Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

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oldsoldier
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Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby oldsoldier » Mon Jul 13, 2009 6:58 pm

My 9 month old flying squirrel suffered a severely broken right hind ankle this afternoon when a black rat snake climbed a column on our porch, traversed a 1 inch wide ledge and got onto his cage. I finally got a veterinarian on the phone but he can't see him until tomorrow afternoon and isn't optimistic!
Angus appears calm, still has his appetite and isn't upset at being handled but I can't find a way to immobilize the ankle joint which is just flopping around and I am fearful he will inadvertently do more damage! Any ideas?
Joel

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MiriamS
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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby MiriamS » Mon Jul 13, 2009 10:25 pm

Oh wow, that's so scary! The previous posting suggests it will heal on its own but I think I saw something on one of these threads about a homemade cast. Though I can't imagine trying to do that with a tiny flyer. One of the experts will point you in the right direction. I think Joan can send you valium. Best wishes for a speedy recovery.
-Miriam

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oldsoldier
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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby oldsoldier » Tue Jul 14, 2009 6:48 am

Kept Angus with me all night "in confinement" and he was perfectly calm. Drank lots of water and ate his favorite jogurt. When he isn't moving about, the limb seems to "assume" a normal position and I have taken my cues from him and allowed him to just sit and be stroked - which is always one of his favorite activities. He is being the "little trooper" he always is... he is so radically different from all the flyers we have rescued in the past!
Thanks for the help...
Joel

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DinNorman
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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby DinNorman » Tue Jul 14, 2009 7:22 am

It will be tough to try to keep a splint on a squirrel, so typically they are left to heal naturally. Often the swelling after the break tends to hold the break more in position and making it dangle around less. The quieter they stay, the quicker it will heal as the movement delays healing. Perhaps your vet will be able to do something. Fractures do NOT have to be treated as emergencies and nothing is lost by waiting till the next day as you are doing.
David

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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby Joan » Tue Jul 14, 2009 4:25 pm

David's right. He'll not use it or bear weight on it until it's better. Keeping him in a smaller cage will discourage jumping about. It will heal on it's own. A flyer will only chew off a cast causing more damage. There is no treatment but letting nature do it's job. These guys have a very high metabolism and heal fast.
Miriam, if I had valium I'd take it myself. LOL
"A lot of people spend time talking to the Animals, but not that many people listen. That's the real problem! ... Winnie the Pooh

oldsoldier
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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby oldsoldier » Tue Jul 14, 2009 4:26 pm

Our vet thinks he will lose the foot because the bone is literally crushed from the snake hanging on while Angus thrashed about. All I can do is try to keep him as quiet as possible and pray. He was really great for the vet and everyone on his staff fell in love with him but with this little guy nothing surprises me... he is so radically different from the fliers we have rescued in the past. He gets around as though nothing is wrong, even jumping from my shoulder to the vet. I'll try to keep you posted!
Joel

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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby Joan » Tue Jul 14, 2009 4:28 pm

Joel, you might be surprised with his healing. Even if he loses the foot, he'll do just as well as before.
"A lot of people spend time talking to the Animals, but not that many people listen. That's the real problem! ... Winnie the Pooh

oldsoldier
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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby oldsoldier » Tue Jul 14, 2009 4:44 pm

Thanks Joan... as long as he makes it I'll feel blessed. Our vet said I probably would have to cancel his release plans but that doesn't matter, all of my rescues have left on their own terms and this one has been so special that he has a home regardless! His two big sisters - Australian Shepherd who found him and Papillon who thinks he is her puppy - don't count legs!
Joel

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lynn
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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby lynn » Wed Jul 15, 2009 8:14 am

Hmmm, I think I see fine mesh hardware cloth and a hammer & nails in his future . . . .
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oldsoldier
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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby oldsoldier » Fri Jul 17, 2009 4:03 pm

Just returned from the vet with Angus and the vet doesn't think amputation is called for at this point. There is still circulation in the foot and the swelling isn't extreme. Angus fussed at the vet while he was checking the foot but he was still and didn't try to bite him... he was a big hit with everyone (again) for his good looks and great disposition.
Thanks for your thoughts and prayers for Angus!
Joel

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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby Joan » Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:58 pm

Your boy may pull this one off being completely OK! :D
"A lot of people spend time talking to the Animals, but not that many people listen. That's the real problem! ... Winnie the Pooh

oldsoldier
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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby oldsoldier » Tue Jul 21, 2009 8:42 pm

Just a quick update... so far everything looks good! Angus is handling it much better than I am. Again my thanks to all of you! :multi:
Joel

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Re: Broken ankle on flying squirrel.

Postby MiriamS » Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:37 am

Wow, I'm so amazed and happy for you both :multi:
-Miriam

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