Thursday, January 24, 2013


Cirrus has been on her medication for two weeks now, and it seems to be helping. Well, at least she is gaining weight.  This past weekend she was up to 66 grams, and while it isn't a lot, it's in the right direction. Her energy level is still good as well. Although she is gaining weight, it's hard to say how much is from the Diazepam. She still runs around the office marking when she is in here at night, although perhaps not as aggressively as before. For the last week or two they all have been eating well, so perhaps they are all more relaxed now.

One of my favorite times is the hour or so I spend with Rossby and Sprite after the trio's playtime is over. They are a hoot to watch. Their previous owner warned us that they were a mischievous pair, and they are. They often just run around and climb on things in the room, with Sprite following Rossby's every move and jump. If one of them finds something of interest, the other one is usually right there checking things out as well. They will get into stuff on my desk and when I go over to see what they are doing, I get this look like "What??? We're not doing anything!" They frequently use me to climb on, clambering up my leg to my shoulder and then launching to the climbing tree. Rossby and Sprite are very comfortable with us. Many times they are already up and around before I can bring them in here in their pouch. They come to the front of the cage when we approach will climb on to my arm for the short trip to the office without jumping off. I sometimes take them back to the cage on me as well, although I usually try to take them in a pouch. Rossby and Sprite don't readily climb into the pouch when it's time to go like the trio do. I usually have to coax them in, or just pick them up and place them in the pouch.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Another Visit to the Vet for Cirrus

We have been concerned about Cirrus' weight loss over the last six weeks. On November 17 she weighed 75 grams, and today she was at 61 grams. With her medical history in mind,last week we called to make an appointment with the vet to have Cirrus checked out.

Cirrus enjoying her morning yogurt last week.
Today was her appointment, and we were relieved to hear that other than the weight loss she is doing well. Her muscle tone was good as was her overall body condition. She is a very active glider. Out of all of the gliders she is the one that probably spends the most time on a wheel or the glider treadmill and she burns a lot of calories. It is probably more than a coincidence that her weight loss has occurred since we obtained Rossby and Sprite. The two attempts at introductions were stressful for all concerned, but perhaps more for Cirrus. During playtime in the office she spends much of her time "marking", which is something we have rarely seen from her before. This is even after almost two weeks of being separated from Rossby and Sprite.

Our vet does not want her weight to drop any further, and thought that reducing her anxiety might help improve her appetite. Cirrus is now on a low dose of Diazepam.  Of all the drug options for a glider, this is is probably the safest. It is often used post-surgery to keep gliders calm and prevent them from overgrooming and opening their incisions. We will see how this goes until Cirrus' next follow-up appointment sometime in February.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Back to Square One

While things went well during the afternoon, once they were up and out later Saturday night the reintroduction didn't go very well. There was a lot of chasing around the cage and a couple of ball-ups with lots of noise. The chasing wasn't so bad, except that the chaser and the chasee threw themselves around the cage and we were concerned that someone was going to get hurt. Since Foehn, Rossby, and Sprite were in one half of the cage, it didn't leave a lot of room for the chases. After careful observation it was clear that often Sprite was the one doing the chasing after oFoehn came up to check her out.  We ended up staying up most of the night to referee things. At 3:30 a.m. or so we headed to bed. After sunrise when I came out to check on them Sprite was still up while Foehn and Rossby were in one of the pouches.

On Sunday I removed the divider in the cage. The introduction of CB and Cirrus went OK, but Sprite hesitated a long time before going in to the pouch with the others. We had removed all other options for her.  We hoped Sunday night would be better, but it was not. They were quiet for awhile, but Sprite was not amenable to letting any of the other gliders except for Rossby near her. She would jump from the wheel after anyone, except for Rossby, who came near her. There would be a chase and once in a while a lot of noise. We were really hoping they would work it out, but it wasn't going that way. The only break was when the trio and Rossby went back to their pouch for a nap. At one point M noticed something on the white plastic of the wheel and on investigation it turned out to be blood. M checked Cirrus and I checked Sprite. At that point Cirrus was stalking Sprite and that resulted in a couple of chases and ball-ups. Sprite had an abrasion on her tail and while we were concerned, it did not seem to bother her and it had stopped bleeding. We suspect it occurred during one of her leaps from the wheel, but it's hard to say.What we were concerned about was further injuries to any of them. I finally went to bed about 5:00 a.m., and M made it in about 7:00 a.m. In the two hours she was watching them Cirrus had been ganged up on once, so M removed Cirrus from the cage after some morning yogurt and Cirrus spent the morning in her robe sleeve.

After two nights it was clear this was stressing out Sprite, and it was also stressing Cirrus. Cirrus has lost 10 grams in the past month and we are worried about her. The stress of having Sprite in the same cage is not what she needs. We decided to separate Sprite and Rossby from the trio again and they are now in two separate cages. The problem is definitely with  Sprite. She is scared of the other gliders. They come up to sniff her and she crabs at them, and then tries to stay away. I noticed that she also likes to test things with her teeth and occasionally lightly nipped one of the others. Of course, they do not like that and let her know.  It was definitely time to take a big step back with the introduction process. However, we're not sure what to do at this point.