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Thread: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

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    Cavy Slave tiffers's Avatar
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    Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    I've rescued a pig, and she came from a house that also had 3 boys (unneutered). I don't know that they were all in the same cage, because when I saw them...they were stacked on top of each other in front of Petco in itty bitty BITTY cages.

    The concern is that she may be pregnant. I have considered spaying her, to avoid/abort babies and contributing to overpopulation...however, if she is not pregnant, I don't want her to have surgery.

    A few things come into play...I've done some pig research here and at Guinea Lynx, and have also talked with members there. She has something in her eye that may age her older than I had initially thought. So...giving birth will likely be hard on her...if she is indeed older.

    She the least dominant of the two (I have one other pig)...but she has a bigger belly...but is seemingly smaller body wise and in 'thickness'. Now, being fed an appropriate diet will also have her gain weight, so I don't know that weighing her every week will be accurate enough to tell.

    I don't want to xray her once a week either and wait until we see bones to know for sure.

    I'm just looking for more opinions on what you all would suggest I do?

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    Cavy Slave Feylin's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    Hi Tiffers. I'll post the advice I gave you over on Guinea Lynx. You don't know the pig is pregnant, so I don't even know why you're already set on a spay. Most people on your thread at GL have advised you not to spay.

    Here's what I told you there:
    I wouldn't spay her. You chose to pick up a pig with unknown history, thus you took on the responsibility of whatever might come from that.

    You could just as easily be having this conversation about cancer, no teeth, severe mites, or other big illnesses that would require you to put in a TON of time and effort (and money) on this pig's part.

    Would you say "no, I don't want to deal with major illnesses I'll just have the vet euthanize her if she has one" ? I am guessing you would not.

    So. Put on your big girl pants, wait to see if there's babies before you get worked up, don't put the pig through a painful unneeded surgery, and take care of babies if you have to.

  3. "Thank you, Feylin, for this useful post," say these 2 members:

    rabbitsncavyluv (12-17-10), RandomOne (12-16-10)

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    Cavy Slave tiffers's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    I'm not set on a spay...and have not been, and I'm not worked up. I want what's best for her, and I want as much information and opinions as I can so that I can make a decision based on what I have learned from you all and other websites. Being a turd to me, isn't helping any and I am not going to reply to your rude comments again. If you want to put your big girl pants on and have an adult conversation with me about my pig and how we can proceed, let's do it. Until then, please don't talk to me.

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    Cavy Slave Feylin's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    Well, over on GL we already tried talking to you like an adult. It didn't work. *shrug*

    Good luck.

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    Cavy Slave tiffers's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    You tried talking to me like an adult? Are you serious!?

    Forget that...it doesn't matter. I'm not going back. I was told not to even go with my pig in the first place...now, I see why.

    I want to start off on a good foot with someone knowledgeable, and that may very well be you...but you aren't trying very hard to help me, Feylin. You're too busy making assumptions and going with the crowd over there. 98% of y'all started in on calling me a murderer and a piece of crap because you made assumptions. I have PMed the member who offered to help with babies, should it come to that.

    Now, seriously...I would like some help, and if you can do it without being so condescending and rude, I'd appreciate it. If you can't, I'll wait for the next person. But you really seem to know guinea pigs, and I'd like it very much if you would take a step back from following everyone else and help me.

    Please.

    I just sat on the phone with another vet I have worked with before and we talked about the new girl for a very, very long time. She has the same concerns that I do.

    I'm taking her in to work with me tomorrow, and I'll xray her to determine if she's pregnant. If there's nothing there, I'll do another in two weeks.

    I'm also going to start her on Vitamin C injections in hopes of getting her into good health should she be pregnant, as we don't know yet. Either way, she needs the Vitamin C boost because I'm pretty sure she's never had any more than what comes in the pellets.

    We're kind of hoping that her belly comes from being underweight and that's where the weight sits. She may 'look' pregnant because she's unhealthy/malnourished, and not really be pregnant...which would be nice. Loofah, my other pig, is completely fuzzy...so it doesn't help me to compare the two as far as body condition. I just know the new pig is a lot...erm, what's the world...she's not as 'solid', I guess. If that makes sense?

