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ursulav

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That poor squirrel.

I noticed a squirrel hanging off the neighbor's feeder, who appeared to have some kind of large, pale growth on his side, just under his shoulder. I stared at this for several minutes, baffled--it was pale cream color, and stuck out. I thought "A tick? A parasite? Squirrel mushrooms?"

Finally I went outside, and he hopped down, revealing an identical growth on the other side. Although hard to tell, it looked as if the skin was identically swollen on each side, with fur covering part of the swelling, and a bald patch on top. While hard to judge the size, I think each swelling was a little smaller than a quarter, and on one side, there appeared to be some kind of groove or rut in the fur and possibly the skin.

I could be very wrong, but I almost wonder if a dog managed to get its teeth around him, and the puncture wound has abscessed on both sides, or--it's a long shot--if somebody shot it with a BB gun and it's scarring rather grotesquely over both entry and exit wound. It's a very bizarre looking appearance, and I feel badly for the poor squirrel. I don't like what they do to my feeders, but I wouldn't wish that on 'em, either.


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Squirrels often carry and can be occasionally infected with bubonic plague. :/

Eep!
They are also prone to wart-like fibroma .. but the growth's aren't usually that bad, and I doubt they'd be symetrical. The bite theory sounds plausible to me... either that or it's a cunning effort to gain sympathy and peanuts.

What the other folks have said. A BB gun is unlikely to have enough oomph behind it to do an in and out.

I'd suggest a cat as a more likely suspect, dogs being great lumbering beasts compared to zooming zigging squirrels.

Either way, it's not looking good for the critter. Another predator, feline or raptor, is likely to get a meal sooner than later...

Mako

It might also be cancer.

Having had pet rats and mice, which are usually speed-bred (read: inbred) primarily for snake food rather than as companions-- this I'm sure you know already- most pet shop rodents, if they live long enough to be "old", develop cancerous growths on their chests, often just behind the forelegs and on one or both sides. (I assume it's some sort of mammary cancer) I'm not sure why, but the growths will often ulcerate, and on occaision, necrotize (which may be the cause of the ulceration).

It's possible that your squirrel has the same thing, but the cause could be anything: environmental, bad genetics... one-in-a-million gentic longshot...

You've got two choices: Leave it be, or call a game warden to put it out of its misery.

Yah. Rats and mice are very prone to getting mammary tumors. Not sure if squirrels would be also.

Shhhhh.
It went in for a breast enhancement and the plastic surgeon didn't do a good job and now the poor thing is reduced to raiding birdfeeders becasue the lawsuites have takken all it's money and, and, and...
Ooooooh. Shiney!

Poor squirrel. I'll peg 'em with a water gun if they're on my feeder, but I wouldn't want to actually hurt them. :(

Maybe they're buds for wings?

I think I see more UrsulArt on its way.

I hope I see more UrsulArt on its way.

The variety and current state of health of your outside companions never ceases to entertain and horrify me at the same time.

*purchase note* think I'll be getting some prints. I crave to own multiple Ursula Vernons. =)

I've heard the squirrels here are prone to paracites including one bot flies that lay eggs on the squirrel, larva burrow under the skin and grow there absolutly disgusting link about lumpy squirrels

So it's possible that's it?

eeeeeew!

That's all I gotta say.

Dude! That's it! That's exactly what it looked like!

The thing may have had--the mind boggles--symmetrical bot fly larvae?

That's.... disgusting....

We must not get that sort of thing around here, because I've never seen a squirrel with anything worse than "summer mange".

urk . . . *turns green and heaves*

Jesus . . . that is one of the most horrific things I have ever seen. There is one that shows a squirrel with all the empty "warbles" all over him, and I about lost it. UGGGGHHHHH *shakes*

yech! That's even worse than the fibroid tumors the wild rabbits around here have. They look like thick whiskers, and make the rabbits look a bit crazy.

If you're worried about it, you might check with a wildlife rehabilitator. Can't guarantee they can do anything (and they often don't do pickups) but it's something to consider.

Well, if it is the squirrel bot fly, they said a healthy adult can handle a couple as part of the glorious cycle of nature, so I'm not inclined to interfere. I don't want them to suffer, I'll swerve to avoid them in the road, but when it comes down to it, a squirrel is basically Purina Predator Chow on the hoof, and there's a limit to how much I'm willing to go through to keep one alive a little longer.

Well there's that, too. just figured I'd offer the suggestion. :)

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