As many of you are already aware, Darwin injured his tail this evening and had to have an emergency partial tail amputation Right now I am unsure of the cause but will go over his cage with a fine-toothed comb in the daylight tomorrow to see if I can find any tell-tale tufts of fur that might give us a clue I suspect, in thinking about what is in his cage, that it might be from the axle that attached the wheel to the reptarium frame. Darwin is unusual in that he likes to run on the outside of his wheel Crazy guy is always running along the outside of the track and then hops to the inside mid-stride! Truly amazing to watch but I'm afraid it may have gotten him into trouble this evening So... when I was feeding the gliders this evening, Darwin came out for his nightly "runabout" so he could run visit with Mareki through the mesh and then proceed to mark up the outside of her reptarium as per usual. I didn't notice anything unusual at first because he ran to the top of the Rept right away, then over to Mareki's side. I continued to feed the rest of the gliders and then when I was ready to put him back in his Rept I noticed that his tail was kinked at 90* angles in two places Poor Karen/the_gliders_angel... I was on the phone with her when I discovered it and her ears are probably still ringing from my cries of astonishment. Darwin, meanwhile, was looking at me like I was totally bonkers He truly didn't seem affected by the breaks at all I quickly hung up and ran downstairs to show my hubby. We agreed that I needed to bring him to the vet immediately for emergency surgery. I called and left a message for my regular vet. An hour later, I arrived at the Metropolitan Veterinary Hospital in Akron, Ohio. Upon examination, Dr. Smith determined that Darwin did need to have part of his tail amputated. She proceeded with the surgery and I had Darwin back in my hands within another hour. Although he seems oblivious to his newly abbreviated tail at this point, he is VERY MAD at me for putting the e-collar on him! I did take pictures of his stub once we got back home again but had forgotten to bring my camera with me to the vet's. When I asked her for the part she had amputated, she really thought I was nuts, but then I explained about needing to take pictures of it for my gliders' medical files. The following pictures are graphic and should not be viewed if you have a weak stomach...
The e-collar is actually available from some vet's offices now. I believe they are actually made for birds. I do know that Karen/sugeebaby is carrying them on her site now if your vet doesn't carry them.
I don't think the stub will fall off but I have no previous experience with this type of injury nor with amputations Darwin is doing fine this morning but he's still mad about the e-collar and now he's mad about being separated from Nara all night, too Still seems oblivious to his tail though
No, the stub wont fall off. Ive been through three tail amputations. The end will heal and then The hair will grow back around that portion of his tail and it will only look like he has a very short tail. It will all be grey fur.
Suz, you and darwin are in my thoughts and prayers for a speedy recovery! And Mr.Darwin you need to be good and not get yourself into anymore trouble!
Oh wow... I hope you find what did this to poor little Darwin. Maybe someone will come up with a cover for the back of the wheel if that's what it is I'm sure with all these creative people, we can come up with something.
Darwin, stop trying to give mama Suz heart attacks! Be a good boy and run IN the wheel! *sigh* Boys!
Suz, I'm so glad everything went okay with the surgery. That is a snazzy little e-collar that you have there! God I hope I never have to use one.
Just curious, what kind of wheel do you use? I had the same thing happen to my little girl, but it was only in one part. I didnt notice the kink until she self mutilated it. I hope everything goes go with your lil man. Make sure he keeps on with the antibiotics. I had to have 2 tail amputations before it finally was right. The second time they put her on antibiotics the whole time and she did a lot better. Now she has a fluffy tail, all the hair grew back, even on the tip. Hers is all gray as well!
I talked with Suz a little bit ago and she said that they did a trial where they took Darwin's ecollar off. She said he cleaned his tail but did not attack it!! So he will not have to wear the e caollar anymore, yay. It does not seem to bother him so good think is he is not in pain!!
Melissa is right We found that Gizmo had gotten out of his e-collar while I was getting ready for the day this morning. We kept a close eye on him and although he cleaned his tail he didn't do any damage to it at all He has now been without the collar for about 5 hours and still is leaving it alone We will continue to watch him closely and put it back on him if the need arises. I'm so glad he's such a good little man
I did thoroughly inspect his reptarium and could not find any tufts of fur anywhere. So no indications of what he caught his tail on last evening Upon closer examination of the wheel mounting, I did determine that it could NOT have been the wheel mounting axle that caused the injury. I have a Custom Reptarium from Teresa/Dancing with the Rescue Wheel mounted to a vertical center pole in the cage. The axle is covered by a PVC pipe axle guard which does not rotate at all! I'm so relieved that the axle wasn't the culprit of the injury. I still believe that he may have broken his tail while running on the outside of his wheel and then jumping to the inside while it was spinning though. Unfortunately I'll never know for sure, but it's the only scenario that makes any sense at all. I questioned his regular vet about it and she feels that since he regularly runs on the outside of the wheel that it is very probable that this scenario is accurate since there appears to be nothing else in the cage that he may have broken his tail on...
Suz, my heart goes out to both you & Darwin. I hope he continues to "leave it alone" like a good little boy.
You'll have to tell him that he's now part of an elite group of gliders more commonly known as "hamstas"....remember how short Willy Wonka's stub of a tail is? There IS life for gliders with no rudder, they just jump & bound where they want to go now.
Minkasmom (Papillon Kisses) Slave to: 25 gliders,4 cats, and ONE husband (can't handle two, lol!) Remembering all my lost loves
Well, it certainly hasn't slowed Darwin down, that's for sure! Today we had him out for a while and he decided to keep gliding from me to my hubby and back again. Then, he decided to glide to the kitchen cupboards and scampered up to the top of them! Now, keep in mind that we have 10' tall ceilings so the top of the cabinets are at 8' high I'm sure you can get a good visual of all of this activity from a little man who had emergency surgery last night Amazing!!!