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Thread: My piggie is losing hair....

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    Cavy Slave
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    Question My piggie is losing hair....

    My female guinea pig, Snickers, has been losing fur all over her body. She was missing patches of fur on her face, but it all grew back. Some fur has also started growing back on her body. Still, she is missing a lot of hair. I was wondering if anyone knew what could have caused this and what I can do to help the hair grow back and prevent it from happening again.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    My guess is, it's probably mites. I'd treat her for mites.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Is there any way to tell if it's mites? She isn't scratching and none of my other pigs are losing hair. It's just her.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Quote Originally Posted by JodieLee View Post
    Is there any way to tell if it's mites? She isn't scratching and none of my other pigs are losing hair. It's just her.
    Bilateral hair loss indicates ovarian cysts but from what you've described, the hair loss is all over her body. Does she have any crustiness or sores? There's always the possibility of a fungal infection. You can have a vet check her but if mites are suspected, it's better to just treat for them instead of doing a skin scraping which is often inconclusive and is painful. Guinea pigs that are stressed are often more prone to mites. It could be that she's stressed for some reason and is showing symptoms. I always treat all of mine at the same time for mites.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    There isn't any crustiness or sores. That was the first thing I checked her for. Her skin doesn't look irritated at all and the hair loss doesn't seem to bother her. Could low vitamin C cause hair loss? I've tried researching it, but not much comes up. Or could stress over new guinea pigs cause it? I got two new pigs at about the same time. Shortly after, she started losing hair.

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    Administrator bpatters's Avatar
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    If she's not scratching, it's probably not mites. You could try bathing her with Nizoral shampoo in case it's a fungus, but I'd also do all the fungal precautions -- follow the instructions for ringworm at www.guinealynx.info/fungus.html.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Alright, I'll try bathing her. If it was a fungus or mites, wouldn't my other pigs have hair loss too?

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Stressed guinea pigs are more prone to mites. I have one that started losing fur very quickly. She wasn't scratching, didn't have sores but was stressed about a new guinea pig I added to the herd. I treated all of them for mites and her fur grew back very quickly. She's been fine since.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Her fur has already started to grow back in some spots. She's starting to look like a normal guinea pig again. She was looking pretty scary. So, it is most likely mites that caused the hair loss?

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    It's hard to say. All I know is when my female started losing fur, I treated her for mites. Her new cagemate was still living with her and one other female so that didn't change at all. He fur was thinning all over, including her legs and face. I didn't see any improvement until after I treated her. There are links on here that show photos of fungal infections. If you see anything like that, I'd recommend you make a vet appointment. Have any of yours been treated for mites? How long ago did you introduce the new ones? I always treat new ones for mites before introducing them to mine.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    None of mine have been treated for mites that I know of. The first one I introduced was a few years old and the second was still very young. That was a couple months ago. She started losing hair a few weeks later. I've never had a guinea pig lose hair or get sick.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Quote Originally Posted by JodieLee View Post
    None of mine have been treated for mites that I know of. The first one I introduced was a few years old and the second was still very young. That was a couple months ago. She started losing hair a few weeks later. I've never had a guinea pig lose hair or get sick.
    The fact that her symptoms started shortly after you introduced the new one, my guess is the newest one had mites. Guinea pigs can have mites but not show symptoms. Stressed guinea pigs seem to be more susceptible to outbreaks. Where did you get your last guinea pig? Rescues normally treat for mites but if she was from a pet store or a shelter, she could have been exposed to mites. I can't say for 100% sure that's what it is, but if she was my guinea pig, I'd treat for mites and if it didn't improve, I'd schedule a vet appointment to rule out other causes.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    She came from the local pet store. The nearest shelter is about 5 hours away. The other guinea pig came from a friend that couldn't keep him anymore.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    We've made an appointment, but I was hoping that it would something I can treat myself. Vet bills can get pretty expensive.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Here's a link to treating for mites yourself:

    http://www.guinealynx.info/parasites.html

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Okay, thanks :)

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    Moderator foggycreekcavy's Avatar
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    Re: My piggie is losing hair....

    Sooner is better. Mites drive them crazy, and can be fatal.

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