Yasmina and Oliver

Oliver & Yasmina AKA Ollie & Mina

Yasmina is a 1 year old Silver Female
Oliver is a 1 year old Male Sable
DOB February 04, 2003

The pair went to their Forever home on October 23, 2004!

Ollie and Mina are now with the angels.

Yasmina came with her cage mate Oliver on November 22, 2003. Yasmina is a bit of a renegade ferret, she will sometimes nip to get your attention, she must go to her new home with Oliver. Oliver on the other hand is a little puppy that will follow you around until you stop, at which time he will insist you pick him up to love him.

The kids left for their new 4-ever home on October 23, 2004 to live in Endicott New York. Mom came to pick up two others and Yasmina had other ideas. She told mom in no uncertain terms she wanted to go and she needed to leave the other two here. So she did leave them and take these two kids.

Update: March 23, 2011
Hi Brenda,  I was just going to email you. Ollie just went to be with Mina and the angels. He had been going downhill for a while, and yesterday he decided he didn't want to eat or drink anymore and he didn't want his Ferretone. I refused to force feed him but did try giving him warm water in a syringe, but he cried even then and kept turning his head away. 

George and I just got back from the vet. His heart was in very bad shape on top of the advanced bilateral adrenalenoma. He had a lot of fluid around his lungs, a mass in his belly that could have been the right adrenal, he had difficulty breathing and his heartbeat was slow and weak, and he was whimpering and crying when moved. The vet thought he might be going into kidney failure because he was urinating even though badly dehydrated. I pray that he is dancing with Mina and feeling happy, healthy and peaceful. Susann

Update: February 25, 2011
Doubled Ollie's dose of Lasix per the vet's instructions. His appetite is a little better and he can move around easier, but he is totally incontinent and does seem addled mentally - just like Alzheimer's! I can live with that.

Update: February 19, 2011
I just picked up Mina's ashes. The crematorium put them in the most beautiful little wooden box, engraved with flowers and leaves. I didn't know they were going to do that. We got the "private" cremation so maybe it's included in the price. Geo had gotten me two really nice urns for Christmas - we picked them out online - I was planning to put Mina and Ollie in the same urn, but this little box is so pretty I can't complain. 

Feel like I made the right decision for Mina but oh, how I miss her!!! 

Ollie's not doing so well. He only eats soup now, no kibble. He's lost control of his bladder but his poop generally looks good. Talked to the vet today and she said to double the Lasix - he's also on Enalapril - you know I swear Ollie has the animal equivalent of Alzheimer's, too. There really is such a thing - they've just formally identified it in dogs, but no other species have been clinically studied as yet. Plus I just don't think he feels well. He doesn't really interact with us or the other kids anymore, and he kind of staggers when he walks. Oh, he does have arthritis on top of the bilateral adrenalenoma and the heart failure. Poor dear baby. Well he's what, 90+ in human years? 

I hope you and the kids are well, and I was so glad to hear that Luna is doing so much better! Love is healing that little one's spirit, isn't it?

Update: February 12, 2011
Dear Mina went to be with the ferret angels about two hours ago. She sends her love to Auntie Brenda, and thanks you for the loving care you gave her until she found her human mommy. She also thanks you for your compassion, love and great dedication to helping hundreds of ferrets just like her, as they waited for their 4ever homes - or for their own angels to come and take them to a place of endless peace and comfort.

I will never forget the first time I saw that gorgeous, snowy little white face with a rosebud nose, and those brilliant black teardrop eyes, looking at me from across your kitchen. The intensity of her gaze was amazing. I said, "Who is that!? You're so beautiful!" And I went over to her and picked her up and began giving her kisses, then I climbed over the barrier and found Ollie too and began giving them both hugs and kisses. When I looked up, you were standing over us with your hands on your cheeks and your mouth dropped open in horror. You told me how Mina was a terrible biter and nobody could pick her up without being shredded. I was soooo privileged that she allowed me to love her, and Ollie agreed that they should come home with me, so I could love and care for them for the rest of their lives. 

