Hungry Hamster Fills Cheeks with Potentially Deadly Antidepressant

Hungry Hamster Fills Cheeks with Potentially Deadly Antidepressant


Pet Poison Helpline Also Announces 2022 Toxin Tails Winner

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (Jan. 18, 2023) – With a reputation like Professor Sweetcheeks, you wouldn’t suppose he wanted temper medicines. When this rascally rodent obtained his paws on some sertraline, the energetic ingredient in Zoloft, nevertheless, the drug made its means into his cheeks sooner than you may say, effectively, Professor Sweetcheeks.

“Our 11-year-old son Gregory begged for a pet hamster, and named him Professor Sweetcheeks,” stated Christie of St. Louis, Mo. “A couple of months in the past, we let Professor Sweetcheeks scurry across the kitchen island whereas we lower up carrots for him, and the following factor we knew, he was consuming a Zoloft that was unintentionally left on the counter. When we couldn’t take away the capsule from his cheek, I requested my husband Greg to name poison management. They knowledgeable us the closest emergency hospital that handled rodents was 45 minutes away.”

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At this level, it was time for the household to divide and concur. Greg shuttled the children to high school and different actions, whereas Christie loaded up Professor Sweetcheeks’ cage into the household minivan and headed off to the animal emergency hospital. The household was taking a visit to Lake of the Ozarks, so Christie was planning to fulfill the household down there as soon as the hamster was launched from the hospital.

Once Professor Sweetcheeks made it to Fox Creek Veterinary Hospital in Wildwood, Mo., Dr. Nelson, the veterinarian, labored on getting him to empty his cheek pouches whereas on the cellphone with the Pet Poison Helpline crew. They eliminated some dissolving capsule materials, nevertheless it was very seemingly the hamster ingested a number of the remedy. His cheeks have been flushed with water after emptying and was then administered activated charcoal to stop absorption of any remaining remedy in his GI tract. The subsequent step was to find out if Professor Sweetcheeks had ingested a poisonous quantity of sertraline.

“There is not any particular poisonous dose quantity of sertraline for hamsters,” stated Dr. Renee Schmid, a senior veterinary toxicologist at Pet Poison Helpline. “Given their relationship with different rodents used when the drug was being studied, nevertheless, we have been capable of decide there was a extreme danger for poisoning, which can lead to central nervous system (CNS) and cardiovascular indicators. We really useful decontamination, monitoring and supportive care together with fluids, sedation and methocarbamol, which is used to deal with muscle tremors.”

While treating him for the unintentional ingestion, the hospital crew seen that Professor Sweetcheeks additionally had extreme dental illness. Because of the thorough veterinary care supplied by the crew at Fox Creek Veterinary Hospital, all of Professor Sweetcheeks’ remedy wants have been met.

“Although Professor Sweetcheeks made a full restoration, it may have been way more severe,” added Dr. Schmid. “According to knowledge from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey launched by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), 13% of adults aged 18 and over used antidepressant medicines prior to now 30 days.  The progress in using medicines like Zoloft means extra pets are in potential hazard of unintentional poisoning.”

“The ethical of this story is — don’t go away your loved ones’s remedy on the counter if in case you have a pet,” added Christie. “Hundreds of {dollars} later, and a number of journeys to the veterinarian in at some point, we realized our lesson. We’re simply relieved that Professor Sweetcheeks continues to be his curious, cuddly self and didn’t expertise any seizures. He recuperated within the Ozarks, the place we woke him each few hours to verify on him.”

Pet Poison Helpline created Toxin Tails to teach the veterinary neighborhood and pet lovers on the numerous sorts of poisoning risks going through pets, each out and in of the house. All the pets highlighted in Toxin Tails have been efficiently handled for the poisoning and totally recovered. Professor Sweetcheeks will probably be eligible for the 2023 competitors, however 2022’s winner has simply been revealed.

2022 Case of the Year Winner Announced

“After our on-line vote, we’re proud to announce that our 2022 Toxin Tails case of the yr is Mav, the Labrador who ingested as much as 600 sleep dietary supplements and was handled for the uncommon and probably lethal serotonin syndrome,” stated Dr. Schmid. “Mav and his human household will obtain a basket of enjoyable Pet Poison Helpline swag, and the hospital crew that handled him will obtain 10 free poisoning consultations and a lunch for his or her workers,” stated Dr. Schmid.

About Pet Poison Helpline

Pet Poison Helpline, your trusted supply for toxicology and pet well being recommendation in instances of potential emergency, is offered 24 hours, seven days per week for pet homeowners and veterinary professionals who require help treating a probably poisoned pet. We are an impartial, nationally acknowledged animal poison management heart triple licensed by the Boards of Veterinary Medicine, Medicine and Pharmacy offering unmatched skilled management and experience.

Our veterinarians and board-certified toxicologists present remedy recommendation for poisoning circumstances of all species, together with canine, cats, birds, small mammals, giant animals and unique species. As essentially the most cost-effective choice for animal poison management care, Pet Poison Helpline’s price of $85 per incident contains follow-up consultations at some point of the case.

Based in Minneapolis, Pet Poison Helpline is offered in North America by calling 800-213-6680. Additional info may be discovered on-line at

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