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Guinea-pig related hand-holding in urgent need here....

(76 Posts)
70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 05-Jul-13 14:05:17

My little black Abby boar (nearly 3yo)

Last night at evening cuddles his eyes were a bit dry crusty (he's got a fatty eye) this was both eyes.
He had a cuddle, supper, bit quiet.

This morning, about 6.30am I took them breakfast. He was sitting there. Usually he has his nose in the air, with his funny little hedgehog nose twitching.
He's exhibiting all the guinea-pig "I'm going downhill" signs.

He's out in the run now with GP1 to give them fresh air and grass if he wants. He's got the run shelters, shade, a bowl of Ribena diluted (I've never tried this but I thought "Try anything"

He's sitting straight (not stretched out or anything), sort of puffed out, but not starey fur.
I've bathed his eyes with boiled salt water and he had enough savvy to fight with me.
He's doing a sort of 'nodding' back and forth, but his breathing isn't raspy.
When i lifted him , he felt 'limp' not floppy but a CBA feeling.

So. This has all happened in the last 12 hours.
I phoned the vet. They have no GP vet until Sunday. I've booked him in .
I will get him inside later and give him Critical Care. He's eaten a bit of breakfast and had hay.
Then I need to look at is eyes again and decide if I can keep him SAFE until his appointment or find another vet.

I know GPs eyes are vunerable.
I know I have to get food (Critical Care) in him.
I know if I find A.N.Other vet they might not have GP experience.

But I know when a guinea pig goes, it goes. If he's going to 'go' I want it to be peaceful at home with his brother.Not taken miles to be examined and medicated.


Dilemma. Horns.

guineapiglet Fri 05-Jul-13 14:31:46

Oh 70 sending you kind thoughts and hugs I know how precious your boys sounds like you have done all the right things and you know what to wat
ch out for. Has he eaten or drunk anything in the past couple of hours? Lethargic? Could it be heat related in any way? It does sound like he needs a vet visit when you can could you organise anything nearer until your proper appointment? It might just be an eye infection and may need anti b's?

You are very experienced and wise so rely on your instincts for him. Keep him watched over so you can check all his movements. How is his companion doing? May need to separate if at all possible in case it spreads?

Will be thinking of you and send all blessings for your little black furry xxxx

70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 05-Jul-13 14:46:26

Thankx guinea

his eyes are clear fluid like tears (he was under the hay - strange animal) so I cleaned them in case there was any hay seeds.
They do have those milky cleaning tears don't they. Last time he had a hay piece he nearly took my hand off when I bathed his eye.

GP1 was a bit hot'n'bothered (which was why I thought I's chance it and put them in the run) . They are nearer the house so I can keep going out to them.

I don't want to seperate them unless I have to they aren't sitting together). GP2 is parked in the middle of the run, not hiding away like an ill animal would (or should ).

I know from years gone by with my previous hogs, this was the way they went (very quickly)

I'm very wary of GPs + antibiotics. The upset to the gut flora, the probiotics.

I'm hovering between - heat, needs food and a good eye clean
a vet who'll think "GP, antibiotics, bye"

Then it might muck up whatever his GP vet would do.

I'm hoping my Guinea-Pig Animal Husbandary will see him right sad
I'm watching his eyes really carefully though.

guineapiglet Fri 05-Jul-13 15:00:32

The eye thing sounds like some kind of hayfever almost - ishe the one allergic to some kind of hay. ? I think you are right to go with your experienced instincts. Cosset him, keep him in familiar surroundings with gp1,it is much less stressful all round and thats what i think i would do. Wait to see your trusted vet who you can rely on. It is vv hot and humid not good with a fur coat on..

. Dont worry too much he is in expert and loving hands

70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 05-Jul-13 15:12:56

Things that should be easy:

Trying to get Critical Care into a little rodents' mouth. (I'm trying to help you piggie)

Rodent says "No. You're the adult. I'm armed with teeth"

It's a bit on a tiny spoon literally on his lip then he licks it.

Eyes are clear at the moment but he's lethargic.Not puffying and panting, just meh.

guineapiglet Fri 05-Jul-13 15:37:44

Would a syringe help at all or a slim straw? I know what a devil of a job trying to get food down is as long as he stays hydrated and cool. Could yoy relocate him somewhere cooler? Near the fridge or on a cool floor? You will have done everything possible for him I know it is a bit of a nursing game now and almost willing them to eat and rally.