Mina was eight years old when she passed today. Ollie is eight years old too, and they have been with me for all but the first year of their lives. They have been dearly loved, and cherished, and have had lots of fun. Mina even had her picture on one of our Christmas cards, with her face poking out of a deep snowdrift in our backyard and bits of snow on her whiskers. How she loved making that hole in the snow bank. Strangely, that was kind of a one-shot deal, because she never liked playing in the snow much after that. "Aaaah this is fun! Woo hooo I can dig a tunnel.... Oooh jeez this stuff is cold!" 

I hope she knows that she has a home in my heart forever. 

Update: February 11, 2011
Ollie didn't show any significant improvement on Lasix, so as of today he's starting an additional medication (an ACE inhibitor). Poor guy. Mina is having a bad day - she's weaker, but still eating her soup voluntarily, just not as much. If she wants to stay in her bedding all the time and just eat her soup every few hours, as long as she does it willingly then I'm right there with her. I wonder if the carafate is depressing her appetite? She didn't have bloody stools so hadn't developed an ulcer, and I started carafate as a preventative, but maybe it interferes with the taste of the soup that she loves so much.

It's been very hard. Round the clock care, constant cleaning when she messes herself, mostly just so awful watching her and Ollie cling to their diminishing joy in life. I know you've been there many, many times and fully understand.

Update: February 8, 2011
Mina is still here, but barely. Poor baby girl. Ollie was just diagnosed with severe heart disease and has begun taking Lasix. Maggie and Beau are very happy and healthy. BTW is Maggie the "Munchkin" in the FML calendar? ;) Didn't see pix, just the names...

Update: December 22, 2010
Hello Brenda,
As you know, Mina's insulinoma has progressed very quickly and I write to you with a broken heart that her time with me is nearly over. Through all this, her appetite never wavered until today, and I have promised myself that I would never force-feed her like I did with Josie and Kaylie (Reese) when the illness was terminal and there was clearly no hope. Her eyes look so dull and unhappy. I will watch her throughout the day but if she doesn't regain her appetite then I guess I'll have to buck up and take her to the vet.

She has not been on Diazoxide (sp?) but has been on 3 ml of Pred every day for two weeks (increasing the dosage for almost three months before that) and it hasn't made any noticeable difference. I'll talk to the vet later but I wanted to know your thoughts as well.

I also thought you might want to say goodbye to her in your prayers. Remember the delightful, feisty little sprite she is, a fearless spirit who was very happy through most of her life. She spent last night snuggled in warmth between Maggie and Beau, and tonight she will be with Ollie, her brother, and Mittsie, who loves her just as much.
Take care,

Update: December 5, 2010
Also, I wanted to let you know that Mina's insulinoma has progressed and we just upped her Pred to 1ml 2x day. She gets soup several times a day, too, but her hind legs are weak and she just has no energy. I miss my dancing Mina.

Ollie is doing really well on the Melatonin; it brought all his fur back and his appetite is great. I'm thankful that the medicine is making him feel better, after the Lupron quit working and the Deslorelin failed. He still has a very good quality of life. Hard to believe he and Mina are just about 8 yrs old!!

Update: August 1, 2010
Oliver No. 1 went to see Dr Gschrey last week. Good news: no sign of insulinoma, no sign of the adrenal tumors being near the prostate or vena cava (so he'll live a while yet), and one enlarged tumor near his spleen that the doc thinks is just excess red blood cell production, not lymphoma, because it's clear and well rounded. All Ollie's other blood work is normal. The itching isn't that bad - Dr G said he's seen ferrets who have actually scratched themselves raw, poor babies. So he does not recommend surgery. He did suggest Melatonin (at $65 for a 4-6 month shot including the implant procedure itself), and as an alternative just to control the itching, 1 ml of children's benadryl twice a day. 

