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URI/Upper Respiratory Infection How do I know if my guinea pig is actually getting better?

theclueboys

Member
Cavy Slave
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
4
About two months ago we lost Professor Plum to a URI. Then last weekend we noticed that we could now hear Colonel Mustart breathing and he was sneezy and had a snotty nose so we took him to the vet and was given Baytril to put in his water as he has been eating and drinking normally. He also was given a shot of the antibiotic at the vet's office. It originally seemed as if Colonel Mustard was doing a lot better, but I have started to notice the breathing noises again from time to time and he is still sneezing. While he has two more days of the treatment, I was just wondering how I know if he is really getting better? He is still eating and drinking and can be somewhat fiesty--i.e. flipping his house for attention, so I don't believe he is getting worse, but I am concerned that he isn't getting better.
 
First, meds should never go in the water. Most pigs wont drink an entire bottle while the meds are fresh, therefore not getting all they need.

That would be my first concern. If he isnt getting what he really needs, he wont get better. Giving Baytril orally is the best option :)
 
Is it safe then to give my guinea pig his final two dosages of the medicine orally? The doctor had given us pre-filled syringes with .5mL in each.
 
Yes, orally is best. If she reccomended .5 mL 2x a day, then do that :)
 
Did the vet tell you to put the meds in his drinking bottle? If he hasn't has the full dose each day, I'd contact the vet to get him on another round of antibiotics. Baytril is tough on their digestive tract, so I'd also give a probiotic while he's on it so he doesn't stop eating or develop bloat. I hope he's feeling better soon.
 
The vet had told us to put the medicine in the water. I think we really have the wrong size syringe to properly get the medicine into our boy. We tried with his dosage today and missed most of it. Fortunately we found a different small animal vet and made an appointment for this afternoon. I definitely think the Baytril is helping though because he has seemed a lot more energetic and less wheezy since we got a very little bit in him this morning. We had originally taken him to an emergency vet that will see exotic animals, but doesn't specialize in them, so hopefully today we can get the right amount of medicine and the proper means to get it to Colonel Mustard.
 
The vet had told us to put the medicine in the water. I think we really have the wrong size syringe to properly get the medicine into our boy. We tried with his dosage today and missed most of it. Fortunately we found a different small animal vet and made an appointment for this afternoon. I definitely think the Baytril is helping though because he has seemed a lot more energetic and less wheezy since we got a very little bit in him this morning. We had originally taken him to an emergency vet that will see exotic animals, but doesn't specialize in them, so hopefully today we can get the right amount of medicine and the proper means to get it to Colonel Mustard.

I'd question the vet's expertise in treating exotics if he told you to put the meds in the water. Do you have a pharmacy near you like Walgreens? You can ask them for a 1 ML syringe which is very easy to use to dose and administer meds. If you tell them it's for a guinea pig, they'll probably give it to you for free. They always do for me. I mark the line for the dose with a marker so it's easy to see where to fill the syringe. The syringe is as slim or slimmer than a pencil. Hold him firmly under your left arm or wrap him in a blanket. Put the tip of the syringe between his gum and molar and slowly squeeze it in while he chews or swallows. You don't want to squeeze it down his throat because he could aspirate it. It's hard to do at first but once you get the hang of it, it's easy. Good luck at your appt today. Keep us updated on how he's doing.
 
Thank you everyone for the help. Our new vet was very helpful (and much cheaper). He was not happy with the advice of the original doctor though he was happy with the medicine that he gave our guinea pig. He figured out a better dosage, checked for other problems that could be underlying the breathing issue, told us to get the medicine out of the water, and gave us a much smaller syringe. He also said that while nothing is a guarentee it is obvious our little dude has a lot of fight and is looking pretty good. If things aren't better by Monday he wants us to come back for x-rays.
 
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