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Weight Loss Guinea pig losing weight, vet can't find anything

Squiggles

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That's actually normal. When all of my boys had been sick I weighed the same way you are and found the exact same thing. And I was told not to do that because it's really not reflective of anything and it will only serve to drive you crazy with worry. I would weigh, at most, once a day in the morning. Just to have a gauge of how they're doing.
Yeah. I figured it was normal, but the drop just surprised me. If I can get him over 900, I might feel a bit better, even though he was 1200-almost 1300 at one point. I'm hoping the milk thistle will begin to work (it's a week today), and, I know it's not good for them, I do put a sprinkle of crushed oats in his dinner. I don't think he's too thrilled, since I watch him pull the food it's on out and shake it off, lol, but I'm desperate to get him back up.
 

bpatters

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There's no point in weighing your pig after he's eaten. You're weighing an unknown amount of food and an unknown amount of pig.

You'll get the best results by weighing first thing in the morning before feeding breakfast, and keeping track of those weights. Unless he's actually ill, there's no point in weighing more than once a day. And once you've seen a stable weight pattern, you can weigh every few days, maybe once a week.
 

Squiggles

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I've been weighing him in the morning now only. I know. So obsessed with his weight that I do it so much, but I'm so frustrated. One morning he was 777, but he seems to be staying between 780-810. At the vet, he was 820, so I've come to realize my scale is about 40 ounces off, so each time I weigh him, I add the 40.

He had his session B12 acupuncture yesterday along with a cleaning since I saw a small clump in his cage the other night (he was pretty clean) along with a gram stain (came back normal). Now I have a question. Has anyone heard of DMG (Dimethylglycine)? She wants to try to start him on that next time, but I'm not too sure, so I figured I'd ask if anyone here has heard or even had a trial with that? He's still getting milk thistle 0.05 two times a day.
 

Guinea Pig Papa

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I realized the same thing, the vets scale always seemed to be a little off from mine. I stayed with the readings from mine because it's the one that was always used.

So if I'm reading correctly, his weight is staying stable? Within 30 grams or so?

I've never heard of Dimethylglycine so I can't comment on that. And if his weight IS staying stable with whatever you're doing and every test is coming back negative, keep doing what you're doing.
 

Squiggles

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I realized the same thing, the vets scale always seemed to be a little off from mine. I stayed with the readings from mine because it's the one that was always used.

So if I'm reading correctly, his weight is staying stable? Within 30 grams or so?

I've never heard of Dimethylglycine so I can't comment on that. And if his weight IS staying stable with whatever you're doing and every test is coming back negative, keep doing what you're doing.
Yes, other than that 777 scare, he seems to not be going under 780, which I'm thankful for. Aside from the weight loss, at times he seems a bit tired and sad looking, even though he's still very active. His stool has been really tiny, too, but it switches from that to normal, but I have noticed a lot of very small ones. She also said she can't rule out underlying cancer entirely, but how many more tests to see inside this little guy? I've done everything in the book. He's been pretty stable today. They were both on harrison's fauna flora, but when he started the milk thistle, I had stopped it, incase it caused a conflict, but because of the clump the other day, she wanted him back on it, so he went back on a sprinkle tonight.

I haven't either. She's a rabbit owner, so she's more with them, but she said they use DMG in them. It's apparently an immune booster. I know guinea pigs and rabbits have similar diseases, but I have never seen anyone mention it for a guinea pig, so I'll wait to see if anyone has had any experience with it.
 

Squiggles

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No longer in the 800-780 range, but now in the 750s. I'm going to call the vet today and next time he goes in for his session, I might try the DMG. I did some research and thankfully it's not a drug, but more of a supplement.
 

Squiggles

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An update, and it's not good. I last weighed him a week or so ago and he was dropping rapidly. Last I saw was 749, so I stopped weighing him until he went to the vet today. She said it's the most she's seen him drop. He was 725, but that's not the worse. There's now a mass that has appeared in his neck. One that wasn't there with any of his vet checks. He also started making a noise like a monkey, so I thought he had something caught in his throat, but now that she found the mass, it's starting to appear to be thyroid. She did another full body ultra sound and they're sending it out to see if it's cancer or whatnot. He also redid the T4 to see for sure if the thyroid is going to read now.


She's so surprised and upset that it took this long to appear, but if he turns out to have cancer and it's going to be a lot of work to remove it, and he's already severely underweight, I don't want to put him through the trauma and would give him the quality of life. I hope it's not, but I'm not looking at a positive outcome. He’s still on the milk thistle, but now he’s also on Metacam. Depending on what the results bring, is what will make me decide about the DMG.
 

Guinea Pig Papa

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I'm sorry to hear the news isn't good. We are all pulling for him, but we also understand what you are faced with. Hoping for the best for him, but also know we are here for you if things don't go well.

Positive energy for you both. Fingers crossed.
 

Squiggles

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The dreaded call came. They believe he has some hyper thryoid on some areas, but she is leaning toward thyroid carcinoma. And the option for that in surgery to remove the mass. I'm worried he might not survive it because he's already way underweight. The other option would be to medicate him for the hyperthyroid, but she doesn't know how he will respond to that. I am waiting for her to send me the notes from our phone conversation so I can write a more detailed reply, but I did ask her to reach out to an oncologist to see what their opinion is. She said it's been a long time since she had a guinea pig owner ask for the request, but if I can help him without making it worse, I want to see what I can do.

