Re: Hermie: possible URI
Hi Nancy/fellow hedgie owners,
Sorry I didn't update you sooner. The vet was able to squeeze Hermie in at 9:45 a.m. on Friday. Hermie was so ill by that point. It was painful to see him like that. He had spent the majority of the night breathing through his mouth, and was almost lifeless at times. The vet did a full physical. I knew Hermie was unnaturally thin (due to his lack of eating over the past couple of weeks), but when the vet weighed him it was still quite shocking. In 2007, Hermie had weighed 500+ grams, and he now weighed 300 or so grams. The vet also felt a mass in his abdomen, and said that it may have migrated into his lungs. There was a definite rattling in the lungs when Hermie breathed (I could feel it when holding him). The vet also said he was hypothermic, even though he was wrapped in about 5 blankets/hedgie bags, and I had had the heat on in my car on the way there.
It became clear to me that Hermie was much sicker than I had known, and the vet and I both agreed that the poor little guy was probably getting towards the end. He said the three options were: 1. to run diagnostic tests 2. to give him antibiotics and see if that helps 3. to leave things as they were.
I knew there was no point in doing diagnostic tests, as Hermie was a very old man and might not even survive the biopsies and other procedures. And I didn't want to take him home with the antibiotics in the hopes that he'd get better, because I was afraid that they wouldn't work and he would die a horrible death over the weekend. To me, dying from a lack of air (suffocation, drowning) would be a horrible horrible death. I was not going to let that happen to Hermie, so I decided to have him put to sleep. I knew he was suffering, and I didn't want it to go on any longer, and I didn't think there was much hope of him getting better.
So later that day I had a little funeral for him at my parents' house. They have a little forest area behind their house, and our other pets are buried there.
It's sad not having him around. He was a great little guy.
I'll post some pictures soon so you can see him Nancy. I'm on someone else's computer right now so I don't have access to them.