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Thread: Possible internal bleeding

  1. #1
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    Default Possible internal bleeding

    Please help, I have a chipmunk who I've been seeing since we found her as a baby in the spring. She's very comfortable with me and will crawl and sit on my shoulder.
    I saw her today around 1, then when I saw her around 3pm I could tell from far something was wrong. She looked puffed up and standing sort of wonky...she immediately ran to me, crawled in my sleeve, curled up and wouldn't leave. I tried to gently guide her out and she burrowed deeper. I thought I would let her stay in there...when I noticed her breathing. She was sort of wheezing, making airy noise breathing. I finally moved her from my sleeve to little carrier with towels in it, where she slept for several hours. She has eaten some peanuts and a blueberry, and drank some water. The breathing is better, although sometimes loud wheezing again...when I came to check on her she crawled back in my sleeve, where she is now sleeping.

    I was concerned that maybe she has fallen and punctured a lung or something...and when looking at her i can see red below her ears. I don't want to disturb her too much by examining, and at first I thought it was just the colouring below her ears, but I've looked again and am worried it's blood. I'm so worried for her...is this something that would heal or clot? When shes up she moves around fine, if a little slowly...

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    After sending a message to the Adm. that had retired for the evening being on the East coast of the US; I sent a message to the,
    "Squirrel Refuge" on the west coast of the US. and directed them to your threadI hope your chipmunk friend is doing better today; or at least is not worse.

    Not a regular rehabber, yet there are a few things you will need to initially check for and to do to support this chippy with a some kind of injury.

    Secure the chippy in a burrito blanket wrap. Examine the chipmunk to make sure that there are no maggots in the ears. Also check the anus.
    Should you see any you will need to remove all you an see and reach. You can use "Capstar" liquid in a syringe to support flushing them out of the outer ears.

    Check for head and eye area for evidence of swelling. If the chipmunk has an uneven gait it could mean it has incurred a head injury.
    There are meds that the rehabbers recommend for this, yet I'm not one that does dosing. Since this is a wild chipmunk.

    Report any new information here to help the rehabbers give you their best advice on how to help.

    Using a non-needle syringe tip dipped into maple syrup or honey, try slipping the tip just into the edge of his lip just behind the incisors,
    This can help with stress and shock which can result from injuries and pain.

    To support his rest and lower stress, place the chippy into a carrier with soft bedding (not towels that catch on the nails). Keep him warm for injuries can promote shock. Place a heating pad on low under one side of the carrier or cage so if it gets too hot for the chippy he can crawl off the spot to the other side. Place the carrier away from pets children off the ground onto a stable surface. A light fleece throw can be placed over the carrier to keep out the draft.

  3. 4 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to Diggie's Friend:

    island rehabber (09-24-2022), klal (09-25-2022), SamtheSquirrel2018 (09-24-2022), Tashahaven (09-23-2022)

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Hi Klal:
    How's you little Chipmunk doing? If things are not completely resolved with her behavior, appearing "puffed-up," having abnormal sounds associated with breathing, evidence of blood or current bleeding; it would be helpful to have some photos uploaded. Also, please give a detailed update on her current status.

    Thanks to Diggies Friend for your efforts to get Klal's concerns with the little Chippy addressed!

    Regards,
    SamtheSquirrel

  5. Serious fuzzy thank you's to SamtheSquirrel2018 from:

    klal (09-25-2022)

  6. #4
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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Hello everyone! Thank you so much for the help.

    My initial worries and fears appear to have been an over-reaction.... she is breathing fine now, eating and drinking, and moving around the carrier, but I do think that she has a broken leg. She has basically slept since Thursday, but when she would get up to eat I would watch her and she is definitely dragging her back right leg. Today she is moving around more and trying to put weight on the leg. I put her in an old bunny crate I have so she has more space to move, but isn't running around like crazy outside. I'm hoping keeping it dark and warm will let her sleep and heal as best she can.

    How long do broken bones take to heal? I don't want to let her out and she hurts it again running around.

  7. Serious fuzzy thank you's to klal from:

    Diggie's Friend (09-25-2022)

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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Quote Originally Posted by klal View Post
    I'm hoping keeping it dark and warm will let her sleep and heal as best she can.
    This is best for her right now... dark, warm, quiet, free from predators and lots of healthy food.

    Quote Originally Posted by klal View Post
    How long do broken bones take to heal? I don't want to let her out and she hurts it again running around.

    Do you have a vet to get an x-ray to confirm a break? Often we believe there is a break when it is a less traumatic injury like a bad sprain and they are 80% in just a few days. IF she looks to be 80% in a few days, I'd keep her an extra few more days before returning her outdoors.

