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Eyes/Non-crusty Blind Baby Guinea Pig

Gigabyte

Well-known Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Nov 29, 2011
Messages
248
Today I learned Rodney the baby pig (4-5 months) is blind. I wondered why he seemed a little off. The vet told me some basics to help him, but I wonder what else I can do for him to make him comfy?
He seems okay and nibbles and pokes his nose around to make his way around. He found the hay rack too difficult, so I took it down and gave him a pile of hay. Sometimes he can't find his way around.

Does anyone think a cage mate in a couple months would help? My vet recommended neutering the cage mate or Rodney and that she has done many successful neuters. They are only $100 to neuter the pig! It includes everything else needed like pain meds.

Any suggestions? The hay on the floor of the cage is getting a little messy with the whole fleece deal.
 
Unless you cage him with a female, I wouldn't neuter him. Since he's a special needs pig, you might have problems with another guinea pig picking on him. I'd suggest you find another special needs pig like a senior male or one with head tilt that wouldn't compete with him.
 
I think the main thing to do with blind guinea pigs is to keep their cage furniture the same and not move things around. That way they get used to where everything is, and can find it by smell. Guinea pigs have pretty poor eyesight anyway, so it's not their major sense in terms of navigation.

The user MildredM, over at Guinea Lynx, has two sighted guinea pigs and a blind one living together. But I don't know whether her experience would be of much help to you, because her blind one is a lethal and requires hand feeding, so she's not competing with the other two for food.

You might try putting the hay in a paper sack with the end cut out. That should keep it pretty well corralled, but accessible to Rodney.

Sorry to hear that the little guy is blind. Did the vet have any ideas as to why?
 
@bpatters
The vet says because of either genetics or malnutrition to the mom or him. His eyes have no light response and he's a little timid.
Rodney was rescued from people who had him living in a dog crate with no water, the worst food possible, no veggies, and a kid who wasn't nice to him. So Rodney is pretty tiny. The vet said he is surprisingly well and that she thinks he will lead a full life. I'm thinking of giving him my old white noise machine that plays nice forest sounds. I'm sure sound must be his whole world, apart from scent.

Actually good news: When I go to vet tech school, my vet would be glad to have me on as an intern. Sorry, had to say how happy I was about it! :D
 
Our blind boar, Picckalo, has a hay pouch. It's a fleece bag-ish sort of thing with three large triangles cut out of the bottom, where he can eat hay. We have the opening so that he would approach it more at eye level rather than stretching up any like the other pigs do. He still prefers to eat the hay that comes out on the floor, though. We comb through the hay and make sure there aren't any heavy stems coming down so he doesn't accidentally poke himself.

We sometimes give him hay in a paper bag which he likes, but it is more of a toy for him in a way. He eats the hay but likes to pop around in the bag.

He eats his pellets and veg just fine. We do pierce any fruit or small veggies that we give him so that they give off scent better since he can't see what we are giving him. Of course it's not necessary with cilantro or pepper or such.

Picckalo is learning to romp around and talk. He likes to cuddle more than the other pigs, but based on what @bpatters had mentioned in another thread, we're starting to think he may be a bit hard of hearing.

We're looking for a friend for him but it's going slowly. He was chewed up by other pigs, based on his ears and other scars, so we want him to have a girlfriend that is very patient and laid back. He can't see any of the visual cues of dominant behavior so that is a challenge for him.
 
And also @Gigabyte, thank you (times three!) for taking Rodney into your home. I'd really like to learn any suggestions you have based on you getting to know him and what makes him happy. There aren't any blind pigs in my immediate circle of piggy friends (outside of a lethal pig).
 
I don't know about anybody else but I think I love Rodney more because he's blind but I'm a sucker for special needs animals. I had a blind kitten once and she was the sweetest little thing.
 
@Wildcavy - Thanks. Rodney sure is a sweety. I got him off Craigslist because he was free and free = snake food most of the time. He gave the vet some nips, but since he's been home today, he's been sweet and, dare I say, apologetic? :D
I have had several special needs and single boars over a good...yesh...maybe 14 years? I'm going to try the hay in a bag idea, he loves sounds quite a bit. He sits with my boyfriend and listens to him play games and 'looks' for the sound. Otherwise, Rodney is a quiet little guy. He shows no outward signs of blindness besides being a tiny bit skittish.

My vet did look at my previous special needs pig's report, Gigabyte (2010- 1/23/2012) and she agreed that I did everything (professional to student) and that the pain GB was in was too much for him. But Rodney will live a normal life, aside from blindness. I'm going to cancel plans to make a loft. It sounds like a bad idea now.

@kittymalone - Thanks, he is very special to me. His blindness makes him even more dear. <3 I will try to get pictures of the little guy soon! He is quite the looker. For now, I have one picture.

[GuineaPigCages.com] Blind Baby Guinea Pig
 
He is so cute! and I am so happy he has a good home with you!!
 
I just had to comment and say that he is the cutest little guy ever! How adorable! :)
 
Last edited:
@JadeRenee and @SpicyPiggies
He is pretty cute! The hair on his butt on each check is puffed out...we call them subwoofers. He's got quite the personality, he started wheeking today - but quietly. He loves to look up at me when I fill his food bowl like "Is that ALL ya got?!". Hehehe. The vet put him on a limited pellet diet because that's what she does with her pigs. Rodney is so cute it's hard to say no when he asks for veggies.
But otherwise, I am overjoyed to have him. Special needs pets remind you of how special little things are in life.
 
I don't know if Rodney will do it, but one of the things that Picckalo does that cracks us up is that he uses his nose for everything, not just sniffing. So in addition to aggressively snuffling the camera or anything you put close to him, he will use his head to lift stuff -- like your chin if he wants to sit under your chin (picture a 1.25 kg boar sitting under your chin), putting his head under your hand if he wants you to do something, using his head to plow food and hay, and so forth. The others use their hands/paws more. We thought it could be the partial paralysis but sometimes I think he figures, well, I've sniffed this, may as well use my head to move it now that I've got it here anyway.
 
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