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Injury Bite Wound on face

PrincessAngel

Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Jul 7, 2007
Messages
1,131
Ugh, My pigs have not been getting along so have been separated for a few weeks. Tonight I tried intros again, neutral ground, hideys, food. They argued for a while and then settled down, Penelope (my lone pig) was even cuddling with Charlie-Muffin. So I put them in a clean cage and that's when everything went bad.

All 3 were in the cage and Tiger and Penelope were re-establishing dominance. And then things went really really bad. Penelope grabbed Tiger by the face and had Tiger was on her back and she now has a giant (seems giant) hole in her cheek (yes hole, not cut). So much for having 3 pigs living together again.

So I have a question, what should I put on her wound? I'm worried about infection. The hole in her face forms a kind of pocket so it's not just a cut on the surface, it looks like when my pig had surgery to drain a fistual/abscess and we had ointment for that.

She doesn't appear to be in any pain, and let me pick some of the hair out of the wound. I would probably be in a great deal of pain with a hole like hers but she also still may be in shock from the event. My dad said she shouldn't need stitches but the worrying pig mama in me has me wanting to get stitches and antibotics and metacam. I'm not so sure though it requires a vet visit. Obviously if it starts getting bad or she starts to be in pain she will be at the vet asap.
 
I think you need to take her to the vet, it would be the responsible thing to do. She may not be showing pain, but pigs are masters at hiding that sort of thing. If it looks like a cut like when your other pig had surgery, I would think this would qualify a vet's opinion. They would be able to give you the right ointment.

It sounds like you did everything right as far as introducing them, so it might be one of those forever alone pigs. It doesn't happen often, but there are some pigs who just cannot be housed with other pigs. Luckily I've never had it happen with any of mine... Have you tried doing intros with these same pigs before? What caused you to seperate them before?
 
It sounds like you did everything right as far as introducing them, so it might be one of those forever alone pigs. It doesn't happen often, but there are some pigs who just cannot be housed with other pigs. Luckily I've never had it happen with any of mine... Have you tried doing intros with these same pigs before?

All 3 pigs have lived together for 3 years and this is the second time in the past year they have fought and needed separation. Penelope is mostly fine with Charlie but sometimes gets on her nerves so that's why she is alone. I thought Penelope could have ovarian cysts but she has no other traits besides being annoying/hormonal.

I will watch Tiger for tonight, and see if I can make her a vet appointment, but I must discuss with keeper of the credit card.
 
Pig wounds do tend to abscess, and it will be much cheaper to treat it now rather than later if the pig develops an overwhelming infection. If it were my pig, I'd take it in.

It's not easy to put antibiotics on a facial wound, because the pig will ingest it when it grooms itself. As problematic as antibiotics are, your pig needs to be treated to prevent any infection from developing.

The "hormonal" behavior can definitely be an indication of ovarian cysts, even in the absence of other symptoms. I'd take Penelope in to have her evaluated for cysts.

You say Penelope is a lone pig. Is there any reason she couldn't live in her own area with a divider between her and the other pigs?
 
You say Penelope is a lone pig. Is there any reason she couldn't live in her own area with a divider between her and the other pigs?

They fight through the grids and chatter and make this annoyed sound at each other. And I will inform the holder of the credit card of the urgency to go to the vet and see if we can book an appointment tomorrow evening/night.
 
My thinking was along the lines of bpatters, that you want to treat it now in case an infection tries to set in.

I hope you can figure out what's going on as far as behavior issues. If they were together previously, then I retract my statement about her being one of those long pigs. It seems there has to be something that's making her change her behaviour.
 
Well, I just called the vet and the lines were busy (24/7 vet) so I will call again in the morning before I leave for class and hopefully get an appointment tomorrow. I really hope our vet is in around 4pm with spots open. They have like 15 vets and only one sees Exotics -_-. If they are full tomorrow I will try another exotics vet.
 
So Tiger has an appointment tonight at 4:30. But unfortunately I couldn't get in at either of my preferred exotic vets so I am seeing my normal cat/dog vet who see guinea pigs and are fairly knowledgable.
 
