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Types of common illnesses treated

Common Illnesses treated by the team at Exotic Vet Century City. Read about the causes, symptoms and possible prevention.
Metal Toxicity in birds

Metal Toxicity is one of the most common toxic diseases that companion avian (birds) species present with. If left untreated it can become fatal very quickly.

Exposure to heavy metals can come from a number of different sources, including, but not limited to: paint, plaster, galvanized wire, bullets/ammunition, jewelry, chains, bells or other toys. It is important to eliminate any metal objects from your bird’s environment. 

Birds are highly sensitive to heavy metals, if any amount is ingested it is important to get veterinary attention as soon as possible, this will significantly improve their prognosis.

Common clinical signs include weakness, depression, lethargy, decreased appetite, respiratory problems such as labored breathing and tail bobbing, anemia (they may present as pale), crop stasis, and regurgitation.

Metabolic Bone Disease

What is Metabolic Bone Disease?

It is often caused by hypocalcaemia, and it results from a low intake of calcium and phosphates or, from being consumed by parasites. It can also be caused by low activation: No sunlight leads to no vitamin D and no calcium absorption. It most commonly occurs in birds and reptiles. 

Symptoms of Metabolic Bone Disease

In Birds:

  • Fragile bones that break easily 
  • Very dark feather discolouration 
  • Soft beak and nails
  • Seizures 
  • Being off-balance 

In Reptiles (Lizards):

  • Abnormally skew bones 
  • Bone fractures
  • Weakness
  • Poor Growth
  • Anorexia and egg binding in females

In Tortoises:

  • Soft or abnormal shell formation  
  • Piramidy or lipping of the shell
  • Bone fractures
  • Weakness
  • Poor growth

How to Prevent it:

  1. Birds: Give adequate calcium in the diet and make sure that the bird gets enough sunlight.
  2. Reptiles: Give adequate calcium supplementation and the correct UVB light source for the reptile species. (UVB lights must be replaced every 6 months)
  3. Prevent parasitism by bringing your pet’s stool to be checked for parasites every 4 – 6 months. 
EGG BOUND

What does egg bound mean?

It is when an animal is unable to lay its eggs. This is most commonly seen in reptiles and birds

How do i know if my pet is egg bound ?

When your pet has a history of egg-laying, they are prone to getting egg-bound. 

 What are the symptoms of Being Egg bound?

  • The animal is straining to lay eggs, but no eggs are being laid
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Weakness in the legs 
  • Lethargy  
  • The animal is not eating as usual

If you think your pet is Egg bound ,take it to an Exotic savvy vet immediately, as it is LIFE-THREATENING!

Respiratory Disease

What is Respiratory Disease (Pneumonia) ? 

It is an infection inside the lungs. Animals affected are mostly rats, rabbits, birds, guinea pigs and tortoises. 

What causes Respiratory Disease? 

It is most commonly caused by bacterial infection picked up in the environment, or it is caused by a secondary infection due to exposure of aerosolized toxins and a cold environment. 

Symptoms of Respiratory Disease : 

  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Nasal Discharge (runny nose)
  • Ocular discharge (weepy eyes)
  • Crackling or wheezing sounds when breathing 

How to prevent Respiratory Disease in your pets :

  • Keep your pet warm during cold temperatures
  • Do not expose them to aerosolised toxins 

What is aerosolised toxins?

Anything that humans can smell for example: diffuser scent, incense, perfume, insect repellent, cleaning chemicals, smoke and vape

If your pet shows any of the above mentioned signs and symptoms, Please contact your nearest Exotic savvy Vet

Gut-Stasis

What is Gut-stasis ?

Gastrointestinal Hypomotility which is a decreased movement in the gastric system and is a serious & potentially life-threatening condition that can affect Rabbits, Guinea pigs and Chinchillas

What causes Gut-stasis?

Primary cause: When your Bunny eats something abnormal, for example a piece of blanket, toxic plants, cleaning chemicals or piece of wire.

Secondary cause: Gut-stasis due to another underlying illness, pain or stress.

What is the symptoms of Gut-stasis?

  • Decreased eating
  • Decreased stool production 
  • Painful when touching the stomach 
  • Bloating 

Gut-stasis is deadly and if your pet has the above mentioned symptoms you must get the animal to an exotic savvy vet as soon as possible. As it can kill your pet in a matter of hours.

