View Full Version : Greetings From Indiana, story of Sammy Browntoe

10-09-14, 11:22 am

My wife and I are the loving caretakers of Sammy Browntoe. He is all black with a single brown toe on his front paw and as he gets older the orange/brown seems to come out of his coat more. He came into our lives as a baby at a local pet store. We had been searching for a little soul to add to our family for years but unfortunately due to my terrible allergies to animals, we had quite a hard time trying to find one that didn't make me extremely sick. We would go to pet stores and try to spend time with the animals there, and that was were we met Sammy. He was in a litter of about 6 that would fit in the palm of your hand and he was the only one that didn't make a sound. I immediately picked him up and my wife held him for at least an hour. He wouldn't make a sound and was so still. This made us worry and the associates there said he was just quiet. We put him up to our ear and he sounded congested so we immediately knew we had to buy him and take him out of that place. We wanted to get him a playmate but we didn't have enough knowledge on guinea pigs to know what sex and what was safe and the associates at the store said they didn't know how to determine the gender. So we brought our little guy home and immediately started trying to nurse him back to health. The first few days he was very lethargic and quiet, he would eat but when he would curl up on our chest we could hear how congested he was and how he was struggling to breathe. On the third night we were extremely worried about him so we took him to the emergency vet and they gave him fluids and a prescription for antibiotics. It took several weeks and two sets of antibiotics to get him back in good health. As you can see from the photo he is a tubby guy now, we try to have him on a diet but he takes after me and is very stubborn. He goes to the vet normally and gets lots of comments on how he is the healthiest piggy they have ever treated (save for the weight).

The only issue is now that my wife has developed an extreme allergy to guinea pigs as Sammy started to grow up. For the first year there wasn't any issues and we thought it was maybe seasonal allergies that was giving her issues. After many trips to the doctor and an allergy panel we found out that the only thing she is allergic to is dust mites and guinea pigs. It has broken our hearts that she can't spend time with him anymore. Only talk to him from a safe distance. She has had walking pneumonia twice in the past two years and I try to combat it by using multiple air purifiers around his environment. We have done allergy treatments and they aren't very successful. Her allergist/immunologist has told her that her allergy to guinea pigs has grown so severe that even medication won't fix it. We are heart broken, and unfortunately our current dwelling is around 800 square feet and I cannot isolate Sammy to a separate room where I can continue to care for him as we have in the past before my wife's allergy developed. We have tried locally to find someone who would love Sammy as much as we do and care for him as much as we have and wish we still could. We have even offered to pay for all of Sammy's necessities/care as long as he went to a home that could ensure he continued to live a good life. We have found a couple families that were interested, but I had to refuse after I discussed it with them further. Either they didn't have the room and would end up putting him in a small/smaller cage or they were buying it for their young child like a bunny at a fair and we just couldn't do it.

I really do not know where to go from here, but this isn't fair to Sammy and I do not feel he is getting the proper love and care that he needs due to our situation. I am sorry to say hi for the first time and dump this all on in my first post, but I just haven't found a community around here that I could say this to till now.

10-09-14, 11:31 am
I'm off to work so I can't leave a long post right now, but I would HIGHLY recommend trying to rehome Sammy on the Guinea Pig Zone site. Just click the tab above for "adoptables" and it directly links you to the page.

Another option might be finding a cavy rescue and seeing if you can surrender her to them. They will make sure that Sammy finds an amazing home, and hopefully a guinea pig friend as well :)

I'm sorry you are put in this situation though! :(

10-09-14, 01:03 pm
69481 Sammy about 2 months after rescuing him.

maddy harper
10-09-14, 01:33 pm
hello and welcome

10-09-14, 02:39 pm
He is so cute! Hope he finds a good home!

10-09-14, 04:06 pm
Thanks Guinepig,
We love him like our own child, which has made this situation so difficult. In the first picture he wasn't very happy with me because I had to do some trimming around his rear, so it looks a little rough back there. =) I was never given a specific breed type for him but he started out with straight hair but as he got older it kept getting longer and sweeping forward in curls. I am not explaining it very well, but he doesn't like baths and really dislikes being combed around his rear so he tends to get knots from time to time back there with the longer hair. I have tons of stuff to ask to all you guinea pig gurus while he is still with us. =)