View Full Version : Stones Guinea Pig Bladder Stone, Surgery?

03-25-15, 04:01 pm
Hello everyone! Sad day, Blaze has a bladder stone. Not serious yet, and he's on anti inflammatory meds. He's doing better, but lost a lot of weight! He was overweight, but is actually a much better weight now... Anyway, I want to keep him as healthy and happy as possible. Which low in calcium veggies and fruits (for treats) are good for him? Thanks!

03-25-15, 04:12 pm
Sorry, but bladder stones are serious ALL the time, especially in males. Their urethras are usually too narrow and too long to pass even a small stone, and if the stone falls into the urethra and blocks the flow of urine, the pig can die a very painful death. Occasionally the stone can be flushed back up into the bladder where it is surgically removed, but even that fails a lot of the time because the stone is too sharp and spiky to be flushed backwards.

Stones should be removed when they're found. If it were my pig, I'd be scheduling him for the first available surgical appointment with a good exotic vet surgeon.

As far as diet goes, you want to aim for .4% calcium or less. The only pellets in the US that come close to that are those from KMS Hayloft, available only online. They have the added advantage of also being the only ones that don't use limestone as the calcium source, and limestore is definitely implicated in urinary stone formation. So I'd either switch him to KMS pellets, or take him off pellets altogether.

Romaine and coriander, although no higher in calcium than other lettuces, can cause excess urinary calcium in some pigs. I'd avoid those altogether -- red and green leaf lettuces are much better choices. No parsley or most other herbs, either -- they're usually high in calcium.

I have a stone pig, and this is what my two get (for the both of them):

No pellets, unlimited timothy hay. For breakfast, a chunk of carrot and some red or green leaf lettuce. For midday, 1/8 head radicchio, 1/2 head of belgian endive, 4-5 young green beans, 2-3 wheels of zucchini or other summer squash. At bedtime, 1/3 tomato, 1/4-1/3 bell pepper, and more lettuce, unless I can get fresh corn. If I can, they get the inner husks and silks of the corn instead of the lettuce.

Here's a chart on what you can feed them, and how often. It's a little out of date, but still usable: http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/threads/22156-READ-ME-Cavy-Nutrition-Charts-amp-Poisonous-Plants-List

03-25-15, 05:40 pm
Thanks. I love my guinea pig very much, but my parents think surgery isn't necessary and too expensive. How can I convince them? I don't want him to be in pain :(

03-25-15, 06:41 pm
Since my one girl had a stone they have been on a pretty strict diet and we have been stone free for ~6 months.

-Unlimited Orchard grass
-My stone girl gets about 5-10 KMS pellets a day. I had her on 1/8th of a cup but was still seeing calcium spots so she gets pellets as a little treat. The rest of my pigs get the regular 1/8th of a cup.
-For veggies my girls get a bit more than a cup a day per pig, more like 1.5 cups. They get red or green leaf lettuce, 1/4th of a green pepper, 1-2 cherry tomatoes, a baby carrot and a couple slices of cucumber. Those are their every day staples. Sometimes they will get butterhead lettuce or escarole, radicchio and belgian endive and if they have fruit it will be a chunk of watermelon rind, or a little piece of cherry.

They never get any romaine, cilantro, parsley, chard, kale or spinach. I'm also careful with letting them each fresh grass outside as they tend to want to eat the clover or dandelion, which are high in calcium.

One other thing to note is the water he has. If you guys have hard water coming from your taps that could be contributing to stones. I would look at getting jugged water that is demineralized by reverse osmosis.

03-26-15, 01:17 pm
So I should give him NO pellets? Just unlimited hay? He has oxbow adult cavy food, and it has .85% calcium which I'm guessing is too much.

03-26-15, 01:27 pm
That's WAAAY too much calcium, and is one of the main reasons that I don't recommend Oxbow pellets. If you can't get KMS, I'd take him completely off pellets.

You can make up the vitamins and minerals with brightly colored veggies. See http://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/threads/22156-READ-ME-Cavy-Nutrition-Charts-amp-Poisonous-Plants-List for what you can feed, and how often, and how much calcium it has in it.

03-26-15, 02:02 pm
Ok, thanks. Good to know

03-26-15, 02:08 pm
I'm looking at KMS hayloft. Which pellets should I use? And can I use these pellets for everyday use? Or just for Blaze? Thanks

03-26-15, 02:52 pm
Alfalfa for pigs under six months, timothy for everybody else. Unless you want to supplement the young ones with parsley or something else, then you can feed everybody timothy.

04-05-15, 08:03 pm
Hey, I posted a question about Blaze and his bladder stone. He is still peeing blood, and has had his meds ever since prescribed on the 23rd (March). He is still peeing blood, and is still eating fine and drinking normally. The vet suggested a surgery, but warned me as it will be risky, and he may never wake up after. I'm really worked up and worried, I want him to be happy and healthy. I've been saving up money for surgery, (around $600). He seems to be ok, though I sometimes wake up to him squeaking in the middle of the night, probably going to take bathroom and meds are wearing off. I love him very much, he is my first guinea pig, and we have a connection, you know? So my question is, should I give him surgery?

04-05-15, 08:14 pm
Please don't start multiple threads on a pig with a medical condition. It makes it very difficult for us to follow what's going on and what you've done so far. I've combined the threads on this pig.

How old is he? That, and his general condition, are the two most important issues when considering stone surgery. If he's a senior pig, or if he's not in good physical condition, you might not want to do it. But if he's younger and in good health, he could recover very well. Even if he does, the stone may recur. Some pigs develop them again very quickly, others never have a second stone.

Second, how experienced is your vet in operating on guinea pigs? The actual removal of a stone in a guinea pig is nearly identical to removing one in a dog or cat, it's the anesthesia for pigs that is so tricky. I would not let anyone operate on one of mine that didn't have extensive experience in guinea pig surgery.

04-05-15, 08:37 pm
My apologies. He is about 2 and a 1/2. I believe the vet is well experienced, but I was already planning on calling her tomorrow to update her on Blaze, so I will ask her. Thank you for the help, and again sorry for posting two posts.