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Thread: Wont eat hay, possible cause for weight loss

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    Exclamation Wont eat hay, possible cause for weight loss

    Hi all, recently my 7 year old guinea pig has began to lose weight over the past week. Being shes way in her senior years, i was expecting weight loss to happen here and there but the daily small decrease in weight concerned me. I couldnt figure out what was causing it since shes eating her vegetables and pellets just fine. The only thing that could be apart of it being the fact her breathing problems havent been doing so good with this sudden heat wave. But even with her breathing problems, she never lost sudden bits of weight. But, today i noticed that her hay pile was barely touched and i realized that havent had to refill her hay much since the start of the weight loss. I only noticed it this time because she didnt spread it across her entire cage like she normally does and the same, untouched pile still was there. I dont know why she would suddenly stop eating it, but i do know it makes up 80% diet and not eating it could definitely be the culprit behind weight loss. Any tips on getting her to start eating it again? Or even maybe why she would just suddenly stop?

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    Cavy Champion Guinea Pig Papa's Avatar
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    Re: Wont eat hay, possible cause for weight loss

    Quote Originally Posted by Caffee View Post
    Hi all, recently my 7 year old guinea pig has began to lose weight over the past week. Being shes way in her senior years, i was expecting weight loss to happen here and there but the daily small decrease in weight concerned me. I couldnt figure out what was causing it since shes eating her vegetables and pellets just fine. The only thing that could be apart of it being the fact her breathing problems havent been doing so good with this sudden heat wave. But even with her breathing problems, she never lost sudden bits of weight. But, today i noticed that her hay pile was barely touched and i realized that havent had to refill her hay much since the start of the weight loss. I only noticed it this time because she didnt spread it across her entire cage like she normally does and the same, untouched pile still was there. I dont know why she would suddenly stop eating it, but i do know it makes up 80% diet and not eating it could definitely be the culprit behind weight loss. Any tips on getting her to start eating it again? Or even maybe why she would just suddenly stop?
    How much weight HAS she lost? Gradual weight loss in a senior pig seems to be the norm, but sudden weight loss and not eating indicates a problem. Does she seem to be drinking a lot more? Not eating is serious and if she won't eat on her own, you'll need to hand feed her. A guinea pig that doesn't eat is a guinea pig that will soon die.

    The best advice I can give would be to get her in to a cavy savvy vet as quickly as you can. It could be any number of things. Have a look at her front teeth, her incisors. Do they seem worn at an angle, and not straight as they should be?

    Do you notice any discharge from her eyes or nose? Lethargy?

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    Re: Wont eat hay, possible cause for weight loss

    Also, you mentioned a heat wave. What is the temperature where her cage is?

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    Re: Wont eat hay, possible cause for weight loss

    In the past 7 days, she has lost 53 grams and her current weight now is 648g. Her drinking habits are normal, i measure it every time i change her water and they are the same as they always been. I havent taken a look at her teeth, but i feel like if there was something wrong with her teeth she would refuse to eat everything. Its only her hay that she doesnt have much interest in. I really want to get her into a vet, the problem though is that the pandemic is making it near impossible to get her in. The vet ive taken her to the past two years and have always been great with her isnt even doing curbside or emergency. Im hoping maybe in the next few days they’ll open back up with the new rules in place so i cant get her in asap. No discharge from nose or eyes and the temp where her cage is at is around 72, but on hotter days i keep a fan blowing in the same room to circulate the air a bit better. She acts like her normal self, still just as active and still runs out and begs for food per usual. I wonder if shes just being picky? Shes always been picky and has gone from loving a certain food to hating it a week later and her pickiness has gotten worse with age. If her vegetables or pellets arent fresh She will NOT eat them. Maybe shes just picked up the same habit with her hay? I truly dont know.

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    Re: Wont eat hay, possible cause for weight loss

    Can you get hold of some different hay? Or try some untreated fresh grass? If you do use grass, give it to her very sparingly at first, and gradually increase the amounts. Too much all at once can cause major digestive problems.

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    Re: Wont eat hay, possible cause for weight loss

    Quote Originally Posted by bpatters View Post
    Can you get hold of some different hay? Or try some untreated fresh grass? If you do use grass, give it to her very sparingly at first, and gradually increase the amounts. Too much all at once can cause major digestive problems.
    I would have to wait a few days to get her new hay since we cant really go into stores too often right now. I can get her untreated grass. She might take that since she does enjoy eating grass outside.

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