Aspergillosis

What is Aspergillosis ?

It Is a fungal infection caused by the fungus called Aspergillus, and is most commonly seen in the air sacs of birds .

What is the source of the fungal infection?

  • Sunflower seeds and Peanuts(monkey nuts)
  • Hay 
  • Unsanitary Conditions 

What are the symptoms of Aspergillosis ?

  • Weight loss
  • Wheezing noises when breathing 
  • Open mouth breathing 
  • Lots of yawning 
  • Feather plucking 

How can owners prevent this?

  • Do not feed sunflower seeds or peanuts to your birds
  • Make sure their environment is clean
  • Go to an Exotic savvy Vet for a health check every 4-6 Months 
  • Stay away from aerosolized toxins

If you see any of the above mentioned symptoms, please take your pet to the nearest Exotic savvy vet .

Crop Infection

What is a Crop infection ?

A crop infection is due to yeast called Candida as well as bacteria in the crop. 

What causes Crop infections?

  • Contact with human saliva and eating food out of humans' mouths. 
  • Eating rancid food 
  • Eating over ripe fruit and veggies. 

What are the symptoms of a crop infection?

  • Bruising 
  • Vomiting
  • Anorexia (not eating)
  • Weakness
  • Swollen crop
  • Open mouth breathing
  • Diarrhea

 How can owners prevent it ?

  • Do not let birds eat out of your mouth
  • Make sure the food is fresh 
  • Replace food and veggies a minimum of twice per day
  • Make fresh baby porridge every time before feedings

If your pet shows any of the above signs please take them to the nearest Exotic savvy vet, as this can cause crop stasis and be deadly. 

 

Why do you need to bring your pet for a health check ? Part 1

Rats,Hamsters,Mice & Gerbils:

Their life span is very short thus they need a health check every 4 months. With these pets, diseases progress very fast thus, catching things like lumps,enlarged organs and dental spurs before they worsen is vital. It is important to start the treatment as soon as possible. 

What does the Vet do when doing a health check?

  • Weigh the pet & check if your pet has any abnormal sized/shaped organs 
  • Check for heart disease & Lung disease as well as tumours and Arthritis 
  • Check for mites and internal parasites (worms) REMEMBER: bring your pet's stool sample with you when visiting the vet.
  • Teeth check 
  • Check the overall health of your pet 

Rabbits,Guinea pigs& Chinchillas 

They need a health check every 4-6 months, as with these pets, diseases progress fast. Catching things like lumps,enlarged organs and dental spurs before they worsen is vital. It is important to start the treatment as soon as possible.

What does the Vet do when doing a health check?

  • Weigh the pet & check if your pet has any abnormal sized/shaped organs 
  • Check for heart disease & Lung disease as well as tumours and Arthritis 
  • Check for mites and internal parasites (worms) REMEMBER: bring your pet's stool sample along with you when visiting the vet.
  • Conscious Teeth check - very important to check the back molars
  • Check the overall health of your pet 

Ferrets 

They need a health check every 4-6 months & all female ferrets need to be spayed & thereafter they need a suprelorin implant to prevent adrenal gland tumours. All Ferrets must be vaccinated against Distemper & Rabies. Catching things like lumps,enlarged organs and dental spurs before they worsen is vital as it is important to start the treatment as soon as possible.

What does the Vet do when doing a health check?

  • Weigh the pet & check if your pet has any abnormal sized/shaped organs 
  • Check for heart disease & Lung disease as well as tumours and Arthritis 
  • Check for mites and internal parasites (worms) REMEMBER: bring your pet's stool sample with you when visiting the vet.
  • Conscious Teeth check
  • Check the overall health of your pet. 

 

Why do you need to bring your pet in for a health check? Part 2

Hedgehogs 

These pets need to be sedated to be examined. They are prone to develop oral tumours and respiratory disease and catching it before it gets worse is best, so that the vet can start treatment immediately . 

What does the Vet do when doing a health check?