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    Diggie's Friend (09-30-2022)

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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Quote Originally Posted by klal View Post
    Hello everyone! Thank you so much for the help.

    My initial worries and fears appear to have been an over-reaction.... she is breathing fine now, eating and drinking, and moving around the carrier, but I do think that she has a broken leg. She has basically slept since Thursday, but when she would get up to eat I would watch her and she is definitely dragging her back right leg. Today she is moving around more and trying to put weight on the leg. I put her in an old bunny crate I have so she has more space to move, but isn't running around like crazy outside. I'm hoping keeping it dark and warm will let her sleep and heal as best she can.

    How long do broken bones take to heal? I don't want to let her out and she hurts it again running around.
    Hi Klal:
    I'm glad that some of you initial concerns seem to have resolve or possibly "over-reaction." There is a big difference between someone's reaction and and someone's observations! I believe that what you saw was something worth noting and if you were uncertain just what could be going on you were quite right in posting and asking for advice and help. Please continue to be observant and freely ask for others here on TSB to comment or offer advice. DON"T just assume that what you may be seeing is simply "over-reaction" and then not communicate your concerns to other who may be able to help further evaluate things for you and your Chipmunk! There is a wealth of experience and talent hear on TSB and you were quite right to post your concerns!

    By the way, does you Chippy have a name?

    I'm a little concerned about what you are describing about your Chippy's Right Rear Extremity and about a couple of other things as well. First of all, is there any chance that you can have your Chippy seen by a Vet and have x-ray films taken. It certainly may be a fracture but there are many other possibilities for reluctance to bear weight on a paw or use an extremity. If there is a fracture involving an extremity, the ideal action that can be done to help lead to optimal healing is to have the fracture pieces immobilized in good alignment with each other which usually requires the fitting of a splint or other form of appliance (sometimes even surgery but not as a rule). X-rays should be taken. Most long bone fractures in the extremities are capable of healing in 6 weeks and sometimes sooner. To have fractures heal in minimal time and with good functional results later on requires ideal alignment of the broken bone , immobilization, and ideally minimizing weight bearing. Again, I would recommend evaluation of your Chippy by an experienced, Squirrel Friendly Vet (much easier for me to say than for you to do, I know!). X-ray and proper splinting are best obtained from a Vet BUT this may may not be a fracture and a Vet can evaluate your Little One for other causes for her "dragging" her extremity!

    I also have concerns about keeping the Chippy's surrounding dark beyond the normal diurnal variation in light and dark. She should have normal day/night cycles. Please also describe the bar spacing and other aspects of the Bunny Cage and post photos of the cage. Less than ideal Bar Spacing and Bar Arrangement can lead to a Squirrel (or Chippy) getting toes or claws caught in the cage structure and lead to fractures or other injuries.

    Your Chippy may also be in pain and one of the members on TSB who are authorized to help with dosing (all of the Admins and some others) can help you with Ibuprofem or Meloxicam dosing (these are 2 of the common NSAIDs available that are also commonly used to treat rodent pain and inflammation) if pain and/or swelling may be factors.

    Regards,
    SamtheSquirrel

  11. Serious fuzzy thank you's to SamtheSquirrel2018 from:

    klal (09-25-2022)

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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    I do not have a vet, as unfortunately I am in a fairly rural area. I've called the closest vet (1 hour away) and they do not deal with wild animals...
    My older sister is a vet (but she is located in the States, and not very familiar with wild animals/chipmunks) and she had mentioned there may be something I could give her for pain, but she wasn't sure exactly what/dosage....also I am in Canada, so I don't know if brands are different, although we have ibuprofen/advil and I'm sure I have some around somewhere.

    The bunny 'cage' is wooden on three sides, with clear plastic on the front and a screen on the top that opens up. There are two wooden platforms that I moved to the bottom, so she can't reach the screen to climb, and turned the clear front to the window for sunlight...the bunny cage has a little wooden house within it, which is where I put an old oven mitt that she has been sleeping in.

    And I named her Smushey

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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    You can give infant's ibuprofen drops for pain if you think she needs that... will PM chart.

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    Diggie's Friend (09-25-2022), SamtheSquirrel2018 (09-25-2022)

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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Well, you can give either infant or childrens strength ibuprophen. Both of which are in short supply because there was a shortage and then panic buying, though you may find one or the other locally and certainly online. We would need to know which one you get as they are different strengths, and we would need the weight of your chippy if possible. You would need a 1ml syringe or smaller to dose with.

