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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-05-2002, 01:34 AM Thread Starter
 
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Question Antibiotics

I've been looking for somewhere to buy antibiotics for emergencies with my chins, and I've finally found them, so I have a few questions for anyone who has experiance with this type of thing.
1. What is the difference between baytril and gentamyacin/ what are the differences in how they should be used?
2. Are there other drugs I should have on hand besides baytril and/or gentamyacin?
3. What is the difference between baytril drops and injectable? I assume that the drops are for external use?

Thats about all I can think of for now, but any other info/advice would be appreciated too. Please don't tell me not to use these without a vets supervision, having these on hand could have saved chinnie lives in the past, or at least given me the peace of mind that I had done everything I could. I will use any medications responsibly and only as a last resort if I can't get to the vet.
Thank you for any info, I'm trying to get as informed as possible.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-05-2002, 01:44 AM
 
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I would never use Baytril for my chins, I use Bactrim. I won't tell you not to use them to go the vet, but I will say use them only after speaking to your vet.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-05-2002, 02:10 AM Thread Starter
 
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I will definetly talk to my vet to get dosages/ suggestions ect. He wouldn't give or sell them to me but I'm sure he'll be very cooperative in helping me. What is bactrim, I don't think I've ever heard of that? I'll have to see if that is available as well. I am still in the reasearching phase. Why is it that emergencies always happen when the vet isn't available? Sigh....
Thanks for the input!

Last edited by Becki; 03-05-2002 at 02:12 AM.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-08-2002, 04:21 PM
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Exclamation Sassy-

What have you heard about Baytril?? I'd like to know, our vet has prescribed it and it's worked fine, but in some cases not as effective, the current girl I have on antib is using vibramyacin- and this seems to be really good stuff, works fast and is effective. Tell me what your opinions/ insights are on this, is there any warning/s I should know about for Baytril??? What do you think about vibramyacin and the others previously mentioned?

Thanks, Sassy!!
 
post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2002, 02:54 AM
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I don't know alot about Baytril I thought it was a safe drug till I took my chin to the vet.She gave him a shot of Baytril and he was gone an hour later that is my experience with the shot


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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2002, 07:47 AM
 
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I also had a chin die after one dose of Baytril, I was told of the dangers of Baytril afterwards by a well known breeder. Baytril can be dangerous if given in to high of a dosage. Can be very easily overdosed.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2002, 10:31 AM
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Yes Sassy that is what I found out also about Baytril.Too much can be lethal to chins.


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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2002, 04:14 PM
 
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Using drugs on chins

Hi Everyone,

I want to comment on the things that have been said during this thread. I want to make clear up front, I am not a veterinarian, but in the last several months I have had my share of sick chinchillas, so I have learned a lot as I have an outstanding chin knowledgable vet.

First off, Becki, I don't know who/what your source for drugs for the chins are, but I would be VERY VERY VERY careful of buying drugs this way. You could be getting the wrong drug, or being sold out-of-date drugs.

Regarding Baytril. It is a very STRONG drug which comes in two forms: 1) injectable and 2) oral. There are two problems with this drug: 1) it should not be given to a chin under the age of 2 years except as a last resort when nothing else works, it can cause the cartilege to stop growing which would then cause other muscular and skeletal problems later, 2) overdose with this drug is common when the vet is not experienced with chinchillas. A bad side effect of Baytril is that your chinnie will, about 99% chance, go off of their food. When using Baytril, you will need to hand feed your chin 2 to 3 times per day with a mush consisting of baby food, live culture yogurt, crushed up pellets, some ground up Kline grain supplement or calf manna; and give a probiotic (yogurt with live cultures, acidophillus or Bene-Bac gel available from your vet) in the evening about 3 hours after the last dose of Baytril to replace the good bacteria that are present in their digestive tract. Also, oral Baytril must be refrigerated.

Bactrim is a drug that in humans is used for respiratory and lung infections, particularly for those that smoke because the bacteria is worse in the airways. I have not heard of it being used on chins, not to say that it isn't, but none of mine have had to have it.

Gentamycin is more of a broad spectrum antibiotic, again, haven't had to use this one.

A drug that is more commonly used for chins is Sulfatrim. This too is more of a broad spectrum drug that is used to treat upper respiratory infections, vaginal/uterine infections, urinary tract infections and other low key infections.