  • Sedate the patient to be examined 
  • Weigh the pet & check if your pet has any abnormal sized/shaped organs 
  • Check for heart disease & Lung disease as well as tumours and Arthritis 
  • Check for mites and internal parasites (worms) REMEMBER: bring your pet's stool sample with you when visiting the vet.
  • Conscious Teeth check
  • Check the overall health of your pet

REPTILES 

Chameleons,bearded dragons,ect. needs a check up every 6 months as they are prone to Pneumonia,Metabolic bone disease & internal parasites & Liver disease . Prevention is better than cure.

What does the Vet do when doing a health check? 

  • Weigh the pet & check if your pet has any abnormal sized/shaped oragans 
  • Check for heart disease & Lung disease as well as tumours and Arthritis 
  • Check for mites 
  • Check for internal parasites (worms) by doing a faecal floatation test REMEMBER: bring your pet's stool sample with you when visiting the vet.
  • Conscious Teeth check and check the mouth for mouth rot
  • Check the overall health of your pet 

Birds 

Need a check up for a health assessment, also called an Avian routine, every 4-6 months .They are prone to Respiratory disease,fungal infections and behavioural issues .

What does the Vet do when doing a health check?

  • If the bird is stressed the vet might want to sedate before doing the avian routine.
  • Weigh the pet & check if your pet has any abnormal sized/shaped organs
  • Check for heart disease & Lung disease as well as tumours and Arthritis
  • Check for mites and internal parasites (worms) REMEMBER: bring your pet's stool sample with you when visiting the vet .
  • Beak & nail file; wing trim at request of the owner
  • Check the overall health of your pet
Mites (External Parasites)

WHAT IS IT ?

It is a microscopic external parasite that is commonly found on Guinea pigs, Rabbits ,Rats ,Mice, Hamsters ,Birds & Snakes.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?

In Rabbits :

  • Flaky skin on their ears
  • A Increase in debris build-up in the ears & in advanced cases brown skin sloughing (Skin sloughing is the process of shedding dead surface cells from the skin) 

    In Hamsters:

  • Hair loss & severe itching ness of the skin, back,& stomach .

In Rat & Mice :

  • Blood spotting on the ears
  • Small scraps on it’s neck& shoulders & above it’s tail

In Guinea pigs:

  • Scabs on back ,rump & shoulders.
  • High sensitivity to touch, even painful when handled .
  • Flaky skin.

In Snakes :

  • Small mites can be seen between the scales & on the face of the snake . 

Mites can be uncomfortable & and indicates that your pet is immune suppressed and that a disease is present .

HOW CAN YOU PREVENT THIS?

  • Ensure that your pet’s environment are clean 
  • Do not use saw dust as a bedding 
  • Mite cases in exotics may need a vet intervention (take your pet for a check up ) 

If you see the above mentioned symptoms .Please contact the nearest exotic savvy vet .

Feather Plucking

There are 3 types of Pluckers

1.OCD Pluckers: (Stress Pluckers)

  •  Birds that are high strung
  •  That scream a lot and are scared 
  •  They are usually in good health
  •  Physically, there is nothing wrong

2.Hormone Pluckers:

  • Highly attached to owners
  • They overgroom (it is also seasonal)
  • These type of pluckers do well on Environmental adaption/husbandry adaption .

3.Medical pluckers:

( can only be identify by a medical professional , thus referring the animal to an avian or exotic savvy vet would be best.)

There is usually something medically wrong.

Things like liver disease, heart disease, aspergillosis, fungus, viruses, metal toxicity and pneumonia are possibilities that could be causing the plucking.

Pyometra

What is a Pyometra ?

It is an infection in the uterus that is caused by bacteria ,it is a deadly condition if not treated immediately as the animal can go into septic shock and die. It can be found in all female animals and is very painful.

What are the symptoms?

  • Vaginal discharge.
  • Weakness.
  • The animal is lethargic. 
  • The animal has pale mucous membranes.

How can you prevent this?

Spay your female pets 

If you see the above mentioned symptoms, Please contact your nearest exotic savvy vet as soon as possible.

Bumble foot

What is Bumble foot ?

It is also known as pododermatitis. It is a very painful swelling or sometimes an open wound on the bottom of the feet. Commonly found in Rabbits, Rats, Guinea pig and birds .

What causes bumble foot?

  • Walking on hard surfaces
  • Having a wet, dirty environment
  • Walking on wired surfaces
  • Having toenails that are too long

What are the symptoms ?

