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Thread: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner Agrimony's Avatar
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    Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    Sorry I have not been posting much lately, but ive had a lot of great but busy things changing in my life but my guinea pigs have been pretty stable...until now..

    I noticed my guinea pig Bird was straining and making pained noises when trying to defecate, and what was coming was smaller, sometimes joined/deformed, and harder than was typical for him or for his buddy. I took him to the vet yesterday and he also lost 100 grams. First off- I felt terrible not noticing the weight loss. i lost my scale when I moved and it has been on my 'to do' list to buy a new one for months and I never did. I have since placed an order for one in Amazon. I didnt notice as well because he looks the same if not bigger, but apparently that is from having too much gas in his system. The vet took stool samples and prescribed me a beneficial antibiotic and told me to go get benebac at a tractor supply store. the antibiotic once a day the probiotic twice a day and obviously at a different time than the antibiotic. I should hear back about the samples by next week when he goes for a recheck.

    Anyone have any insight as to whats happening?

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner janinehunt's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    Hi @Agrimony

    I'm sorry you're having problems with Bird. I took my girl Bubbles to the vet today for a similar pooping situation. She has not lost weight or been bloated though. My vet felt a swelling that she figured was in/on her intestines, and prescribed Metacam (anti-inflammatory & analgesic) and probiotics as a first course of treatment. She suggested that the deformed poops could be caused by a polyp, but after palpating Bubbles and feeling the lump, ruled it out in her case. She said they are prone to polyps, and if I remember correctly, that there was no particular treatment for them in GPs. Also that the deformed poops are caused by some internal obstruction, rather than say constipation, or something more external around the anal area.

    She suggested I limit sugary foods, ie carrots as they can cause fermentation and stick to leafy veg, peppers etc. I am also giving Bubbles vitamin C for its anti-inflammatory and general healing properties.

    Good luck with your little dude, and keep us posted.

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    Cavy Slave TiaColleen's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    My Cooper seems to be having a similar problem. He is about 3 years old. I have been finding some joined together poohs. I just figured it was due to impaction. Thanks to your post I will make sure I weigh him to see if he lost any weight. I did do a 'boar cleaning' a few months ago, but I am sure he needs it again. Good info on Guinea Lynx about impaction. You should check out if you have not already

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    Administrator bpatters's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    If any of those pigs were mine, I'd stop all veggies for 24-48 hours and see if anything improves. If so, you could add them back one at a time, 48-72 hours in between each new one, and see if you can figure out if it's diet related.

    Smaller, harder or deformed poops may be due to dehydration. If you can't get your pig to drink more water, you can get some pedialyte -- some pigs really like it and will guzzle it right down. However, it does NOT last long, and has to be thrown away after a short time. You can freeze it in small portions and just thaw out what you're going to use at one time, though.

    @TiaColleen, I doubt very seriously that the joined-together poops are due to impaction. And just so you know, Lynx is getting ready to redo that page, so I'd hold off on recommending it to anyone until she gets the new stuff up. As I understand it, there'll be some major changes.

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    Cavy Slave TiaColleen's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    Thank you for the reply, bpatters. It certainly could be too many veggies, because mine get more then they really should. They dig their carrot out from the bottom of the bowl before they eat anything else. I can't imagine holding that from them, but I guess I should to see if it helps. There primary veggies are red lettuce or romaine, green pepper, radicchio for Cooper and Kale for Elliott. Coop doesn't like Kale and Elliott doesn't care for radicchio. Fussy boys! There are plenty of single poops in the cage but every now and then there are like 3 smashed together. That's why I thought maybe it was the cecal poops. Unfortunately, I don't have an exotic vet close by. My vet treats GP's but is not a specialist. I rarely post, but always read guinea lynx had the most reliable info, sorry.

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    Administrator bpatters's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    GL does have the best medical advice. It's just that recently there's been some change in thinking about how and how often to clean boar sacs, and Lynx plans to do some updates.

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    Cavy Slave spy9doc's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    With regard to difficulty defecating, it could be simple gas. I know that you have been around the Forum for quite a while, but remember that simethicone drops (marketed as children's gas drops) can be a lifesaver if it is simple gas. It should be a part of your piggy medicine chest. Administer a full dropper morning and evening.......it tastes good and won't harm a cavy.

