Animal Welfare Information Center
United States Department of Agriculture
National Agricultural Library
Information Resources on the Care and Welfare of Ferrets
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Bartunek, A.E., V.A. Claes, and P.R. Housmans (2002). Effects of volatile anesthetics on elastic stiffness in isometrically contracting ferret ventricular myocardium. Journal of Applied Physiology 92(6): 2491-2500. ISSN: 8750-7587.
Abstract: The effects of halothane, isoflurane, and sevoflurane on elastic stiffness, which reflects the degree of cross-bridge attachment, were studied in intact cardiac muscle. Electrically stimulated (0.25 Hz, 25[degree]C), isometrically twitching right ventricular ferret papillary muscles (n = 15) at optimal length (Lmax) were subjected to sinusoidal length oscillations (40 Hz, 0.25-0.50% of Lmax peak to peak). The amplitude and phase relationship with the resulting force oscillations was decomposed into elastic and viscous components of total stiffness in real time. Increasing extracellular Ca2+ concentration in the presence of anesthetics to produce peak force equal to control increased elastic stiffness during relaxation, which suggests a direct effect of halothane and sevoflurane on cross bridges. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.
Descriptors: ferret, volitile anesthetics, ventricular myocardium, elastic stiffness, contracting, halothane, isoflurane, sevoflurane.
Brown, C. (2006). Blood collection from the cranial vena cava of the ferret. Lab Animal 35(9): 23-24. ISSN: 0093-7355.
NAL Call Number: QL55.A1L33
Abstract: The domestic ferret, though not as common a laboratory animal as the rat or mouse, serves as a model in critical research areas, including influenza biology and vaccine development. Studies involving ferrets necessitate knowledge of proper blood collection methods, such as cranial vena cava puncture.
Descriptors: ferret, blood collection, cranial vena cava, animal model, research.
Burattini, R. and K.B. Campbell (2002). Comparative analysis of aortic impedance and wave reflection in ferrets and dogs. American Journal of Physiology 282(1): H244-H255. ISSN: 0363-6135.
Abstract: Our modified version of the T-tube arterial model (consisting of two parallel, loss-free transmission paths terminating in lumped loads of complex and frequency-dependent nature) was applied to experimental measurements of ascending aortic pressure and of ascending and descending aortic flows taken from dogs and ferrets. Our aim was to provide quantitative evaluation of the aortic pressure and flow pulse wave components as they relate to the distribution of arterial properties and relate to wave travel and reflection in mammalians of consistently different size and shape. Estimated effective lengths (distances to effective reflection sites) of the head-end (d(h)) and body-end (d(b)) transmission paths were approximately 12 and 30 cm, respectively, in the dog and 6.5 and 13 cm, respectively, in the ferret. These lengths and distributions of estimated arterial properties were consistent with the difference in the body size and with the more central location of the heart in the ferret's body than it is in the dog's body. In both animal species the ascending aortic pressure and flow waves could be interpreted in terms of forward and reflected components arising from the two distinct effective reflection sites, although the higher d(h)/d(b) ratio in the ferret determined the presence of one broad, indistinct minimum in the modulus of ascending aortic impedance in the frequency range from 0 to 10 Hz, rather than two distinct minima as observed in the dog.
Descriptors: ferrets, dogs, aorta physiology, blood flow velocity, electric impedance, aortic valve, blood pressure, elasticity, kinetics, animal models of cardiovascular disease, species specificity.
Notes: Erratum In: Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2002 Sep;283(3):following table of contents.
Diaz, M.E., D.a. Eisner, and a.W. Trafford (2002). Changes in intracellular calcium handling in a ferret model of left ventricular hypertrophy and heart failure. Pflugers Archiv. European Journal of Physiology 443(Supplement 1): S376-S377. ISSN: 0031-6768.
Descriptors: ferret model, heart failure, ventricular hypertrophy, calcium handling, intracellular, changes.
Notes: 81st Annual Joint Meeting of the Physiological Society, the Scandinavian Physiological Society and the German Physiological Society, Tuebingen, Germany; March 15-19, 2002.
Flatman, P.W. (2005). Activation of ferret erythrocyte NA+-K+-2CL(-) cotransport by deoxygenation. The Journal of Physiology 563(2): 421-431. ISSN: 0022-3751.
NAL Call Number: 447.8 J82
Descriptors: ferret, deoxygenation, kinase, phosphatase, magnesium.
Graham, H.K. and A.W. Trafford (2004). Decreased heart rate variability in a ferret model of heart failure. Biophysical Journal 86(1): 383a-384a. ISSN: 0006-3495.
