View Full Version : URI/Upper Respiratory Infection URI and possible pneumonia , scared to inject medicine !

09-27-16, 06:23 pm
Hello everyone ! I am very new to the forum (this is my very first post) . My male , nine week old Abyssinian Guinea pig , Kupo , just got home from the vet and ... Bad news ): my poor piggie has an URI and possibly pneumonia . I'm so glad I brought him in ! He was acting fine before (I've only had him for a week but love him tremendously already) . I noticed Kupo was sneezing a lot . His brother , King Kazma , hadn't sneezed at all . All of a sudden (two days ago) King got very very ill . I woke up to him with labored breathing , it sounded like he had hay stuck in his nose or throat , because he did a little noise with each breath he took . Then , that same day , King quit eating . Then he quit drinking . That was on a Sunday , and I couldn't even call the vet to set up an appointment . The next day , King passed on . That was when I knew for sure I needed to get Kupo in to see a vet .

The vet gave Kupo a little tube of pink antibiotics (not sure what antibiotic specifically) to give to him twice a day for 8 days , orally . She also gave him an injection of water to make sure he was hydrated . She also gave me two HUGE syringes full of water and told me to inject him with one entire syringe tomorrow , and one the next day . I'm not typically squeamish but I never thought I would have to inject my baby piggy with anything ! She said it wasn't absolutely necessary , but she did reccommend it . Now , clearly I want to do whatever I need to , to make sure my little Kupo gets healthy . But I'm just not sure if I can do this . Especially since I am still trying to earn his trust and show him I'm a nice lady . I want him to associate me with veggies , not needles !! I'm scared he will hate me ): any words of encouragement or any advice would be greatly appreciated !

Also , Kupo has been drinking lots of water since I brought him home from the vet , and he seemed to be drinking quite fine before the vet . He is also eating all of his veggies and pellets and doing lots of little poos . Should I still inject him with the water ?? The vet said it wasn't completely necessary , just recommended .. It's quite a large syringe , and I just feel horrible about the whole situation , especially after losing King just yesterday ):

lots of love from Kupo and I !

09-27-16, 06:38 pm
I'm sorry you lost your pig and that your other one is sick.

The fluids she gave you are for a subcutaneous injection (usually called sub-q or subcue). It's not a difficult thing to do if you have someone to hold the pig while you're doing the injection. And he won't associate you with the needle as long as you've put a pile of yummy treats under his nose while the fluid is running in.

Did the vet show you how to do the subcue? Or better yet, did she let you do one in the office? Guinea pig skin is really tough, and it's harder than you might think to poke a hole in one of the critters.

But if you just can't do it, get a 10 or 20 cc needleless syringe -- most pharmacies will give you a couple for free if you tell them it's for a sick pet. You can then syringe him water with the syringe. Even better than water is Pedialyte -- most pigs love it and will happily guzzle down 10-20 cc of it at one sitting. The generic is just as good as the brand stuff, and you can get it at any pharmacy. Just be aware that you have to keep it refrigerated, and that it will mold quickly. Most people who use it frequently will freeze it in an ice cube tray and just thaw out what they need as they need it.

FYI, guinea pigs with signs of respiratory infections should be seen by an exotic vet immediately. They can go from sniffles to dead in less than 24 hours. But if you get them an antibiotic and force-feed them, they can usually recover.

Be aware that any antibiotic can kill a guinea pig's appetite. But they MUST eat -- they're wired to eat all the time, and a guinea pig that's not eating is a guinea pig that's dying. So if stops eating, be prepared to hand-feed him. See http://www.guinealynx.info/handfeeding.html for information on how to do it, and post back here if you have questions.