    If you go back and look through some of my recent posts, I have had a similar problem with my 4 y.o. boar. He continued to lose weight over a few months and earned himself two trips to the vet. She found absolutely nothing abnormal going on. I am so bonded to this little man that I don't know what I will do when he goes to the Rainbow Bridge. As a physician in complementary care, I probably watch the diet and health of my cavies as closely as anyone. Their diet is better than mine! And, because I'm a physician, I have a good relationship with my Vet.

    Last visit, she finally said, "You absolutely must do the following"........and this time I heard her. She initially prescribed a g.i. motility drug which seemed counter-intuitive to me. After all, he was losing weight, poops were mushy, and he wasn't eating much. Her reasoning was that by stimulating his g.i. tract, he would poop more often, but he would also probably realize that he was hungry and needed to eat. I saw absolutely no change in 10 days. As an aside, he also wasn't eating hay which caused concern about his molars (they were fine).

    After that ten days, we implemented phase 2 of the program. I began feeding Maya and Chester separately because she eats like an NFL linebacker and tends to gain weight. We continued to feed her their normal diet, while Chester is fed Critical Care twice a day and permitted only green peppers and a little green beans.......absolutely no leafy veggies for about a month to date. His poops have firmed up, he has gained a little weight, and his eyes are brighter and his fur in better condition......and his energy seems to have increased. They normally are fed very few questionable veggies such as carrots, apples, or other sweet items......and fortunately don't particularly care for them.

    And, I found a solution to the eating-no-hay problem. I have two litter boxes in the cage, a large one in the loft and a smaller one downstairs. The hay rack is above the larger litter box in the loft. I began adding a layer of hay to the litter box downstairs......and suddenly it became the most popular spot in the cage. Both Chester and Maya absolutely love the box and Chester now frequently parks himself in the box to do two things at once. He's consuming more hay now than just about ever. There goes my uber-neat cage, but if it keeps the "kids" happy and healthy, I'll adjust.
    Last edited by spy9doc; 01-16-15 at 11:32 am.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner janinehunt's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    Thanks for that, @bpatters. Bubbles and Pumpkin have not had their veggies today, as you suggested. So far, there is no great difference in Bubbles' poop. In that case, should I just give them their full veggie breakfast tomorrow morning, rather than reintroducing foods one by one?

    @spy9doc, I'm glad to hear that Chester is improving!

    @Agrimony, I hope you don't mind me posting this on your thread. Just thought it might be simpler to keep this information together. How is Bird doing?

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    Moderator foggycreekcavy's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    They need to be without the veggies and greens for at least a few days, if not more.

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    Cavy Slave spy9doc's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    I didn't say this outright in my previous post, but my Vet opined that it might take a month to see a change in Chester, and she certainly was correct. It has been just about a month now and we're finally seeing a change. I just ordered two more containers of Critical Care which I plan to feed him for another two weeks to a month before I experiment with adding any veggie back into his diet.

    Maya also seems to have overly wet poops, so I'm going to change her diet as well to see if I can find the culprit or culprits before resuming veggies for Chester.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner Agrimony's Avatar
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    Re: Weight loss/ bloating/ difficulty defecating

    Thank you all for your replies! It is much appreciated. @spy9doc how is your baby Chester doing?? I am so sorry to hear he was under the weather.

    I tired no vegies for bird and it didnt change anything ad then per my vet put him back on veggies. Heis still on benebac. We did an x-ray and it showed one spot on his stomach and swollen stomach lining. He also lost more weight initially. We were at the vet last saturday and he was put on metacam for pain and to lower his inflammation. Since being on that he is acting much better- no longer fluffed up and in pain and not eating, hes back to his usual self but still with some pain with defecating and he has not gained back what he needs. After a delay with shipping i should be getting his critical care tomorrow (assuming the mail still comes through the blizzard). We still go back this coming Saturday. The vet was unsure of what caused the swollen stomach lining and spot but we will see if there are any changes. unfortunately they do not have ultrasound equipment there.

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