  • Swelling of the feet
  • Red or Pink round areas around the feet 
  • Painful when walking 
  • Lifting of the feet 
  • Overgrooming or mutilation of the foot or feet 

How do I prevent it ?

  • Keep cages, bedding, and pens dry & clean.
  • Your pet needs solid & soft bedding to walk on.
  • Cover all wired walking surfaces.
  • Use natural perches for birds.

  If you see any of the above mentioned symptoms, please contact the nearest exotic savvy vet .

PORPHYRIN

WHAT IS PORPHYRIN ?

Porphyrin (a red-brown pigment) is a normal secretion produced by the glands around rat eyes & nose . When the animal is not grooming, the pigment builds up around the eyes, nose, and on the fur.

WHAT CAUSES PORPHYRIN ?

When a rat is stressed or in pain , either with an encounter with another rat (a fight) or by being sick or even something like a friend passing away porphyrin can be seen around their eyes or nose or sometimes both .

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PORPHYRIN AND BLOOD?

Owners commonly report bleeding from the eyes and nose of their pet rats, but most of the time it is porphyrin. Blood is much thicker than Porphyrin and although Porphyrin has a red pigment it is more brown than normal blood.

If you see that your pet rat has porphyrin, it is a good idea to bring them to your nearest exotic savvy vet to get him/her checked out.

E.cuniculli (Encephalitozoon cuniculli)

What is E.CUNICULI ?

What is the signs of E.Cuniculi ?

E.Cuniculi causes destruction of the nervous tissue. Other signs commonly seen with this disease include:

  • A head tilt, 
  • Fitting(seizures)
  •  Loss of balance
  • Tremors
  • Kidney failure 
  • Bladder weakness. 

Unfortunately once the rabbit develops severe clinical signs this can lead to death, Thus it is very important to get your pet rabbit to an exotic savvy vet as soon as possible if you see these signs .

How can you prevent your rabbit from getting E.Cuniculi?

Rabbits become infected by the infective spores of E. cuniculi when they are released into an infected rabbit's urine. A new rabbit becomes infected by eating or inhaling these spores which will be left on the grass or bedding.

Thus it is important to separate your pets if one is showing any of the following symptoms and get them to an exotic savvy vet .It is important to always ensure your pet’s environment is clean .The area can be cleaned using diluted F10 sc (1ml in 10ml water )

It is a brain parasite also known as (Encephalitozoon cuniculi) it attacks 3 systems, mainly the brain ,kidneys and the eyes , This is very common in South Africa ,but if caught early some patients might survive with intensive medical treatment .

Eco Toxins

What are eco toxins?

The “active ingredient " in rat poison (calciferol) also known as eco toxins (which is a type of rat poison that can cause a severe increase in calcium.)

What are the symptoms of eco toxins ?

  • Shivering
  • Seizures
  • Shaking
  • Cardiac arrest 
  • Disorientated
  • Lethargy 

How can you prevent this from happening ?

Keep your pets away from the toxins and other toxic chemicals or poison. 

If you see any of the above mentioned symptoms please go to your nearest exotic savvy vet immediately after contacting them as this can lead to death.

Bladder Stones

What is Bladder stones?

It is a build up of calcium in the bladder in a form of a stone. This condition is very painful. It is most commonly found in guinea pigs and rabbits .

What causes bladder stones in rabbits and guinea pigs?

Diets that are too high in calcium, this includes too much spinach and kale, lucerne hay, pellets containing lucerne(Alfalfa). 

What is the symptoms of bladder stones? 

  • Blood in urine
  • Pain when urinating 
  • White sandy debris in urine. 
  • Not using its litterbox . 
  • Teeth grinding when urinating

How can owners prevent this?

  •  Ensure your pet is fed pellets that do not have lucerne as the main ingredient.
  • Do not feed lucerne(alfalfa) to rabbits and guinea pig older that 1 year 
  •  Limit kale and spinach to only a few times a week.

  If you see any of the above mentioned signs and symptoms please contact your nearest exotic savvy as soon as possible

Fowl Pox

What is fowl pox? 

It is a viral infection that is very contagious amongst birds like, Pigeons, quail, chickens, canaries etc. It affects the birds’ upper respiratory system, eyes, mouth and throat and can be life-threatening.