    Can you overwinter this little girl? The nest and burrow she worked on all summer has been appropriated by another chippie by now and her stash plundered. That isn't something she could catch up if she was released now...in Canada. Even if she makes a fast recovery, it would be a death sentence this late in the year.

  16. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to CritterMom:

    Diggie's Friend (09-25-2022), klal (09-25-2022), SamtheSquirrel2018 (09-25-2022)

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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    That's what I'm concerned about. I could definitely 'over winter' her here, although I'm not sure the best approach...I've been browsing this forum for any tips I can pick up. I know chipmunks hibernate to a degree...should I be trying to build something outdoors that is insulated and has a heat source, or is that crazy? (I have lots of building materials, as well as a carpenter on the premises) and just dropping a stash of food in for her every few days for when she wakes up?
    I'm assuming if she's inside she won't hibernate and I can't imagine it's healthy for them to be kept inside all winter and NOT hibernate (I imagine they would go stir-crazy, even if I had a whole room for her to run around in)
    I apologize, I know this is the life-threatening forum/thread, but I really appreciate any advice on how to move forward

  18. #11
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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Quote Originally Posted by klal View Post
    That's what I'm concerned about. I could definitely 'over winter' her here, although I'm not sure the best approach...I've been browsing this forum for any tips I can pick up. I know chipmunks hibernate to a degree...should I be trying to build something outdoors that is insulated and has a heat source, or is that crazy? (I have lots of building materials, as well as a carpenter on the premises) and just dropping a stash of food in for her every few days for when she wakes up?
    I'm assuming if she's inside she won't hibernate and I can't imagine it's healthy for them to be kept inside all winter and NOT hibernate (I imagine they would go stir-crazy, even if I had a whole room for her to run around in)
    I apologize, I know this is the life-threatening forum/thread, but I really appreciate any advice on how to move forward
    Thanks for your concern and care of little Smushey! It would certainly be great for Smushey to be in and protected over the winter and to to have some pain medication if it seems at all like she is having discomfort BUT, I am still concerned about her "dragging" extremity! Do you know of a Rehabber relatively nearby where you could take Smushey for an evaluation? X-rays by a rehabber would not be possible unless the rehabber was also a Vet but an evaluation by an experienced Squirrel person might be of benefit. If you would be willing to try a Rehabber, it would of course need to be someone who can be completely trusted and would not attempt to confiscate or possibly even euthanize Smushey! Perhaps someone on TSB would have some suggestions as to a recommended Rehaber. Also, even though you sister lives in the States; she may have Veterinarian contacts somewhere within reasonable driving range for you where even if they weren't that familiar with Squirrels, they may be able to at least obtain an x-ray study for you. If you are able to get x-ray films done; most modern x-ray equipment is now digital and these films contain a tremendous amount of detail and the programs associated with this technology contain a viewer; all of which can be easily emailed to other people for review and their opinions. It would just be good to know if there was or was not a fracture. Other common causes of not fully using an extremity, other than a fracture, would include a sprain (stretching or tearing of ligaments which hold the joints together), a contusion (something hitting the extremity), a nerve injury, and a joint dislocation (after some incident). I just believe that Smushey needs further evaluation for her extremity issue if this could in any way be facilitated!
    Regards,
    SamtheSquirrel

  19. #12
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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Well, they don't really hibernate, technically - that is why they build the giant stash of food. They awaken every few days and eat, then back to sleep. And no, actually hibernation is very dangerous and a huge number of true hibernators don't make it through the winter. It is just the best solution for them to dealing with winter. Day length is a big part of it - much more so than temps.

    We have a member who knows quite a bit about this - I need to see if I can get in contact with her...

  20. #13
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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Thanks again to everyone for all their help!
    If anyone knows of any trusted vets in Ontario, I would love to be able to take Smushey to get an x-ray as suggested by SamtheSquirrel.

    And any tips for overwintering are much appreciated, I want to give her the best chance possible!

    Also this is the children's ibuprofen/advil I found, would this work?
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  21. #14
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    Default Re: Possible internal bleeding

    Quote Originally Posted by klal View Post
    Thanks again to everyone for all their help!
    If anyone knows of any trusted vets in Ontario, I would love to be able to take Smushey to get an x-ray as suggested by SamtheSquirrel.

    And any tips for overwintering are much appreciated, I want to give her the best chance possible!

    Also this is the children's ibuprofen/advil I found, would this work?
    Name:  white.jpg
Views: 11
Size:  107.4 KB
    Yes - that is what you want. You can't use the dropper that comes with it - way too big. You will need the 1ml or smaller syringe. If you don't have one, tell the pharmacy that you are trying to feed a baby guinea pig that has been rejected from it's mom. And we need the weight of the chippie.

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