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Thread: It's been a year since you were abandoned in a fried chicken box

  1. #1
    Cavy Slave 4boipigs's Avatar
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    It's been a year since you were abandoned in a fried chicken box

    It was October 10 2020. I just got off work when my coworker texted me that a girl had called about some guinea pigs she found in a box while jogging. She wanted to know where to take them. My coworker took the girl's info and gave it to me. I really didn't want to deal with it, as I'd just gotten done fostering/adopting out a dog for an animal shelter. I texted the girl anyway because I figured I could take the pigs to Texas Rustlers, the local small animal rescue. I met her just up the street at Walmart. She handed me a Church's Chicken box with air holes punched in the top. It had two guinea pigs, one way smaller than the other. At first I feared the big brown one was pregnant when compared to the small one. A lot of people thought the little one was younger, but turns out he is just a really tiny pig at about 1.5 lbs. I was told the pigs were found in this box. She wouldn't tell me where, which is too bad because I would have liked to know where. I don't think she told me because she was possibly a minor.

    I took the two home, set up the old pet store cage I had, and called Texas Rustlers. Can't take them, they told me. They are too full. I tried another rescue but they only accept rabbits. I refused to take them to an animal shelter. Chico and Amigo's ridiculous adoption was enough to make me not want to leave them at a shelter. I sent Texas Rustler's an email, hoping at some point they would be able to take the two. They were so busy that they didn't email me back until December, after I adopted Gimbly from them.

    I took the two to work to be checked out, which probably wasn't the best idea because the vets don't really know exotics well. Bruin, who ended up having heart failure, was labeled as healthy. Little Bear, who it was immediately noticeable that he had problems, had an ear infection and possible neurological issues. We weren't too sure. The moment I put him in the new cage, he was turning in circles. Maybe it was from the ear infection, because he hasn't walked in circles since last year. He also only had one cataract at the time. Looking back on Bruin, I remember him breathing heavy but just blew it off as stress from being dumped in 90 degree weather in a box.

    I don't remember when, but not much later in October I decided to find a vet for Bruin, since he was breathing fast. I didn't really know anything about pig respiratory issues or breathing problems, but he seemed to be breathing hard to me, so I wanted to take him. I went to a new, closer vet than where we usually go. We did xrays and discovered that he had an immense amount of fluid in his lungs, and the heart couldn't be seen. The doctor suspected that due to all this fluid, not only was there a good chance of heart failure, but Bruin was older than we thought (a senior). She offered to euthanize him that night, but me not knowing the extent of this and not wanting to euthanize so soon, I went home with meds and a quote for a cardiology work up. Over the next few weeks, Bruin didn't really improve. His breathing was heavy, he often made noise as he breathed, and he coughed often. However, he happily ate and was overall coming out of his shell. Altho shy, he would come to the side of the cage for food and was starting to wheek when he heard the pellet bag open.

    We had quite a few follow ups at the vet, for new xrays and to see how things were coming along. Around (US) Thanksgiving, I took the pigs to work to get pics of them with our Christmas set up. After I got home, I realized Bruin was breathing heavier than before. Whether or not it was due to our little trip, I decided to make the last vet appointment. This time, the vet compared his heart to shoes in a dryer. When she saw how fast he was breathing, she was amazed that the meds he was on (furosemide and theophyline) had not helped him as much as they should. I never had to euthanize a pet before, so I asked the vet for her advice and decided to let them euthanize Bruin. I wasn't allowed to be with him (since small animals aren't pts like cats/dogs), but I got him back in a box so I could go home and let Little Bear see what happened. After that, he went back to the vet to be cremated.

    Little Bear, I would later realize, didn't take the death well. I moved the cage next to Chico and Amigo's cage so he wouldn't be totally alone. I applied for adoption at Texas Rustlers, and due to my work schedule I wasn't able to adopt for a month. In December, Little Bear began to have seizures. It started when I took him out to clean the cage. Then he started to have seizures while in the cage and nothing stressful was happening. I took him to the vet and they found nothing wrong.

    December 26 we headed to Texas Rustlers to adopt Gimbly. I chose various pigs to attempt boar bonding with, but Gimbly was the first choice based on how the rescue described him as gentle. I wasn't allowed to remain due to covid, so I couldn't see them bond. When I came back, I was told Little Bear had a great time and had even been popcorning, which I'd never seen him do.

    He didn't have any seizures after that, and hasn't had one since last December, so I suspect the seizures were stress-induced from losing Bruin.

    Everything went great until Little Bear had his eye issues emerge, which eventually led to the eye removal in August.

    So here we are a year later...two happy and safe guinea pigs.

    The box pictured is from that day, before I took them out to put them in the cage.


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  2. #2
    Cavy Champion Guinea Pig Papa's Avatar
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    Re: It's been a year since you were abandoned in a fried chicken box

    Hard to believe it's been a year already. As I've said previously, Bruin got the love and care with you in just a few short weeks that he likely had never gotten. He knew he was important to someone.

    I am so happy the Little Bear is thriving now, and with his new buddy Gimbly. I am so glad they ended up with you in a home where they are loved, looked after and cherished.

  3. "Thank you, Guinea Pig Papa, for this useful post," says:


  4. #3
    Cavy Slave SSLee's Avatar
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    Re: It's been a year since you were abandoned in a fried chicken box

    Thank you for the recap. I was following Bruin and Little Bear's journey from the beginning. But due to my poor memory, I had forgotten chunks of it and the recap was very helpful to fill in the spots.

    I totally agree with @Guinea Pig Papa, that you probably gave Bruin more love and care in the short time he had with you than he previously had in his entire life. So glad Little Bear is thriving with Gimbly now and looking forward to more happy stories in the future.

  5. #4
    Cavy Slave
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    Re: It's been a year since you were abandoned in a fried chicken box

    I'm glad Little Bear and Gimbly are doing okay together, hoping for a long healthy life for both of them <3

  6. #5
    Cavy Slave ItsaZoo's Avatar
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    Re: It's been a year since you were abandoned in a fried chicken box

    I remember you first posting about the two of them. Both were lucky you took them in and cared for them. Bruin got to experience comfort, love, and a full tummy with you. And Little Bear and Gimbly are so fortunate as well.

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