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Old 05-04-2019, 12:30 PM   #341
Coco61
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Default Re: Nugget's thread

That's a very thoughtful set up for Nugget now. Watching what gave him trouble was a good idea so you knew what to adjust. I expect him to like the Sputnik shelter and the hammock is lovely. He can stop off in there once he is used to it. Soft and warm. His hoard made me chuckle. Huge for such a tiny hamster, bless him. Hope he likes it all soon enough.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:03 PM   #342
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Thank you Coco. I shall have to keep an eye on the hammock in case he chews it but I don’t think he will. He likes chewing hard things. The sisal rope he had in his cage when I got him - it was used on his egg box hammock originally - same pieces of rope. I got that hammock for him ages ago and only just worked it into his set up - and needed now maybe for some interest and comfort.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:47 PM   #343
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His hoard is huge! The hemp mat looks really soft, I'm sure he'll feel much better moving around now. Sounds like you spent a lot of time setting it up for him, he's lucky to have such a caring owner <3
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Old 05-04-2019, 03:02 PM   #344
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Thank you Juls - he really needed this adjustment. I wouldn't call the hemp mat that soft - but it's not that rough either - main thing is he can walk on it without losing his balance. I hope he enjoys the hammock as that is soft. So far he just walked in one end and out the other end like a tunnel
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Old 05-04-2019, 03:36 PM   #345
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I have been re-thinking Nugget's situation generally. When his lumps turned out not to be infection, it was accepted they were tumours and I assumed he had cancer. He may have. But recently, although his lumps are bigger, he doesn't seem unwell in himself and hasn't changed his activities. I am not sure whether he would be the same or worse without Metacam but do think he had discomfort from them so the Metacam helps.

I am now thinking they may be mammary tumours, and from what I've read those are nearly always benign. So he may not have cancer. But the tumours can still cause issues.

So will have to see how he goes now.
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Old 05-05-2019, 12:54 PM   #346
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It's hard to tell if it's cancer or not. Have they grown really fast? Or has it been slow? Usually cancer seems to grow faster than benign tumors. Both my hamsters who had cancer had one massive lump that first grew very fast, then slowed down, and then grew really fast again. Also, if you can touch it and it feels rough underneath the skin (as in not smooth) that's usually a sign of cancer.

The fact that he doesn't seem unwell is a good sign Both my hams were healthy for a very long time after they got cancer, so even if it is cancer he might have a lot more time left
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Old 05-05-2019, 03:49 PM   #347
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Thank you. Yes it's all a bit uncertain.
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Old 05-08-2019, 04:16 AM   #348
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So Nugget had a trip to the vet's today. His Metacam bottle was nearly empty (I wasted a lot initially) and I was unsure about what was what with him. I didn't really want to take him or disturb him as he's just settled into his new set up and enjoying it - just wanted the Metacam. But decided it was best at this stage.

The Vet was very good and helpful and said she is happy with him carrying on the way he is. Surgery is definitely out of the question now as he now has skin nodules where his fur has come off as well.

I took his playbox lined with hemp mat, and with a saucer and tube tunnel in it as well and a little box of food. The playbox is quite shallow and thought the vet could see how he moved around etc in it, and it's easier to pick him up from there. So lifted him from the pet carrier into the playbox and she got a good look at him moving around. The reason he is better on the flat is because on slopes, his back foot sort of trips over one of the dangly lumps. But on level surfaces he does fine. Doesn't seem to happen when he's on his wheel and saucer either. She could see how active he was, running on his wheel and nibbling his food etc.

So he's fine to continue on Metacam unless he shows signs of kidney or liver failure as apparently then Metacam can cause more harm than good. She has kept him on the same dosage even though he weighs more, because the additional weight is the lumps.

As it may come to him needing helping on his way at some point, she explained their procedures for pts which was very reassuring - they always give an anaesthetic first and then bring the pet to the owner to hold after injection. She thinks it's more likely he develops complications than passes in his sleep - eg scratching the lumps and getting them infected. But at the moment that isn't an issue.

So will just continue with palliative care and see how he goes. Vet is satisfied he is doing fine at present now I've got the mobility issues sorted in the cage.
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:13 PM   #349
Coco61
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That was a good way to take Nugget to the vet. Gave her an idea of how he was managing his various activities. Glad you have the metacam so he can continue with that in his treat. Hope he is comfortable for a while yet.
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:37 PM   #350
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Thank you Coco. In some ways his walking is a disability. But in other ways he can still dig a tunnel like nobody's business, and can chew for England!
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