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G pig not eating

(35 Posts)
schilke Sun 19-Apr-15 09:03:43

We have 2 g pigs. They are both girls and are nearly 4 (I think). I feel a bit neglectful, but have just discovered one of them is feeling rather thin. Now I haven't picked them up since last weekend - dds have been handling them and feeding them.

She was behaving quite oddly just now. Laying her head on the food bowl, taking a nugget and making a strange crunchy sound. Her front teeth look ok. I went and got some cucumber....she sort of pushed it round the hutch with her nose as if she couldn't work out what to do with it.

I'll get her to the vet tomorrow. Is there anything particularly nutritious and easy for her to eat that I could tempt her with today? I shall separate her so I know how much she is eating.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sun 19-Apr-15 10:04:20

Sounds like teeth (back teeth especially you cannot see , the vet will put a retractor in the pigs mouth to open their very narrow jaws up)

Weigh her to give you a rough idea of her weight now.

Have you got a syringe or Calpol syringe? You can make a sloppy paste from mashed up pellets (boiled warm water , thin paste and cool ) or a the handle of a teaspoon. Then she'll get fibre and fluid.

Grate some carrot or cucumber or whatever her favourite foods are.

My girls are losing their winter coats (and some of their winter fat) but they are much younger than yours. Our boar went a bit bony in his latter years but he never lost his appetite.

Don;t seperate them though, that would be more stressful. It doesn't sound like the other pig is bullying her away from food, but maybe do lots of little piles of food, just to gove them peace.

Syringe feeding a piggie : wrap in a towel, place on your lap with the rump to your stomach so they can't scoot away. Hold the muzzle (or get DD to) and put the syringe just behind the front teeth. They'll chew which means they'll swallow it. Just a tiny bit at a time, then it won't go in the lungs.
Some of my pigs found a teaspoon handle easier .

When you're at the vets, pick up a sachet of Recovery or Critical Care, just in case. It has a good shelf life unopened (I think ours was a couple of pounds)

Good Luck.

schilke Sun 19-Apr-15 11:22:34

Thank you. They are in the garden now. She is ploughing through grass like there's no tomorrow. Eaten some grapes too. They are in separate runs, but right next to each other just until I've seen her poo and then I'll put them back together. Something is wrong though - it's as if she's lost her personality. I know that sounds odd, but something is different about her reactions.

They haven't been out on the grass for a few weeks as we laid new turf nearly 3 weeks ago and wanted to keep them off whilst in bedded in.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sun 19-Apr-15 11:40:38

She might be fine with the softer grass (and if they haven't been grazing for a while they'll be like delighted little locusts grin ) sounds like the harder food is the problem.
She might have a broken or overgrown back tooth.

It's a good sign that she's eating grass but don't let her overdo it (bloat risk)

The subtle changes are a good indication of something amiss though.

schilke Sun 19-Apr-15 11:43:19

Yes, I will be at the vets tomorrow. I think we had some critical care food when a previous g pig was ill...he'd loved it, but i made a right mess of his face trying to feed it to him!

I tried looking further into her mouth, but it was full of grass at the time so did not help.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sun 19-Apr-15 11:57:20

grin at full of grass

Our boar (GP3) had a light/scope thing (I'm sure there's a technical term) put down his throat to check his teeth (they are pretty far back) he was quite judgey .
GP2 had his filed , no anaesthetic but he was very poorly so wouldn't have fought back anyway.

Critical Care is usually shared with the guinea-pig, your clothes, the floor, behind their ears, their chins...........

schilke Mon 20-Apr-15 07:42:00

Still thin but eating everything now. Should I give her a couple of days to put on weight or take her today anyway? It's really odd as she looks totally normal today - squeaking on my arrival and snatching food out of my hand.

schilke Mon 20-Apr-15 08:20:27

I've decided to take her anyway. she feels like skin and bone.

sanfairyanne Mon 20-Apr-15 10:49:23

good luck at the vets today

dietcokeandwine Mon 20-Apr-15 11:25:03

Good luck OP.

I have a similar thing going on with one of my boars at the moment-fine in himself and eating quite happily but has lost around 200g from his usual weight and is feeling/looking quite skinny. He has previously had tooth issues (resolved once vet had burred a jagged tooth down) but this time it turns out he has a UTI so is on anti biotics to help clear it.

Always worth getting them checked out for noticeable weight loss I think. Hope she's ok.

schilke Mon 20-Apr-15 15:16:10

Doesn't look good. Vet checked teeth, heart etc... She was shocked at how thin g pig is and said her muscle has wasted too. She only weighs 600g. G pig looked quite happy munching away on hay. Options put to sleep today; take her home with critical care and see how she does; tests involving a GA.