      What causes fowl pox?

Through biting insects like mosquitos from one affected bird to the other . Birds can get fowl pox from eating, inhaling or coming in contact with other birds that have fowl pox.

    What are the symptoms of fowl pox ?

  • Drop in egg production
  • Loss of appetite 
  • Weight loss

Wart-like scabby growths on the comb, feet, face and eyes of the bird

     How can it be prevented ? 

  • Mosquito control
  • Good biosecurity 
  • If there is an affected bird, it needs to be quarantined (separated from the others showing no symptoms )

If your bird is showing signs of the above mentioned, please contact your nearest exotic savvy vet as soon as possible .

Hay in Eye

When a piece of hay is in your pet’s eye it may have the following symptoms:

  • Teary eyes
  • Red & swollen eye
  • painful to touch 

If this has happened to your pet please get it to the nearest exotic savvy vet as soon as possible. Do not try to remove it without consulting an exotic savvy vet.

Coccidia

What is Coccidia ?

It is a gastrointestinal parasite (internal parasite) that is most commonly seen in young rabbits. This condition can be deadly if not treated . 

What are the causes of Coccidia in bunnies?

Bunnies can get the gastrointestinal parasite from other animals like their parents or an unhygienic environment.

What are the symptoms of Coccidia in bunnies?

  • Weakness 
  • Lethargy
  • Unexpected death
  • Gastric bloat
  • Diarrhea

How can bunny owners prevent this condition?

  • Keep your pets’ cages & environment clean & hygienic. 
  • Frequently check your pets for parasites.
  • All baby rabbits needs to be checked by an exotic savvy vet.
  • When going to the vet remember to bring a stool sample.

If you see the above mentioned signs, please contact your nearest exotic savvy vet .

Fly Strike

WHAT IS FLY STRIKE ?

It is when fly maggots infest the skin. commonly seen in rabbits and can be life-threatening .

WHAT ARE THE CAUSES ?

Overweight rabbits that cannot clean themselves ,thus having a dirty bum like when they may have diarrhoea that stinks and attracts flies.These flies then lay eggs that hatch into maggots that infest the skin .

A dirty or unhygienic environment, cage or pen .

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS ?

  • Foul smelling odour usually located at the back of your pets bum 
  • Usually painful when touched .
  • Owners will be able to see maggots on the skin and sometimes on the fur.
  • There will be wounds 

WHAT CAN OWNERS DO TO PREVENT THIS ?

  • Regularly clean the environment ,cages and pens of your rabbit.
  • Control your pet's weight 
  • Keep an eye out for diarrhea , as this is very dangerous for your bunny .
  • Fly and insect control
  • Regularly check your rabbit to see if there are any poops are stuck to their bum or for any wounds.

If you see any of the above mentioned signs please contact your nearest exotic savvy vet as soon as possible .

Heat Stroke

WHAT IS HEAT STROKE ?

This is a lethal condition, and can easily lead to organ damage or death. Most commonly seen in guinea pigs and rabbits.

WHAT ARE THE CAUSES?

Too high temperature, either due to the environment being too hot or too long fur coat.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS ?

Seizures.

Lethargy.

Warm to touch .

Unbalanced (falling over).

Increased respiratory rate .

Fast breathing .

HOW CAN OWNERS PREVENT THIS ?

Properly groom your longhaired pets .

keep your pets environment cool during hot temperatures , you can even use cold packs wrapped in a blanket to avoid them from eating the cold pack.

         

 If you see the above mentioned signs please consult your nearest exotic savvy vet as soon as possible.

Calcium Sludge in the Bladder

What is calcium slush?

It is an accumulation of calcium in the bladder. This condition is very painful as it can be compared to urinating out sand. It is most commonly found in guinea pigs and rabbits .

What is the causes ?

Diets that are too high in calcium, this includes too much spinach and kale, lucerne hay, pellets containing lucerne(Alfalfa). 

What are the symptoms? 

  • Pain when urinating 
  • White sandy debris in urine. 
  • Not using its litterbox . 
  • Teeth grinding when urinating 

How can owners prevent this?

  •  Ensure your pet is fed pellets that do not have lucerne as the main ingredient.
  • Do not feed lucerne(alfalfa) to rabbits and guinea pig older that 1 year 
  •  Limit kale and spinach to only a few times a week.

