PDA

View Full Version : Teeth Guinea unable to bite into carrot, struggling to eat other food



Elysium
02-03-16, 08:13 am
My little buddy is having trouble eating his food this morning. I gave him a carrot and he wasn't able to take it from my hand despite trying his hardest. I gave him a slice of green pepper instead and he was able to eat but its obvious he is having difficulty biting down into the food. Today is the first day he has been unable to take food from me, yesterday he was able to do so and he took carrots from me. Over the last 4-5 months he seemed to be having slightly more trouble eating but was always able to do so and I left him be hoping he would naturally grind his teeth down as necessary but now its obviously become a bigger issue.

What should I do? I've already called the only guinea pig specialist I know of in my area (almost an hour drive..) anything else I can do to help him for now?

bpatters
02-03-16, 09:37 am
Can he swallow if he gets food into his mouth? Try cutting food into matchstick-sized slivers and sticking them in the side of his mouth. If he can swallow, then either continue to feed him that way, or read the hand-feeding instructions below. If he can't swallow, he needs a good exotic vet with rodent dentistry experience now, like TODAY!

You need to hand feed him, immediately. You can get Critical Care at some pet stores, or you can order from Amazon. Or you can pulverize pellets in a food processor or blender, make a loose slurry, and feed him through a syringe. See http://www.guinealynx.info/handfeeding.html for more information on how to do that.

GL recommends using 1 cc syringes, and if you've got a really uncooperative piggy, that may be the way to go. But if he's at all agreeable with the idea, you can use a pet-feeding syringe and not to have to load all those little syringes. Pet stores sell them, or you can get a 10 or 20 cc needleless syringe from most pharmacies if you tell them it's for a sick pet.

Put your non-dominant arm on a table, and nestle the pig in the crook of your elbow. Hold the head firmly with your non-dominant hand. With the other hand, insert the tip of the syringe crosswise into the pig's mouth, behind the front teeth and in front of the back teeth. Depress the plunger to give about .25 cc at a time. If the pig is chewing, it's eating.

That addresses the immediate problem -- that pigs have to eat ALL the time or they'll die. They can't do three meals a day like we do. They continually produce stomach acid which will digest the lining of the stomach if food isn't coming in, and the pig will wind up with bloat, or will die from an ulcerated stomach.

The bigger problem is that he needs his molars planed -- my guess is that they're trapping his tongue, but he could have an abscess or elongated roots. Either way, you need to get him to a good vet immediately.

FYI, waiting to see if a tooth problem will resolve itself will never work. You could probably have had this taken care of for less money for you, less pain for your pig, and a shorter recovery time if you'd addressed it at the beginning.

Some pigs will have problems with teeth because of their genetic makeup, or something wonky with their jaw, and will require regular planing. Others may have a one-time occurrence, and if they're given sufficient hay, won't need another planing. You'll just have to see which one your pig is.

Good luck with him, and let us know what happens.

Saylavi
02-03-16, 09:41 am
You could try slicing the carrot thin (thin enough to read a newspaper through) but in the end he needs to see a vet. Does he have access to unlimited hay? They need that to help keep their teeth in check. It may also be a loose tooth or an abscess or something else that makes it painful for him to eat, only an exotic vet would really know

Elysium
02-03-16, 04:24 pm
Hi, thanks for the responses. I got him into the vet today at 11:00 am. The vet was apparently experienced with GP's, i found the vet through the guinea lynx website. She examined his teeth, his 2 top incisors were different lengths, one was probably a good centimeter or so longer than the other, but she said his teeth looked like a good length, she also checked both sets of molars and said they looked fine. so she says maybe the one incisor is slightly long so she went back to trim them and apparently the tooth was loose already so she ended up pulling it. I didn't have a say in anything after she took him back to trim, she came back and it was pulled already. She said no pain medication was necessary that guinea pigs react to medications weirdly and best to not put them on anything if not required. No anti biotics were given either. No mention of needing to hand feed.

How was the diagnosis? he seems to be up and moving now after he went to sleep for a few hours upon returning home. he's eating pellets but is biting on the bars noticeably less, i assume he is sore and biting on hard stuff right now is difficult for him. he still has an appetite and seems his normal self otherwise.

Saylavi
02-03-16, 04:54 pm
I've heard of cavies with pulled teeth before, the tooth will usually grow back. If he will eat on his own then let him, but try to cut up everything small for him. He will be alright

bpatters
02-03-16, 04:55 pm
Mumble, mumble. I wonder how the vet would like to have her teeth pulled with no pain medication.

She should have done two skull x-rays, one from the top and one from the side, to see if there was an abscess or elongated roots. She couldn't possibly know about either of those without an x-ray.

I'd watch him VERY carefully, and if he has any problems, get him to a different exotic vet. You're looking for swelling, odor, pus, bleeding, pain, inability to eat. Keep track of how much he eats. If he's not eating as much as normal, you've got to hand-feed him.

Before it gets late enough that the stores close, go to a pharmacy and get the free needleless syringes -- 10 and 20 ml will be the most useful. If you can get some Critical Care at a pet store, that would be great, but if not, be prepared to crush his pellets to feed him with. A guinea pig that's not eating anything else needs at least 60-100 cc of CC/pellet slurry for every kilogram it weighs, broken up into 5-6 feedings per day, throughout the day and night. If he's eating some things, you can give less of the slurry, but it's better to overdo it than to feed too little.

Good luck with him, and let us know how he gets along.

