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Thread: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried.

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    Cavy Slave
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    New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried.

    Oh gosh, everyone, hello. I'm completely new to taking care of piggies. However, before I found my piggies at the pet store (I know, I KNOW. I tried to find adoptables for a MONTH and had no luck with any of the shelters around my area) I spent a month and a half researching because I wanted to be prepared.

    As it turns out, researching and knowing about stuff doesn't seem that useful when your babies are sick (within the first week of them being introduced to their new home).

    Once I brought my dear little babies home (A pair of piggies who seemed bonded to each other already-- two 5-month-olds named Rocky and Miloh-- pictures later) I noticed immediately that they sneezed more than perhaps is usual, and their eyes started to get crusty. I took them to the local exotics vet (who is pretty highly acclaimed out here, apparently??) who told me that it was a vitamin C deficiency and that I should add vitamin C to their water (-- FIRST red flag. I've read EVERYWHERE that this is a bad idea). But, okay. Whatever. I'm a noob. So I trust him. What do I know, right?

    I'd like to note that in during this visit he also told me not to feed them too many vegetables because they'd become 'addicted' and wouldn't eat their pellets and hay? Err. This ALSO raised a red flag with me, because I'm pretty sure that piggies just don't get 'tired' of hay unless it's of poor quality? I only feed my pigs a cup of varied, list-approved-veggies a day... And when I did they still ate PLENTY of their yumyums until they really started getting worse.

    WELL. The piggies didn't like their water very much (they drank but not as vigorously as before-- if that makes any sense at all), and I told him so when I toted them BACK to the vet because their eyes and sniffling got worse! So he Rx'd Baytril, and told me to syringe feed them small amounts of the drops (0.1 on the little syringe)-- that they would need the extra vitamin C and this would help them get better.

    So, it's day four of the antibiotics. Day four of syringing them their vitamin c supplements (which I'm very uncomfortable with), and they don't seem to be getting any better. And they're not eating their pellets very much now! (They're still drinking regularly, and their hay regularly. If anything, I'd say there's an increase in hay consumption.) Their stools are becoming kind of soft (not squishy soft, but I can pinch them into shapes without too much effort) and I'm worried!

    I'm definitely calling the vet again tomorrow morning to discuss my concerns, but, I'm not even sure if I trust him at all (granted, I'm not really sure I trust myself because I've only had my piggies for about two weeks now!)

    On top of this: I feel like this was an awful way to introduce my piggies to their new home! Illnesses, and car-rides all the time, and having to force them to take that nasty medicine. I know that it's for their own good, and that's what a pet-mommy does, but it's all quite stressful. This was definitely not how I'd hoped they'd learn that I'm not an evil predator out to eat them! D:

    (Sorry I rambled. u__u; )

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Hello n welcome.I'm sorry for what your going through but don't blame yourself your trying to do what's right for them and you can see you Care for them.if I were you I'd see if theirs another vet and get a second opinion. also for vitamin c see if they like yellow bell pepper it's loaded with vitamin c and they would get it naturally. don't worry to much about not going after their pellets as long as Their eating plenty of hay and their veggies they should be ok.I'm not to familiar with the baytril and I know there can have some side effects with using it from what I've read so hopefully some with more experience with it will chime in .good luck

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Update So. We're now day 10 into the antibiotics and vitamin C drops. Both boys' eyes are looking better-- not so goopy. But I do notice that there's still some crustiness around both. Miloh seems to be recovering fantastically. He's getting more active, and coming out of his shell. I've even caught him popcorning when I put his favorite toy (Paper Bag lol) into the pen! I suspect a full recovery from him in the next few days.

    My other boy, however, is not doing so great. I notice that there's like a wheezing or labored sound whenever he tries wheeking loudly. It's like he's lost his voice? I'm not really sure what's going on. His Poos are getting soft too. I decreased the amount of Vitamin C that I'm force-feeding him, and I completely stopped giving him vegetables for the next few days because I'm trying to get his poos to become more solid (they are solid, but soft enough that they stick together in small piles and can mush pretty easily). He's eating and drinking regularly-- nothing out of the norm. I'm still incredibly worried and I'm probably going to take him to the vet tomorrow morning if his poos are still soft.

