prolapse is when part of the bowel lining (the mucosal lining)
protrudes from the cloaca (as pictured at left). The cloaca
will be very sore and swollen and will be quite painful for
is it caused?
are a few reasons for a prolapse.
the animal is constipated and continually pushing, trying
to pass poo;
2. ongoing diarrhoea;
3. over stimulation when toileting.
to avoid it?
It is vitally important to ensure that the animal is kept
adequately hydrated while in care. For adults, ensure that
there is fresh water available daily. For joeys, this may
mean giving water bottles in between milk feed bottles Ė remember
that the milk substitute we offer them is food and not water!
This is particularly so with Wombaroo fed joeys. Wombaroo
is a very thick milk formula and it is imperative that water
bottles are also offered. When using Biolac or Di-Vetelact
extra water may not be required, but constant checking is
needed at all times, which ever formula is used. Obviously,
more water is required on hotter days.
Diarrhoea should never be ignored! If the diarrhoea canít
be stopped within 3 days then itís time to get your animal
off to the vets ASAP. Of course, use your own judgement, if
the diarrhoea is severe then get to the vets sooner rather
When toileting a marsupial joey you only need soft, gentle
rubbing to stimulate the joey into passing wee and poo. If
the joey has not begun to toilet in 30 seconds Ė or is not
showing signs that is about too (cloaca opening and closing)
- cease toileting.
to treat it.
is important to ensure that the entire cloaca area is kept
well lubricated during a prolapse.
The animal will need to be transferred to a clean environment
so that dirt, etc, does not get onto the bowel lining.
less severe cases sugar (fine) can be mixed with an oily solution
(Vaseline, Paw Paw Ointment, Baby Oil Gel, etc) and applied
to the cloaca. The sugar makes the bowel lining contract back
in and the oily solution keeps the area lubricated.
cream can be applied to the area. This also shrinks the bowel
lining back into the cloaca.
severe prolapses, and when the above treatments donít work,
a vet will need to anaesthetise the animal, manually push
the lining back into place and then insert a stitch to keep
it in place.
prolapse should never be left for long as the bowel lining
becomes dry it will become quite difficult to treat. If an
improvement hasnít been seen in around 2 hours from the time
of prolapse then veterinary help is required ASAP. A vet will
also give an anti-inflammatory, antibiotics and probably pain
medications for the animal once the stitch is in place.
the stitch is place, the sugar and oily solution can be applied
to help keep the bowel lining in place.