Monday, September 14, 2015

2294. 2nd visit: A lovable dwarf hamster keeps losing weight - sand bath allergy?

Sep 15, 2015

This dwarf hamster, around one year old, is very active but he scratches his sides and bites his bely. His chest hairs have dropped by 50% and he has actually lost weight.

In Aug 30, 2015, the daughter owner consulted me saying he keeps losing weight. He keeps scratching his left ear when I saw him. He weighed 46 g, a ball of action. A big abscess in his scent gland was drained and his longer lower incisor teeth were trimmed.

In Sep 7, the owner took him to another vet as the hamster had not put on weight. A skin test on the chest showed no skin mites. Anti-fungal, appetite stimulant, baytril antibiotics and anti-histamine oral were prescribed. Yet the hamster did not put on weight. So the mother consulted me as the hamster was not putting on weight.

Findings: A large nose pimple (digging into pelleted bedding and sand?).
Hair loss on both sides of the cheek pouch (sharp seeds stored inside the pouches?)
Hair loss on chest and top half of lower body (sand bath of different fragrances used daily, according to the mother).

What is the solution to the continuous body scratching and biting?
An allergy is suspected but the cause is unknown. It could be the fragrant sand.

"A change of lifestyle is needed," I advised not giving the daily fragrant sand bath and switch to paper litter. I would get the hairs clipped bald. The lower front teeth were OK and the hamster is hyperactive and much loved. But he just did not put on weight as all his litter food intake had been burnt out by his continuous scratching. (VIDEO).

Will need to follow up.    

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