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Thread: HELP! Listless gray squirrel

  1. #1
    zizzanie Guest

    Default HELP! Listless gray squirrel

    I took in 3 orphaned gray squirrels about 8 weeks ago, one had to be put down right away due to a broken back. The other two were doing great...until today, there is something wrong with the biggest one...he is just lying around...he doesn't want to eat ( even his favorite treats )or drink ( water or formula ).
    These are not friendly little squirrels, as soon as I weaned them I stopped interacting with them, so they are wild and I cannot pick him up.
    ( I thought this would be much better for him so he would have a better chance when I put him back into the wild, my first rehab squirrel was much too dependant on me )
    He still moves very quick if I try to catch him, but was able to feel him through the cage which he never ever allows me to do. I was able to put a drop of water on his mouth and he drank that.They are in a room where they do not see my dogs or cats so no chance at all of a cat bite. He does not look injured in any way.
    I am very scared about what could be wrong with him, and even if I can find a vet that would look at him I don't know how it would be handled as I cannot catch him and the vet certainly couldn't pick him up. I don't know any wildlife rehabers, I am the only one I know who takes in coons or squirrels...this is only the 2nd time I've raised squirrels. All I can think of is disease? Parasites? ( All my cats & dogs are fully vaccinated and parasite free ) So close to release time and I'm so scared he'll never be able to live free
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Pinopolis, South Carolina
    Thanked: 1

    Question Re: HELP! Listless gray squirrel

    WOW zizzanie....sorry for your troubles. There are just sooo many questions that are pending.
    What was his diet before.... during nursing?
    What is his diet now?
    What is his cage like...size...inside or out?
    Has he seen a vet?
    What are your skill as far as rehabbing like?
    Can you post a picture?
    How are his bowels...pee & poo.
    Can you put him in another cage by himself??? To see if he eats or drinks or used his bowels?
    Maybe other rehabbers can think of some other importaint questions I havent asked !!!! Please chime in!!
    Sometimes the animals have ilness or genitics we know nothing about and it's so hard to tell until it's too late. Keep your chin up.... we are here for you., and the ill fuzzer!
    Rebecca <
    SC Wildlife Rehabilitator
    I'm a squirrel watcher, I'm a squirrel watcher, watching squirrels go by, my my my!

  3. #3
    zizzanie Guest

    Default Re: HELP! Listless gray squirrel

    I fed him an esbilac mixture. Everything went well. He only saw a vet once, the day I had his brother/sister put to sleep due to broken back. I'm not sure about bowels, I will seperate the two in the am and keep close watch. The cage is approx. 4x3x3 9 I wish I could have bigger but is as big as my space allows ), they have a sleeping box, I took out the blankets last week so they would try to nest with the leaves and other natural things.

    His diet now...I think this is the problem...I was reading other posts about MBD, his diet was high in peanuts and peanut butter. My theory was to make sure they had enough weight on for when they were released I have researched squirrels before but this is the first time I have heard of it. I guess I didn't not look very hard I also give them sunflower seeds vegtables etc. I have not seen seizures yet, but the other symptoms sounds like him. All I have in the house is Caltrate 600 + D...can I use this? How much? Is there anything else, food ? Should I start putting esbilac mix in cage instead of water? I'm sooo guilty & frazzled!!! I would take him to the vet in the am but i cannot catch him, and I don't think my vet will look at a squirrel that is not friendly, nor will any around here.

    I am not a squirrel expert ( as you can see ). I've worked in a shelter ( cats & dogs ) and rescue for 14 yrs and as time went on and word spread people just started bringing me animals....coons, skunks, deer, birds, squirrels, rats, mice etc, I try to save everything I can. ( Thank God for the internet!) What I cannot save I have my vet euthanize. I cannot find 1 suitable person any where near me to rehab wildlife. ( well I can but i cannot cross into the US with wildlife) I have woken up to dogs tied to my front door handle, a box of kittens in my car when I leave the store or forgotten to lock my door and come home to a new cat sleeping in my bed!

    I tried to apply for a wildlife rehab course & permit only to be told they do not exist here! The game wardens told me I can rehab small animals here since "they are just a nuisance animal and they would be shot anyway"! If anyone knows I have them & makes a complaint I would have to relinquish ( ya right!!!) to game wardens. So our outdoor trips are very very limited. But I do keep the cage next to an open window ( with a big tree outside so it's not direct sun ) so they will be adjusted to the climate. "sigh"

    Just checked my little lunatics...when I opened box top he ran out and up side of cage. Looks better than before but I KNOW there is something wrong.

    Could someone plz get back to me tonight about the calcium please?

    Thank you verrrry much!

  4. #4
    zizzanie Guest

    Default Re: HELP! Listless gray squirrel

    I just realized I said I gave him drops of water...but it was esbilac. Could this have anything to do with him appearing to feel better?

  5. #5
    sparkysmom Guest

    Default Re: HELP! Listless gray squirrel

    Not a rehabber here either, but you could give him some ensure. Thats what Chris (nutz) told me to give ours when one had a seizure. They are all doing great now. I changed their diet too. Sparky was sick like that one day, I had been feeding him way to much corn as that was his favorite. I found out from all the experienced people here , that was NOT good for him. Look back in some of the posts and you can get some great ideas as to what to feed him. Good Luck. Better help will be here soon.

  6. #6
    BuckeyeSqrl Guest

    Default Re: HELP! Listless gray squirrel

    If you have access to a vet, get him some Calciquid and ask the vet for the dosage amount. You could also put deer antlers in the cage for them to chew on. They are a great source of calcium and help keep their teeth trimmed.

    Best of luck to you!

  7. #7
    zizzanie Guest

    Default Re: HELP! Listless gray squirrel

    Changing their diet now, going to the vets this afternoon & trying to find deer antlers. I'll post again in a few days to update everyone

  8. #8
    BuckeyeSqrl Guest

    Default Re: HELP! Listless gray squirrel


    Any updates on your squirrel? I hope all is well.


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