Dr G also talked with Bob Wagner, who said he is seeing more cases of Deslorelin resistance - espec those who have been on Lupron for a while and it's stopped working. Otherwise, the higher number of Des resistance is just because many more ferrets are using it, he said. 

Other than the adrenalenomas (both right and left side), and some arthritis in his legs, Ollie is doing well - he loves his soup and treats, his teeth are good, etc. 

Hope Bear III and Oliver II continue to do well. 

Update: July 21, 2010
As for the kids, Mittsie (New Orleans rescue) is still doing fine but has not yet accepted Maggie and Beau. She will only hang out with Ollie and Mina, who are about 7.5 years old! She's a very active ferret, so needs a lot of play time with me. 

Maggie is perfectly fat. LOL. She is sweeter and more affectionate than ever. Beau is also doing extremely well - he never ceases to amaze us with his strength and agility. He just loves life and such a joyful little soul! We love him to bits. 

Mina is very agile for her age, too. She can still run up the stairs and likes to play. Her appetite is very good and her IBD (if that's what it is) has improve since I began adding probiotics to her diet. 

Ollie is my problem boy right now. His appetite is also good, but his level of activity is low and the Deslorelin implant had no effect. His tail continues to lose fur. We are lucky that the Lupron held the disease in check for about two years, but now I fear surgery is his only chance. I am leaning toward Dr. Wagner in eastern PA, as he has a lot of experience with ferrets and ferret surgeries. I hope he will also be able to identify any other problems going on, e.g. insulinoma or cardiomyopathy. 

Hope you are well - and let me know if you can take the kids for camp. 
Hugs, Susann

Update: May 29, 2010
Mina is doing a little better with her tummy and I may try that Feline Flora to keep helping things along. Mittsie is in perfect health and just
gorgeous (according to the vet last week. Ollie, not so good - the Deslorelin implant doesn't seem to have slowed things down for him. He still
has fur loss - although only a little bit on the tail, but he's still quite itchy. His appetite is very good tho. 
Good luck with Clinic day! 

Update: April 24, 2010
Mina has her issues too, but she's still a soup-and-treat ho, can't gobble enough soup and loves her kibble too. She still scurries around like a kit, up and down the stairs. Ollie had his Deslorelin implant 2 weeks ago now and he's stopped scratching all the time, thank God. Both of them send their love.

Update: March 19, 2010
Ollie is showing adrenal signs again, so it appears the Lupron isn't working anymore. He's very itchy and a bit lethargic. My vet says the hair loss will soon follow. We talked to Cornell and they want $200 for a Deslorelin implant. Yikes - but he's worth it!

Update: February 8, 2010
Ollie is going for surgery on Thursday to remove a benign sebaceous epithelioma. He's had it for over a year, but it has just started to "weep" (bleed) through a hole in the center. It's really just an annoyance, but it may continue to grow and bother him, so it's best that it come off. He's doing very well otherwise. Mina also sends kisses to her favorite shelter mom! Hard to believe they're both 7 years old.

Update: January 12, 2010
Everyone's doing great!! Ollie and Mina are almost 7 years old, and still have wonderful appetites - for food, and for life! The other day I saw Ollie rolling and jumping like a kit.

Update: October 28, 2009
Hi Brenda!

How are you feeling?? Better, I hope!!!
All the kids are doing fine. Ollie and Mina look great for their age (almost 7, wow!). They do spend most of their time sleeping, but their fur is thick and silky, good appetites and they love their treats. They give lots of kisses and still bounce around and dance sometimes. 

Mittsie (not from Lakeroad) is still a beautiful little spitfire. She has become very affectionate, too, but still will have nothing to do with the newcomers. 