Comely Guineas
02-03-16, 07:08 pm
I don't think that vet's very good. When my guinea pig had to have both of his top teeth pulled because they were damaged, she put numbing cream inside his mouth before and after the pulling. She also prescribed antibiotics.

Elysium
02-04-16, 07:17 am
I don't think that vet's very good. When my guinea pig had to have both of his top teeth pulled because they were damaged, she put numbing cream inside his mouth before and after the pulling. She also prescribed antibiotics.

the vet I met with did not explicitly state that he either did or did not receive any sort of numbing, just that pain or other medication was not required to take home and provide him with. The doctor I met with was the exact doctor recommended on the guinealynx website for that location so I took him where I could get him in. I called the specialist that was an hour away early yesterday and never and got a call back even up to this morning.

my buddy is in my lap with my right now, he seems to be doing well. behavior is normal and his appetite is huge, hes begging for food right now and is able to eat green pepper no problem as long as I give it to him in smaller pieces. The vet did recommended cutting his food up into small bites for a few days and he does seem like hes a bit sore there still as he isn't biting down on anything too hard with his remaining top incisor/bottom 2 incisors.

the only thing im noticing is less than 24 hours later he obviously is sensitive, he wont eat anything right now that he has to tear off from a bigger piece so the food i give him has to be easy enough to get into his mouth to chew. if he doesn't seem to make improvements within a few days or if he starts to refuse to eat even small pieces of food I will have to take him somewhere.

Elysium
02-04-16, 09:02 am
My guinea pig seems to be doing pretty good so far today, he has been able to eat as long as I cut his food up into small enough chunks to fit in his mouth. He seems like he is still sore less than 24 hours after the tooth was pulled because he doesn't seem to want to bite down too directly on anything with his incisors but chews just as fast as he ever has if his food is actually in his mouth. He has also been eating his pellets like normal and even a bit of hay. His behavior seems normal, he's alert, no weird drainage in eyes or nose, and hasn't been sleeping an unusual amount except for right when we came home yesterday but he was probably tired/stressed. he's awake right now just hanging out in his house and seems fine.

here's a picture of him from just a few minutes ago.78218

Opheliakc
02-04-16, 09:57 am
I've heard a story like that couple months ago. It turned out to be there's a teeth behind the eye and after infections etc the poor piggy died. I hope your boy is okay.

Elysium
02-04-16, 10:40 am
I've heard a story like that couple months ago. It turned out to be there's a teeth behind the eye and after infections etc the poor piggy died. I hope your boy is okay.

are you saying that loose tooth is an indication of a tooth growing behind his eye?

my pig tends to bite the bars of his cage whenever he wants food, he has been doing it since he was tiny. i think he may have jarred it loose from biting on the bars too much.

Can anyone inform me if there any post-op signs I should look for in regards to infection around his teeth or other signs of trauma pertaining to a loose/pulled incisor specifically?

bpatters
02-04-16, 11:15 am
No, loose teeth are NOT an indication of a tooth growing behind an eye. I've never heard of such a thing.

It's possible for guinea pigs to have really wonky teeth -- doubles, triples, growing in the wrong direction, out of the roof of the mouth, whatever. It's also possible to have one growing behind an eye. But conditions like that are VERY rare, and in any case, would have nothing to do with your pig's loose tooth.

I gave you the signs of infection in post #6 (https://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/usertag.php?do=list&action=hash&hash=6) above.

Guinea pig teeth grow very quickly, and unless the tooth root has been damaged to the point that the tooth will never regrow, you should signs of the growing tooth very soon. It does sometimes happen that a pig will lose the same tooth two or three times before a good tooth "takes," so don't worry about it if the next one is loose or looks a little funny.

What you desperately need to do, if he's not eating the normal amount of food, is hand feed him either Critical Care or a pellet slurry. It can be the difference between him living and dying.

Elysium
02-04-16, 01:51 pm
No, loose teeth are NOT an indication of a tooth growing behind an eye. I've never heard of such a thing.

It's possible for guinea pigs to have really wonky teeth -- doubles, triples, growing in the wrong direction, out of the roof of the mouth, whatever. It's also possible to have one growing behind an eye. But conditions like that are VERY rare, and in any case, would have nothing to do with your pig's loose tooth.

I gave you the signs of infection in post #6 (https://www.guineapigcages.com/forum/usertag.php?do=list&action=hash&hash=6) above.

Guinea pig teeth grow very quickly, and unless the tooth root has been damaged to the point that the tooth will never regrow, you should signs of the growing tooth very soon. It does sometimes happen that a pig will lose the same tooth two or three times before a good tooth "takes," so don't worry about it if the next one is loose or looks a little funny.

What you desperately need to do, if he's not eating the normal amount of food, is hand feed him either Critical Care or a pellet slurry. It can be the difference between him living and dying.

thanks, i understand how critical care works i've only been asking questions about things I don't know the answer to. I understand how important it is that he eats which is why I took him to the vet yesterday morning because he was unable to eat his daily veggies on his own and have expressed that he has been able to eat his regular pellets/hay thus far as well as his veggies as long as they are appropriately sized.

thanks for the help

Comely Guineas
02-04-16, 05:48 pm
When my pig had his top teeth pulled, I had to hand feed him all of his veggies every day until they grew back. I just cut them into matchstick pieces and hand fed him as he couldn't pick up anything or tear off. But your pig sounds like he is definitely coming along. It's good to hear he can eat on his own. His teeth grew back pretty fast, I think it took around 2 weeks. So hopefully yours will be back to normal soon.