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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-03-2010, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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furless hamster in NYC

Hi,

New to the forum. We have a syrian hamster named Smootsy. She's a little over a year old.

Recently, after adding some new bedding, she began to lose the fur from her butt and her tummy. The fur on her back higher up, near her head, was otherwise okay.

We thought the new bedding was sticking to her fur and she was scratching her fur off out of annoyance. We changed back to the old bedding, but her skin continues to be slightly red, slightly scaly, and we've recently noticed some scabs. In addition, there is a small patch of little tiny black dots.

Any takers on what's going on? We suspect mites, and less likely some kind of fungal infection. We bought a "mite and lice" bird spray and are using that on her fur and her cage. We've thrown out her ball, her old bedding, and some other stuff that might have been contaminated.

Also, we want to take her to a vet. We live in New York City. Any good vets to go to? What price should we expect to pay?

Thanks a lot in advance!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-03-2010, 11:21 PM
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I really don't think you should be using mite and lice sprays.... it's probably toxic. DE36 is a great, all-natural killer of things like mites.

What bedding WERE you using? Pine? Cedar? Aspen?
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 12:13 AM
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This vet treats hamsters: http://www.avianandexoticvets.com/

I'm not sure about prices, though.

I actually wouldn't use any OTC sprays right now. Wait until the vet tells you exactly what's wrong.




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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 12:50 AM
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Hey!

I agree I would wait and take her to the vet and find out exactly what's wrong before you use anything on her.

Other than the link already posted, I think the Animal Medical Center will treat most exotics including rodents. I've been there with one of my rabbits before, they are open 24/7 for emergency cases - just make sure you call and talk to them before making an appointment because not all vets there treat all species.

http://www.amcny.org/

Price will really depend on what's wrong I think. If you're worried about the cost, you could call and ask about it or go in and talk to a receptionist. They can sometimes give you a price estimate, but not knowing whats wrong with her they probably won't be able to give you a very accurate price until you bring her in.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-06-2010, 08:40 AM
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When you spray ur hamster with any mite and lice spray, always read the instructions at the back, never use anything that ISNT for small animals.
Yeah ring the vets, but dont think thats its too expensive so i wont use it, cause thats not fair on the hamster. I think the vets will be the best place too get the medication stuff from instead off shops, they really dont know what there talking about.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-08-2010, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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Well, so we did try the spray once, before posting, but only once. We have been using Carefresh bedding, except for that little misadventure with the other bedding (little balls).

Anyway, we brought her to the vet today - Avian and Exotic Vets - and saw Dr. Maguire. She said it could be either mites or Cushing's, and gave Smootsy a treatment of Revolution (selamectin). She recommended a second treatment in two weeks. She did not recommend doing a skin scraping. And apparently the cluster of black dots are comedones.

After we got back home, though, we looked up Cushing's in hamsters online and the pictures and description seem to fit better than mites. The fur loss is symmetric and it's on the belly and backside instead of up near the head. We're pretty upset, as this condition doesn't have a treatment, and it seems like it could be more painful for her.

We'll hope and pray it's not, but if it is, I guess we'll just have to play with her a lot more while we still have some time left with her.
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