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Small pets

Lost 2 piggies overnight - very upset any ideas?

8 replies

raspberryroop · 14/11/2011 00:01

We lost two piggies (mother and daughter) last night - neither was ill before just dead this morning. Am absolutely gutted as CoCo the daughter was my fav - loving and sang all the time.

Thinking of burning the cage as its the same cage as we lost another piggy in last year (thinking maybe fungus or mold??) but as very expensive custom made cage wondering if that's a bit over the top?

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LordOfTheFlies · 14/11/2011 17:35

Not much help I'm afraid but Sad.

When I was a child I had 12 GPs over the years (some were babies that we only had for a short time-till rehomed)
Most of mine had a snuffly 'cold' went all limp, couldn't support themselves and had little lumps behind their ears.(Don't know if guineas have lymph glands there) This always happened within 24 hours, one day fine, downhill very fast.

Unusual though for 2 to go together.
You've obviously ruled out injury or being attacked (there would be obvious signs)

So respiratory seems to be likely. Could be mould as you say. Can you scrub it with Jeyes fluid. It seems to kill most things, safe for stables and kennels. If you scrub,rinse well and air the cage it should be fine.

raspberryroop · 14/11/2011 17:40

Hi LOTF - yes piggies are very vulnerable to respiratory stuff as you say - going to burn it anyway :( as would be gutted if I put another pair in there and they died. Shame as its a lovely cage.

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noyouhavehadawee · 14/11/2011 18:28

sorry ti hear about your piggys, how old where they? My sil lost one of hers last night , mine are outside nd im just wondering now if i should go out and wrap them up.

raspberryroop · 14/11/2011 19:21

a 2y old Girl and and 6mth daughter - wasn't cold here at all - but as we have pulled the cage apart have noticed some of the wood is rotten and marked.

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KRITIQ · 14/11/2011 22:37

Very sorry to hear of your loss. Two piggies at once - how awful. Do you have any surviving piggies? It would be worth getting them checked at a cavy savvy vet just to make sure. It is also possible to have a post mortem on a pig, but of course that costs. It was just this time of year in 2005 that I lost my gorgeous fat boy Will to a chest infection that took him literally within the space of 12 hours. There was an awful virus going around - no idea how he got it as his companion, much older and weaker, was fine.

Wooden cages are just really hard to keep clean and to me seem impractical for rabbits or guineas. They stay damp when they pee and there is no way to kill all the bugs like you can on a plastic or metal surface. A bit like having damp in the wood of your home, it also keeps the atmosphere damp and encourages mould growth - both of which can contribute to guinea pig respiratory infections. I've honestly never worked out who first had the bright idea of putting a not-often-toilet-trainable animal in a wooden floored enclosure!

I'm not a fan of keeping pigs outdoors, particularly as the climate in the UK is both cold and damp - not good for guineas. But, for those that have no other option, getting a really thick cage snug (like the jacket on a hot water tank) seems to be pretty essential, along with copious amounts of regularly changed hay bedding. Even when it's not frosty cold, it can still be cold and damp to a piggy. It would probably be worth putting a couple hot water bottles or those microwave hot plastic disks in the cage, especially at night, or even better, changing them 2 or 3 times a day to have something like a storage heater inside.

Take good care.

thisisyesterday · 14/11/2011 22:48

too cold would be my guess to be totally honest. unless you aren't in the uk?
guinea pigs are best kept indoors over winter

Joolyjoolyjoo · 14/11/2011 22:52

So sorry to hear about your loss Sad Were there any other clues- wet backsides/ uneaten food? Could have been respiratory, but, funnily enough, tend to see more respiratory disease in indoor piggies.

Don't give yourself too hard a time- unfortunately these guys are not the most hardy wee things, and they can go downhill very very quickly, from a variety of causes. All the best.

raspberryroop · 15/11/2011 08:58

We do have indoor cages but it has been very mild here so 2 still outside - my Peruvians are inside though. I have cage warmers and they are well insulated.

Never had a problem with wooden cages before but think as this one was made by a local guy he may not have treated all the parts as never had one rot before.

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