VETS SAYS HEDGIE SHOULD BE PUT DOWN. HELP ASAP. - Hedgehog Central Hedgehog pet care & owner forum
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Old 03-15-2010, 08:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default VETS SAYS HEDGIE SHOULD BE PUT DOWN. HELP ASAP.

Please help. My hedgehog Clover who is 3 years old has been very sick since last week. He first had a skin infection (this reoccurred after first happening 3 months ago), so we took him to our vet. The vet said that he should take Clavaxix (0.25 CCs) and Chloramphenical (0.05 CCs). He also got some Revolution in case he had mites (the vet was not sure what he had, although we are pretty sure it was an infection because the original issue with the rash was an infection). Then, after we went home and started the meds he began to get very wobbly when walking- not a good sign. He was barfing and pooing green mucousy poo as well at this point, so we called the vet and she said he was probably having a reaction to the meds. We stopped the meds but the problem persisted. I gave him a bath last night, as he has stopped eating and I had gotten food on his mouth and chest from syringe feeding him, and noticed that he also had a noticeable lump that had formed around his tail almost in the shape of a horseshoe going around his anus starting at the right hand side and then travelling towards his penis. I took him into the vet again this morning and she said it was his penis and that for some reason it is engorged. We tried to get it out of his shaft in order to inspect it, but it would not come out. The vet said that she thinks he has cancer and that we should think seriously about putting him down in the next few days. There is no mass though, the penis is soft-just very big and will not come out so the vet can see it. Has anyone ever experienced anything like this? Clover is still peeing ok so obviously it is not affecting his urethra... If you have any ideas at all in terms of inspection of what is wrong or have a similar experience I would be so grateful to hear what you have to say. For now, he is still syringe feeding and shuffling about quite wobbily. Thanks in advance. I attached a photo- the penis is basically the lump beside the anus.
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Old 03-15-2010, 08:50 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: VETS SAYS HEDGIE SHOULD BE PUT DOWN. HELP ASAP.

OMG that's awful! I'm so sorry! I've got no idea about what might help, but you have my sympathy. My Aries isn't eating on his own due to gum disease, and I'm worried because he is so weak from not eating.

Our original vet didn't see any problems with Aries's mouth 2 days ago, but his new vet today said he definitely has a gum infection and has probably had it for some time. I'm so glad we went to someone else and got another opinion. Would that be an option for you? Getting a second opinion from another vet?

Good luck. I hope Clover feels better soon.
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Hedgehog mom to Zeus, Aries, Artemis, Pepper, Bonnie, Bridget, Athena, and Clover.

"So many things are possible just as long as you don't know they're impossible." The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
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Old 03-17-2010, 12:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: VETS SAYS HEDGIE SHOULD BE PUT DOWN. HELP ASAP.

Ok, so my husband and I have been syringe feeding little Clover- he loves his kibble crushed and then with water added to make it like a mash. He chirps like crazy as he eats it even though he is not feeling stellar.

He is walking around better today too- not as wobbly and he actually raised his bum off of the ground- a miracle as he has been dragging his bum everywhere. He is still falling over though, but it is far less and has more of a environmental explanation- like a lump in the carpet that makes him go off balance. The meds seem to affect his balance- anyone else experience this with their hedgies?

In terms of the lump, it is still there It is not really a lump though because it is just his penis which is swollen for some reason. We are really hoping it is just an infection and nothing more severe. I am amazed that there is no information out there about hedgehog reproductive anatomy- only info like "the penis is the belly button looking protrusion from the abdomen". I actually spent 9 hours the past 24 hours even going through vet books online and there is almost NOTHING. Well, there was a literary description of the organs in the abdominal cavity from 1934 if you can believe it but that was pretty much it. There was only one other vet book on exotic animals that had a diagram of the organs but it was copyrighted so it would not load- gah! But, I would not have been surprised if it just pointed out the external genitals and skipped the internal completely. I swear in my next life I am going to come back as a hedgie vet because not having this info is absurd!

Not for the faint of heart, but my husband and I were finally able to inspect the penis out of the sheath. For those of you who might have to do this, we used a popsical stick to keep his head up by resting the stick gently at his chin (not with the stick running length wise to his body, but across his body) and then when he relaxed I worked the penis out of the sheath- it worked better with me than the vet because I think he knew he could trust me. It takes time to get it out, but this type of inspection is crucial if there is swelling inside the shaft (get your vet to okay you doing this- our vet said we should try). The penis as a whole runs internally from the anal area to the external genitalia if you can believe it. It actually comes from around the side of the anus. I am going to find a diagram or ask a vet specializing in hedgehogs for one and I will post it here. It pisses me off that stuff like this is so hard to find as it is really detrimental when trying to understand what is going on with a hedgie that is having urinary or 'penile' issues- lol.

Anyhow, though feeling manhandled for sure little Clover is doing much better. He is really affectionate, I think because I am with him 24-7 now- he is even coming to work with me and just about everywhere else that is warm and calm enough for a sick hedgie. He crawled up on my lap today out of the blue, even though with his mobility issues it was like climbing Mount Everest and then curled up and went to sleep. Oh, how I love him.

This is my therapy right now- writing about this experience. Yesterday I was so devastated and the only thing that made me feel sane was writing about what happened.

Ferma and Clover
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Old 03-17-2010, 12:43 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: VETS SAYS HEDGIE SHOULD BE PUT DOWN. HELP ASAP.

I'm so glad Clover is doing better. Has the swelling gone down some? It's good to hear he is walking better and not dragging his bum. I wonder if there is a possibility that he bit or injured himself while enjoying boy activities? I know a bitten hedgehog tongue can swell up huge.
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Hedgehog mom to Zeus, Aries, Artemis, Pepper, Bonnie, Bridget, Athena, and Clover.

"So many things are possible just as long as you don't know they're impossible." The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
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Old 03-17-2010, 01:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: VETS SAYS HEDGIE SHOULD BE PUT DOWN. HELP ASAP.

Thanks! How is your hedgie doing? The swelling is still the same, but he seems a lot happier!

For those of you with hedgie boy issues I found a picture of what the penis is supposed to look like, as well as the internal reproductive organs. For the repro organs keep in mind that dorsal means at the back and ventral means at the front (the belly)- this will make the description more clear (for those of you who like me are like 'ventral' what?!). So the bladder is towards the back and the external prostate closer to the belly (internally still).[attachment=0:1ctp279v]Picture 34.png[/attachment:1ctp279v] For those of you who need to see the photo of the penis I found from a vet for medical purposes just let me know and I will send it to you- I don't want to post it willy nilly or all the hedgies out there will be embarrassed
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File Type: png Picture 34.png (216.6 KB, 32 views)
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