If you see any of the above signs and symptoms, please contact the nearest exotic savvy vet to get your pet the correct treatment.

Mouth Rot In Reptiles

Signs of mouth rot :

  •  loss of appetite
  • visible dead tissue in the mouth
  • pus coming from the mouth and/or nose 
  • red, inflamed mouth tissue. 

How can owners prevent this?

Keeping your reptile healthy is the best way to prevent mouth rot in reptiles. 

Make sure your reptile’s diet is a quality and healthy one. 

Keep the terrarium environment clean with weekly disinfecting sessions and daily checks for dirty spots or uneaten food.

Make sure your pet’s living space is maintained at the proper temperature and humidity level. 

Contact your exotic savvy vet immediately if you notice any of these symptoms, or if your reptile seems unusually lethargic or depressed.

Mouth Rot in REPTILES

What are the causes of mouth rot in reptiles?

  • An infection develops when your pet's immune system is compromised and is unable to handle common oral germs.
  • Poor nutrition
  • Mouth injuries
  • Unsuitable terrarium temperature or humidity levels can all weaken your pet's immune system.
  • A mouth infection can cause a variety of other issues as it progresses and finally travels to the esophagus and lungs.
  • The medical illness generally referred to as mouth rot occurs when a reptile's mouth gets inflamed. This condition can affect turtles, snakes, and lizards.

INFO SOURCED FROM :

https://dakotahillsveterinary.com/2013/12/15/mouth-rot-in-reptiles/#:~:text=Signs of mouth rot include,seems unusually lethargic or depressed.

Scale & Shell Rot in Reptiles

SHELL/SCALE Rot in REPTILES

Shell/scale rot is as a catch-all term for any problem with your pet reptile’s scales or skin, including:

  • Blister disease (vesicular dermatitis)
  • Ulcerative dermatitis
  • Bacterial abscesses
  • Secondary infections as a result of burns or abrasions

What are causes of shell/ scale rot ?

  • Unsanitary living environment – Caring for a living creature is hard work, whether it’s a pet snake or a newborn baby. Appropriate reptile husbandry includes adequately cleaning their enclosure on a regular basis. You wouldn’t let your child sleep in a soiled crib, so don’t let your pet snake slither around in a dirty terrarium.
  • Improper habitat regulation – The temperature and humidity of your pet’s enclosure play a key role in scale and shell rot. Often, when their habitat is too wet and cold, the substrate (bedding) never fully dries, creating the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and fungi that often lead to scale rot /shell rot —perfect for the bacteria, not so perfect for your pet.
  • Deficiency of vitamins A or C – This is less commonly cited as a trigger for scale/shell rot but can contribute to its development. If the living conditions are optimal, this may mean the reptile lacks sufficient nutrients.

What is the signs of Shell/Scale rot :

  • Skin or scales or Shell are cracked and crusty
  • Raised or swollen scales/shell scoot
  • Red, brown, or otherwise dark discolored skin, especially near the tail or on the abdomen / shell
  • Loss of appetite

How to prevent shell/scale rot ?

  •  Preventing scale/shell rot requires diligent reptile care, starting with a few straightforward steps:
  • Daily cleaning – Clean up any spilled liquids, shed skin, or eliminated waste at least once a day. Again, if you wouldn’t let your newborn baby live in those conditions, you shouldn’t let your reptile pal, either.
  • Weekly cleaning – Once every week or two, you should perform a more in-depth cleaning, following the sterilization procedure outlined earlier.
  • Sturdy water bowl – This may seem deceptively simple, but a sturdy bowl will prevent spillage that leads to damp living conditions and increased bacteria.
  • Optimal environment – Maintain the ideal humidity and temperature at all times. Check to make sure the substrate is drying correctly; if not, consider raising the temperature slightly or lowering the humidity. You can reduce the humidity by increasing the ventilation or scaling back on the regular misting.
  • Contact your exotic savvy vet immediately if you notice any of these symptoms, or if your reptile seems unusually lethargic or depressed.

INFO SOURCED FROM https://vetericyn.com/blog/how-to-treat-scale-rot-on-reptiles/

Internal Parasite in Reptiles

What is internal parasites in reptiles?

It is a internal infestation of worms in the reptiles intestines .

