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#33013 - 01/04/05 11:17 AM Where did I go wrong?

Last Thursday, our pair -- Salvaje (male) and Dulce (fem) -- brought forth a pair of joeys from the pouch. They were just perfect -- both parents attentive, with Salvaje cleaning and cuddling one while Dulce fed the other. If Dulce was feeding both at once, Salvaje wrapped himself around her protectively.

On Monday, it appeared that they rejected one joey, as he wandered outside the bedding pouch througout the afternoon. I kept putting him back in with his parents and sibling, but came home last night to find him dead (though without bite marks or other signs of injury). I took him out of the cage and buried him with a heavy heart, but thinking perhaps something was wrong and that's why the parents abandoned him.

The remaining joey was fine at 11 p.m., crawling actively on Dulce's head with Salvaje cuddled next to them. This morning at 6, however, my 16-year old daughter found the remaining (seemingly healthy just hours before) joey half-eaten on the edge of the sleeping pouch. Dulce appears to the be culprit.

I'm heartbroken, but love these gliders so, and want to know if there's something I can do better for next time.

Early Monday before these problems began, I changed their bedding pouch to a clean one, as the other was soiled. Would the change to a clean pouch disturb them so that they would abandon or kill their own young, just 4 days OOP?

Dulce was also exhibiting a strange behavior yesterday -- chewing up her hard-boiled egg as though ravenous, but then spitting most of it out. Is this a sign of illness, or just something they do?

They seemed like such good parents, but we probably disturbed them by peeking too often, and maybe by touching the babies too soon. Any advice?

#33014 - 01/04/05 11:20 AM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]

My guess is that your female wasn't producing enough milk to support her little ones. What diet do you feed? Were you supplimenting her diet with anything while she was nursing (wamberoo, puppy milk replacer)? How old are your gliders? Is this their first set of joeys? Answer these questions and I might be able to help you out a little more...

#33015 - 01/04/05 11:42 AM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]

Seems like she might be hungry. Is she getting enough protein?

#33016 - 01/04/05 11:45 AM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]

It was their first litter; Salvaje is probably 3 years old, and Dulce is about 18 months. I've had Salvaje for about a year and a half, and Dulce for 9 months or so.

I realize now (after researching all morning) that their diet was inadequate; I had been feeding them fresh fruit every day, along with daily yogurt, corn a few times per week, sometimes white string cheese, and an occasional raw peanut for a treat. They have fresh, filtered water at all times.

I downloaded the recipe for BML this morning, and am heading out now to find all the ingredients. I don't blame them... I blame myself, for not learning more sooner. Since I work from home and am frequently up in the middle of the night, these little guys are great companions when everyone else is snoring.

I just can't imagine what would cause her to kill a healthy joey.

#33017 - 01/04/05 11:46 AM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]

I had the feeling that maybe poking around and touching our first joey too soon might have caused our pair to canabilize it too - it wasn't their first joey, just the first since we'd adopted them about 6 months before this happened. This time we left them alone and didn't get to see the little one until she was about 2 months old, but she's doing just fine now and is very sweet.

Is there any evidence or general opinion that playing with the joeys too soon could cause the parents to reject or canabilize them?

#33018 - 01/04/05 12:02 PM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]
Dancing Offline
Glideritis Anonymous

Registered: 09/10/04
Posts: 22746
Loc: 80 acres of paradise in KS
NetMom, I am sorry to hear of your loss. Please try not to blame yourself. We all learn and unfortunately often by tragic mistakes. BML is a good diet choice, easy to use and hopefully will prevent this from happening again in the future.

I have had 13 joeys born in my home over the past 5 years and I have handled each and everyone from day one oop. It all depends on the dispossition of the parents. In my opinion handling the joeys does not cause them to reject or canabalize. I believe it has more to do with diet and/or age of the parents. Sometimes the mom won't produce enough milk or she might develope a pouch infection that causes it to hurt her when the babies nurse.

A wellness check up for Mom might not be a bad idea just to make sure there isn't any type of infection going on with her.

Also, NetMom, Welcome to GC. I'm sorry it is under these circumstances. You will find tons of great information here to help you with your gliders and wonderful support to help you cope with everyday glider troubles and celebrate the successes.
Judge not until you have walked in their shoes and lived their lives. What you see online is only part of the story.

I could have missed the pain
But I'd of had to miss the dance

The soul would have no rainbow if the eyes had no tears.