Maggie and Beau are doing beautifully well. As you can see from the pix, Maggie is the same little minx who captured your heart (and mine). She loves Beau and the feeling is mutual. Beau had put on more than a half-pound when he went to the vet two weeks ago, and must be close to 3 lbs by now. Of course, being spoiled with fresh warm turkey soup twice a day will do that to a man! ;) 
Everyone sends their love.

Update: February 12, 2009
I cannot believe that Mina and Ollie are six years old! Ollie's fur is as beautiful as Maggie's (thank you, Lupron!) and he's the little man of the household. He's the first one to make sure I see the food bowl needs replenishing in the morning and that the water needs to be changed. He's like a little sheriff. He always greets me in the morning with kisses, and likes to cuddle on my lap while I'm working. 

Mina is as bright-eyed and spry as ever. She still runs up and downs the stairs 20 times a day without effort. She never walks - only scurries or runs. The tumor on her forehead (which the vet said is benign) doesn't seem to bother her at all. She loves to be kissed and scratched too.

Update: February 13, 2006
I wanted to let you know about Ollie, Mina and the two “bayou babies.” They’ve been getting on very well. The last few days I’ve noticed a split right down gender lines … lol … Mina and Josie like to sleep together under one of my desk drawers, while Ollie and Coco go to sleep under our bed. They all curl up and snooze happily, then wake up and play and beg for treats. You know how that goes!

There’s no fighting, no more stress poops. All is OK. Mina hasn’t bitten anyone in months!!! Josie is quite the mush.

Update: January 10, 2006
I did indeed get the kids (when Renee blew through like a Cat 5 hurricane on New Year's Eve, on her way home from Louisiana to Connecticut :)).

Everybody is doing fine. George and I had bought one of those giant ferret condo things, thinking we'd keep the two groups separate for a while and eventually move them all in there together. Well, that plan didn't last long...

Ollie and Mina had a few days to explore the new cage at will before Renee arrived, bringing her own four along with Josie and Coco. O & M didn't seem interested in sleeping in the cage or anything, just poked around now & then. When the six ferrets blew in with the hurricane, I let Ollie run around with them but kept Mina downstairs. At first, Ollie seemed subdued and let himself be cuddled to sleep by both Carolyn and Malerie, but in a couple of hours he decided to play and curl up to sleep with the gang of furkids.

Mina didn't meet Josie or Coco until the next evening, after Renee left and we had come back from an afternoon party. She was definitely a bit out of sorts at first (she didn't even want her cheerios!).

That night, I left the door of both cages open for everybody to explore and plop down where they wished, and don't you know all four ferrets chose to sleep together in the new cage? The next morning (Monday) they were all fine, playing and curling up together. Everybody seems to be eating and pooping well, and enjoying their treats. There was one stress poop and I think it was Mina. But surprisingly, she has shown absolutely no aggression toward either of the new kids.

Last night Coco and Ollie went at it a bit. George was afraid they were playing too rough, as Coco was after Ollie's ear. There wasn't a lot of squealing and no bite marks in the skin, so I think it was OK. Ollie was badly outmatched size-wise and he didn't seem too happy about that. Coco is a VERY big ferret - twice the size of O & M, and 3x bigger than Josie. But an hour later they were curled up sleeping peacefully in the same hammock!

And no "talking" or other problems anytime through the night. So I guess it was them getting used to each other and working out their hierarchy, as ferrets do. So far today everything has been fine. Hard to tell who the "alpha ferret" is now.

At least, I can say that nobody has tried to hurt anyone else, nobody has "shut down" and stopped eating, and nobody is stress-pooping.

Josie is a real sweetheart, but a greedy little soul! She is so tiny, barely a pound, but constantly begs for food (no surprise given her starving in the Gulf). It took maybe two hours for her to figure out which cabinet holds the ferret treats. She runs to the kitchen and dances around the cabinet every time a human goes near it. Ha!