We went for option 2. She had a pain killing injection too. I was worried a GA would be too much for her in her current state.

I have syringe fed her and she has eaten cucumber, grapes and carrot. She seems like a different piggie to yesterday - is eating like mad, so fingers crossed she improves. The vet seemed to think she'd lost too much weight!

foofooyeah Mon 20-Apr-15 15:26:12

Oh poor little pig. I had similar problems with mine recently. I syringed critical care. Are her eyes ok? I discovered mine was having trouble drinking from bottle and I put a bowl of water in the cage and the pig paddled around and drank loads (was dehydrated - hence eye question as the eyes go smaller when dehydrated). Mine has rallied round, hope yours does too.

dietcokeandwine Mon 20-Apr-15 17:11:42

Poor little pig. The enthusiastic eating is a good sign, though. Fingers crossed.

schilke Mon 20-Apr-15 20:32:03

Her eyes seem ok. She loves the syringe food and is wolfing down any fresh food, but avoiding dried food. I'm feeling a little bit positive.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Mon 20-Apr-15 20:52:54

Hi - just caught up.

Mystery unsolved by the sounds of things but it's a good sign that your pig is eating well.
Carry on with the feeding while she picks up to keep her guts working.

Has she got to go back to the vets?

sanfairyanne Mon 20-Apr-15 23:24:51

did the vet have a good look at her back teeth?
good sign that she is eating anyway

schilke Tue 21-Apr-15 09:15:01

Well, she's looking jolly at the moment. I weighed her... now I know it's different scales, but she's put on 52g! grin

schilke Tue 21-Apr-15 09:17:50

Just to answer those questions... go back if she deteriorates. The vet struggled to get a good look at back teeth, so my plan was yet and boost her up and if still struggling with the nuggets then perhaps do the GA to have a proper look. I bought some extravagant food yesterday which has smaller crunchy bits, as well as various herbs and grasses, and she seemed to manage to eat those.

BubGal13 Tue 21-Apr-15 12:25:59

oh so happy to hear OP , hate hearing ill piggy stories + always so worrying when they don't eat

tadpole39 Tue 21-Apr-15 14:30:05

She sounds similar to my piggy luna, I took her to the vet because she was visibly losing weight and eating like mad. It turned out she has an abdominal mass that may have been there for a while.
She's eating so much cos the tumour is taking all the nourishment, so she's catching up. Her quality of life seems fine, she's alert. and active but eating a huge amount. She too weighs under 600gms. She can't stay ahead forever but ok today.

GooseyLoosey Tue 21-Apr-15 14:36:19

Hope she is OK. This happened to one of ours - she seemed entirely happy until she died though.

schilke Tue 21-Apr-15 20:36:07

Oh tadpole, hope she carries on staying ahead and happy. I think there's something going on with our g pig. She is eating like crazy - resisting the syringe food though. Should I abandon it?

70isaLimitNotaTarget Tue 21-Apr-15 22:07:55

If she's eating and poohing well you can safely give up the syringe feeding , she sounds like she's doing it herself.
Does she eat hay? Maybe give her some "treat" hay, like one of the fancy ones or ReadiGrass. I bought some hay cookies and long stick things from P@H for our girks when they were indoors.

Sadly, 4yo seems to be "middle aged" for guineas, they start to get those niggly health problems sad

Things like teeth and minor health problems are fairly easily dealt with but some health problems aren't
I read one Rescue site "Twelve Guinea-Pig Rules" and one was Don't neglect my health just because I'm old. Take me to the vet as you would a younger piggie

But sometimes, the older ones just need some TLC and attention but you don't want to go down the intervention route. As long as they aren't in pain and are enjoying life, you just need to watch over them and take each day.

schilke Tue 28-Apr-15 10:57:31

Well a week on and her weight seems to be around 640g...she feels bony, but seems happy. She squeaks hello, eats loads and runs around on the grass. If I syringe feed her for a day her weight seems to go up to about 670g.

So I know her weight is not great, but she's eating, pooing (slightly smaller poos than normal). I don't think there is an issue with her teeth as she tackles all food. I wish I could get her to eat more of the dried food, but she doesn't seem as interested as she used to be - she can eat it though.

Her sister weighs 1091g blush, but she was always much bigger.

sanfairyanne Tue 28-Apr-15 15:17:23

have you tried metacam? one of mine has arthritis in her jaw and has daily pain relief to encourage her to eat more

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