These are some terms & definitions I came up with when researching for my Glider A Day Calendar and Weekly Planner.
Anal glands: small paired sacks located on either side of the cloaca and are used for identification of members of the colony and to mark territory. During times of stress a glider can spontaneously empty their anal glands creating a strong unpleasant odor (called skunking).
Arboreal: Living in trees. A term used to describe a species which lives in trees
Bald spot: The term used to describe the scent gland that a male glider develops on the top of their head. It produces an oily secretion that slicks down the hair giving the appearance of hair loss.
Barking: is a form of communication between gliders. By barking, a glider can let other members of the species know they are there and gain their attention or a glider could be calling an alert to other members of the colony to warn them of danger. A gliders bark sounds
like a bark from a small puppy.
Bootie Dance: Both male and female gliders will perform the “Bootie” Dance. During this performance, they will keep their front feet stationary and swing their rear back and forth over an object to mark it or claim it as their own.
Bra Baby: a glider who will stay inside their Mom’s shirt either lounging in or hanging on her bra for an extended period of time.
Chattering: To communicate, gliders will often make a chattering sound. It sounds
like they are clicking their back teeth together.
Cloaca: The posterior opening that serves as the only such opening for the intestinal, reproductive and urinary tracts of certain animal species. The word is Latin in origin and means “sewer”
Crabbing: The noise a glider makes when they are frightened or startled. It is often described as sounding like an electric pencil sharpener.
Face hug: When your glider jumps or glides to you and lands on your face rather than on another part of your body.
Flossing: The term used when a male glider is grooming it’s penis. This often happens during puberty or when the male is overly hormonal.
Hissing: Gliders will make a sound similar to a cat’s hiss to announce their presence or call out to other members of their colony. However gliders will also hiss if they are having difficulty going potty (urinating or defecating)
Licky Treats: A semi-liquid food that you offer to the glider on your finger for them to lick off. It is a bonding
technique used to gain your gliders trust and helps them associate you with good things.
PomPom: The term used to describe the male gliders scrotum. It looks like a small furry belly button on a male’s stomach.
Pouch protective: The term used to describe a glider which is territorial about their pouch. This glider can react in many different ways ranging from crabbing to lunging and biting when you attempt to interact with them in the pouch.
Patagium: The gliding membrane that stretches from the wrist to the ankle on each side of a gliders body. A glider will use their patagium like a parachute to glide from place to place.
Quick is the blood vessel that runs inside your gliders toenail. If you accidentally cut this during nail trimming apply a little bit of flour or Quick Stop to the nail to stop the bleeding.
Scent Staining: A gliders fur can change colors based on their propensity to mark, their diet
and their living conditions. Given the right circumstances a gray glider could appear to be a cinnamon in color. This may only become apparent once the glider begins to shed their fur and grow a new coat.
Singing: The sound a female glider makes when she has joeys in pouch, often when she has decided that it is time for them to detach from the teat. It is a difficult sound to describe as no female sings in the same way, but it includes a combination of chirps, chatters, chortles and snicks with tonal variations.
Skunking: The term used to describe the act of a glider secreting a strong musky scent from their anal glands when startled or frightened as a protection against predators.
Snaky Tail Dance: An action your glider performs when they are intently focused on something that is interesting or strange to them. They will stick their rear in the air and wave their tail back and forth in a manner that reminds one of a snake charmers snake.
Subcutaneous Fluids (also known as Sub-Q’s) are sterile saline fluids that are administered through a needle which is inserted under a gliders skin. They are given by a vet
or at a vet
’s direction when a glider is dehydrated.
Tent Test: The term used to describe the process that is used to test gliders for dehydration. When using the tent test, you gently pinch the skin between the gliders shoulder blades. In a hydrated glider, the skin should return to normal within 3-5 seconds. If it remains tented or takes an excessive amount of time to return to normal the glider is dehydrated.
Tent Time: When you take your glider into a small tent (or bathroom) for the purpose of interacting or playing with them.
