How much critical care is safe?

GarnetKrow

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TLDR: the vet recommended feeding 20-25ml of critical care 3 times a day (total of 60-75ml a day), which seems like a crazy amount. Any thoughts?

Hello, my chins recently hurt her leg doing god knows what. She had torn soft tissue on the hind left leg before, and after 2 to 3 months of cage rest, she was deemed as healed by the vet. Skip forward another 3 months, I suddenly find that the same left leg has blood on it. Upon looking at it, the skin on the front of her thigh had been ripped off. Since I have never seen her fighting with her cage mate, nor do I see any blood anywhere in the cage, my vet said she might have done it to herself (?!). This was this Sunday.
Took her in today (Wed), the wound is a lot better now, and the vet today told me it looks more superficial and not infected anymore. Worth noting that this was the same vet branch, different dr. However, between this Sunday and today, she had slowly stopped eating, and therefore pooping. I was worried that the antibiotics and pain meds she had been put on decreased her appetite. The vet today recommended changing up her meds, and feeding critical care. He prescribed to feed my chin 20-25ml a day 3 times a day (total of 60-75 ml a day) for 10 days to get her gut moving. That to me seems like a lot. I tried feeding her, and while she eats, she starts really fighting me before she finishes 12 ml. Anyone that has critical care insight, does that amount seem ok to you? I am worried she will develop bloat. Thanks.
 

Amethyst

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The total amount sounds right, depending on how much the chin weights I think it's something like 50-60ml of mixed critical care (cc and water) per 500g of body weight. Some chins don't like to take more then about 10ml at a time though, so you may need to split it up into smaller amounts more often. I also know some people give infant gas drops along with the critical care, either after the feeding or mixed into the critical care. Dosage for gas drops is about 0.3ml every 12 hours, but you can't really overdose extra is just peed out.
 

GarnetKrow

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The total amount sounds right, depending on how much the chin weights I think it's something like 50-60ml of mixed critical care (cc and water) per 500g of body weight. Some chins don't like to take more then about 10ml at a time though, so you may need to split it up into smaller amounts more often. I also know some people give infant gas drops along with the critical care, either after the feeding or mixed into the critical care. Dosage for gas drops is about 0.3ml every 12 hours, but you can't really overdose extra is just peed out.
Thank you very much for your input. I’ve been splitting it up since it’s hard for her to eat a lot at once, but I am extremely worried about how she is not defecating. Hoping things will get better very soon. I was also prescribed cisapride for her. Do you know any negative effects cisapride has on chins? Any feedback is appreciated. Thank you!
 

tunes

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You can also try massaging her stomach, which will help her get things moving. Is she drinking enough water? I find that when I feed any hand-fed food that it goes a lot better if I syringe in some water after every couple mL's. Water also gets things moving.
 

DawnStar

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My vet recommended the 60mL a day. I had to do 3mL syringe at a time, sometimes 1mL. I don't like the big syringes..I couldn't imagine a chin enjoying being force fed that big glob at a time. Good luck and I hope she gets better!
 

GarnetKrow

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Thank you! Yeah I’m feeding 10 ml a time, but it’s pretty difficult... also worried that she’ll develop bloat from being stuffed. I’m super worried, but she is able to move around pretty well. How long did your chin take to recover from GI statis, if you don’t mind me asking?
 

GarnetKrow

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My vet recommended the 60mL a day. I had to do 3mL syringe at a time, sometimes 1mL. I don't like the big syringes..I couldn't imagine a chin enjoying being force fed that big glob at a time. Good luck and I hope she gets better!
Thank you! Yeah I’m feeding 10 ml a time, but it’s pretty difficult... also worried that she’ll develop bloat from being stuffed. I’m super worried, but she is able to move around pretty well. How long did your chin take to recover from GI statis, if you don’t mind me asking?
 

GarnetKrow

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You can also try massaging her stomach, which will help her get things moving. Is she drinking enough water? I find that when I feed any hand-fed food that it goes a lot better if I syringe in some water after every couple mL's. Water also gets things moving.
Hi, thanks for the feedback. I did try massaging her stomach, not too sure if I have been able to do so correctly or not. The critical care food is mixed with water, so it has a smoothie-like texture. I think she is getting enough water from the critical care solution, but I’ll see if I can get her to drink more. Do you know how often chins are supposed to urinate? I don’t see any urine spots in the cage as of yesterday, which is worrisome to me. Thank you.
 

chinniesnyc

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I've had to force-feed two chins, and I've found it really does depend on the chin how they respond to feeding. One was much easier than the other -- perhaps due to the different ailments.

