Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Happy Birthday Zoey

It may be tax day but around here we are celebrating Zoey's birthday!  She is 11 years old today!

Zoey was an adorable fluffy white kitten - born in Colorado - across the street from my parents house.  The story goes something like this:  I saw her and fell in love - she was promised to someone else.  We were on a road trip and had left for home and got a call from my mom after being on the road for a few hours that we could have the kitty.  My husband (boyfriend at the time) turned the car around and headed back for her.  She was a lovely traveler on the way home and she made fast friends with Isabel and Aggie - the kitties we had at the time....

Zoey morphed from an all white kitten to a beautiful marmalade and cream colored cat.  It's believed that she has some lynx point Siamese in her blood line.  She also morphed from a happy purring kitten to a somewhat persnickety adult kitty.  She has certainly mellowed over the years but she can still be hissy, growly, and unpleasant to strangers and especially to the vet.  She loves her humans though and is quite loyal.  She gets along well with all the kitties, is peacefully co-existent with Emma and is not a huge fan of the ferrets even though they try to be friends with her often.

We have had a few health scares with Miss Zo over the years but for the time being she is quite stable and seems to be doing well and enjoying life.

So - happy  birthday to my girl - you were so worth the miles we spent turning around to pick you up and make you a part of our family!!!

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Stories of the Day

Wow  - is it a Monday.  Critters are all good today - everyone seems happy and healthy.  Maddie and Theo both seem great after their run of antibiotics.  The other ferrets seem quite well - engaged and playful. Kitties are all just fine - quite snoozy on this gray and rainy Monday.  Miss Emma has headed upstairs to hide under the bed from the dreaded rain.

Today we applied FrontLine.  We were a few days late this month - wanted to wait til everyone was feeling better.  I think the ferrets are getting more used to it - Violet didn't cry this time and Finn was much less floppy in his effort to squirm away.  Kitties were okay with their applications.  Emma gets her flea protection from Trifexis - which you have to hide in something she loves in order to get it in her belly....

I took down the traveling pen that I had set up for Miss Maddie to stay in while she was feeling icky - much to the disappointment of the ferrets - they have all enjoyed climbing in and out.  Theo is such the daredevil that he was leaping from the end of the bed to the top of the pen for thrills.

All in all - a good critter Monday - so relieved that everyone is back to healthy...

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Ferret Vocalization: Noises and What They Mean

We have experienced some of these ferret noises around here - and thankfully - not experienced some others.  Clooney was always the silent ferret - dooking only occasionally  - but then the babies came along and Violet, in particular, taught him that he has a voice and now he uses it often.  Maddie is a dooker, Finn and Theo are both quite vocal as well - but Violet definitely takes the cake.  We have tons of dooking - not much hissing, tons of squeaking and screeching!!  On the days that we have to put on flea treatments there is a bit of whining.  Never any screaming - knock on wood - we will keep it that way!
Some ferrets will go their whole lives making only a few noises, and other ferrets are very vocal. There are a number of different noises that ferrets make, and they can all mean different things. With this guide to ferret noises and sounds, you'll always know what your ferret is trying to tell you!

A "dook" is the most well-known ferret noise, and it's a sound that you will hear when your ferret is excited, playful, and happy. It sounds somewhat like a cross between a chuckle and a chattering noise. Some ferrets dook very softly or not at all, while others dook almost constantly when jumping around playing with you or his ferret friends. If your ferret dooks at you while jumping back and forth in front of you, he's trying to get you to play with him.

A hiss means different things depending on what the ferret is doing at the time. Some ferrets hiss regularly, and it's just their way of talking. In most cases, however, ferrets indicate that they are annoyed, by hissing. It's a warning, their way of telling someone to "back off," whether they're hissing at a person or another ferret. You may see two ferrets playing until one starts hissing. The hissing ferret is probably telling the other ferret that he has had enough.

Squeaking & Screeching
Many ferrets will squeak and screech while they play, and it doesn't always mean that they're losing the fight! Some vocal ferrets will jump on another ferret while squeaking or screeching. However, in some cases it does mean that the ferret vocalizing is the one losing and he is upset. As you get to know your ferrets, you will learn which are vocal and which will only make noise when they are angry or upset about something, and you can act on their noises accordingly.