Abscess A collection of pus that has accumulated in a cavity formed by the tissue. It is normally caused by an infection, parasites or the presence of foreign materials (i.e.: splinters) It is a defensive reaction of the tissue in an effort to prevent the spread of infectious material to other parts of the body. Symptoms of an abscess include swelling, heat and redness. Surgical draining (lancing) of the abscess is usually required and the pus should be cultured to find out which antibiotic will work the best
Aflatoxins are naturally occurring mycotoxins that are produced by many species of Aspergillus, a fungus. They can colonize and contaminate grain before harvest or during storage. High levels of aflatoxin exposure produce an acute hepatic necrosis resulting later in cirrhosis (liver failure) and/or carcinoma of the liver (liver cancer). If a cricket or feeder insect has been housed in bedding containing the fungus, they can contract it and pass it on to gliders without showing any signs or symptoms of having the illness itself.
Coccidia are microscopic, spoor-forming, single-celled parasites which infect the intestinal tracts of animals. The disease spreads from one animal to another by contact with infected feces or ingestion of infected tissue. Diarrhea, which may become bloody in severe cases, is the primary symptom. Other symptoms may include poor appetite, vomiting, dehydration and even death. Young or immuno-compromised animals tend to suffer more severe symptoms than healthy ones who may appear asymptomatic. With the exception of toxoplasmosis, most coccidian organisms are usually species specific
Diarrhea (loose watery stools) can have several causes including stress, parasites or bacterial infection. It can be slowed down by giving the glider a few oatmeal flakes (no more than 2-3 flakes or you risk blockages) or canned pumpkin. It is necessary to also keep the glider hydrated if diarrhea occurs.
Ear Mites are mites which live in the ears of animals. They spread rapidly and can be transmitted even from the briefest physical contact with infected animals. Symptoms include itching, and redness of the ear. Infected animals also have a large amount of crumbly dark brown material in the ear. If left untreated, ear mites can totally eat away a gliders ear.
Giardia is a flagellated protozoan parasite that colonizes and reproduces in the small intestine. A glider can become infected with giardia through the ingestion of dormant cysts found in contaminated food or water or through contaminated feces. Once infected a glider can then pass on the parasite to other animals or humans.
Hypercalcemia is where there is too much calcium in the blood. It can lead to arthritis, gall stones and kidney stones. It is also believed to cause calcium crystals in the urinary tract.
Hypocalcimia: A deficiency or lack of calcium in the blood. It can be caused by a lack of calcium in the diet
or from an illness or parasite. This can lead to Hind Leg Paralysis (HLP) Once the body starts drawing calcium from the bones it weakens them and can cause the vertebra to collapse on itself.
Jaundice or the yellowing of tissues, itself is not a disease. Rather it is a sign of an underlying pathological process.
Scurvy is a disease resulting from a deficiency of vitamin C. Scurvy leads to the formation of spots on the skin, spongy gums and bleeding from mucus membranes.
Seizure: The excessive firing of the neurons in the brain. It can be caused by genetic abnormalities, infection, injury, stress, toxins or medications. In gliders they generally manifest by either the glider going completely ridged (followed by limpness) or by uncontrollable shaking. If your glider experiences seizures, they will need to be seen by a vet
to determine the cause and treatment of the condition.
Self Mutilation (SM) The act of attacking and chewing on one’s self. If you suspect your glider is Self Mutilating, the first thing you should do is put the glider into an e-collar or wrap the glider up in fleece so that the glider can do no further damage to themselves.
Trichomonads are an order of anaerobic parasites with 4-6 flagella. The primary symptom of infection is the waxing and waning of diarrhea which occasionally will contain fresh blood and mucus. Other symptoms include loss of appetite, general lack of activity and occasionally vomiting. They are detected by direct fecal smear.
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) is a bacterial infection that affects any part of the urinary tract. When Bacteria gets into the bladder or kidneys and multiplies in the urine they cause a UTI. Symptoms include hissing when going pee and excessive licking of the cloaca area.
Yeast Infections are fungal infections that range from superficial to systemic and potentially life-threatening diseases. Symptoms of infection vary but may include severe itching, burning, soreness, irritation and a whitish-gray cottage cheese like discharge often with a curd like appearance. Diagnosis is done through microscopic examination and culturing.