My guy who was not happy with it -- I found that syringing a line of food on a nice thick (and long) chunky apple stick worked *wonders*. You'd need two people to do this though: my partner would hold him, and I would navigate the stick horizontally under his nose (like a corn on the cob) so that whenever he'd go to bite the stick (to get the tasty bark) he'd get a bite of food as well. He seemed to get really frustrated being held and having a syringe forced into his mouth, so this gave him an outlet for energy. I got more food into him this way than syringing normally. We tended to go back and forth between the two methods to get him to eat more. We also went through *a lot* of chunky apple sticks.

I'm sorry to hear your chins unwell. I hope she perks up! Try not to get frustrated when you're only able to get her to eat a little bit at time. It's not unusual; and it's better that she's got something in her tum than nothing! One last thought: I was skeptical at first about the efficacy of probiotics, but the Bene Bac probiotic gel (available on amazon) is usually recommended for chins as well: it actually did seem to get their appetite to perk up a bit. Just use it sparingly.
 

GarnetKrow

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I've had to force-feed two chins, and I've found it really does depend on the chin how they respond to feeding. One was much easier than the other -- perhaps due to the different ailments.

My guy who was not happy with it -- I found that syringing a line of food on a nice thick (and long) chunky apple stick worked *wonders*. You'd need two people to do this though: my partner would hold him, and I would navigate the stick horizontally under his nose (like a corn on the cob) so that whenever he'd go to bite the stick (to get the tasty bark) he'd get a bite of food as well. He seemed to get really frustrated being held and having a syringe forced into his mouth, so this gave him an outlet for energy. I got more food into him this way than syringing normally. We tended to go back and forth between the two methods to get him to eat more. We also went through *a lot* of chunky apple sticks.

I'm sorry to hear your chins unwell. I hope she perks up! Try not to get frustrated when you're only able to get her to eat a little bit at time. It's not unusual; and it's better that she's got something in her tum than nothing! One last thought: I was skeptical at first about the efficacy of probiotics, but the Bene Bac probiotic gel (available on amazon) is usually recommended for chins as well: it actually did seem to get their appetite to perk up a bit. Just use it sparingly.
Hi, thanks for your reply! I was able to get her to eat MUCH easier when I used a smaller syringe (1 ml vs 10 ml). She has finally started going regularly!
 

GarnetKrow

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Thank you to everyone that replied. She has started going regularly, although she had some diarrhea today, so the vet told me to put her off of the cisapride.
The next problem is to keep her from picking at the wound on her leg, and her opening it up again. The vet said they have a collar I can put on her, but also said that putting it on may cause her to stop eating again. Does anyone have any other good ideas to keep her from picking at her leg? Thank you!
 

DawnStar

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Thank you! Yeah I’m feeding 10 ml a time, but it’s pretty difficult... also worried that she’ll develop bloat from being stuffed. I’m super worried, but she is able to move around pretty well. How long did your chin take to recover from GI statis, if you don’t mind me asking?
sorry for the late reply! Been crazy with COVID for my work. Unfortunately, mine did not make it :(. I hope yours is doing well????
 

GarnetKrow

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sorry for the late reply! Been crazy with COVID for my work. Unfortunately, mine did not make it :(. I hope yours is doing well????
Hi, yes! She is completely better now. The leg is looking much much better, but it’s taking a while to heal since she keeps picking at the scab. The doctor said I could put a cone around her neck, but also said that might cause her to stop eating again, so decided not to do that. Thank you for checking in, hope you and your loved ones are doing well during this crisis too!
 

DawnStar

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Hi, yes! She is completely better now. The leg is looking much much better, but it’s taking a while to heal since she keeps picking at the scab. The doctor said I could put a cone around her neck, but also said that might cause her to stop eating again, so decided not to do that. Thank you for checking in, hope you and your loved ones are doing well during this crisis too!
I'm so happy to hear that! Is it possible to wrap the leg so she doesn't pick the scab ? That sounds tough! Stasis is definitely not fun :/
 

GarnetKrow

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I'm so happy to hear that! Is it possible to wrap the leg so she doesn't pick the scab ? That sounds tough! Stasis is definitely not fun :/
Yeah, I never want to go through that again, for multiple reasons haha. Mimi was not a happy camper being syringe fed. I tried wrapping it, she basically chews through it or it just comes off eventually :(. It’s mostly just a flesh wound at this point, so not too worried. I’m putting udder cream on it (it’s the pet safe kind that’s in a green can?) and that seems to deter her from touching it too much.
 
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