I will be highly unpopular if i pray for rain ( i am indoors with mahoosive hayfever) but some cooler air might help. Treats!? Grass and cucumber might help or ice.

Really hoping he starts to improve. Hugs xxx

KRITIQ Fri 05-Jul-13 17:58:48

Oh no, hands and paws outstretched to you.

Have you explained the symptoms on a guinea pig forum or similar? If it is something fairly obvious, a rodentologist might be on hand to suggest treatment - then you go to the vet's and tactfully say what you think it is (fib about it happening with another pig in the past and vet told you it was such and such then,) so you can get the treatment required.

Is there another pig savvy vet anywhere? Everything crossed for you!

70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 05-Jul-13 18:11:56

Guinea - Update:

He's still very quiet compared to his usual self but that might be the temperature.

He's eaten grass (good sign) but turned his lip up at the Critical Care. (I've got a syringe guineapiglet but I don't want to send it into his lungs He's not an easy patient)

I took a piece of hay out of his non-fatty eye - hoorah so I'm hoping it's a physical irritant than an infection . I'll only know if it flares up again.

I'm taking all the hay from the hay boxand giving them fleece. They can have a pile of hay in the corner or I'll get judgey looks.

GP1 is being a right Prima Donna. He's giving GP2 space but he's being very prowly and attention seeking. But it ight be compared to GP2 quietness.

We're not out of the woods, he's still going to the vet. I need to get food into him and keep him cool.
Waxing him not an option. <<ouch>>

Thanks guineapiglet and KRITIQ. Virtual pig-support really does help. grin
DD ws beside herself today.
(Even DH phoned me to see how piggie was doing)

guineapiglet Fri 05-Jul-13 19:23:23

It sounds like GP1 is being a bit jealous and over protective - we have all said before how they just 'know' if one is under the weather and act accordingly.... he probably is concerned for his brother and 'knows' that you are being concerned about him. Clever little souls....

Yes, he should probably go and see someone who knows him just to put everyone's mind at rest, lets hope it is combination of the hay in the eye and the hideous hot weather - sorry a red head with freckles and hay fever, another horrible combination!

Keep him nice and cool - the fact he is eating grass and has an appetite is really good news - with one of my girls I used to 'dip' the grass she loved so much, with the seeds, into the paste I had made, so at least I felt some was going in. They are very hard creatures to force feed!!
smile Really hoping he has a good night, and that all will be well tomorrow.
Sleep well little guinea.

noyouhavehadawee Fri 05-Jul-13 22:00:26

no helpful advice other than keep cool, just sending support and squeaks for your piggy.

alemci Fri 05-Jul-13 22:11:17

hope your GP is ok. It is very hot.

we have been in a similar scenario recently and our GP is just old. The boars are more troublesome aren't they with illness.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 05-Jul-13 22:43:13


They are complex little beasts and it is so easy to fall madly in love with them .
The older an animal gets, the more difficult the hot weather is to cope with.

I may get a small fan for their Pighouse.
Keeping them warm in winter seems easier than keeping them cool.

They're off to bed now. I'll see how he is tomorrow- it doesn't help him that he's black , fluffy and small. Not a good hot weather combo.

guineapiglet Sat 06-Jul-13 09:08:01

Hi 70 just wondering what kind of a night he had and how he seems today? V hot and humid here already so hope the heat not affecting him too much. A fan is a great idea. Does his eye look better today?
This is where ceramic floors come into their own, i miss mine alot, ideal for overheating furries and humans!

<prays for a thunder storm>

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sat 06-Jul-13 12:52:23

Hi guineapiglet

I had DD on "whoever gets up first opens the guinea-pigs windows" watch.

His eyes are clean but look a bit dull (I'm sure dehydration).
We put veg next to him so he didn't have to strain himself.
He's still very inactive, not bothering much.
We are handfeeding him (they are out in the shade in their run). Cucumber in water, herbs, grass.
Last night he claimed the fleecebox, GP1 had the haytrug.

I'm wondering if it's his teeth? though his front ones are fine ,back ones might be the issue? Teeth can affect eyes too.
He's finding all this warm weather very draining, poor chap. Though he was doing his little hedgehog face which is reassuring.

I'll see what pans out at the vet.

