CASE DESCRIPTION A 10-week-old 0.73-kg (1.6-lb) castrated male domestic ferret (Mustela putorius furo) was referred for exploratory laparotomy because of pneumoperitoneum and possible septic peritonitis after being bitten by the owner's dog.
CLINICAL FINDINGS Abdominal exploration revealed a large laceration of the duodenum, tears of the jejunal mesentery, and 2 small tears in the abdominal wall. Chylous abdominal effusion developed 48 hours after surgery.
TREATMENT AND OUTCOME Postoperative care included supportive treatment, analgesia, and antimicrobials. An abdominal drain was placed during the laparotomy and enabled monitoring of abdominal fluid production. Enteral feeding was provided through an esophagostomy tube. The chylous fluid production rapidly decreased after treatment with octreotide was initiated, and the ferret improved. Chyloabdomen resolved after 8 days of hospitalization and medical treatment.
CLINICAL RELEVANCE Findings suggested that chylous ascites can potentially develop secondary to blunt abdominal trauma in ferrets. In this ferret, chyloabdomen was successfully treated with octreotide administration and abdominal drainage.