De-Worming your Adult Skunk

De-worming your adult skunk properly is a very important part of skunk ownership that is often done improperly or not at all.  All skunk kits come with roundworms that need to be removed before they build to a dangerous level. Read about de-worming a kit here.  If you have had your skunk since it was a kit and already followed the initial 3 de-wormings, then you should be able to de-worm twice a year. If you have not already done so, start with the recommendations for de-worming a kit first.
de-worming your adult skunk
The recommended de-worming medications for skunks are Strongid (Pyrantel Pomoate) for kits and adults up to 4 lbs, and Panacur (Fenbendazole) for skunks 4 lbs and up. Panacur is a better choice because it kills more types of parasites than Strongid. Panacur comes in liquid form, Panacur Suspension 10%, or granules called Panacur C. If you are using the liquid Panacur, it is dosed at 25 mg per pound, or 50 mg per kilogram given daily for 3 consecutive days. There are cases where Veterinarians have given Panacur for up to 5 consecutive days.  If you choose the granule form of Panacur, skunks 4 lbs to 10 lbs will get Panacur C, 1 gram, for 3 days in a row, wait exactly 2 weeks and repeat for 3 more days. Wait 6 months and give for 3 days, wait exactly 2 weeks and repeat for 3 more days. Each box contains 3 packs so you will be able to give it for 3 days. You will need to purchase 2 boxes to complete the de-worming cycle.

Skunks over 10 lbs, will require Panacur C, 2 grams, for 3 days in a row, wait exactly 2 weeks and repeat for 3 more days. Wait 6 months and give for 3 days, wait exactly 2 weeks and repeat for 3 more days. You will need to purchase 2 boxes to complete the de-worming cycle.  Either form of Panacur is tasteless and easy to give.

De-worming properly is one of the most important things required to keep your skunk healthy!  Do not depend on fecals to determine whether or not your skunk needs to be de-wormed.  Do not assume that because your skunk is kept indoors, that it does not need to be de-wormed.  Skunks carrying parasites often have an unpleasant smell and the white of their coat will turn yellow. You may see them vomit after eating or dragging their butt after using the litter box. Kits have died from seizures and or prolaspe caused by the build up of parasites. Adult skunks who have not been properly de-wormed are at risk too.

I do not usually recommend feeding dairy to skunks but I do mix the de-wormer with either cottage cheese or yogurt as this will result in a looser stool and help facilitate the removal of any parasites present. When de-worming, make sure your skunk is going potty on schedule. I once had a rescue who became blocked shortly after her first de-worming.  The blockage required an emergency visit to the Veterinarian who had to give her an enema.

If your skunk was a rescue and you were not able to obtain past Veterinary records, I would recommend that you follow the de-worming guidelines for a kit to start with. Do not allow the new skunk near other household pets for at least 2 weeks.  It would be a good idea to de-worm all household pets on the same schedule.

 

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