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    Administrator bpatters's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    It's more likely the antibiotics are causing the soft poop than the vitamin C or the vegetables. Are you giving him any probiotics?

    Sometimes it takes a longer course of meds to clear up a URI, or the addition of another drug, such as doxycycline.

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    Cavy Slave Dashmo's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Hello and welcome! Sorry to hear that you're having trouble with your pigs. Pretty much everything that vet told you was wrong, so I'd look into finding a new vet. Saying a pig will not eat hay if you give them veggies is asinine, pigs need hay like they need oxygen. Not your fault, though!! You'll find lots of great advice here that can help you out. I'd try looking for a vet that specializes in small animals, clearly this one does not.

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    Cavy Slave Amalee's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Quote Originally Posted by Dashmo View Post
    Hello and welcome! Sorry to hear that you're having trouble with your pigs. Pretty much everything that vet told you was wrong, so I'd look into finding a new vet. Saying a pig will not eat hay if you give them veggies is asinine, pigs need hay like they need oxygen. Not your fault, though!! You'll find lots of great advice here that can help you out. I'd try looking for a vet that specializes in small animals, clearly this one does not.
    I think there actually is some truth to that. If your piggies are eating way too much vegetables, especially if they're ill or on their way to becoming ill, they may neglect their hay and choose to fill up on vegetables or fruits. It's a common practice to remove vegetables and fruits from the diet to encourage hay consumption either in old, picky, or ill pigs. I somehow doubt this is what their vet was trying to get across, anyway... Anyway, I wouldn't trust that vet with my animals.

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    Cavy Slave Dashmo's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Quote Originally Posted by Amalee View Post
    I think there actually is some truth to that. If your piggies are eating way too much vegetables, especially if they're ill or on their way to becoming ill, they may neglect their hay and choose to fill up on vegetables or fruits. It's a common practice to remove vegetables and fruits from the diet to encourage hay consumption either in old, picky, or ill pigs. I somehow doubt this is what their vet was trying to get across, anyway... Anyway, I wouldn't trust that vet with my animals.
    Hmmm, yeah that makes sense. I guess I've just never had any trouble getting my guys to eat hay. I can see where it would be a problem if the balance was too far off, too many veggies and not enough hay.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Thank you so much for your replies, everyone.

    When I came home tonight, my partner informed me that they had gobbled up all of the pellets I left for them this afternoon (roughly a fourth of a cup between the two of them) and so he'd put down more--- so their appetites are definitely going. Tonight was supposed to be the last of the antibiotics but I have a gut feeling that this is far from over. @[email protected];

    The vet didn't tell me to give them any probiotics. He just sort of kept re-instating the vitamin C thing (which I've ordered some supplements that hopefully won't be so awful for them to eat).

    Tonight Rocky's poos were solid when I came home. I mentioned before that I lowered the C-drop dosage, but it could maybe be the antibiotic had stopped bothering his belly so much. @[email protected] Both pigs are looking better and overall, being more active and.. Well. Pig like, I imagine. But they still both sneeze, and Rocky still has the wheeze.

    I originally started with this vet because he is the exotic/guinea pig specialist in my area-- as far as I know of, anyways. I did some calling around right before I got the pigs. Most vets around here don't really cater to small animals (there was one pet hospital I'd taken a hamster to before... But they were expensive and didn't really seem to know what they were doing either. After he abruptly passed away after them having lanced an abscess I'm really reluctant to take any of my pets there again). This is the guy that the pet stores take their exotics to (which kind of reinforces my wariness for him, too).

    (Side note that is pretty unrelated to their health but is super cool and exciting: Rocky and Miloh are starting to open up more now that they're feeling a little better. If I say "I love you" to them, Rocky gets very excited and wheeks at me. Miloh doesn't run from me when I try to pet him (unless I'm pestering him when he's doing something-- like playing with his ball hehehehe. This is very exciting for me, because the first few weeks that we were supposed to be taking it slow and getting to know eachother, I kind of had to just. Force feed them medicine and drive them around a lot. @[email protected] )

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    More Updates:

    Miloh is recovered! WOohoo! He's being friendly and excited, and his symptoms have completely cleared up. His appetite is great, and it's back onto what would have been our normal schedule!

