Exotic Animal Care Center News
Fall 2011

Dear Friends,


We had a busy summer attending a whirlwind of veterinary conferences. First was the Ferret conference in Arizona. I attended with our nurses Amy and Beth. We learned about new treatments for Adrenal Disease in ferrets using a long lasting hormone implant called Deslorelin. While talking to Dr. Wagner, a researcher on Adrenal Disease, we learned about Adrenal Disease in RABBITS! If you have an adult rabbit that is spayed/neutered and suddenly starts showing signs of aggression or humping, your rabbit may have this disease.


The second conference was on all species in Anaheim. Our manager Maureen attended management talks and Amy and Beth went to the technician talks. They had a terrific reptile program and I learned things like how to identify and treat the different types of egg binding in reptiles.


The third conference was the Exotics conference - a combined conference involving the Association of Exotic Mammal Vets, the Association of Avian Vets, and the Association of Reptile and Amphibian Vets. Both Dr. Tiffany and I attended this fantastic conference in Seattle. They discussed cutting edge research on many diseases, like thyroid disease in guinea pigs, rhinoscopy and rhinotomy in rabbits with chronic nasal discharge, and acupuncture and herbal remedies for kidney and bladder disease. One study showed that guinea pigs require higher doses of pain medication after surgery. Another researcher identified all of the bacteria in the gut of free-ranging rabbits - lactobacillus was NOT found anywhere. Also, at our hospital we are starting a program to make E. cuniculi testing more affordable, so that we can test more rabbits and learn more about this elusive disease.


If you are interested in hearing more about new information and cutting edge research and treatments on rabbits and guinea pigs, I'll be discussing this in depth during the upcoming Zooh Corner Adoption event at Exotic Animal Care Center on Saturday, November 12.


Attending veterinary conferences is important - it allows us to stay updated on the newest and best treatments, in order to offer you and your pets the very best medicine has available.



Dr. Kanfer

What About the "Little Guy" - Passerines

By Tiffany Margolin, DVM, Dipl. ABVP, NAET Certified


Passerines are a group of birds that include canaries through finches and crows through jays, and encompasses over half of the bird population. Our little ones are very popular, being gregarious, with beautiful songs, and requiring little human attention.


They are fascinating, and once you fall in love with these little guys, it tends to last forever. Because we at Exotic Animal Care Center want you to have healthy, lasting love, we've put together some ways you can keep your feathered friend singing.


Just as in the bigger species of birds (i.e. parrots), it is a MUST to bring in any new canary or finch for a checkup before just throwing it into your collection. I cannot tell you how many times a client has said, "Well, he LOOKED healthy, and he was from a FRIEND..." about the new little bird that spread a deadly infection to all her others.


The problem is that the little guys mask disease just as well as the larger species. Merely "quarantining" for a few weeks does not guarantee you will be able to tell who is sick. A very nice client, Linda, brought two ostensibly healthy gouldians into her group of cordon bleu finches, and has had trouble ever since, including air sac mites, fatal virus, and even tuberculosis!


So don't underestimate the "new guy." Some of the ways we can tell if a small bird is sick include checking a fecal sample for bacteria, parasites and yeast. We can take a tiny amount of blood and DNA test it for multiple diseases. And we can even take a quick x-ray if need be. If one or more of your group DOES start to fluff up, sit lower on the perch or stop vocalizing, SEPARATE HIM OR HER immediately.


Place the "dumpy" bird in a small, quiet setting with low or no perches, food on the floor and warmth. You can use a heat lamp or heat pad under the cage to get the ambient temperature to 85 degrees. This is ideal to prevent unnecessary energy expenditure while Tweety is trying to get well. The best way to prevent a problem in the first place is to ask the seller for an agreement that if the vet finds a problem within a week of purchase, you can return/exchange your new bird. If you want to care for him yourself, please remember not to handle your well birds without disinfecting your hands and changing clothes after handling your little sick one.


