View Full Version : Hair Loss Could it be mites/ovarian cysts

01-09-13, 12:26 pm
About a month ago, I took Lily in for a check up. The vet noted her hair was thinner than her sisters, but didn't think much of it so I didn't worry. Then a couple days ago I had her out for laptime and noticed her hair was thinning along her sides. It isn't bald patches, but it's slowly thinning, though it seems to be normal thickness along her back. Does this sound like mites? She doesn't seem to be excessively itchy, though due to quarantine I am not spending as much time with her as usual. She isn't dropping weight, the vet noted she was a little underweight, and she has gained since then. She is alert, and has a great appetite. I got her a vet appointment but the earliest they could get her in was Monday. Should I go ahead and treat her with ivermectin? Or does it sound like she has something else?

01-09-13, 12:32 pm
Hair loss only on the sides can be a sign of an ovarian cyst http://www.guinealynx.info/ovarian_cysts.html

01-09-13, 12:47 pm
After looking at that page, I think she does has an ovarian cyst. She is bonier around her hips, and I think she may be a bit more pear shaped. Will she be okay until Monday, or do I need to find an emergency vet? (we have two cavy vets near us, but are avoiding one as she is very flaky about calling back, and we have lost two animals because of it, but if my piggies life is in imminent danger then I think we will have to go to her)

01-09-13, 02:26 pm
She should be good until Monday. Do you have a good cavy vet?

Oops, I see you have a couple near you. Let me know your city and I can see if I can recommend a good one.

01-09-13, 02:27 pm
Okay, I found a cavy experienced vet, and am taking her in tomorrow morning. She recently lost her sister due to unknown causes, so I am very anxious, hopefully this vet is better than the last and can help her! I will update tomorrow!

01-09-13, 02:31 pm
foggycreekcavy I'm taking her to Jones Animal Hospital in Tacoma, WA. Do you know anything about them? I haven't been there before, but they are the only place nearby that has guinea pig experience, and had an appointment available tomorrow.

01-09-13, 02:36 pm
I haven't been there personally, but some of my adopters say it's pretty good.

My main vet is in NE Tacoma. Dr. Sperlich at Brown's Point Veterinary Clinic. She can be hard to get a timely appointment, though, since she's so busy.

The best treatment for ovarian cysts is a spay. Unfortunately they usually run $200 at the least. How old is Lily? Older pigs, or those who are not good surgical candidates, can get a regimen of hormone shots instead. They are not a permanent fix like a spay, however. Sometimes a pig ends up needing them monthly or even more often. There are different hormones used--my vet usually used Cystorelin, but Lupron is also often used.

01-09-13, 02:47 pm
foggycreekcavy I tried to get an appointment with Brown's Point, but as you said, they are hard to get an appointment with. I was recommended Jones Animal Hospital by them. Luckily, we have a care credit card we can do payments on, so a spay is an option financially speaking. Lily going to be 3 in April, is that still young enough for surgery?

01-09-13, 03:10 pm
Oh yes, as long as she's in good shape otherwise. I even had a 5 year old spayed before.

I'm sad about Brown's Point. I always recommend them to everyone, but now it's so hard to get in. I will do some research on Jones.

01-10-13, 07:09 pm
Well, we went to the vet this morning, and I didn't really feel informed upon leaving. He didn't seem very cavy savvy; luckily we still have that appointment with the other vet, so we are going to go see what they say Monday. Hopefully we can figure this out!

01-11-13, 10:40 am
That was Jones? How disappointing. What did the vet think it was? Did he suggest any treatment?

01-11-13, 06:27 pm
foggycreekcavy Yeah, it was at Jones. He didn't really tell us what he thought it was, he just listed many things it could be, and when we asked questions he would answer them with more questions. The only real treatment he suggested was spaying her, and seeing what happened. Well, and he also suggested leaving her be until Spring, and seeing if she got better with the weather (even when I told him she lived inside). Overall he just seemed very unsure, and not really confident suggesting anything. Hopefully the vet we go to on Monday has some answers. Though he did say that it is most likely not a parasite on the skin, because of the hair loss pattern, and condition of her skin. I think in the end we are going to end up spaying her, as it seems most likely that she would have cysts, given the symptoms. Though, with my luck she will have some crazy disorder nobody has ever seen before! (Problem animals all seem to flock to my house)

01-12-13, 10:59 am
Yes, it does sound to me like ovarian cysts and a spay would be a good idea. Still, you want a vet who sounds like he knows what he's talking about.

01-14-13, 06:52 pm
Lily will be getting spayed Wednesday, but due to work constraints we have to take her in Tuesday evening, and pick her up early Thursday morning. What do I need to bring with to the vets for her overnight stay? I'm thinking, a comfy bed, her favorite veggies, hay, pellets, anything else?

Post op: What will I need? I ordered critical care, it should be here Wednesday. I have canned pumpkin, and can get baby food if needed. I have a pet store cage she can rehab in, it's probably about 4sq ft. I will be getting white towels for bedding, so I can monitor urine color, and watch for bleeding. I plan on asking the vet if I can get some pain medication to take home. Is there anything I am forgetting?

01-14-13, 07:15 pm
Appropriate sized syringes?

01-16-13, 01:25 am
We finally found a competent vet! She said she is almost positive Lily has ovarian cysts. She felt a lump on her right side, and said she has textbook symptoms. We discussed options and risks, and Lily will be getting spayed tomorrow morning. I'm a little worried for her, but happy we are finally getting this sorted!

01-16-13, 05:24 pm
Good news, Lily is awake from surgery! I don't know a ton about how she was doing, as when the vet called she was just waking up. She said she found cysts on both ovaries. Hopefully her recovery will be an easy one. I can't wait to go pick her up in the morning!

01-18-13, 07:16 pm
How is Lily doing?

01-18-13, 07:36 pm
Poor thing! I hope she has been recovering well.

01-18-13, 08:21 pm
foggycreekcavy So far, so good! Lily is eating, and drinking like a champ; she is bright, and alert, and not showing any signs of pain. She's on antibiotics, and pain meds for 10 days, so hopefully recovery goes as planned.