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Lump Nikki has a lump

Nikkipig

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Nikki (4.5 year old female) has what feels like a pea-sized lump on her back. It's completely covered by fur so it's hard for me to see. She was making sounds of distress when I attempted to feel it so I left it alone. From the few seconds I was touching it, I made out that it was sort of firm and didn't move around. I took the best pictures I could, but it was really hard to hold the fur out of the way. It feels like a ball, but in the pictures it looks like it has something on the top of it.
TC0UWrb
QuY8JZW
 

bpatters

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That looks like a good possibility, or maybe a sebaceous cyst -- it's hard to tell with all the hair. Neither is serious.
 

Nikkipig

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That looks like a good possibility, or maybe a sebaceous cyst -- it's hard to tell with all the hair. Neither is serious.

Thank you.

Small update: I found 3 more lumps on her back, all just a tad smaller than the first one.
 

Nikkipig

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Nikki had her vet appointment this morning. The lumps were abscesses. The vet shaved the fur around the biggest one and popped it with a needle, then drained the pus from it. He said that he wasn't going to give her antibiotics because the abscesses were thick so they probably wouldn't help. As the rest of the lumps get bigger, I'm supposed to pop and drain them myself at home and put peroxide on them. Poor Nikki was shrieking through the entire appointment (she was scared). The abscesses aren't anything serious, though, and he said she looks really healthy for her age.
 

bpatters

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Ok. Get another vet. Those abscesses will never heal by just being popped, and peroxide hasn't been used by reputable medical people, including vets, in years. Wiping the outside of a pig's skin with peroxide to treat an abscess under the skin is useless.

The abscesses should be lanced and drained, and you should have to flush them daily to get all the pus out and to let them heal from the inside out. The larger ones should have drains put in.

The only thing that vet was right about is that antibiotics probably will not help because they'll never get to the inside of the abscess. If the abscess ruptures internally, which they can do, then the pig does need antibiotics.
 

Nikkipig

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Ugh. Okay. I thought I finally found a good vet, and had to take a three hour round trip to get there. Neither of my local (within 20 mins) exotic vets are any good with guinea pigs, and using Guinea Linx that was the closest supposedly "reputable" vet I could find. I guess I'll have to keep searching. Living in a small town is no fun.
 

Nikkipig

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I took her to another vet and he says they're cysts. He decided not to do anything because the remaining lumps are so small/nothing serious. You can hardly even find them.
 

foggycreekcavy

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This sounds better. By your description I figured they were cysts. Usually they stay small and cause no problems, but occasionally will grow large enough to need to be removed or cleaned out.

I'm sorry you wasted money on that first vet. I hate it when that happens.
 

Nikkipig

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The first vet was actually a much farther drive than this one, and a bit more expensive, too. This vet was kind of surprised at how the first one went about things. At least now I know she'll be fine and don't have to worry anymore.
 

Nikkipig

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Will someone please change the name of this thread to "Nikki's Medical Thread" (since there's supposed to be one thread per pig)?

Nikki's acting unusual tonight. I was out of the house all day today, and expected to come home to hungry pigs. The pellet dish was only half empty (it's usually completely gone) and the hay hadn't been touched much at all. I tried to pick up Nikki expecting her to take off running (she's very skittish), but she felt almost limp and made no attempt to resist my hands. I checked her out and she had no nose discharge, and although her eyes looked really moist, there was no discharge. When I put her back in the cage, she purred and scurried over to take a drink, but she wasn't wheeking for food even though it was her dinner time. When I gave the pigs their veggies, Nikki finally wheeked a little bit and ate, but she ate a little less than usual. The thing that bothers me is her stool. It has the shape of regular poop, but it's really wet and makes a mess if they step in it. The fleece was filthy where they sleep and I had to clean the cage earlier than usual. Every once in a while, she puffs up and squeaks in pain. She's wandering around the cage "talking" to Callie and eating hay now, and is acting normal again, but every once in a while she freezes and it looks like there's something wrong with her. I think she may be trying to hide that she's in pain.

Nothing about her diet has changed recently. She gets timothy hay, Oxbow pellets, and a cup of veggies a day (mostly just lettuce, green bell pepper and a baby carrot). Although, I've been putting empty toilet paper rolls in the cage because she likes to chew on them. They don't look like they have glue on them, and if I see any on there, I don't give them to her. I've been doing it for a while, but is it possible it's just now causing her problems? There's none in the cage right now in case that's what the problem is. Should I take her to the vet ASAP or wait to see if she gets better without the TP rolls?
 

bpatters

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Vet. ASAP.

If she's not eating, hand feed her.

But keep the cage clean. One of the prime causes of bladder infections in guinea pigs, especially sows, is a dirty cage.
 

sallyvh

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I would take her in to the vet.

If she has a blockage or something from eating a toilet paper roll waiting won't do her any good.

With the puffing up and pain squeaking, does it look like she's hunching? If she's squeaking, hunching and puffing up I would think it may be bladder stone/UTI related.

Keep us updated!
 

Nikkipig

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Vet. ASAP.

If she's not eating, hand feed her.

But keep the cage clean. One of the prime causes of bladder infections in guinea pigs, especially sows, is a dirty cage.
I have fleece liners, so I spot clean twice a day, flip the fleece to the clean side after 3 days and put in a new liner 3 days after that. It was so dirty because every time she poops, it's messy and it sticks to the fleece. I might have to put smaller pieces of fleece or towels where they sleep and change them often to keep it clean.

She's eating hay now, and she's taken drinks of water. I've been sitting by the cage keeping an eye on her.

I'll call the vet and see when they can get me in. Thank you.
 

Nikkipig

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I would take her in to the vet.

If she has a blockage or something from eating a toilet paper roll waiting won't do her any good.

With the puffing up and pain squeaking, does it look like she's hunching? If she's squeaking, hunching and puffing up I would think it may be bladder stone/UTI related.

Keep us updated!
Not sure if she was hunching (she's getting bigger with age and with her fur puffed up she just looks like a big ball of fur), but she did drag her butt on the ground once, and the freezing in place/puffing up/squeaking seems to happen simultaneously.

Her urine did suddenly turn white a couple of days ago and leave marks on the fleece, so I switched her to red and green leaf lettuce from romaine. The color is getting clearer again and the white spots went away, so I didn't think much of it at the time. That could be it.

Thank you!
 

bpatters

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She probably has a bladder stone or a bladder infection. She needs to see a vet. Don't wait around on this.
 

Nikkipig

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She probably has a bladder stone or a bladder infection. She needs to see a vet. Don't wait around on this.
I will call the vet. I checked on their website and I can call out of hours for emergencies to get in ASAP.

I'll post an update with how it goes.
 

Nikkipig

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I forgot to update, but I will now.

I took her to the vet in February when Nikki was having problems, and the vet I took her to then said she had digestive issues. She appeared to recover completely with the use of a probiotic (no more diarrhea or painful urinating/bowel movements, no weight loss or lack of appetite, etc).

All was "fine" until yesterday when she started bleeding vaginally and squeaking in pain and a +3 hour round trip later I rushed her to a much better vet. Turns out she has a bladder stone and will be having it surgically removed at our next appointment (until then she has pain meds and anti-inflammatory meds; the bleeding stopped as well). I am very impressed by this vet, much more so than any of the other exotic vets I've been to. I am grateful to have found him and that Nikki is in good hands now. I am hoping she recovers well.
 

jazznut92

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Aww good luck on her surgery and hope she gets better soon!


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DroidGuineaPig

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Me too!

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