So quick update. Tiger saw the vet, they shaved down the fur around her wound (she was not happy about this!) and they cleaned out the pus. She is on Baytril 1/2 tablet twice a day for 7 days. And I had my dad pick up some probiotics for her as well (my dad also on antibotics is going to share the probiotics with Tiger!).

I go to this vet at least once a week to shadow so I will keep them updated with her progress, I will actually be there Friday and most likely Saturday. Benefits of shadowing there is I know they have Baytril and have seen them prescribe it to piggies! And they almost always have open spots as they are open from 8am-8pm Mon-Thurs. I couldn't even get a person to talk to at my normal exotics vet and my backup only had appointments when I was in classes. There is no possible way for me to drive 13 miles home, 5 miles to the vet and then back home and school in just an hour.
 
1/2 tablet seems like a lot. What's the concentration of the tablets?
 
1/2 tablet seems like a lot. What's the concentration of the tablets?

It says "Baytril No. 22.7" so that is a 22.7mg pill, correct? It is probably overkill, but honesty she doesn't end up even getting the whole half tablet. Most ends up on the towel or down her face. I could always halve the half.

I currently don't have an able bodied and willing helper to hold her for her meds. My normal helper is on antibiotics himself and I don't want him anywhere near her. And contrary to what my friends think, it is extremely hard to restrain a 2lb 13oz pig by yourself.
 
Are you giving it dry, or crushing, mixing with water, and syringing?

I've found that some pigs do fine with the tablets, while others have to have it syringed.
 
I tried giving her the tablet and she wanted nothing to do with it. I've been syringing it with water and a little bit of fruit juice. I wish she would take the Baytril as easily as the probiotic! All I do for that is sprinkle it on veggies and she gobbles it up.
 
So now I think the wound has abscessed. Originally I only saw one hole but in hindsight there were probably 2 seeing as pigs have 2 rows of teeth to bite with. But as I checked her over today I noticed a stronger smell from her and it obviously wasn't coming out of the top part of the wound as it is completely scabbed over. There had been some swelling and this morning I noticed it went down but I needed to leave for class so I didn't investigate too much.

Well there is a bottom hole that is about 2 times larger than the top, and I think it had healed over but burst from pressure. It has a small scab but also a hunk/plug of tissue attached to it and it is loose and I can easily see into the wound and all the walls of the hole are white and thick and stinky. I'm going to continue her Baytril and flushing the now open wound until I get an appointment with my exotics vet. Other than that she is eating/drinking/pooping fine.
 
As long as she's still taking antibiotics and you flush it a few times a day and keep it open, you may not need to go back to the vet. I would continue with the Baytril until the wound is healed.

However, you might want to try another antibiotic, or even add one to the Baytril. Check with the vet.
 
As long as she's still taking antibiotics and you flush it a few times a day and keep it open, you may not need to go back to the vet. I would continue with the Baytril until the wound is healed.

However, you might want to try another antibiotic, or even add one to the Baytril. Check with the vet.

I flushed it earlier and when I came back later (just a few hours), she had worked her guinea pig witchmagic and the hole had closed -_-. I'm going to call the vet tomorrow and get a refill of the Baytril and see what she thinks about adding another antibiotic. I'm afraid to try to open the wound back up as she doesn't want me near her face anymore and Ii don't know the best way to go about reopening it. If it were anywhere else other than her face, you better believe I'd have that scab off in a heartbeat.
 
I usually hold a warm wet washcloth to the area, then gently wipe at the scab.

The vet may have to open up the area more so it won't heal up so quickly. My vet sometimes "marsupializes" the incision--stitching it open.
 
That's what I figure would reopen it. The thing is though when it was open earlier, the scab was attached to a hunk of tissue and had separated from the sides. I'm not sure that's such a helpful description, but I took pictures earlier if that would help. I will see what my vet says tomorrow morning, I know she will be there, but Saturday are crazy there.
 
Keep us posted!
 
Yes you need to douse it in warm water with a wash cloth and open it up over and over until it heals from the inside out! If you can get a curved syringe it helps to clear out that down into the pocket!

Its a pain in the butt but you just need to do it 2-3 times a day and clean it out really good. NO amount of antibiotics is gonna get rid of it completely without you cleaning it out a lot!
 
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