Raccoon Neonatology



Neonatology and Pediatrics in Orphan Raccoons

Karen Bailey

The majority of intakes in the rehabilitation setting are orphans ranging in size from newborn to juvenile.  There are special considerations based on age that must be addressed in order to provide appropriate care. Neonate animals differ from their adult counterparts in key physiologic aspects, and these needs must be met in order to ensure survival. Management of both the healthy and critical patient will be covered including pathophysiology and treatment of the most common causes of neonatal mortality: septicemia and pneumonia. In addition, the rehabber must be able to recognize and treat dehydration, hypoglycemia, hypothermia, and shock. Drug therapy in neonates is discussed due to their different physiology and immature systems. After the neonatal stage, infants and juveniles have their own set of considerations. Nutrition and infectious disease management are key components to raising healthy animals for release.  Vaccine theory and protocol, maternally derived antibodies, and shelter medicine are addressed. Pathophysiology, prevention, and treatment protocols of common infectious diseases, canine distemper and parvovirus, are covered in depth. The goal of this presentation is to provide the rehabber with the tools necessary to develop a multi-faceted approach to raccoon rehabilitation.

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