Now my caution/warning to EVERYONE! You should not treat a chin yourself, this is why vets do not prescribe drugs without seeing the animal first. As you can see from my descriptions of drugs above, some can be used to treat a range of problems, some are very specific. For instance, giardia and coccidiosis are both intestinal parasites, but the treatments are totally different families of drugs. You also have to be concerned with pregnancies in females, though no drug is truly safe for a pregnant or lactating female, some are safer than others. My best advice for everyone is to start putting aside some money from each paycheck so that if an emergency arises, you have the funds to get your animal to a vet, even if it does cost $600. Also, know your animal's behaviors when it is well so that you will know if s/he stops eating or drinking, or quits pooping or has strong odorous poops, that there is a problem, then you can get treatment sooner so that it is not an emergency situation. We all love our chinnies very much, but we can sometimes do them more harm than good by trying to treat them ourselves.

Sorry that this is such a long post, but I am trying to share my experiences with you to help you and hopefully prevent you from making a disasterous mistake.

Last edited by chinkeep; 03-09-2002 at 04:17 PM.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2002, 04:43 PM
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Chinkeep,

Thank you so much for posting!! You were a great help to me when I was treating Tuck and Roll and your advice is greatly appreciated!

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mom to three wonderful kids (9, 5.10, 4),
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2002, 05:05 PM
 
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Chinkeep.
Bactrim was given to one of my chins that had pneumonia (she was pregnant at the time) Baytril was given at first (she went into seizures after one dose, we almost lost her) the vet then gave us Bactrim, she is still with us today and delivered 2 very healthy kits.
I was told of the dangers of Baytril by very well known breeder after losing a 1 yr old male that died about 40 minutes after being given Baytril.
I would never self medicate one of my chins and would not recommend it.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-14-2002, 08:07 PM
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Originally posted by chincare.com: Thank you so much for your input! Chinkeep, if you don't mind, I'm going to post your note, crediting you, on my website for others to see (it'll probably be under "my field experience" notes for format style, but credited to you)- also, I'll show that to my vet. Sassy, thanks again for speaking up and letting us know! Proves how invaluable these forums can be.
Chinkeep- just as a means to reference, are you a vet/ vet's asst? Just asking because I like to do my source research. Thanks!!



Posted by chinkeep:
Chincare,

Well, as I said in the beginning of my earlier post, I'm neither, just a hobby mutation breeder. I currently have a small herd of 14 chins, but not all of those are breedable, yet. However, in the building of my herd, I have met several challenges and have a WONDERFUL veterinarian who is willing to share her knowledge with me, she even lets me look in the microscope at specimens so I can see what I am fighting, and she tells me why she is doing something one way rather than another. Other knowledge has been gained through email and other chinnie bboards. Much of what was in my reply yesterday was direct from my vet, my breeder or just good old fashioned experience from what I have gone through with my animals.

I don't mind if anyone uses information that I have provided as long as your readers understand that I am not a vet/ or vet tech and that only a vet can make proper diagnosis and treatment of their animals. If you ever find conflicting information, please feel free to let me know becuase I have been wrong on a couple of occasions and I will certainly take my lumps when I am wrong, the important thing is learning.

Hope that I have answered your questions!

John


Posted by Becki:
Chinkeep, thanks for the good info! From what I've heard I thought baytril was the norm for treating chins...I guess not! My vet just prescribed sulfatrim for 2 of my chins with recurring poo problems and when we talked about it, it sounded like a safer, more all around antibiotic. As far as self medicating my chins, It's not a money issue, I will go without food, heat, whatever to make sure that they have everything they need. The problem is that the only vet I would trust with my chins is about 2 hours away from me, closes early on saturdays and is closed sunday . I've been in situations where those 2 days mean life or death, and having antibiotics on hand could've saved thier lives. Than again, maybe not but I can't even describe the guilt I have for not being able to even try. I would never self diagnos/treat an animal if there was another alternative, Please don't think I'm being irresponsible, hopefully just overcautious and I'll never need it.

I am thinking of buying the medications from PetCareRx.com. Anyone else ever deal with these people?

Thank you again to everyone for the info, keep it coming!

Wife to an amazing man,
mom to three wonderful kids (9, 5.10, 4),
2 dogs, 3 hermit crabs and 2 bettas

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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-14-2002, 08:08 PM
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Posted by chinkeep
Becki,

First, I don't think you are being irresponsible, just the fact that you are asking questions means that you are being responsible in trying to find out what is best to do.

