Our veterinarians are experienced in providing specialized care and treatment for exotic companion animals, including ferrets, gerbils, guinea pigs, hamsters and other small mammals, iguanas and other lizards, rabbits, but not snakes. We understand their unique health needs and can provide diagnostic, therapeutic, and surgical services, as well as counseling on nutrition, behavior, and general care.
Pain Management and Control
We know the issue of pain management is of great concern to pet owners today. As in human medicine, we have a variety of medications available to manage your pet’s pain both before and after surgery and in the event of trauma. We would be pleased to discuss the options available to you and your pet under any of the above circumstances.
This minimally invasive procedure allows a veterinarian to see inside a pet’s body and, when necessary, take biopsies (tissue samples) without having to perform surgery. Endoscopy is commonly used to examine the inside of the ears, nose, esophagus, colon, bladder, stomach, and other internal organs. Endoscopy can also be used to assist with minimally invasive surgeries and is particularly valuable in retrieving swallowed items.
To perform this procedure, the veterinarian inserts the endoscope (a long tube with a camera at one end) into the area to be examined. Incisions are sometimes required; however, the incisions used for endoscopic procedures are considerably smaller than those used in traditional surgery. This means a much less painful and quicker recovery for your pet.
Endoscopy does require that your pet be placed under anesthesia. As with all such procedures, we follow strict protocols and continually monitor your pet’s vital signs to help ensure his or her safety. Please see the descriptions under Anesthesia and Patient Monitoring for more information on what we do to keep your pet safe.
If you have any questions about our endoscopy service or what to expect during your pet’s procedure, please don’t hesitate to ask.
You can help keep your ferret healthy by bringing him or her in for an exam once a year. That way, we can monitor any changes that occur in your pet and help prevent or catch diseases early, when they’re easier to treat. As ferrets age, they may need additional testing and dental care.
Common problems associated with ferrets include gastrointestinal disease, parasites, and cancer. In addition, ferrets are inquisitive creatures by nature and frequently ingest objects they shouldn’t. Regular blood tests can help determine whether your ferret has any problems with the kidneys, liver, or pancreas.
Ferrets can also benefit from receiving certain vaccinations and monthly preventives, which we’d be happy to discuss with you during your visit. Please bring a stool sample to your ferret’s annual exam so we can test for internal parasites.
Unless you are planning to breed your ferret, we recommend that he or she be spayed or neutered. Female ferrets, or jills, do not need to give birth once to stay healthy. In fact, spaying can save a ferret’s life. Jills that haven’t been spayed will stay in heat until they’re bred. This condition can cause anemia (a decrease in red blood cells), which can be fatal. In male ferrets, neutering can reduce their strong body odor, prevent marking, and reduce aggressive behavior.
Please contact us right away if your ferret develops any unusual symptoms, such as vomiting, diarrhea, hair loss, lack of appetite, trouble breathing, black ear wax, discharge from the eyes or nose, lumps, swelling, or an increase in aggression or sexual behavior (especially in neutered males).
Rabbits are susceptible to a variety of diseases and conditions, including overgrown teeth, hairballs, parasites, and cancer. They also tend to hide signs of illness or pain.Contact us if your rabbit:
Has discharge from the eyes or nose, runny stool, or a gurgling stomach
Has an elevated or low temperature
Begins drooling, scratching at the ears, or sneezing
Starts tilting his or her head
Develops bald patches in his or her fur
Stops eating, appears overly quiet, or shows other abnormal behavior
In addition, your rabbit can benefit from regular dental checkups. We can help make sure problems with your rabbit’s teeth don’t turn into serious, potentially life-threatening conditions.We also strongly suggest that you have your rabbit spayed or neutered. Not only can rabbits potentially give birth once a month, but they can also have up to 14 babies at a time! Even in households with a single rabbit, spaying or neutering has plenty of benefits: It can protect your rabbit from several types of cancer and reduce or eliminate aggression, as well as other undesirable behavior, such as spraying, mounting, destructive chewing, and biting. Spaying or neutering will not change your rabbit’s personality.If you have any questions about how to best care for your rabbit, we’d be happy to discuss proper diet, housing, grooming, and even litter box training.
Iguanas and Other Lizards
Nutrition-related disorders and diseases are common in iguanas and other lizards. We can help you avoid these problems. Call us to set up a nutritional consultation so we can discuss how to help keep your lizard healthy.
We also offer an initial checkup for new lizard owners to help identify current or potential medical problems and, if necessary, begin treatment. In addition, we can provide you with information on appropriate enclosures, environmental requirements, sanitation, and disease prevention.
Gerbils, Guinea Pigs, and Hamsters
Just because they’re small doesn’t mean they can’t benefit from veterinary attention. Teeth, which grow continuously in gerbils, guinea pigs, and hamsters, often require trimming. (We can also recommend appropriate chew toys, which may help keep the teeth worn down.) Parasites such as lice, mites, and fleas can infest your pet. In addition, these companion animals can suffer from other health issues.
Call us if your pet stops eating, loses weight, appears quieter than normal, has discharge from the eyes or nose, or develops a lump on its body. We can provide treatment that fits within your budget.
Other Exotic Animals
Although a lot of information regarding exotic animals is widely available on the Internet, it is often difficult to determine what sources to trust. You can rely on our experienced veterinary team’s knowledge of mice, rats, pot-bellied pigs, hedgehogs, and other exotic pets.
Not only can we provide medical assessments and perform surgical procedures, but we can also help you prevent many diseases related to improper nutrition, which are extremely common in these animals. Please schedule an appointment so we can discuss your exotic pet’s nutritional needs. In addition, we supply a wide range of foods and supplements for these unique animals.
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Contact Shiloh Veterinary Hospital today!
Mon – Fri: 7:00 am – 6:00 pm
Sat: 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Open at 7:00AM Monday through Friday for early morning admit. We are closed from 11:00AM – 12:00 noon on Thursdays for staff meetings.
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