sm's self mutilators, can be caused by many things, infections by far are the most common, either urinary tract infection, giardia, or a bacterial infection, however although the most common not by any means any less common than the other reasons, sm's can easily test out to not have any problems,
there are no definitive answers, however there are very distinct warning signs, and things that you need to have prepared in the slim chance it does happen,
most responces to the question, what should you do if your glider self mutilates, the answers I have seen are.. get them to a vet
in reality the first thing you should do is to put on an e-collar and do what you can to prevent further damage.
once the collar is on, contact someone who can help you with your vet
, as most vets
do not know what to do or what to check for.
as was stated many things are considered sm'ing,
the most common ones we see are right after neuters, usually due to lack of pain meds, but sometimes there is no reason, again going after the surgery site, as aproductof stated due to the pain factors.
some gliders chew on their tails when stressed, other chew on other parts of their body due to injury (you may not even know they are injured)
one glider had a hair wrapped around his private parts,
another chewed on it's membrane due to a bug bite, another due to a splinter.
so many reasons, and causes. the best knowledge you can have tucked away with an already prepared e-collar, is what signs to watch for, and what to do..