I totally understand your situation, and for you it might not hurt to have something on hand. Again, I'm no vet, but probably the Sulfatrim would be the best to have on hand for a couple of reasons: 1) as I mentioned before, it is more of a broad spectrum and can be useful in treating a wide variety of infections and 2) it is usually good for a couple of years and does not need to be refrigerated, so you could easily keep it in a first aid kit so that it is handy; of course, caution must be used so that the chinnie doesn't develop an immunity to the drug.

As for Baytril, you may find vets that are prone to jump and use the hardest hitting drug available, but this isn't good. Just like humans, chins can develop immunities to a drug and then when the hard hitting drug is needed, it does no good. A truly good vet is going to weigh the options and use the most aggressive but the least intrusive treatment. The biggest problem that I have heard of with Baytril and losing an animal is that the drug is not dosed correctly leading to an overdose which is basically poisonous and kills the animal. I recently used Baytril for one of my chins with an upper resp infection, but I had no worries in doing so because I trust my vet completely and know that she wouldn't have used it unless she felt it was the only solution.

Just as an FYI, ALL drugs for chins should be dosed based on their weight. There is a formula that the vets use to determine the amount.

I'm just curious about the recurring poo problems...what does your vet think the problem is??? Do they have a parasite of some kind? Let me know, I have experience with those little buggers too!

John



Posted by Becki:
I thought it was girardia, and I discussed this with my vet along with all the stuff I'd read about it. He said that girardia is pretty common, especially since I had been giving them tap water, but that wouldn't cause the diahrea, some outside stressor was probably causing it. When a chin has diahrea that is a better breeding ground for the bacteria etc., so the number increases dramatically(probably why people associate girardia with diahrea all the time?). Turns out this makes alot of sense because in the next cage is a very aggresive chin that tries to start fights whenever the chance arises and that, in hindsight, was probably enough to do it. The diahrea was always easily treated too, so I think thats why he thought it wasn't a medical problem. Basically he said try to find some stressor that is consistent with the bouts of diahrea...don't overlook the small stuff.

About the antibiotics, do you think that maybe I should go with the stronger, harder hitting baytril? I ask because I wouldn't use it unless it seemed to be a life or death situation where stronger meds might work better. As an example (god forbid it ever happens again) 2 of my chins got bortadella (sp?) and they died within 20 to 30 minutes of first symptoms and a few different people told me that a quick dose of baytril may have saved them.

Does anyone know the formula/chart for dosages by weight for any of these drugs?


Posted by chinkeep:
Becki,

In the case of the bordatella, even baytril more than likely wouldn't have worked. The problem with chinnies is, they don't breathe through their mouth, this makes any type of respiratory infection dangerous, and usually leads to death because they litterally suffocate. And worse off, once anything bacterial hits their lungs, the chance of recovery is very very slim.

The problem with keeping Baytril on hand is that it would have to be injectable and you would have to be shown how to use it (where to put the shot) and how much to give, and I don't know what the expiration on it is. Oral Baytril is mixed on the spot and is only good for about 3 weeks max, and must be kept refrigerated. I truly feel that your best bet is still going to be the sulfatrim, or maybe ask your vet if there is another antibiotic that carries more of a punch that could be stored for an extended period of time.

Regarding the Giardia. Most intestinal parasites are going to cause the fecal matter to be extremely odorous, usually to the point of gagging you should you get a good wiff of it, and yes, they will cause diarrhea too. If you're not getting that with your chins, chances are it is not a parasitic infection, but more associated with stress, or maybe even some bad hay if you use loose hay. Parasitic infections usually take 3 to 5 weeks to start showing symptoms. The only way to truly know about parasites is to have a fecal "wet slide mount" done and you need several fresh specimens because they can be present but just not show up in each fecal sample, and if memory serves me correctly, all chins have a small amount of it in their intestinal tract anyway. The other problem with parasites is, they are fecal-oral transmitted, so if your chins are infected with it, you have to be very diligent in cleaning all surfaces that they touch to ensure that you kill and dispose of all parasites and eggs. Some parasites can lay dormant even in slight dry conditions and then become activated when picked up by an animal and ingested. I believe that Giardia is treated with a sulfa class drug, I just don't remember which one. Coccidiosis is treated with Albon which is much stronger than sulfa drugs and requires less dosing on a daily basis, usually only once compared to twice with sulfa drugs.

Hope this helps! Let me know if you have any more questions.

John

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mom to three wonderful kids (9, 5.10, 4),
2 dogs, 3 hermit crabs and 2 bettas

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