    If she's older, the doctor did definitely recommend a spay, considering we don't know her history and if she's ever had pups before. I'm almost inclined to think she has, because the other males that were in the other two cages that were dumped with her...there was one her size on the bottom, and the two on top were definitely younger. So, I'm included to think that the two on top could potentially have been previous babies? ...and if that's the case, she could birth this litter if we can get her healthy enough in the next few weeks. How long after a pig has birth can they become pregnant again? The guys didn't seem to old, well...they were a bit smaller than the smallest size the pet stores sell. I don't know if that helps determine an age for them.

    She told me that if she's never had pups before, she may need a c-section, in which we decided that mom's life comes first. She and I discussed the risks and that she has had some successful, but there have also been losses. I'm a vet tech, I understand that...and I do accept that, I'll be heartbroken, of course. I'm really getting attached to the little girl; she's so sweet.

    One of my questions is this: she's being fed a far better diet than the awkward pellets she had in her cage when I took her, so she'll gain weight, naturally. If she's pregnant, would I see sudden weight spikes...or will they be gradual as well? I'm going to weigh her at work weekly for the next few weeks...but, I'm concerned about how fast she should be gaining for a normal underweight pig versus a pregnant pig.

    My other question is Vitamin C...I know that Spinach is high in Vitamin C. However, if she's going to be getting injections, is the Spinach too high in Vitamin C to do as well? Or, is there a better vegetable that she should be on for a boost?

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    Cavy Slave DaCourt's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    98%??? Really? I think you need to go back and re read. But in any event, if you want medical advice, that is where you need to be. This site is wonderful and used by many of the people on GL, however I feel GL is the best place to be.

    I am going to be honest with you and I say this to try to help, not hurt or cause ill feelings. Most people join GL and spend time lurking...reading and getting a feel for the place. You joined and had almost 100 posts your first day. You came on very strong and were offended when people told you that newbies were discouraged from handing out medical advice.

    A good majority of the people there do not have time to hand hold. It's not like they don't care about you or your feelings, but they are putting the neds and well being of your pig first. A good majority of the people answering the questions in the medical forums are involved in rescue work and don't have time to always be PC. So I am confident that people did warn you. The answers you are going to get are straight and to the point. (That's a collective you, not you specifically.)

    I hope you do stay around and learn, like we all do every day. Even some of us old timers still step on each other's toes. So I hope you take this for what it's worth. Everyone just wants what's best for your pigs.

  8. "Thank you, DaCourt, for this useful post," says:

    rabbitsncavyluv (12-17-10)

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    Cavy Slave MaggieMae's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    If you weigh her daily the weight differences should be much different from "gaining weight" than "being pregnant". So I would start with that.

    Also, you just need to start feeding her veggies. She doesn't need vitamin c injections and I wouldn't give them to her. You can read the diet stickies on the forum for different ways to get her on a good diet with some vitamin c.

    Piggies with scurvy don't even need injections from what I have read. I think it will just stress her out.

    I don't know what happened on guinea lynx but my opinion would be to let whatever happened over there, stay over there. If tiffers makes enemies here, tiffers makes enemies, but lets not start this person out on a bad foot. That is kind of harassing.

    I agree, the spay is not always the best option.

    Spinach is not a good food to feed them even though you can. Please read the stickes in the diet section. You want romaine lettuce, bell pepper and cilantro to start but it is all explained better there.

    Also, babies can impregnate at about 3 weeks and get pregnant around 4 weeks. So even if they were her pups, she could be pregnant again. It is all possible.

    It sucks because you just don't know. Just take a big breath, relax, and go with the flow. Don't freak out any more than needed because some things you just can't change. The first thing would be to find out if she is pregnant. A lot of people think they are, and they aren't. However, if she is, you are right, you need to be prepared.

    Good Luck!

