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failur3byh3art
08-04-13, 09:45 pm
Hello everyone. A couple days ago something terrible happened. Before I mention what happened I want to say I own 3 young guinea pigs. 1 of them especially is only 1 month old so still a baby. It was cage cleaning time as I picked all of them up and put them on my bed. They seemed to behave without any issues and I even gave them a treat. I completely replaced their fleece bedding, cleaned their houses, and replaced their food (hay, pellets). When I put them back inside their cage they started acting weird. I don't know if it's because of the new fleece bedding/color difference but they were running back and forth as if they had seen a ghost. The youngest one, sushi, attempted to jump out of the cage several times and managed to get to the top. I quickly grabbed her and gently set her back down. I thought maybe she wanted more time to be out so I gave her lap time with a treat. She seemed very calm but once I put her back in the cage she went back to running back and forth as if she was scared. What happened next really terrified me. She managed to jump up and get her head caught in between the grid holes. Now I know I should have "baby" proofed the cage >< It is my first time taking care of guinea pigs ;~;. I managed to get her free but she did it again. She got her head caught once again and she was screaming. Never before have I even heard such a sound.. But it is a sound I never want to hear again. It took nearly 5 minutes until I was able to get her free. I was so scared she might choke to death (I tried so hard to hold her so she doesn't suffocate from hanging). She was in shock, and shaking. I held her all through that night. As of now I have her in a big box with enough room for her to move around. She hasn't tried to escape but has opened up again, slowly but surely. However this is my problem. When she "wheeks" she has this low wheeking sound as if she was sick. I had recorded a video for the person I adopted her from because she wanted to know exactly what I was talking about and I wanted to know if I should take her to a vet. I'm really worried as she never sounded like this before.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5C6dF4umKs

At 24 seconds you can hear her with a faint "wheek" but air. And as the video continues she does it again.


the video is listed as "unlisted" so only people with the link can see it.

Should I take her to the vet? I'm worried she hurt her neck or worse

bpatters
08-04-13, 10:00 pm
I think she's probably ok -- most of the rest of that wheeking sounds normal. I'd just watch her carefully, and if she shows any other signs of injury (isn't eating/drinking/pooping/peeing normally), then I'd take her to the vet.

But, as you've discovered, they can be unpredictable, and they can move in a hurry. They also occasionally get weirded out by something in the cage, and you may never know what it was. However, I'd never leave mine on a bed, because you never know when they're going to launch themselves off of it. They also have no depth perception, so can easily walk off a bad and injure themselves.

You can babyproof the cage by putting cardboard up the sides and zip-tying it to the grids. Leave it there until her head is too big to go through the holes. But don't keep her separated from the others, or you'll have to go through the whole introduction scenario, and they may not along as well afterwards as they did until now.

CavyMama
08-04-13, 10:05 pm
What size grids are you using? If there are 8 holes across, they are the dangerous grids, as you found out the hard way. The holes are large on the 8X8 grids.

failur3byh3art
08-04-13, 10:08 pm
Thank you for responding! I'm just really worried because when she normally "wheeks" its high and healthy. I can easily tell that she's happy and hungry. But when she wheeks or makes some sounds in general they are low toned or sound like she has a sore throat. And hearing her breath of air coming out instead of a full "wheek" really worries me. Also the grids are 9x9. I am in the process of covering all the holes. I never want that to happen again

bpatters
08-04-13, 10:12 pm
Nine by nine grids are what's generally recommended -- you just still have to babyproof for very young pigs. She'll be unable to get out when she's several months old.

My guess is that the sounds are normal. I had a friend who was once accidentally choked, and her voice was weird for several days. No permanent damage, though. Is she acting as though she's injured?

failur3byh3art
08-04-13, 10:14 pm
She doesn't show signs of being injured. Just her voice being off. She eats, gets excited when I bring the food, poops normally, and sleeps normally.

failur3byh3art
08-06-13, 08:32 am
Hello everyone. It has been over 5 days now and sushi sounds almost the same when she wheeks. I am still worried. I may end up taking her for a check up to be on the safe side. I am a first time cavy parent but I love her to death!

Sunny
08-06-13, 09:57 am
The "airy" wheeking is pretty normal, as far as I'm concerned. All of my pigs do it sometimes. I just joke that they have a frog in their throat.

However, if it is definitely out of the ordinary for her, a vet trip may not be a bad idea just to be on the safe side. At the very least it will make you feel better.

RandomCavy
08-06-13, 12:17 pm
Just thought i'd add, the running and jumping was probably just them running laps and popcorning :) it means they are happy, and they were probably glad their cage was cleaned!

rolandinthehay
08-06-13, 12:52 pm
My pigs have sounded like that before with no illness/health problems, if that helps with your stress!

failur3byh3art
08-07-13, 12:29 pm
Hello everyone! Thank you all for the wonderful replies. Sushi sounds so much better today. She has her voice back and is back to normal. It was such a scare for me but I'm feeling so much better. I'm going to do everything in my power to make sure it never happens again!