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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Large Animal Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16181
Experience:  As a veterinarian, I have been educated to treat all animals, big and small.
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I have a show pig that was perfectly fine yesterday and this

Customer Question

I have a show pig that was perfectly fine yesterday and this am , got home this afternoon at 6 and she is struggling to stand seems stuff like an old man .... Never had this issue ?
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Large Animal Veterinary
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
This Showpig has never stressed , walked beautifully , never given us any trouble - got home today and she could barely stand ??
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 10 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your situation, and wanted to help.

Again I do apologize that my colleagues could not aid you sooner. If you would still like assistance, can you tell me:

Any chance of a fall, slip, or injury?

Does she favour any one leg?

Does she have a fever?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
No slip, no fall, no fever
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 10 months ago.

Thank you,

Now as I am sure you can appreciate, joint stiffness and gait abnormalities can be triggered by a range of issues. If she isn't favouring a single leg and there is no risk of trauma, then we would have to be wary of a possible systemic/joint based infection, tick borne infection (depending on your location), muscle based myopathy (which can be related to immune dysfunction), spinal disease (affecting the cervical vertebral region), brain based issues (viral, bacterial, protozoal or inflammatory meningitis), or possible toxicity (hopefully less likely here).

With all this in mind, we do need to tread with care. To start, we'd want to have her on strong pain relief to see if we can resolve her signs. Ideally, we'd want her vet to use a strong injectable option like Meloxicam, Carprofen, Flunixin, or Ketoprofen. If you have any delay in seeing them, since you noted no trauma risk, you could consider a low dose of buffered Aspirin (10mg per kilogram of her weight every 12 hours) given after food. Of course, if you use that, we'd need to keep a close eye on her and stop treatment if she has any stomach upset. Furthermore, even without fever, it'd be reasonable to cover her against bacterial causes for these signs. Ideally, we'd use a broad spectrum antibiotic like Penicillin (especially as it is effective against listeria, which is one possible bacterial species that could cause these signs) which most farm supply and vets carry. That way we can start narrowing causes for her sudden signs.

Of course, if she doesn't respond to broad spectrum treatment, then again we'd want to have her local vet involved. They can perform a neurological examination and pinpoint the source of her signs (brain vs. spine vs. muscle/limb based). Depending on that, they can target testing and treatment to identify which agent is present and get her signs under control. And the quicker we do that, the sooner we can get her back on her feet.

Please take care,

Dr. B.

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Expert:  Dr. B. replied 10 months ago.

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