Causes of Internal parasites in reptiles:

  • ingestion of parasite eggs from the environment or food 
  • either eating or coming in contact with faeces from other reptiles . 

What are the signs of internal parasites in reptiles:

  • Anorexia
  • not eating 
  • weight loss 
  • lethargy
  • Secondary infections due too low immune system 

How can this be prevented:

  • Please bring your reptile pets in for a health check at an exotic savvy vet every 6 months for the vet to do a faecal analysis (remember to bring a faecel sample with you when visiting the vet).
  • clean faeces immediately after they have passed it .
  • clean water and food bowls every day as they like to poop in the water.
  • clean the substrate and enclosure daily 
  • do not put too much individuals together in one enclosure .

If you see any of the above mentioned signs please contact your nearest exotic savvy vet to make an appointment .

Vit A Deficiency in Birds

What is Vitamin A Deficiency in Birds? Birds get vitamin A deficiency because they do not get enough vitamin A in their diet. It usually occurs in birds on sunflower seeds, peanuts and other seed mixes. It also occurs in birds that do not get enough fruits and vegetables.

What are the signs:

Low immune system

Sinus abscesses 

Rhinoliths 

(Stoney build-up inside the nostrils)

Abscess underneath the jaw 

Sinus infections and pneumonia

What can Owners do to prevent this:

Feed your bird a suitable diet made up of a good quality pellet, fruit and vegetables. 

Take your bird to your exotic savvy vet every 4 - 6 months, so they can check that your bird is healthy.

What is Vitamin A Deficiency in Birds?

Birds get vitamin A deficiency because they do not get enough vitamin A in their diet. It usually occurs in birds on sunflower seeds, peanuts and other seed mixes. It also occurs in birds that do not get enough fruits and vegetables.

If you see any of the above mentioned signs, contact your nearest exotic savvy vet.

Vit C Deficiency in Guinea Pigs

What is Vitamin C deficiency in guinea pigs?

Guinea pigs get vitamin C deficiency because they do not get enough vitamin C in their diet. This affects their immune function. Vitamin C deficiency is also known as scurvy, and can lead to early heart disease or Steatitis. Steatitis is the inflammation of fat.

What are the Signs of Vitamin C dificiency in Guinea pigs? Hair loss Wounds and scabs around the mouth Dry skin Getting ill easily

How can owners prevent this from happening : Feeding good quality pellets Feeding good quality fruit and vegetables Giving pediatric vitamin C supplement If you notice any of the above mentioned signs in your pet, please take it to your nearest exotic savvy vet.

Diarrhea in Rabbits

What causes diarrhoea?

Diarrhoea is a symptom rather than a specific disease, meaning that it can be seen as a result of multiple conditions. The most common causes of diarrhoea in rabbits include:

Diet-related diarrhoea

Coccidiosis

Viral or bacterial gut infections

Antibiotic medications

Systemic illnesses such as liver disease

How does my rabbit get diarrhoea?

Diet-related diarrhoea can occur due to a low-fiber diet, sudden changes in diet, feeding of inappropriate greens, such as iceberg lettuce, or feeding of excessive quantities of rabbit-safe greens. Causes of poor appetite or appetite changes such as dental disease, stress, or other sources of pain can also result in reduced fiber intake, which can lead to diarrhoea.

Coccidiosis, bacterial, and viral gut infections are most common 

in young rabbits around the time of weaning, especially in cases 

of overcrowding or poor hygiene, or where groups of rabbits are being mixed together.

Symptoms of diarrhoea in rabbits

Rabbits experiencing diarrhoea may exhibit: 

Loose/watery, smelly stool Faecal staining around the anus

Distended belly

Sick rabbits may also become Lethargic

Anorexic

Develop a poor hair coat

Breathe rapidly.

If you notice any of the above signs in your rabbit, contact your nearest exotic savvy vet right away, as diarrhoea can be deadly.

