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Last sync:2023-02-19 13:30
Kemosabe the prehensile tailed porcupine runs around, licks an apple and gourds, and we update you on his health.

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Welcome back to Animal Wonders.  I'm Jessi and this is Kemosabe the prehensile tailed porcupine.  Kemosabe is sleepy and a bit grumpy right now, and that's because it's daytime and he's nocturnal.  I don't get to share what's happening after dark very often, but last night, Kemo and I had a really good hangout and I thought you'd like to see what he does during the time that he's normally awake, so enjoy watching him lick some pumpkins while I talk a bit about what's been going on in his life.


Kemosabe had a visit to the vet today, so he slept the day away in his crate while the anesthetic wore off and now it's time to get out and play a bit.  It's really special to me that I get to care for Kemosabe and I want you to know that I don't take a single minute for granted.  You might notice that Kemosabe has a bright orange bandage on his foot.  Kemosabe poked himself on something and it created a small wound.  It's not healing on its own, so we've been treating it with ointment and a wrap, so he doesn't mess with it.   He is not amused by this bandage and so he's protesting by refusing to use his leg at all.

We took Kemosabe in to our care eight years ago, which makes him ten years old.  He's getting older and he's starting to deal with some old age related issues.  He's got a little arthritis in his tail and he doesn't heal from little wounds as quickly as he did when he was younger.  

He's also had issues with the health of his teeth since he arrived at Animal Wonders.  Kemosabe currently has just one tooth left, a top incisor, that we have to trim regularly because he's a rodent and rodent incisors grow continuously and since he has no other teeth to rub it against, it just keeps growing.  He's already had three of his incisors removed because they became infected below the gum line.  Porcupines have 16 molars, four in each quadrant, and all of Kemosabe's molars have fully erupted and come to the end of their life.  Since they had nothing left anchoring them in, they each fell out on their own over the last two years.  

We've been caring for Kemosabe's teeth issues for a long time, and he's always recovered quickly, but this time, it's been different.  Kemo's third incisor removal seemed to go well, but after a week, it was obvious he wasn't healing like he had before.  He had gotten an infection in the space left behind by his tooth and we've been helping him fight this infection for the last five months.  He's been through multiple surgeries to clean it out and stitch it up.  He's gotten antibiotic injections.  We've been flushing his mouth with Betadine solution and oral cleansers every day, and now our best hope is that an antibiotic bead will work.  This is an antibiotic wrapped in a hard clay covering that creates a localized dose released over time.  We actually tried putting an antibiotic bead in already, but Kemosabe was able to use his tongue to dislodge the stitches and kick the bead out, but we just put a new one in that's smaller and hopefully the stitches holding it in are Kemosabe-proof, and it stays in long enough that it does its job.  

Through all of this, Kemo has been so tolerant of us giving him daily mouth flushes and medicines that taste like fake strawberry banana smoothies.  When he's not feeling so great, I can always get him to eat by hand, feeding him little balls of his soft steam diet.  He's still active and full of life, it's just difficult to see him struggle to get fully healthy.  Getting to care for Kemosabe has been a highlight in my life, and I'm soaking up every day.  He's loved by all of the team at Animal Wonders.  The staff at the vet clinic all know him by name and ask for updates whenever they see him come in.

Dr. Card, his veterinarian, always makes room in her busy schedule to make sure Kemosabe gets the best treatment.  He's known by millions of people around the world and loved by countless internet fans who've watched him since his debut in 2013, and if you're watching this video, he's also become a part of your life.

I don't know what the future holds for Kemosabe, but I do know that I will do everything in my power to make sure he gets the best chance at living a happy and healthy life and that he enjoys each and every one of his nights, even if that means he gets away with licking all of our squash and apples, which we then need to wash before we can use.  

If Kemosabe holds a place in your heart, please let me know in the comments below.  I'd love to know where you first met him, whether it was on our channel, someone shared a video of him with you, or if you've met him in real life, and if you haven't seen and shared Kemosabe's most viewed video, I've put a link in the description.  Please share his wonderfulness with the world, because it's not every day that someone as special as him enters your life.

Thank you for letting me share.  I hope you have a great day and I want to leave you with some more Kemosabe.  

Hey buddy.  How's it going?  Can you come down from there?