Coco is the fattest ferret I have ever seen, beautiful and sleek. I would never have recognized him as the same kid I found dying in the cage in Gonzales. He's very mischievous but is a good-natured soul at heart. He, too, can't seem to get enough food. No wonder...!

Update: August 02, 2005
Mina has started giving me a face wash every morning when she wakes up. She waits for me to hold and cuddle her before running off to start her day. She also lets Malerie and George hold her without biting. She's a very, very different ferret now than when she first came to live here! Ollie is so sweet -- as Malerie put it: "Ollie loves everybody, and everybody loves Ollie." He likes to steal Carolyn's old toys and hide them under our bed.

Update: March 02, 2005
Except for our visit to the vet for shots, when she chomped me terribly (she was having her temp taken via the rectum and was NOT at all happy about that), she’s been a total peach. She’s made tremendous progress since coming to live with us. J

Update: February 05, 2005
They’re doing great! I need to get a decent camera and send you pictures. Mina loves to be held and kissed every morning when she wakes up. Ollie is trying very hard to like the snow, but he hates cold paws… he’s really going to love playing outside in the warm sunshine.

Update: December 21, 2004
Mina and Ollie send their love. Mina has just developed a bad cough … George and I woke up in the middle of the night Wednesday, dreaming of a dog barking. It turned out to be Mina coughing in the living room. I fed her soup and a couple raisins and we heard no more coughing until today when she had another bout. We don’t have dust balls or anything so I don’t know why it would be sporadic like this. Ollie is fine, too.

Update: December 12, 2004
They’re really doing well. Mina is letting everyone pet her now, and she rarely bites. Ollie had a bit of an upset stomach last week but I gave him carafate 2x/day and he’s back to his normal rambunctious self. They are a joy.

Update: December 01, 2004
Mina has progressed to the point of allowing Malerie to hold her, especially when Mal has cheerios in her hand. Ollie is into everything, a real little Mr. Curiosity. Did I tell you he ‘adopted’ the engine of Mal’s toy train set, and also snatched the top off a carved pumpkin? We still haven’t found it and think it’s stuffed in our mattress somewhere. We love them both and they’ve settled in quite well.

Update: November 21, 2004
Ollie and Mina enjoy their playtime in our backyard as the weather stays nice and mild. Ollie is becoming a regular little marshmallow. He knows exactly which kitchen cabinet holds his favorite treats. Mina’s nipping has lessened noticeably; we went almost a whole week without a bite! When she did chomp, I was putting her to bed in her cage (she didn’t want to go to bed yet, just like a little human kid!). She bit me, and I stroked her and spoke softly and then she started to tremble. They tremble when they’re happy, like when they’re licking their Ferretone, so I think that was a good sign. She just is a little afraid to let herself love someone, ya know? Malerie played with her today, too, and no nips.

Update: November 04, 2004
Kids are doing fine. Ollie is a riot – he likes to steal things and stash them in odd corners; when we move them, he moves them right back. He’s figured out now that if he hides his special toys in our bed mattress, we can’t get them out. He stole part of Malerie’s childhood plastic train set and hid that. For some reason he had a fascination with it. He also stole the lid to the pumpkin Mal had carved, and hid that in the bathroom. He’s a sweetheart. Carolyn likes to cuddle him … heck, we all like to cuddle him! Mina is getting a lot better … with me, at least. We actually went almost 3 full days without a nip, just until last night! She’s given me kisses several times, and when she does start to nip me, it’s like she stops herself right away and kind of gums me instead. Once she started to nip and then kissed my fingers instead. “Her” food is all gone now, but she seems to like the ProPlan by itself. They both enjoy the soup I make and they get that twice a day. George and the kids are still keeping their distance from Mina, though. She has gone up to Mal when Mal was just sitting on a chair reading, and nipped her feet. So they all wear slippers or shoes around the house now, and keep their hands away from Mina. When she’s fully comfortable with me, then I’ll try introducing them all again…

Yasmina and Oliver Yasmina and Oliver