Descriptors: ferret, animal model, heart failure, decreased heart rate, variability, cardiac arrhythmias, autonomic control.
Notes: 48th Annual Meeting of the Biophysical Society, Baltimore, MD, USA; February 14-18, 2004.
Johnson Delaney, C.A. (2005). Ferret cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Seminars in Avian and Exotic Pet Medicine 14(2): 135-142. ISSN: 1055-937X.
NAL Call Number: SF994.2.A1536
Descriptors: ferrets, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, therapy, heart diseases, reviews, techniques, cardiac massage, cardiac arrest.
Kottwitz, J.J., V. Luis Fuentes, and B. Micheal (2006). Nonbacterial thrombotic endocarditis in a ferret (Mustela putorius furo). Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 37(2): 197-201. ISSN: 1042-7260.
NAL Call Number: SF601.J6
Descriptors: ferret, thrombotic endocarditis, nonbacterial, pelvic limb ataxia, cardiac murmur, pathology, clinical aspects, diagnosis, endocarditis, histopathology, postmortem examinations.
Lowe, M.D., J.a. Lynham, A.a. Grace, and A.J. Kaumann (2002). Comparison of the affinity of beta-blockers for two states of the beta1-adrenoceptor in ferret ventricular myocardium. British Journal of Pharmacology 135(2): 451-461. ISSN: 0007-1188.
Descriptors: ferret, ventricular myocardium, beta blockers, affinity, betal andrenoceptor, comparison, potency, cardiostimulant effects.
McLain, D.E. (2006). Use of an adjustable restraint device for prolonged and intermittent intravenous infusion and blood sampling in ferrets. Lab Animal 35(7): 47-50. ISSN: 0093-7355.
NAL Call Number: QL55.A1L33
Descriptors: ferrets, restraint, instrumentation, blood specimen, collection, methods, infusions, intravenous, methods, infusions.
Sanchez Migallon Guzman, D., J. Mayer, R. Melidone, R. McCarthy J, E. McCobb, A. Kavirayani, and J. Rush E (2006). Pacemaker implantation in a ferret (Mustela putorius furo) with third-degree atrioventricular block. Veterinary Clinics of North America. Exotic Animal Practice 9(3): 677-687. ISSN: 1094-9194.
NAL Call Number: SF997.5.E95 E97
Abstract: A 7.5-year-old castrated male ferret (Mustela putorius furo) was diagnosed with third-degree atrioventricular (AV) block. A monopolar epicardial pacemaker system was implanted, resulting in a regular, paced cardiac rhythm with third-degree AV block at 140 beats per minute. Over the next 2 months, the ferret developed anorexia, interstitial pneumonia, intermittent diarrhea, and hind-limb weakness and had a slow and progressive recovery. The ferret developed clinical signs of congestive heart failure 4 months after the surgery, resulting in its death 3 weeks later. Necropsy results attributed the death to cardiac failure due to extensive myocardial mineralization. To the authors' knowledge this is the first published report of surgical report of surgical pacemaker implantation in a ferret.
Descriptors: ferret, atrioventricular block, pacemaker, implantation, congestive heart failure, myocardial mineralization.
Vastenburg, M.H., S.A. Boroffka, and N.J. Schoemaker (2004). Echocardiographic measurements in clinically healthy ferrets anesthetized with isoflurane. Veterinary Radiology & Ultrasound 45(3): 228-232. ISSN: 1058-8183.
NAL Call Number: SF757.8.A4
Abstract: Two-dimensional, M4-mode, and color flow Doppler echocardiography was performed in 29 (18 females, 11 males) clinically healthy ferrets anesthetized with isoflurane. M-mode measurements of the left ventricle, left atrial appendage diameter (LAAD), and aorta (Ao) were obtained. The fractional shortening and LAAD/Ao ratio were calculated. The values of the M-mode measurements were compared between the male and female ferrets using a Student's t-test. No significant differences were found. The difference in body weight between the male and female ferrets was highly significant (P<0.001), but no significant correlation was found between body weight and M-mode measurements. Color flow Doppler examinations of the mitral, tricuspid, aortic, and pulmonary valves were recorded and there was minor valvular regurgitation in five ferrets, which was considered nonsignificant.
Descriptors: anesthesia, anesthetics, inhalation pharmacology, ferrets, heart ventricles, isoflurane, ultrasonography, reference values, doppler ultrasonography, echocardiography.
Zandvliet, M.M.a. (2005). Electrocardiography in psittacine birds and ferrets. Seminars in Avian and Exotic Pet Medicine 14(1): 34-51. ISSN: 1055-937X.
Descriptors: electrocardiography, ECG, psittacine, Mustela furo, cardiac disease, parrots, ferrets.
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