SconeInSixtySeconds Sat 06-Jul-13 13:00:37

70 - no advice to offer but I will be thinking positive thoughts for your piggy.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sat 06-Jul-13 13:07:14

He's just done one of his Mega-Droppings.
I've bagged it to show the vet (I'm sure he'll be thrilled )

I'm relieved because at least that end is working but there's no much going in sad

SconeInSixtySeconds Sat 06-Jul-13 13:38:01

I was going to suggest parsley but I see you have put herbs there already. Poor boy sad

guineapiglet Sat 06-Jul-13 15:35:43

Glad to hear he is up and about and there is something coming out the other end..

Has he had teeth problems at all? It is usually the back ones causing problems but if he is eating little and often something is going in at least. They do lose their appetites in the heat like we do so am hoping his lethargy is due to that. If you are seeing the vet tomorrow it's not long to wait, then you will get the help and advice to sort him out. How is gp1 doing??


70isaLimitNotaTarget Sat 06-Jul-13 16:34:24

GP1 is being his usual self wink - his jaws are constantly going nom nom nom on the grass- which is what GP2 should be doing too,

He's eaten watermelon, but he's just sitting (not lying sprawled) in the run, it's a tiny bit breezy so they are staying as cool as possible....but not eating the grass. sad

No previous teeth problems and his front ones are fine (but I can't see/feel the back ones)

It's all started with the heatwave but if he rides this out then I'll keep him hydrated and arm wrestle the Critical Care in.

GP1 is being very considerate and giving him 'boar space' which is good.

FernieB Sat 06-Jul-13 18:22:42

I hope he's feeling better. Sending him parsley scented hugs.

guineapiglet Sat 06-Jul-13 18:26:37

I am sure the vet will set your mind at rest re the teeth issue tomorrow. The problem is they cant really be seen or felt by us mere mortals, and sometimes they can only have a real look at the teeth by x-ray, so a consultation is vital. Am hoping the CC will help him get his appetite back, lets hope so, meanwhile it really is a little of what he fancies, his fave snacks etc, just to get him moving again... and lots of your daughter's tlc of course....! As a treat I would sometimes offer ours bread soaked in milk just to bulk them back up a bit, but you kind of almost will them to eat, - so lets hope tomorrow sorts him out. Do you have to go far.......? just make sure the air con is on before you get in the car!!

Sending you positive thoughts and vibes for tomorrow, hope the little chap perks up! XXX

MimsyBorogroves Sat 06-Jul-13 18:32:22

Guinea Lynx forums give bloody good advice (sorry if not allowed to post re other forums, but it's true!)

Have you got a neurofen or calpol syringe? Try syringing critical care into the side of the mouth, behind the front teeth, but slowly and carefully - there should be a grinding/chewing motion from pig or you run the risk of aspiration.

Romaine lettuce normally goes down well when all else fails.

Crossing fingers for you. Apologies if any of the above is something you've already tried - my memory is bloody awful and I can't reference using the app.

fortifiedwithtea Sat 06-Jul-13 21:18:08

Hi 70 only just seen this thread. Unmumsnetty hugs to you and special chin rub to your dear little Abby flowers

I can't add much more than has also been thought of except to say weigh him and keep a close check on any change until he is better.

Back teeth were my thought too as he has loss of appetite and eye trouble.

Fingers crossed the vet will instantly know the answer.

noyouhavehadawee Sun 07-Jul-13 13:52:35

how did you get on at the vets?

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sun 07-Jul-13 13:57:22

Update from the 70isa Boars:

They went in today- the cars aircon cranked up to maximum.
GP1 went along the give guidance and comfort to his little brother.(Nothing to do with the fact that he gets very fretful if GP2 leaves him at all)

GP2 was very quiet and lethargic this morning , DD and I syringed some Critical Care into him.I put the fan on, they seemed to like it.

His eyes are fine.
He had his teeth checked and then trimmed (I wasn't with him, I don't think it was a Spectator Sport)
Temperature checked and weighed.

He's got some antibiotics and probiotic

I'm going to continue syringing down the C.Care and I will give him Vit C in solution (mainly because I don't think he's eating his pellets)

They are out in the shady run - DH moved it so they have a nice fresh patch.

So, really, I have no definitive answer as regards my pig-o-let. But I'll manage his symptoms for now.
Sadly, I don't think he's out of the woods yet sad

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