Friday, November 28, 2008

Mirror, mirror... (Part 2 of 2)

Q. The same young woman wanted me to talk to her ferret. She had three but the baby, the one year old female, had developed severe diarrhea and had almost stopped eating. This ferret was also very attached to her mother’s energy. I knew it was a stress issue. The little ferret was very reluctant to speak with me. She was afraid to admit to anything that I asked her.

A. When I asked her if she was the one of the three ferrets that had the diarrhea problem, she came back quickly and adamantly saying, ‘It wasn’t me!’ I wasn’t getting anywhere with her. She was very evasive.

The woman took her to the vet and the ferret was diagnosed with IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and put on the same medication that the young woman was on herself. The woman still couldn’t figure out why her ferret would stop eating for long stretches at a time. I had known this woman for a year and was aware of how often she was sick with IBS and would stop eating too. I asked her to look back at the last couple of times that her ferret was off of her food. I said to her, ‘Weren’t you sick over those same exact dates as well?!’ I knew she had been. I explained to her that each time she gets an IBS attack, loses her appetite or feels nauseous, her ferret gets the same symptoms. I told her that it’s not a coincidence.

It’s hard for anyone to be told they are making their animal sick, but if we are never aware of the co-relation, how can we hope to change or improve it?

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