Whining & Whimpering
A ferret that whines or whimpers is generally in some kind of discomfort, pain, or he is frightened. It is not a normal noise, and if you hear it, you need to investigate. If he is whimpering because of pain and it continues, you should contact your veterinarian. If he is making these noises while going to the bathroom, schedule a veterinary appointment immediately, as this can indicate a blockage.

When a ferret screams, it's never a good thing! A scream is generally a reaction to extreme pain or fear. In some cases, he may make it when he's extremely angry as well. Locate your ferret and find out what caused him to scream immediately - he may need your help.

This guide will help indicate your ferret's mood and communication.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Week in Review

Wow - this week was a complete and total whirlwind...

  • The big happening of the week was my Miss Maddie taking ill on Wednesday evening.  After an all night vigil and a vet appointment on Thursday morning I am happy to report its as if nothing ever happened.  She is feeling just great - full of energy and personality.
  • Theo exhibited many of the same symptoms so he went on the same antibiotics as Maddie - I think he is feeling quite good as well....so active and into everything.  I love that crazy boy.
  • As for the other ferrets - Violet, Clooney and Finn - they are all doing just great!!
  • Kitties have been all good this week - no illness or ick to report for them.  Things seem quite stable in feline world...
  • Miss Emma is doing well - she had a play date this afternoon with my parents dog Quincy.  She has been having her own tummy issues - but for her that is not all that unusual.  She is such the worrier and stress queen that a bit of tummy upset is not out of the ordinary.  Whatever was stressing her has passed and all is back to normal...
  • The humans had a week filled with work and taxes and chores and other craziness and we are looking forward to a stress free, beautiful weekend...
Here's to a calmer week next week - enjoy your weekend!!!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

What a Difference a Day and a Trip to the Dr Makes

Let's start off by saying that my little one is fantastic this afternoon - a vast improvement from just 24 hours ago.  She is running around playing, eating, drinking and enjoying being freed from the confines of the pen she was cooped up in last night.

Miss Maddie had a pretty rough night last night.  She was very lethargic for the bulk of the evening and overnight and she obviously had a very unhappy tummy based on some very unpleasant outputs.  Thankfully she was cooperative about drinking throughout the whole illness.  Food wasn't of interest until about 4 am and then she started to perk up.

When we got the the vets office she made a nice little deposit which saved her from having the uncomfortable fecal test procedure.  She was a tiny bit dehydrated but not terribly.  They did several tests - all of them negative which lead to the diagnosis of colitis.  We also had her ears checked for mites - thankfully none were found.  So - Maddie got some sub cutaneous fluids and some antibiotics which she will be sharing with Theo who is exhibiting many of the same symptoms - I think because he weighs over a pound more than Maddie he just didn't get it as bad.

Anyway - order has been restored upon my little zoo - for that I am thankful.  I am also looking forward to bedtime as the all night vigil over my sick baby has worn me out....

Here are a couple of snaps taken by Becky at the vet's office:

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Maddie's Got an Upset Tummy

My poor Maddie girl is feeling a bit under the weather this afternoon.  She was fine this morning and for the bulk of the day but about 5:15 she got up and went potty and it was not a pretty sight.

I  immediately called the vet - of course there wasn't too much they could do for me as they close at 5:30 but I did get to speak to her Dr. and he thought we should confine her and see what happens later tonight.  Ferrets have an incredibly fast metabolism and sometimes if they have icky poo the next round is better or even normal.  So - I have her resting in Clooney's traveling pen all tucked into her bed.  She is drinking so I don't believe she is dehydrated.  So far she isn't all that interested in food but she has both in her enclosure.  Now we wait for a few hours to see what the next output looks like and then make a decision as to whether we think she needs to go to the emergency hospital or if she can wait until 10:30 tomorrow morning when I have she scheduled to see her vet.

I am so hopeful this is just a one time thing - she is a very healthy ferret typically so I am not sure what could be ailing her.  Perhaps this is similar to Clooney's dietary indiscretion when he ate red licorice.  I will be keeping a very close eye on her -

Looks like Phoebe and Theo will be helping me....

I hope my baby is feeling better soon....

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

ZooCam - Jordan Lake Eagle Cam

Okay - its not actually technically a ZooCam but it is pretty cool.  The local lake here has quite the eagle habitat and they have a camera on one of the nests.  I believe the hatch occurred yesterday and now you can watch the baby grow and the mama take care of it via the web cam:


Last year on my birthday we went on a boat tour of the area - here are some snaps of that:

You can also get eagle updates on their Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/JordanLakeEagleCam