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What’s happening at Starlight Trust Animal Rescue

Christmas sadness December 29, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — sproggie14 @ 15:53
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I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season. We are enjoying a bit of a break after such a hectic year and we’re looking forward to saying goodbye to 2009 and starting afresh with a new year.

That said our break has been slightly overshadowed by some sad losses amongst the mice.

On the 16th we found dear little Eve had passed away in her cage. She was amongst the welshies we took in recently because they had tumours but on closer examination Eve was found to be in good health. So finding her gone was a huge shock.

Two days later John left us. John had a tumour on his spine so we knew he had a poor prognosis. But he had been bright and active and showed no real sign that his situation was deteriorating. He took himself up into a hammock on Thursday night, went to sleep and just didn’t wake up.

On the 23rd we let Niamh and Nahla go as their tumours had become too large. This was planned and expected since they arrived realistically but was complicated by the weather here. I had wanted to take them on the 18th originally but that was the day we had the initial snow fall. We tried again on Monday 21st but the snow came down again as we were on our way and we had to abandon our journey when it became apparent the roads were impassable. And then Wednesday was the next available appointment with Emily, our preferred vet. Still, both girls were still happy and eating right to the end – these welsh girls really are made of stern stuff bless them.

Then, of all times, Christmas morning I was terribly sad to find Brains had passed away. Brains was born here last November, had been neutered and was living happily with a gang of girls and Steven, another neutered boy. He and Steven had been offered a home and were due to start their new life together in the new year. Brains had had a respiratory infection but it had seemed to be responding to treatment so his loss was quite a shock.

And then another big shock on Boxing Day. I was being extra cautious after the previous losses so that morning I lifted up the house in the big mouse cage to check on everyone. They all stumbled out warm and sleepy but dear Nelly didn’t move. Again she had obviously gone to sleep cuddled up with all her friends and simply failed to wake up. Like Eve she had been a healthy one who slipped in with the lumpy girls so her passing was very unexpected. She also had a lovely new home lined up in the new year so it was doubly sad.

I’m obviously watching everyone else like a hawk at the moment. There doesn’t appear to be any link, anything contagious doing the rounds at least. It seems to just be one of the runs of bad luck which plague those of us who share our lives with lots of small pets.

Run free babies xx

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Brooke update May 12, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — sproggie14 @ 14:08
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Just heard from the vets…Brooke didn’t make it through. I’m devastated. She was fine apart from her lump and now she is gone. Four friends gone in a week. Why does life have to be so cruel?

 

A mixed week

Filed under: Uncategorized — sproggie14 @ 13:18
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It’s been a week of ups and downs here. Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way first….

BlueFirst of all last Tuesday we had to say goodbye to Blue. You might recall that she had a pituitary tumour and mammary tumours too. At the end of last year we started her on a treatment which we hadn’t tried before but had heard good things about. She responded brilliantly and we were delighted. We never dreamt it would buy us another 7 months with her though! She actually had a lovely retirement, living for her evening medicine which was always delivered in a bowl of chocolate flavour baby food! Monday night she wasnt waiting for it at the door as usual but I just figured it was cos we were a bit early feeding them or something. But Tuesday she had crashed and lost control of her legs. She still managed to put away one last bowl of baby food though before we went to the vets!

The same day I found a problem with Lacey, one of the welsh mouse babies. When she was tiny Lacey hurt her eye so she was separated out with some of the adult mice who had lumps. Her eye problem cleared up and quite recently I moved her in with some other young girls and she was ready to go to a new home. But Tuesday I found no less than 8 lumps on her teeny little body. Two on each side of her neck, one in each armpit and one either side of her groin. Clearly she had lymphoma, an evil and aggressive cancer. We watched her carefully for any sign that she was suffering but she passed away suddenly and peacefully on Friday. She was just 6 months old 😦