I'm so puzzled how this just popped up when I've been taking him for over a year to see what was causing the weight loss.
 

Squiggles

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I think I might take him to my cats' vet. One of them, who has been a vet for over 30 years is an exotic one, but he's impossible to get. I can see him Tuesday they said, so I might ask him what his opinion is on all this.

I think Dr. Dewey herself is unsure, and she did give me someone who can do a second opinion, but I'll just go to my vet.
 

bpatters

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Well, vets who usually treat just dogs and cats get next to no education/training in the care of exotic pets. I wouldn't trust the care of a sickly guinea pig to a cat vet who doesn't regularly treat them.
 

Squiggles

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I agree. I have run into some horrible vets in the past who pretended to know about exotic animals, but he does do exotics and has some of his own. I don't expect anything much to change, but I am curious to know what he thinks. The next exotic vet is in the city, and the experience I had with them in the past was not positive.
 

Squiggles

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Little update. I've been over at guinea lynx since a member there had the same symptoms that I'm having. The exotic vet's advice was surgery on a severely underweight guinea pig and then chemo to clear it out. She didn't think the thyroid medication would work because it was looking too much like cancer.

I took him to my vet, who does exotics as well, but he's a mix of that and cats and dogs, but I figured, why not. He retested T4 and that was it. He said he didn't want me to go through anymore or the little guy, as he calls him. T4 came back negative, but I'm finding there is no accurate reading for this. And he said the only way to tell if the lump was indeed cancerous was to do a biopsy. He said there was no accurate way to tell unless that was done, but he refused to do the surgery due to his weight. And I agreed.

Long story short, he fell to 684, and is now between 653-672. His eating is insane, and he's always hungry, and has now been on tapozole (banana flavor, they didn't have carrot) for a week today. I hope it works, but seeing how he's still here and still functioning, I'm going to take it as a plus.

He started to wheek again today, which I haven't heard since the lump appeared. I took that as a good sign. He's currently in a playpen to separate him from his 1300 brother, who can be a bit rough, but I do put them back together during the day to make sure they're not apart all the time.

(Hope photo isn't too large, feel free to edit)

1663599968472
 

TinyPiggy

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Grazing is no problem. There's four sections with hay in their cage, and the other doesn't bother him. It's when it's time for veggies that he comes to bug him.

It's beginning to show signs it's more GI than anything. I weighed him before he ate last night, he was 794, then after he ate a meal of some lettuce, peppers, half a corn on the cob, and some peaches, he was 850. During the night, he dropped to 816, and then this morning before pellet feeding, he was 797. I have made note to tell her all this when he has his appointment this Friday.
Wishing you luck!
 

Squiggles

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Just a small update. He's been on the tapozole for almost two months, he's still eating insanely. I've also noticed he has increased his hay intake because he was very iffy about that in the beginning and he is now between 750 and the 760s. He still makes that noise because of the lump, but he also has begun to wheek and purr again and it's becoming louder and louder each day.

Off topic, because he's been back and forth with foods. There was a website, because everyone seems to have their own facts on guinea pigs lately, that said green peppers are not really good for them. Has anybody ever heard anything on that? I give then mostly yellow because they're not a fan of green, but I do give them green every now and then. I go by our chart that's on here.
 

Guinea Pig Papa

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Peppers of any colour are actually the same. The colours just depend on how ripened the pepper is. That said, different colours contain different levels of sugar, and different levels of vitamin C. Green peppers have the lowest amount of sugar, and also have the lowest level of vitamin C. Yellow peppers have the highest amount of vitamin C, followed by orange, red, then green.

I feed my pigs yellow, orange and red. I do feed green but generally stick to the other colours because of the vitamin C content, not because green peppers are bad.
 
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Squiggles

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Peppers of any colour are actually the same. The colours just depend on how ripened the pepper is. That said, different colours contain different levels of sugar, and different levels of vitamin C. Green peppers have the lowest amount of sugar, and also have the lowest level of vitamin C. Yellow peppers have the highest amount of vitamin C, followed by orange, red, then green.

I feed my pigs yellow, orange and red. I do feed green but generally stick to the other colours because of the vitamin C content, not because green peppers are bad.


Thanks! I didn't know that about the yellow. I know red was limited to twice or three times a week because of the sugar, but I didn't know yellow had the highest vitamin C. So is that ok to give every day? I give them a slice each night with their other vegetables, but of course people also say you shouldn't do that either. 🤷‍♀️
 

Guinea Pig Papa

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My boys get 1/8 of a pepper every morning. I cut a quarter out from top to bottom and the split it. One for each pig
 

omgitspiggies

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Long time, no post. My pig just turned four in May, and has been losing weight constantly. He used to be a big pig at about 1300grams, but now he's around 700. I have taken him repeatedly to the vet (it is a cavy savy one, Dr. Dewey at Veterinary Center for Birds & Exotics) and he has been through every test from bloodwork, to ultrasounds to check for cancers or tumors, to echocardiograms, and he has no issues other than slight regurgitation of the heart, but they did not recommend any medication.

I am at a loss of what to do. I give him critical care with his breakfast every morning, and do have to separate him and his brother during feeding time since the other is a bully with food (his weight is no problem, in fact, he has become heavier when he was the smaller of the two). Dr. Dewey feels it’s just him aging, but the dropping is really worrying me. Is there anything else I can do to put weight on him? Thanks in advance.
Sounds like u lov your pet a loooot did you also have his teeth looked at?
 

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