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Anybody want a sweet-smelling flower, or 4?

Taceas
06-16-2004, 03:00 PM
The mother got hit on the highway a few days ago, and she left these behind. There were six originally, but two were dead when I happened upon them. So now four remain: 3 girls and 1 boy.

I immediately took them to the local vet as they were all covered in fly eggs, maggots, and lice. So they got some shots, wormed, given intravenous glucose and saline and vitamins. They're perking up pretty good already, now if they'd only eat the kitten replacement milk I have we'd be set.

The vet estimated their age to around 3 weeks. Their eyes are barely open, and they still don't have any erupted teeth, and they don't walk all that good yet.

But they've been given an insecticide bath already and their eyes flushed out. I think if I hadn't found them they wouldn't have lasted the night. They were soaking wet and cold when I found them all huddled up.

http://www.mainecoon.net/~rain/FamilyPics/ThisAndThat/Skunks0.JPG

http://www.mainecoon.net/~rain/FamilyPics/ThisAndThat/Skunks1.JPG

http://www.mainecoon.net/~rain/FamilyPics/ThisAndThat/Skunks2.JPG

Just thought I'd share the cute little buggers. :D

And as for names, the boy is Pepé and the three girls are: Daisy, Rose, and Violet. Gotta keep up with the skunk cartoon characters. =D

MegF.
06-16-2004, 03:05 PM
OMG!! How cute are those!? Maybe a wildlife rescue can get them back out into the wild when they are big enough.

Neumann
06-16-2004, 03:09 PM
Man Taceas,

You sure seem to come upon an interesting assortment of cute little critters. It's very fortunate for all of them that you're the one to discover them.

Kat
06-16-2004, 03:16 PM
Aww, how cute... goodluck with them.

-Kat

Amanda E
06-16-2004, 03:47 PM
They are adorable! I guess it'd be a bit difficult (not to mention smelly), but have you thought about keeping any as pets rather than giving them to a rehaber?

My grandfather had a skunk as a pet when he was a boy. He happened upon a few babies just like you did, except only one made it. No vets around to care for them then like there are now. His mother hated it, because it was always spraying the farm dogs. :D

Quigs
06-16-2004, 04:29 PM
Nowadays, you can get skunks de-scented just as you would do with ferrets.

From what I have heard from several people, they make excellent pets actually.

Quigs

Taceas
06-16-2004, 06:22 PM
Quigs and Amanda,

The thought of keeping one for a pet crossed my mind, yes. I've already got a ferret, so the care of a skunk really wouldn't be all that different. I almost considered owning a skunk for a pet before I got my ferret, but the price and the problem of having licenses for them seemed daunting for my small bank account when I just moved out of my parent's house.

It would take a de-scenting operation for sure. Right now they smell kind of musky, ferret-ish..but thankfully they haven't discovered out how to spray yet. =P

I raised up an orphan raccoon when I was younger, but finally had to let him go to a state park display because he was developing one hell of a temper when he got scolded. So maybe I can do something like that. Adopt them out to local state parks or to wildlife officials who do shows on wild animals.

I'm going to give the local game warden a call tomorrow and see what my options are. I am really leary about just letting them go with being accustomed to human activity. Unless I release them in a very remote location, I suspect they'll make a nuisance of themselves. But I'll have to see what he says for sure.

The one I thought wasn't going to make it seems to really be rebounding after being tube fed and warmed up. She's really a squeaker, talks non-stop when you pick her up. There's one little girl who doesn't have much white on her, and she's a cuddler. She'll cry in the box and when you pick her up and hold her close to your chest, instantly asleep. =D

I'll keep you all updated with any information that becomes available.

Sandra
06-17-2004, 06:49 AM
Taceas,

Your love for animals is truly heartwarming. Those lucky little flowers!! I hope they continue to thrive under your care.

My daughter is cut from a similar cloth as you... I guess I should prepare myself for ANY possibility. ;)

Cheers,
Sandra

CornCrazy
06-17-2004, 07:02 AM
They are precious! I wish it wasn't illegal to own one here in TN. I would definitely take one! I've always thought they were AWESOME animals!

FYI, a lot of wildlife rehab places aren't allowed to rehab skunks simply because of the threat of rabies. I know the one near me isn't allowed. Whenever someone called about baby skunks (while I was there), rabies control was sent out to collect the animals, and then they were euthanized :angry01:

Also, (FYI) even those babies COULD have rabies since it is gotten from saliva of an infected animal. If the mother had it, then there is a chance that the babies have it. The bad thing about skunks is that they don't react to the virus like other animals do. They are typically asymptomatic. That is what makes them so dangerous!

I admire that you are trying to rescue them, but please realize the danger you may have put yourself in! Unfortunately, you should probably check into preventative measures to keep you from getting the virus...just in case...

Taceas
06-18-2004, 01:04 AM
Update:

Two of the females have passed away today. One was looking listless when I went to feed them this morning, and wasn't wanting to feed at all.

The second one passed away when I went to feed them an hour ago. She seemed to have trouble breathing and sounded rattly when she did breathe, then she convulsed and slipped away.

To prevent the passage of any diseases into wild animal populations I am going to cremate the remains tomorrow.


CornCrazy:

I've tried looking up information on rabies in skunks and can't seem to find very much information. Do you have any idea how it progresses at all as far as symptoms go? I do know they're not as clinical about it as other animals, but surely there has to be some symptoms. This is about all I've found:

Skunks with rabies have two interesting peculiarities:

1. 90% will not spray even when cornered by man or dog.
2. Regardless of sex, they will try to mother a litter of puppies or kittens. Invariably they will nip one or more of the litter thus transmitting the disease to these highly susceptible animals.

Regardless, I have been taking pretty good precautions, I think. I always wear latex gloves when feeding and handling wastes. I disinfect everything that might have been in contact with their wastes or them with some blue colored disinfectant the vet gave me. It's in an un-named spray-bottle however. I disinfect the nipple of the bottle after each feeding with Nolvasan. And even though I wear gloves, I wash my hands to my elbows with Dial soap and hot water.

CornCrazy
06-18-2004, 03:56 AM
Misty,

I am not sure about the progression of the disease in skunks. I personally would take (or send overnight - packed with ice packs) the two that died to your state lab. They need to be tested for Rabies. You may even be able to take them to a rabies control center in your area. They should be able to send them off...Make sure they know not to freeze the bodies, though!

You should NEVER handle them without gloves on! Babies will typically try to suckle each other and thus saliva will be on their bodies. You should also never hold them against you unless you have a protective impermeable barrier between you and the baby.

Otherwise, just continue being very concious about where they are, what they touch, what you touch after handling them, etc. Make sure that everything that comes into contact with them is throughly disinfected!

I'll ask around and see what I can find out. It probably will be next week because I will not be back at work until then. I take my National Board exam today. I'm glad I have a weekend to relax before going back to work!