View Full Version : URI/Upper Respiratory Infection URI/Antibiotics-Probotics Question

07-25-10, 09:39 am
Well I wanted my first post to be on the Introductions Threads, but unfortunately I have a sick baby so I'll save that for when she's all better.

Friday morning I got the girls out to snuggle and I noticed that Lil' Bit was breathing loudly and sounded like a snotty 2 year old. I had given her some alphalfa hay the night before (the first time she'd had it) and it was VERY dusty unlike her normal Timothy and Orchard Grass. I thought maybe she was allergic.

Later in the morning I noticed she was sneezing non stop and rubbing at her nose so I took her to our vet (they have a new vet recently come on board who was suppose to be a cavy savy exotic vet). Well I wasn't crazy about her at all. Now she was very nice, but she looked like a dad who was holding their newborn for first time and had never been around children before. I get the sense that she "loved small animals" but didn't have much experience with them.

She diagnosed her with a URI but wanted to do about $300 worth of tests to make sure she was putting her on the "right" antibiotics. Now don't get me wrong, I would have no problem spending $300, but I just didn't think she was that sick.....I'm no vet, but I just felt like she wanted to use Lil' Bit as a "guinea pig"....no pun intended :).

I told her could we just try the antibiotics and I would come back Monday if she wasn't better (I really meant I'll try the antibiotics while I look for another vet)! She said yes. I also wanted to know how old she was because the folks at Petstupid said they had no idea. (Yes, I know...I was completely clueless when I got the girls. I know better now after finding this wonderful site and will not even step foot in those places again)

Oh the other thing she said is that she was no expert on guessing the age of guinea pigs but she thought based on size.....she thought her to be around 3 months. We've had her 4 weeks and they said they'd had her about 2 weeks. She is exactly a pound and has tiny pointy fingernails, so I am thinking that she might be at least right about her age.

Ok, long story short....which I will never accomplish. I started her on the Baytril (0.1 ml every 12 hours) on Friday at lunch time. She has just had her 6th dose. She is acting back to normal except she still sneezes quite a bit. They are not great big sneezes like Friday, just little things, but I would say 1 an hour or so.

Her urine is also white like milk (looks like skim milk...white but watered down).

I had seen on another thread that they need probotics if on antibiotics. Where do I get something like that? I mean for my kids I give them yogurt but not sure about for piggies.

Oh and I do have her isolated from my other piggies....which is very sad. I was wondering if antibiotics for piggies is the same as with children (once they've had doses for a certain amount of time they are no longer contagious) or is an URI different for piggies. I hate to keep her alone for 2 weeks but I will of course if necessary.

Sorry this is so long, I just know that everyone is always so helpful and wanted to give as much info as possible!

07-25-10, 02:35 pm
Her urine is milky colored because she's expelling excess calcium. It's a good idea to feel these spots when they dry to see if they feel smooth or gritty. Gritty feeling could indicate bladder sludge, smooth is normal.

For a probiotic, you need acidophilus tablets or capsules. You can find them anywhere over the counter medications are sold. Some people like to use bene-bac but I don't recommend that as it has added stuff and not just probiotics in it. With acidophilus, you are getting straight probiotics. You would crush a tablet or open a capsule and dose it about 45 minutes to an hour before or after the AB's. Before is said to be better. You can give it by sprinkling it over veggies or mix it with some water in a syringe and give it that way.

You don't need to isolate her from the other pigs as the others have already been exposed. They will either get it or not since they've been exposed so I'd put her back in with her cage mates.

07-27-10, 12:02 pm
I got two precious piggies from PetSmart at the beginning of June (before I knew better!), and the one, Shauna, has been sick since we got her. Sneezing, then congestion, extrememly snotty, then pneumonia, she is still sneezing and the nasal congestion is back. She has already had 3 rounds of antibiotics-10 days each! She is fine while on the antibiotics-less congestion, but still sneezing. Within a few days of finishing the antibiotics it is back. Poor baby! We are off to the vet again today in about an hour. I just want my sweet baby to get better!

I do have a question about probiotics. I tried giving them to Shauna during the second set of antibiotics, but they seemed to make her poops runny. Was I giving too much? See she is a good eater and never had slowed down on that except the one day that she was really having trouble breathing and I rushed her to the vet and they said pneumonia. Her poops were always normal, but got really soft, squishy, & sometimes runny during the two days of probiotics. So I stopped giving that and they went back to normal again. I did read up on all that I could about them on this site, going through all the old posts, and the first day gave acidophilus (powdered-sprinkled a bit on a piece of parsley), then the next day because she now had slimy poops I tried the fresh poop (from my other piggy that was still normal) in water and dropper fed it to her. Neither seemed to help. But now that we are looking at possibly another round of antibiotics I am wondering if I should try again.

Also, I have never separated the two piggies. They were in the cage together at the store, and then together at home through the whole 7 weeks so far and Kerri, my other piggy, has not shown any signs of illness yet. She sneezed twice total since we got her that we have seen, and we just figured that was dust or something, since we have watched her closely and no signs of being sick, other than the ringworm that she had bad when we got her, but we fixed that up ASAP and her hair has grown back to where you can't see the bald spots anymore!

PetSmart is NOT smart at all! We had to treat them both for ringworm, since Shauna was just starting to get a small bald spot when we got her also and on top of the URI/Pneumonia and ringworm she might also be pregnant. I am hoping to confirm with the vet today. Wish us luck. I love our vet. She is really nice, great with the piggies, and knows what she is doing. I wish they would teach me how to hold them still like the vet & her assistant can, without their squirming and fighting the whole time!