiratory issue? What was this based on?

    Has his teeth been evaluated? What you describe is often related to teeth issues.
    An antibiotic can help with teeth issues but depending on why and condition it's often a temporary fix.
    If you can post a picture of his teeth it may help to get an idea of their condition.
    Thank you for responding. I don't know his weight, I will ask my partner after work.

    The respiratory issue was suspected due to a small spot the Vet saw on his lung, but she did not know if that was a real issue or not. His teeth are healthy, though. We're confused because usually respiratory things are accompanied by a rattling sound while they breathe and he only seems to be squealing when he tries to eat. He's become very lethargic now and is still refusing to eat and even come out of his nest. At this point we're waiting for the vet to respond to our call.

    It's one of the saddest things I've ever seen. poor little guy.

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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    Hello,

    Update: he wonít come out of his nest now, I tried to get a video of him sitting still in the corner of his cage with his head down into his chest but he saw me and ran back into his nest (probably still horrified about the force feeding). So thereís not much footage I can take.

    Does anybody know what that means when they do that with their heads?

  16. #12
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    Default Re: Eastern Grey Squeaking, Trying to Eat, and then Not Eating.

    When they have little appetite, and retreat into their nest with their head down, they are feeling ill, perhaps in pain. hug

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