Helicobacter, ferret gastric issues
May. 7th, 2012 @ 05:06 pm
When Kuzco was 2, he was having some bad stomach issues. He had to be put on a special diet of ground chicken livers and a few other things, and while my memory is fuzzy for me, I know he had to have some pepto bismol, and if I had to guess, antibiotics.
It was a rough patch, but he pulled through. He's nearly 6 now. He still has stomach issues, likely related to the same bacterial problems, and I'm trying to stave it off. Normally my occasional remedy was a few cheerios (oats are low in carbs and still usually settle stomachs pretty good I find), or a touch of TUMS dissolved in water, but they're not doing it this time. So I'm thinking pepto. Now this ferret will eat almost anything I offer him; he trusts me highly. He seems to HATE the peppermint taste of pepto, though. Will not touch it. While I can get out the medicine dropper, I'm hoping to just trick him into having a dose or two.
For you ferret parents out there, are there any methods you've come across which might make it easier for your boys and girls to take the pepto, aside from force-feeding? I'll do it if I have to; I'd just prefer not to. He's my oldest boy to date, with the first few having passed around their fifth year from adrenal complications and/or cancers. Well, and Gaz, who succumbed to anesthesia. Would like to have one of my boys make it to the ripe old age of 8 or 9, and Kuzco's well on his way. Hacksaw's doing well too, for being a Marshall Farms boy.
Anyway, rambling. Any ideas/advice?
The first thing that comes to mind is Cherry-flavored Pepto.. I've never tried it myself, but presumably it doesn't taste like peppermint?
Actually that I didn't think of. Cherry, he loves. Simple solution. May try that. =)
I've been able to hide the most foul medications in a spoonful of warm chicken babyfood. Have you tried that?
Try the cherry, but I have found mine don't care for it anymore than the other. Everyone I know has had to forcefeed pepto. When Iggy's IBD acts up I feed him chicken babyfood with goats milk. He also gets pepto, amoxycillan and metrodazinol. He is 8 years old and going strong.
Chicken baby food and goat's milk. That's a new idea. I've done milk once in a great while for Kuzco, just a touch, but as you'd expect, it gives the runs, and it's very short-lived as his system clears it out. More problems than help, I've found. Your mileage may vary.
That's my struggle. He just hates the stuff.
Goat's milk doesn't cause the digestive problems cow's milk does. Works great for getting the weight back on them.
The verdict, btw.
"OMW WHAT IS THAT SMELL I LOVE CHERRY" *lick* *frantic headshake* "OH MY GOD IT'S THAT STUFF I REMEMBER IT"
So, he'll kinda have it. I bet when I mix it he'll do it.
I was under the impression that pepto was dangerous for them because it contains some of the same ingredients as aspirin. I use carafate for stomach issues instead.
The emergency vet that talked to me about his helicobacter suggested I use Pepto. I don't think he meant it for long-term regular usage, however. Only temporary ones. When Kuzco first had his issues with the bacteria, he had ulcers, and the concern was, how to reverse that process. It was rough. Kuzco refused to eat, and we really had to push him.
My poking about found:
'The active ingredient in Pepto bismol is bismuth subsalicylate. Taken orally, it
is metabolized to bismuth (which is what causes stool to darken in color when
taken) and salicylate. The word salicylate may sound familiar as it is the
chemical the aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) is metabolized to in the gut. Since
aspirin is not recommended for ferrets, most people tend to stay away from pepto
bismol. Dogs can have small doses of aspirin, while cats cannot have any as they
cannot metabolize it properly. That being said, I think people tend to err on
the side of caution and treat ferrets like they are cats in that respect. I do
not know if actual scientific data exists to suggests aspirin (and salicylates
in general) is toxic to ferrets.'
So, very much not sure. The emergency vet certainly thought it was worth trying, and Kuzco did come around. No issues with thrombosis of complications. Part of why we did livers was the iron. He was losing some blood and not eating well.
My personal experience suggests that it's okay. Sure would like a more solid answer.
Wow, I did hear that somewhere. I was trying to think where I heard the aspirin pepto connection. I know back in my early days of ferrets I did give it to them in a small dose - but really - wore more of it then they got I think. I remember there was a different OTC med for stomach problems that was safer but not sure which one it was.