Some of the most common and treatable conditions in canaries and finches are listed below:

  1. Air Sac Mites: These little buggers cause increases in respiratory rate and sometimes audible wheezing. TREATMENT: Ivermectin 
  2. Scaly Leg Mites: Causing crusty skin on legs, these bugs are also TREATED with Ivermectin 
  3. Avian Gastric Yeast: Once thought to be a bacteria, this large yeast found in the gut can cause diarrhea, fluffing, and general malaise. TREATMENT: Amphotericin-B, Sodium Benzoate, or Nystatin. 
  4. Mycoplasma Conjunctivitis: Causing redness and swelling of one or both eyes, this is a serious bacterial infection that is very treatable if addressed right away. Some birds may turn into carriers after treatment. 
  5. Bacterial Infection of gastrointestinal tract: Causes large "puffy" stools or diarrhea, persistent color change in stool. TREATMENT: Appropriate antibiotic, aided by running a culture and sensitivity test. 
  6. Tuberculosis: Chronic and difficult to detect, there is no good treatment. 
  7. Internal parasites: Diagnosed by running a microscopic fecal test, they are treated once diagnosed, with the appropriate targeted deworming agent. 
  8. Poxvirus and papillomavirus: Both cause skin and/or mucous membrane lesions. Poxvirus can be fatal and we do have a vaccine against it. This is recommended for flock situations. Papillomavirus causes warty growths on the legs and feet. TREATMENT: Supportive. 

Please be sure to bring any new birds to us after purchase or adoption. This way you can all have a happy, healthy life together! 

Zooh Corner Adoption Event and Fundraiser on Saturday, November 12 at EACC

More details coming soon!  Animals for adoption, raffle, aromatherapy grooming, shopping for your furry friends too!  Dr. Kanfer will be giving a talk on the new and exciting information she has learned attending veterinary conferences over the summer. 


If you would like to donate a raffle item for the fundraising portion of this event, please contact Lori Ann at 405-1777 or email kim@exoticanimalcarecenter.com. All proceeds will cover veterinary care for Zooh Corner foster rabbits.

EACC Animals for Adoption! 



 R2: She was relinquished to us at EACC as the owners could not afford to keep her.  She's an adorable, dainty, blue eyed, black and white dutch.  She's very sweet and loves to be petted.  R2 is about 4 years old. By the way, she's a snuggler too!

   Liam: He is a beautiful amazon parrot that had to have his wing amputated. He's nervous with new people at first, but warms up quickly and is a bit snuggly!  Liam is about a year old. 

   Swiss Cheese: Poor Swiss Cheese.  This California Desert Tortoise was attacked by a dog and now has 28 holes in his shell.  He is healing well, but slowly.  He still is on meds for his injuries. 

  Hobo Joe: He was abandoned at another veterinary clinic and was terrified.  His caretaker worked on socialization with him and now Hobo Joe is very friendly, loves to talk and "popcorn".  NEWS FLASH!!  Hobo Joe is going on a date with Lucy, a newly adoptable pig at the clinic!  Stayed tuned for this adorable pair who will need a home soon!  He is neutered.

     Naughty and Dart: Naughty is a beautiful, healthy, blue-eyed white rabbit that isn't as naughty as her name suggests. She loves to race around the house and  play. Naughty is about 4 years old and is spayed.  Dart (D'Artagnan) is a gorgeous silvered black Jersey Woolly, about 3 years old and neutered. He is very inquisitive and explores everything, and loves to race across the house.  They are a happy couple, Dart and Naughty!


Please call us at 626-405-1777 or email Kim if you are interested in any of the animals above. 

photosPhotos of Animals for Adoption
Hobo Joe  
  Dart R2


 NaughtySwiss Cheese




Treats and More at EACC!

Did you know that both Zooh Corner and Bunny Bunch rabbit rescues sell lots of yummy treats and toys here at EACC?  They also sell their delectable hay varieties as well.  Make sure you take a look the next time you are at the clinic.  There is usually something new to try!

Contributions to EACC
We are always getting in local wildlife that needs our help and in these cases, EACC pays for the care and medications to make these animals well again.  Additionally, we have a few individuals who are struggling to cover their EACC bills, as well as rescue organizations whose bills mount up quickly helping rescued and homeless animals.


If you have a few dollars or more to spare, EACC welcomes donations to help cover the costs of care for these animals.  We appreciate any help you can give.  Thank you!


Keep Up to Date and Learn About Exotics Through EACC's Blog!


We will be posting monthly about exotic animal care topics, what's happening at the clinic and more!  Go to http://exoticpetblog.wordpress.com.

Thank You for Supporting Exotic Animal Care Center!  We truly appreciate you and your precious pets!

2121 E. Foothill Blvd.
Pasadena, California 91107