Health Topics: Bumblefoot
How serious is it?
Can get very serious, very quickly. Life threatening.
What is it?
Bumblefoot, medically known as ulcerative pododermatitis, is an inflammation of the foot pads. It is most commonly found in captive birds and rodents.
How can I recognize it?
How do you treat it?
Treatment for Bumblefoot is a long, laborious process and it is verypainful for the chin. The feet must be soaked several times each day to keep the area clean and supple. Epsom salts soaks, vinegar and water, colloidal silver, orprescription Chlorhexidine wash are the usual courses of treatment. Oral antibiotics and pain meds are normally prescribed in conjunction. Additional topicals like Blu-Kote, Silver Sulfadiazine, Bag Balm with or withoutfoot wraps are often applied after each soak.
How can I avoid this?
Chinchillas are most susceptible to Bumblefoot when exposed to housing conditions that are less than optimal. Wire floored cages, or cages with wire shelves and ramps are hard on sensitive little feet and are often the culprits of this disease. A chronically dirty cage is also one of the primary contributors of Bumblefoot. Where a chin is exposed to damp, dirty floors or where he/she is inclined to urinate in favorite spots and rest in the aftermath, these conditions are breeding grounds for bacteria that causes ulcers to form. Even a simple case of dry feet from unlimited access to dust baths can crack the foot pads and offer a doorway to this malady.