    Rocky is currently at the vets. They're keeping him for a few days just to watch his poos for me. They said he should be ready to come home either tomorrow or the next day. I'm calling first thing to check on him. We all anticipate a full recovery.

    SO. Now, I've got my hands full with a very bored and lonely Miloh while his best friend is away for a few days. I feel so bad because I recently kind of hurt myself and getting down to his pen level is really hard for me right now (I, too, should be fine in the next few days) and I've been sleeping a LOT during his active times. I've been sure to give him extra lovins', lap time, and since he doesn't like floor time so much, I adapted it to his version: 'Couch Time'. I put down extra towels on my big sectional, scoot the automan close to the couch and let him run around. I'm going to be browsing the threads to see if I can do anything else to make his time a little easier.

    Thank you so much for everyone who commented and left replies. The past few weeks have been super scary for me, but I'm pretty sure that we're out of the woods and heading for the right direction. c:

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    Administrator bpatters's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    You'll have to do full introductions and put them back into a clean cage when Rocky comes back.

    Nothing short of a full-out emergency would make me separate pigs. It's too much work getting ready to put them back together again.

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    Cavy Slave Dashmo's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Glad to hear Miloh is doing better! Hopefully Rocky follows suit. bpatters is right, you'll need to re-introduce them as if they're meeting for the first time.

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    Moderator foggycreekcavy's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    What was the dose and the type of vitamin C drops they were getting? Sometimes an overload of C can cause soft stool.

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    I'm thinking it was just that the antibiotics upset his tummy. I called the vet and they said Rocky's doing much better now.Err-- I won't have to quarantine rocky for the two week period, will I? I have no where to put him. =/For the re-introduction, do you guys think it will go pretty smoothly/quickly? I mean, they were practically up eachothers butts 90% of the time before Rocky had to go stay with the vet. Is the couch an okay place to do re-introductions? Would toweling them up (in individual towels but close together) and cuddling them both like I did when I first got them, help at all? ///////////Stressed.

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    Cavy Slave Soecara's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Quarantine should not be necessary, unless there are other guinea pigs being kept at the vets that he could have caught something air-borne from. It might go smoothly, or it might not, just because they got on well before does not mean they still will. The couch would be a horrible place to introduce, they would likely fall off the edge (as they lack depth perception) particularly if they were to get into a fight. If you can pig proof your bath room (make sure there is no furniture they could get behind and no things within mouth reach that they shouldn't eat) then that would be an ideal location for an introduction if you put down a fleece blanket or some towels. No don't towel and cuddle them until they are comfortable with each other again, you don't want to force them to be together you want them to figure it out on their own in a way they are comfortable with (hence the large intro space, they can get away from the situation and each other if they are uncomfortable).

    Read this for info on how to introduce them http://guinea-pigs.livejournal.com/3002707.html

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    Cavy Slave
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Update:

    Rocky crossed the rainbow bridge today. He never did come home-- the past few weeks have been battling the URI which became pneumonia. I only got to spend a few weeks with him before this all happened. I'm not really sure what to say, or do, right now.

    I went and cuddled Miloh (who is healthy, noisy, and fidgety) as soon as I was done speaking with the vet. I'm thankful that he recovered.

    I think this chapter of our lives might be over, now. My partner and I will be setting aside funds to find a new mate for Miloh (finding a new cage for the two-week period and the like).

    Thanks for everything, guys.

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    Moderator foggycreekcavy's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    I'm so sorry.

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    Administrator bpatters's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    I'm sorry you lost your piggy.

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    Cavy Slave poop_patrol's Avatar
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    Re: New Piggies with suspected URIS. A few days of Antibiotics Later, and I'm worried

    Very sorry to hear that Rocky couldn't recover. You did your best by making sure he was under the care of a vet...something many people don't do for small animals.

    When you are ready to find a companion for Miloh, please adopt a pig from a shelter or a guinea pig rescue. You've seen first hand that pet store pigs often harbor unexpected illnesses. Buying another one from a pet store puts Miloh at risk for catching another URI from the new pig, not to mention that pet stores are notorious for mis-sexing pigs which could result in unwanted pregnancy when paired with Miloh.

    Good luck and best wishes to you and Miloh!

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