#33019 - 01/04/05 12:06 PM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]

I think it's great that you are looking into a proven diet and BML is a good choice. Remember that she will need extra protein when she's nursing/pregnant, so if you plan on letting her breed again, you might want to look into starting a mealworm farm. It's very easy and, in my opinion, totally worth the time and effort in the money you save.

I've never had a problem with females rejecting joeys after handling them. I do have a female that will canabalize joeys that are IP if she smells another glider, but that's a totally different story...

#33020 - 01/04/05 01:54 PM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]

Well not sure about other people. I have one breeding pair and so far I have had the best of luck. I start handling generally 3-4 days oop. Just seems to me to be the right time, cause the first couple of days my gliders are super over protective of the joeys. But they ease up after a couple of days. I would rather wait the day or two then stress them out.

Basically I feed the Suncoast diet with fresh fruits and veggies every night. They also get mealie worms every night and when the mom is nursing she gets wamberoo on her food too and glider aid every now and then. Along with the other vitamens for their diet. Basically the most important thing is just up the protein for the girl if she is going to be a mommy. A few extra mealies and some milk replacer does wanders. I have heard great things about the bml diet as well, I use it for licky treats.

#33021 - 01/04/05 03:40 PM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]

It looks to me like you have gotten good info. Extra protein and milk replacer is a great idea. We had that happen one time before we started ours on the BML. Since then (it's been about 4 years now), we have had no problems, but I do use Wombaroo and give them extra protein. Sorry for the loss, but don't blame yourself. It's a tough way to learn, but it seems like we all go through some stage of learning. Welcome to GC! <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wave.gif" alt="" />

#33022 - 01/04/05 05:11 PM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]
cyndiekb Offline
Serious Glideritis

Registered: 10/08/03
Posts: 5916
Loc: Cornersville TN I'M HOME :)
Well I'm on babies 10 and 11 here at my house. I have also handled each one as soon as they are oop. Heck these 2 were being petted while they were still attached. I think it was just diet and glad you found the BML (that is what I feed too). You will be having happy healthy babies in no time. Your pair have most likely bred again too. They do that with in a few days of baby coming OOP <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

I heart & miss you HALEY

My runaways 4/04 Lilo, 5/04 Dash & Angel

angel Sprite Says GO STEALTH!! at

#33023 - 01/04/05 07:59 PM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]
minkasmom Offline
Serious Glideritis

Registered: 11/08/04
Posts: 5965
Loc: Northeast Indiana
Hi, Netmom!
My heart goes out to you for the loss of your precious joeys; I lost a "rescued" adult female and still argue with myself about the "coulda/woulda/shoulda" routine of things that may have made a difference if only I'd done something else. (she died of a severe kidney infection) Yes, you hurt; maybe this or that wasn't good for parents & joeys; but the words of those who've been there may help you through your confusion & prevent history from repeating itself.

When you talk about the diet you gave your adults, it sounds a lot like the diet I have my 2 families on: yogurt each night (alternating flavors), fruit or veggie, 6 to 12 live crickets, and I use GliderAide (from Brisky Pet Products) with vitamins mixed in...all in separate dishes. I also have a "snack bowl" with pumpkin seeds, very small pieces of dried papaya and a finely chopped pecan half. I've resorted to this combination because my gliders have rejected 3 or 4 BML matter how I combine ingredients or what I use, it all ended up in the trashcan! So far (knock on wood) I've had 2 healthy sets of joeys from 2 sets of parents who are all growing & prospering. But I didn't touch the joeys til at least a week after they were OOP and eyes were open. Whether or not that makes a difference is as big a topic for argument as what to put in BML: everybody has their opinion.

Hang in there, NetMom. Time will heal these wounds, too.
Minkasmom (Papillon Kisses)
Slave to:
28 gliders,
5 cats,
and ONE husband (can't handle two, lol!)
gangel Remembering all my lost loves cry

#33024 - 01/04/05 09:12 PM Re: Where did I go wrong? [Re: ]

Thanks all, for your comfort and suggestions. I guess it's better to know what I can do differently to hope for a different outcome; that's far better than having no idea how to improve.

Fortunately, I was able to find the necessary vitamins and supplements for the BML mix at a local pet store (though I got the last of one). We'll try this, and see if they like it. I know from experience with four human children they will likely eat if not presented junk as an alternative <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif" alt="" />


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