And lastly Dee, who had been fighting respiratory problems for most of her life, took a turn for the worse last week too. DeeShe came to the vets with Blue and we started her on a new antibiotic and a diuretic to clear the fluid from her chest. By Friday she was no better so we took her back to the vets. We ummed and ahhed about the best course of action. The diuretic really should have helped her and she was struggling. But she was only a year old. I hate that bit. Truly, truly hate it. I’ve been working with animals now for 15 years but I still find it overwhelming when you know that an animal’s life rest entirely in your hands. Make the wrong choice and you risk either ending an animal’s life prematurely or condemning it to suffering. So anyway I opted to try another antibiotic and some steroids. Of course it was the wrong choice in the end. Well in that it didn’t work, I think it was right to try. My gut told me she wasn’t ready to give up. She fought til the end bless her, determined not to let it beat her. But nothing worked and we had to let her go last night.

brookeHer Auntie Brooke is at the vets today. She had a lump removed from her right shoulder last September and as a result we decided she should remain here as a resident. The lump came back last week, has grown rapidly and now has a friend too. The vet was fairly optimistic about being able to remove it successfully and Brooke is a tough cookie but she is 18 months old now so I can’t help being worried. She’s a special girl and we’ve had more than enough sadness this week.

And you might recall that Kandi and Reya had been separated from the other two degus following their dentals? Well Reya was still struggling to put weight back on and since Naomi can be a bit of a bully I was still keeping them apart. Juliette decided she didn’t like that idea and managed to eat a hole through the base separating the two sections of the cage. She then got into a fight with Kandi, leaving Kandi battered and in shock. I removed her and Reya from the big cage completely and Kandi has been on antibiotics and special treatment since. It has actually done the two of them the world of good. Kandi is recovering well and Reya has put all her weight back on. Of course, I had to buy a new cage too! I’ll post pics of them all enjoying it soon.

Anyway, on to the happy stuff. We’ve had a host of long stay animals go to new homes or be reserved for new homes since I wrote last.

Diana and Laura

Diana and Laura found a new home with some other girly rats for company. Kes, Seven, Rose and Martha all found a home together with Becky who previously homed bitey boys Fred and Barney.

Dutch, one of the neutered welsh mice,  has gone to a new home with some lady friends who were adopted from us in December.

And reserved for new homes are Samantha the winter white hamster and Stacey the syrian hamster. We also have some promising home offers for some others…watch this space.

Phew, well I think that’s everything for now. I’ll try to be better with the updates and let you know how Brooke gets on and how those home offers work out 🙂

 

Vet Visits March 12, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — sproggie14 @ 13:46
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Last week we took Reya degu and Gilly and Simon the mice to see our specialist vet, Rob at Seers Croft. Reya developed a lump under her jaw which Rob believed was tooth related. Gilly is one of the welsh mice who had mammary tumours. Her tumours had gotten very big so I wanted Rob to check and see if she was ok to carry on. He agreed that she was still comfortable although he didn’t think it would be too long for her. Simon had two of the blocked sebaceous glands that the welshies have issues with. In general Rob has recommended against removing them but Simon had developed one in the middle of his back and was worrying at it. He also had one on his ear. So yesterday we took Simon to have his lumps removed and to be neutered at the same time, we took Reya to have her abcess removed and teeth trimmed and we also took Reya’s sister Kandi to have her teeth as well. Simon, I’m delighted to say since he’s a bit of a fave of mine, coped brilliantly with his surgeries. Kandi’s teeth were pretty bad but all went well for her. We were a little concerned about Reya as she refused to eat initially but she’s looking fine again this morning (if a bit bald, bless her). While that lot were off having their bits done, I cleaned out Gilly’s group and gave Gilly her daily check over. The sparkle had gone from her eyes and she had started to look uncomfortable. It was time 😦

When I spoke to Rob to see how everyone else was I asked if he was consulting that evening to see Gilly. He wasn’t but he stayed behind especially to see her. He could so easily have referred us to one of the other vets in the surgery to perform the simple task of sending Gilly on her way but he didn’t. He likes to see things through. This is what makes Rob so special (as well as his incredible knowledge). There are pictures of him examining Rhino’s in the surgery yet he shows the same level of care and respect for what most people would call vermin as he would for an endangered species. And what is more, he didn’t even charge us a penny for the times he examined Gilly and for letting her go. He just wrapped her carefully in a little tissue shroud and treated her with amazing care. We are so incredibly lucky to have found him.

Run free Gilly bean. It was an honour and an inspiration to have known you.