  10. "Thank you, MaggieMae, for this useful post," says:

    rabbitsncavyluv (12-17-10)

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    Cavy Slave tiffers's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    DaCourt, it is how it was said. I didn't ask for hand holding. I don't need it. It is because people were making assumptions, and attacking me when I've just been asking questions about the health of my pig. And yes, I offered medical advice that was correct because I was able to help. All those posts? The majority of them are my thread and the urinary thread. I don't even know why I'm explaining this...it's like a broken record. It always is. I wanted advice from experienced people, not to be lynched. I moderate another pet forum, and I see soooo many people throwing stones and tomatoes thinking their getting their point across...the sad truth is that they're not. It makes people put up a wall, and I did...and I won't be going back. Personal choice. You probably don't agree with it; that's your choice.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieMae View Post
    If you weigh her daily the weight differences should be much different from "gaining weight" than "being pregnant". So I would start with that.
    Okay, and I want to make sure I understand. Weigh her daily, if it's a fast weight gain...there's a possibility of pregnancy?

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieMae View Post
    Also, you just need to start feeding her veggies. She doesn't need vitamin c injections and I wouldn't give them to her. You can read the diet stickies on the forum for different ways to get her on a good diet with some vitamin c.
    I took her on Saturday night, and she's had a good salad every morning since. The vet recommended the injections, but I realized we don't even carry Vitamin C injections at our clinic (only dogs and cats) because we never used it. So, if I could get that Vitamin C boost with vegetables, that'd be more ideal. I had to give a past rat of mine antibiotic injections and that was a chore; I can't imagine a guinea pig.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieMae View Post
    I don't know what happened on guinea lynx but my opinion would be to let whatever happened over there, stay over there. If tiffers makes enemies here, tiffers makes enemies, but lets not start this person out on a bad foot. That is kind of harassing.
    I agree...and I'm trying to avoid that. I need help, and I wish that people would just help versus slaughtering me. I appreciate your information, by the way. I really do.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieMae View Post
    I agree, the spay is not always the best option.
    Contrary to popular belief, I would like to avoid surgery. Her health is most important to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieMae View Post
    Spinach is not a good food to feed them even though you can. Please read the stickes in the diet section. You want romaine lettuce, bell pepper and cilantro to start but it is all explained better there.
    She gets romaine daily, and I haven't tried her on bell pepper or cilantro. Loofah, my only other pig, doesn't like either of those, so I don't have them in the fridge. I formulated my menu off the chart here, it was easiest to read and was recommended to me before getting pigs. I have been meaning to go back and refigure the menu; at the time, I didn't (and still don't for some) know what half of what's on there is.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieMae View Post
    Also, babies can impregnate at about 3 weeks and get pregnant around 4 weeks. So even if they were her pups, she could be pregnant again. It is all possible.
    I got ya'. I don't know for sure that they were her babies...or that they were even housed together, but the condition of their cages would lead me to believe they were not owned by someone very pig savvy.

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieMae View Post
    It sucks because you just don't know. Just take a big breath, relax, and go with the flow. Don't freak out any more than needed because some things you just can't change. The first thing would be to find out if she is pregnant. A lot of people think they are, and they aren't. However, if she is, you are right, you need to be prepared.
    I am a worrier. I always expect the worst, so that when something that's only disappointing happens, I'm cool with it. I appreciate you're help. You've answered a lot of my questions. No doubt I will have more.

    These are my first pigs, and I've only had my original pig since August of this year. I did a lot of research before getting her, so I'm not a complete moron...however, I do have a lot of questions to ensure I'm providing the best that I can.

    Thanks again. I do appreciate it.

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    Cavy Slave DaCourt's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    Regarding the medical advice...it was not always accurate. But besides that, it stated in the emergency medical forum that newbies should not be handing out advice. Period. That should be left to the experts...the guinea pig experts. Now, I have been there for YEARS and I don't hand out medical advice because there are those who know know better.

    There were no assumptions. They responded based on your posts. I really hope you don't leave. You will learn here, but you will learn there too. Yeah, you (and I mean the collective you) have to suck it up and put your emotions aside sometimes. Guess what...tomorrow is another day.

    I guess we will just chalk your high number of posts up to enthusiasm. But at the rate you are going, you will pass me in no time.

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    Cavy Slave tiffers's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    I went to learn, and I fully expected what I got. I was seriously warned before, and was even told by TWO people not to even post. What a terrible thing to have to warn someone about...? What's a help forum if you can't ask for help?

    I am bitter, yes. I'm sad, yes. But, I'll get over it. We always do. Well, not all of us...but for the most part, especially after moderating for so long...I have thick skin.

