CRITICAL CARE NUTRITION AND FLUID THERAPY IN REPTILES

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CRITICAL CARE NUTRITION AND FLUID THERAPY IN REPTILES

Postby kingofnobbys » Sun Sep 16, 2018 3:26 am

Is very disturbing how often people present posts here about emaciated dragons (often rescued by them, found by them (after being abandoned or lost) or due to very poor husbandry.

It takes a very long time for an adult bearded dragon to reach the point of being "skin & bones" emaciated.

That said , and keeping the welfare of these unfortunate dragons the priority rather than finger pointing , I post this link that I hope will help people save emaciated dragons that they have on their hands.

Please refer to this scientific paper about " CRITICAL CARE NUTRITION AND FLUID THERAPY IN REPTILES " , https://www.avianexoticvetcare.com/user ... S_2009.pdf

Key treatments (extracts):

Fluid therapy: when, what, and how much
Many of the reptiles that are presented for emergency care are chronically dehydrated and volume depleted.
These patients require fluid therapy and parenteral routes should be used in those with signs of moderate to severe signs. Intravenous or intraosseous routes are reserved for cases of acute volume depletion or those that need colloids or glucose.



Nutritional support: when and what
Anorexia is one of the most common presenting complaints from reptile owners, and nutritional support is frequently included in the long-term medical management of reptile diseases. Proper hydration and body temperature must pave the way for nutritional supplementation to avoid potentially fatal “refeeding syndrome” characterized by hypokalemia and hypophosphatemia.
DO NOT RUSH TO FEED.

It is often better to wait several days before providing nutritional support beyond diluted simple carbohydrates and electrolytes.
Ensure normal muscle strength before attempting to assist feeding a reptile, or risk regurgitation and aspiration pneumonia. ( Sad story resently here where this is the most likely cause of the dragon's death .)
Nutritional needs vary among herbivores, omnivores, insectivores, and carnivores, and feeds must be chosen to meet nutritional needs. Several commercially available products are available for assisted enteral feeding of reptiles. The following list includes the products that the author uses and recommends. Nutritional support begins by feeding the enterocytes with either half-strength Pedialyte (Abbott Laboratories) or Gatorade (Stokely-VanCamp, Inc., Oakland,
CA). Herbivores may then be fed a variety of species-appropriate vegetables that have been processed in a blender or Critical Care for Herbivores (Oxbow Animal Health, Murdock, NE). Carnivores may be fed insects or Carnivore Care (Oxbow Animal Health, Murdock, NE).


Good suppliments to try include VetaFarm HERPABOOST and VetaFarm REPTILE CRITTACARE.
Critta care is very potent …. several small meals total of 1ml/100g body weight will help.

Mice are not an appropriate food for a emaciated or healthy dragon.
Omnivores may be fed a combination of vegetables and appropriate prey items that have been processed in a blender or Emeraid Psittacine Omnivore (Lafeber Co., Cornell, IL). Refer to Donoghue14 for detailed nutrition information.


And last but not the least - don't try to treat the emaciated reptile WITHOUT consulting an experienced REPTILE VET first …. it's critical to have a vet assess the reptile before ANY treatment other than giving fluids and electrolytes , the dragon may well have other serious health issues than need to addressed too , ie parasites, injuries, MBD.

If at all possible the vet must be experienced with reptile health , an exotics or general vet can and often will do more harm than good , and can actually make the reptile's health worse.
CBDs: Puff (M)(RIP 10Dec2015 @ 3.2 yrs old (aneurism)),Rex (F)(RIP 16Mar2017 @ 4.6 yrs old,Toothless (M)(sudden unexplained death RIP 26Nov2017) @ 2.1 yrs old.Peppa (F) (born 15Nov2015).
EBTSs : George & Mildred (born july 2010).
EWSs : Lucky (M)(wild juvenile), cat attack rescue, fatal SI RIP 21Jul2010.Wriggles (F)(rescued injured),thought she was a big lizard, 7-8 yrs old, died in her sleep, RIP 2Feb2016). Fluffy (F) rescued 14Nov2017 about 4 yrs old . .
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Re: CRITICAL CARE NUTRITION AND FLUID THERAPY IN REPTILES

Postby CooperDragon » Wed Sep 19, 2018 12:00 pm

This is pretty accurate based on my experience as well. Focusing on hydration at first is important. If they are taking fluids then slowly introducing nutrients and going easy on the proteins is the next step. Slow, deliberate steps tend to see the best results.
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