Diarrhea in Guinea Pigs

What Is Diarrhoea in Guinea Pigs? Diarrhoea is more common in young guinea pigs than adults, but it can happen at any age. It is essential to monitor and investigate your guinea pig’s poop daily. If you notice softer stools and watery diarrhoea, call your veterinarian right away so your pet can be seen promptly. Diarrhoea can cause dehydration, loss of nutrients, and can get worse very quickly, if it’s not treated swiftly. To prevent any spread of infectious agents, separate a guinea pig with diarrhoea from other guinea pigs until they are deemed safe to be around others. Symptoms of Diarrhoea in Guinea Pigs Guinea pigs experiencing diarrhoea may exhibit: Loose/watery, smelly stool Fecal staining around the anus Distended belly Sick guinea pigs may also become Lethargic Anorexic Develop a poor hair coat Breathe rapidly. Causes of Diarrhoea in Guinea Pigs Guinea pigs can get diarrhoea from: Dietary imbalance, including too many carbohydrates, too many fresh greens, too many treats, or not enough fiber Recent antibiotics, especially those used to treat gram-positive bacteria (like penicillin) Dental disease Infectious bacteria, including clostridium, salmonella, e coli, etc. Parasites Stress from overcrowding and poor sanitation Fungal infection (this is rare) Hyperthyroidism

If you notice any of the above signs in your guinea pig, contact your nearest exotic savvy vet right away, as diarrhoea can be deadly.

The importance of getting 
your pets sterilized.

Pets that are unsterilized are almost certain to develop these health conditions as they age, it is important to know the signs and symptoms: 

Discharge of any kind and quantity from the vagina - this is never normal and is a sign of a pyometra.

Tenderness around the abdomen and/or genitalia.

Swelling of the abdomen and/or testicles.

Bleeding from the vagina and/or urethra.

A mass of any size that can be felt upon palpation surrounding the abdomen and/or testicles.

sterilisation prevents the occurrence of mammary tumors, pyometra (infection of the uterus), endometriosis & ovarian cysts, uterine tumors, uterine prolapse, testicular cancer, prostatitis alongside many other health conditions we see frequently in unsterilized pets.

If your pet has any of the above signs, seek urgent medical attention AT ANY EXOTIC SAVVY VET- do not attempt to treat at home as this can easily worsen their condtion.

Seizures

What is a seizure ?

A seizure is defined as an uncontrollably high spike in electrical activity between brain cells, also known as neurons or nerve cells, which results in transient anomalies in behaviors, sensations, states of awareness, muscle tone or movements (stiffness, twitching, or limpness). Not all seizures are the same. The sort of animal experiencing a seizure will also determine its outcome. For instance, after a seizure, a rabbit will typically leap into the air and experience rigidity in their limbs, whereas birds will usually flap their wings in unison on the ground. Where during seizures, rats begin to twitch excessively and constrict or stiffen their limbs 

If your pet is having a seizure secure the animal safely so that they can’t injure them selves and then go to your nearest exotic savvy vet as soon as possible as this can be deadly

Masses

One of the things that we at Exotic vet century city often see are masses .

the different type of masses we see are :

Type of masses

  • Skin cysts- blocked follicle - this can form an abscess.
  • Tumors- cancerous/ benign mass
  • Abscesses- puss filled mass
Chlamydia psittaci in birds

What is Chlamydia psittaci: It is a type of bacteria that often infects birds. These bacteria can infect people and cause a disease known as psittacosis. Psittacosis can lead to illness or pneumonia (lung infection).

How can this happen ? The bacteria can infect people exposed to the infected birds.

When the droppings and secretions dry, small dust particles (that include the bacteria) can get into the air.

 The signs of C. psittaci infection in birds are non-specific and include:

Sinusitis - runny nose and eyes

Poor appetite

Inflamed eyes

Breathing difficulty

Diarrhoea 

Infected birds may not have signs of disease or even seem sick. 

When birds have symptoms caused by C. psittaci infection, veterinarians call the disease avian chlamydiosis.

One important aspect of preventing Psittacosis is to control infection among birds.

Prevention - have new birds tested by your avian veterinarian before they get introduced into your house. Keep cages

Clean - clean cages, food and water bowls daily.

Position cages so that food, feathers, and droppings cannot spread between them. (i.e., do not stack cages, use solid-sided cases or barriers if cages are next to each other).

Avoid over-crowding.

Isolate and treat infected birds

 If you see any of these signs please contact the neatest exotic savvy vet. 

Psittacosis is a state controlled disease, so any positive cases should be reported to the state veterinarian.

Normal Vs Abnormal Poop Chart