North East Wildlife Animal Rehabilitation Coalition is a 501(c)3, non-profit organization. We are a group of licensed wildlife rehabilitators, and these are the tales of the injured and orphaned animals we care for until they are able to be released back into the wild.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The first baby of 2009 has arrived!

Well here he is in all his cuteness!! The first (yet to be named) little guy to come in this season. Mary and I picked him up Thursday night.
Mom was "removed" from a home. A couple days later the carpenter went by to close up the hole and found the nest. 2 babies already dead, this boy and his sister still alive. Although his intentions were good, his help led to the little girls demise. He put them in a box, got some milk and fed them....they were hungry and "ate great!" Then left them in the box in his shed until I got there. They were coonsicles when I got them, and the milk they were fed wrecked havoc on their already compromised condition. The little girl died the following morning.
After horrible diarrhea and belly aches and lots of supportive care and fluids, our little boy is finally feeling better and much more comfortable! He's still got some diarrhea, but it's not uncontrollable anymore and he's finally getting some proper formula into him!

OK....he's REALLY comfortable now!

And if anyone has ever wondered how such a little creature can use a big ol' human baby bottle to nurse, just look at the size of that mouth!! Once they get used to the new nipple, that tongue seals right around it- a perfect fit and they suck it down in no time!

So the unfortunate lesson learned here is this: if you find an orphaned baby (of any type!) DO NOT feed it ANYTHING, especially regular milk! Depending on how long baby has been without food, feeding it anything can kill it without kick starting the digestive system again properly. And feeding the wrong food can just destroy the gut. Pedialyte only and very carefully so animal does not aspirate (breath in) the fluids, and not until after the animal is warm if it is cold.
Please, call a rehabilitator who will advise you the best way to help in the situation until the baby can be transported. The best intentions can lead to the worst outcomes and it's a heartbreaking thing to watch!

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