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A Big Thank You

Cavalicious

Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Jan 11, 2012
Messages
140
Hi all,

I've had Hammy and Honey (both male American piggies) for a little over a week (rescue adoption) and I can't say enough how much sites like this have helped me find the coroplast and cubes I needed locally, as well as all the fleece advice. It certainly put me ahead of the game and earning my new piggies' love. Even as the older boy is big and started out lethargic, he's full of pep and popcorning now. Honey, the baby (and suspected Hammy's son to boot), has gotten over his shyness and loves to fall asleep on my chest with his daddy pig.

I never fail to feed them all they need, including faves of cilantro (coriander), curly parsley and lettuces - as well as backyard clover and fresh grass. Hammy gets a slice of Cara Cara orange at nighttime (which is when I have one - he can smell it when I peel it!).

They love baths (a miracle) and most importantly, they love their home. I couldn't be happier and more at peace.

Thank you, internet and GPC specifically, for providing such a great wealth of information. I couldn't have made the transition without this place.

Kim, Hammy, Honey and family
 
That's wonderful that your pigs are enjoying their new home! I'm happy to hear that you have found this site to be helpful :)

I'd be careful with the baths though. If you've only had them a week and you've already given them more than one bath, it's more than enough. They tend to groom/bathe themselves (in a very similar fashion to a cat). Too many baths can dry out their skin and cause other skin irritations.
 
Thank you for the bath reminder! Yeah, I had to give them a bath (was very nervous) when they managed to get their paws into their poop too much. Afterwards, they got the idea and confined their pooping to corners. I'm constantly amazed by their learning curve.
 
A Big Thank You
So (from lt. to rt.) it's Honey and Hammy! That's me holding them, of course.

I am allergic to both the hay (not so bad) and the guinea pig dander. I noticed that up to a week after I bathed them, I didn't have a bad reaction and did well on my 24 hour Zyrtec and Benadryl at nighttime. But as the third week goes on, I'm having an asthmatic shortness of breath after handling them. I know it's the proteins from the urine that I'm allergic to, which comes into contact with their fur as they groom. I have a hepa air filter in the room.

I've read about Allerpet and have used it before years ago on my childhood dog. Is it advisable to do a similar surface wetting of the fur weekly to help me overcome my more serious attacks? I don't want to increase the baths because of their skin drying out.

Any other suggestions? I've searched under allergies in the forum and didn't see anything about Allerpet. Thanks in advance!
 
I tried typing Allerpet into the search bar, but not much came up. Someone started a thread about Allerpet, but there weren't many replies. The consensus seems to be that rubbing a product on a guinea pig isn't a very good idea.
Hopefully someone else can give you a better answer than me!
 
You can wipe their butts with a damp washcloth, which will help keep the urine down. Also, keep the hair trimmed very well back there so it doesn't get into the urine.

Not many people are allergic to guinea pig dander -- they're really hypo-allergenic animals. Possibly you're just allergic to the hay that's rubbed on them?

I'm also a little suspicious of their claim that wiping the pet with a damp cloth will get rid of dander. It's usually down very close to the skin, so you'd have to give the pet a really thorough going over to get that out. Also I'm not a fan of things that you wipe on pets that groom themselves and don't wash off.

Possibly someone who's used it before can speak to the Allerpet, but I think I'd go with warm water baths before I'd use it.
 
Thanks for the suggestions. Yeah, I'm going to have to figure out a way that works. So far, I just wash my hands and my face well after I handle them. I may have to line the inside of my nose with Vaseline to catch all the allergens. I'm not sure if it's the hay since whenever I feed them, I'm okay. It's just when I give them lap time, or rather chest time. I may need to go to an allergist to do some tests and then get shots. Ow. But worth it.
 
Do you have respiratory allergies, or skin allergies?

Either way, you can test the hay without going to the allergist -- finding out about the pig dander may require more effort.

If your allergies are respiratory, just sniff the hay (the clean hay, not that in the cage), and see if you get an allergic reaction. If not, it's not the hay.

If you have skin problems, you can rub a bit of hay on the inside of your arm, and check there for a reaction. No reaction, no hay allergy.

The hay problem is usually easy to solve. It's timothy hay that bothers people the most, and many allergic pig owners do just fine with orchard grass or bluegrass -- those are the easiest of the grass hays to find, after timothy.
 
Hay makes me sneeze like a crazy person. Non-stop sneezing for long, long periods of time. I use Rhinocort Turbuhaler now and I'm pretty sure I would die without it. If you have terrible sneezing fits, I would suggest talking to your doctor about Rhinocort. Sometimes when I forget to take it, and I start to have a sneezing fit, I have to use my Neti pot. It feels so good when your nose is itchy and inflamed from allergies. It's a bit gross using it for your first time, but it's not hard to get used to.
If your pigs and their hay affect your nose, I would really look in to these!!!
 
I have both resp. and skin allergies. The first time I held Hammy without a towel, everywhere he licked me on my arms broke out in red bumps. So now I use the towel to pick them up every time. I started using the Filtrete air filter in my home office, which helps. And when I clean the cage, I used one of those painter's filter masks. I look like like a scientist from Contagion!

My respiratory symptoms involve a large growing lumplike feeling in my throat and a shortness of breath. I cough, but don't have sneezing fits. And if I lie down, I feel like a brick is on my chest. I just changed the air filter (going to probably have to do that once a month or every two months instead of three). I also made an appointment with an allergist for Tuesday. We'll see, but keep the suggestions coming so that I have some stuff to ask the doctor. Thank you, guys.
 
Ellisa, I'm not a doctor, but I am sure that the long-term use of cortisone-like compounds (Rhinocort is one) is not good for you. I think you should talk to your doctor about how often you're using it, and ask him about any long-term effects. If I were having to take cortisone every day in order to live with pigs, I'd have to re-home them and try another kind of pet.
 
Ellisa, I'm not a doctor, but I am sure that the long-term use of cortisone-like compounds (Rhinocort is one) is not good for you. I think you should talk to your doctor about how often you're using it, and ask him about any long-term effects. If I were having to take cortisone every day in order to live with pigs, I'd have to re-home them and try another kind of pet.

I've taken Rhinocort almost every day for over 2 years now for my Rhinitis. Sometimes I miss a day or a couple, and sometimes I'm lazy and don't feel like taking it. I've never had a problem with it, and my doctor or pharmacist has never said anything about it. I've looked over the pamphlet about it before, and it doesn't say anything bad about long term use. It says for a maintenance dose to take the smallest dose possible, which I do.
Do you think I need to bring it up with my doctor the next time I go in?
I haven't been taking it much anymore, now that I am pigless. I'm not on it just for the hay either, dust and nature makes me sneezy also. :ashamed:
 
You could talk to your doctor if you like. But I misread your post -- I thought you were using it every day so you could hold your pigs. And while I love guinea pigs dearly, and would have a houseful if I didn't think it would result in divorce, having them as pets is not worth risking your health over.
 
You could talk to your doctor if you like. But I misread your post -- I thought you were using it every day so you could hold your pigs. And while I love guinea pigs dearly, and would have a houseful if I didn't think it would result in divorce, having them as pets is not worth risking your health over.

Thanks, Billie. I just looked online and it said that taking a high dose of vit B12 can also help with rhinitis symptoms. I'll look into it all!

Sorry for taking over this thread!
 
I don't mind! If this becomes an allergy thread, it might do me some good. :eek:
 
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