    Regardless, I want to learn. I want to do what's right for my pigs and yes, I ask a LOT of questions. Maybe I even asked 96 questions. I want to be darn sure I am doing what's correct and in the best interest of my pigs. Apparently, that is not welcome there as I was accused of horrible things that never happened. But one person said one thing and so the band wagon jumps on and suddenly it's become true.

    I want to leave it alone now. Please respect that. I'd like to leave that there; I don't want people coming from there to here and start attacking again. I just want to help my pigs and all that bickering and stone throwing is not helping me help them. Thank you...

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    Cavy Slave PiggyKat's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    I would start with weighing and a good diet.(Romaine green lettuce ect. , green peppers and others high in Vit C is a good start per day. There is a lot of information about diet on here if you look around!).
    Yes if the weight gain is faster it can mean a pregnancy but since she is comming from a home with less than ideal conditions it could also be just her body evening out. To be sure get a quick ultra sound done(I had to do this with my pig when I first got her. She was not happy but it made me feel a lot better knowing she was not pregnant)
    Good luck and I hope everything goes well.

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    Cavy Slave tiffers's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    Quote Originally Posted by PiggyKat View Post
    I would start with weighing and a good diet.(Romaine green lettuce ect. , green peppers and others high in Vit C is a good start per day.
    I feed Dole Seven Lettuce Blend daily (along with other veggies). It has some romaine in it, but after looking at the diet threads...I need improvement! I'm looking at the menu thread now in another window to try and formulate what's available to me here. I know now that I should also be feeding fresh stuff twice a day, as I've only been doing it once.

    Quote Originally Posted by PiggyKat View Post
    To be sure get a quick ultra sound done(I had to do this with my pig when I first got her.
    It's funny that you say that; after I got off the phone with the exotics vet, I called my boss (who is a dog and cat vet). She was on a date, so she had to call me back later. But, when she did call back...we talked about an ultrasound. We don't have that in house, but we generally call someone in. I had one done on a rat a year or so ago, and so I know there's a vet that can do it. I believe he also said he had guinea pigs. Do you think I should do it now? What if she is only 'freshly' pregnant? Should I wait a week or so?

    Thanks for you help.

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    Cavy Slave DaCourt's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    People aren't coming from there to here just to post on this thread. I read here all the time, just don't always post. I just wanted you to know that people over there are saying they hope you come back.

    GL is not sunshine and rainbows. I too will tell people that they may get jumped on so be prepared. But I still refer people there. I tell them it should be there GP bible.

    I wish you luck with your pig. I hope to see you back on GL.

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    Cavy Slave PiggyKat's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    Well it won't hurt! If you can get it done you can see what you can see, so to speak. I personally would try to get it done sooner than later but they are your pigs. . You could always call the exotics vet and get their opinion as well. If you don't do anything you'll never know! I'm a worrier too so I know how you feel. But I would do daily weighs and ultrasound. They are very simple and usually pretty accurate.

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    Cavy Slave tiffers's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    Thank you, DaCourt.

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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    If the other smaller guinea pigs were her babies from a previous litter, which is most likely and the previous owner did not remove the father of those babies until after the babies were born then assuming that the babies were atleast 3-4 weeks old, then she could be 3-4 weeks pregnant already since guinea pigs can get pregnant again right after delivery of the first litter. Guinea pigs are pregnant for about 8-10 weeks.

    If she is pregnant you need to be thinking about not only feeding veggies high in vitemin C but also high in Calcium like kale, parsley, spinach.

    Spinach should not be given every day.
    Day 1
    AM feeding

    Romaine
    greenleaf
    Bell pepper
    cilantro
    Cucumber

    PM
    Romaine
    Greenleaf
    Bell pepper
    parsley
    baby tomato

    Day 2

    Am
    Romaine
    greenleaf
    cilantro
    yellow bell pepper
    kale

    pm

    Romaine
    Greenleaf
    yellow bell pepper
    Cilantro
    Spinach
    baby carot

    And add more and rotate as many as possible, but Romaine, Greenleaf, Cilantro, and Bell peppers are a must have to start with, and add from there with rotating veggies added.

    My menu is just an example to show how to add and rotate it is not a sample menu as to what veggies I give my girls as their menu changes every day with changes between am and pm meals. My girls get 1 baby carrot a week and fruits are given 1-2 times a week. I want mine to eat the essentials before adding good stuff to their salads.

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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    Hi, Tiffers. I rarely read GL, haven't in this case, don't intend to, but in any case, welcome, and I'm glad you're asking.

    I'm not really seeing the point of giving her C injections. C is something which is absorbed same-day and not stored in the body past the day it's given, whether it's eaten or injected anyhow, so it would seem to make sense to do it the way which is least stressful to her, which would be via diet. Many pigs will eat C supplements as if they were treats - I'm sure if you search in the diet section you would find the proper type and dose. Bell pepper is your best natural source of dietary C - high quality, fresh pellets also contain it. It isn't really possible to get too much C in a day - excess is just excreted in urine - but you don't want to give too much spinach for other reasons (mainly high levels of oxalates and vit. A, which is NOT excreted and can build to toxic levels in the body).

    I'm sorry, I only have boars so haven't had to educate myself on pregnancy and its diagnosis, so no help to you there. Good luck in any event.

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    Cavy Slave trexgorawrrrrr's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    You have been given some good advice on here as far as what to do. I am on the no spay idea right now, especially since you don't know how old she is. She may be old, and it may be just as hard on her as a pregnancy. I am hoping for your sake that she is not pregnant, fingers crossed.

    I rescued a sow and boar, the sow ended up being pregnant. I know how stressful it is to have a pregnant pig that you know nothing about. She ended up delivering 3 healthy pups, and thankfully nothing went wrong. I completely understand where you are coming from and the stress you feel!

    I would weigh her daily to see if she gains weight. You shouldn't see a big jump like you thought would maybe indicate, but she'll steadily get bigger & bigger. If she's malnourished she'll probably gain weight anyways. If you suspect she is pregnant be very careful picking her up and putting pressure on her belly. Do you have any pictures of her? I'd like to see a picture, maybe it will be easier to tell. Or maybe it won't Can't hurt to ask though.

    I don't know what happened on GL since I'm not a member there, but it was annoying to read almost a whole page of stuff relating to something that happened some where else. Parts of it seemed very rude to me, but maybe I don't know the whole picture.

    Quote Originally Posted by Feylin View Post
    I wouldn't spay her. You chose to pick up a pig with unknown history, thus you took on the responsibility of whatever might come from that.

    You could just as easily be having this conversation about cancer, no teeth, severe mites, or other big illnesses that would require you to put in a TON of time and effort (and money) on this pig's part.

    Would you say "no, I don't want to deal with major illnesses I'll just have the vet euthanize her if she has one" ? I am guessing you would not.
    I just wanted to say THANK YOU for chosing to "pick up a pig with unknown history," you probably saved her life! I don't see how this is the same as comparing to putting the pig to sleep. I understand that spaying is harder than neutering, and shouldn't be done unless necessary. Tiffers - you are trying to find out as much information possible, looking at ALL your options, and you're trying to do what's in the best interest for you pig. I see that as someone being a responsible pet owner, and cleaning up after the last irresponsible owner. I don't see any shame in that. I don't get how people can get away with being so rude.

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    Cavy Slave babytulip07's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    I didn't see anything rude about what Feylin said. Matter of fact yes, rude no. As you said spaying can be risky, I think Feylin was saying that putting a pig through a very risky surgery just because she MIGHT be pregnant isn't much better then putting a down simply because it had teeth problems or severe mites.

    No one is saying she shouldn't have rescued her, obviously. We are saying that adopting from unknown backgrounds has its share of risks and with that risk comes the responsibility to help the pig in the best way possible. Not by putting her into more risk.

  23. #20
    Cavy Slave blackarrow's Avatar
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    Re: Rescue - Possibly Pregnant?

    Thing is, Feylin says she already told her this elsewhere. Not sure why it needed repeating. Spaying is dangerous. So is an older pig giving birth, esp. if it's for the first time, which I gather is unknown. It's going to take a vet visit to tell which is safer for this particular pig, if this particular pig is diagnosably pregnant.

  24. "Thank you, blackarrow, for this useful post," says:

    trexgorawrrrrr (12-16-10)

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