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alhdvm
alhdvm, Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1855
Experience:  I have 12 years experience in the field of veterinary medicine. I work on all species of animals.
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Veterinary

Sick guinea pig wont eat or drink. Also not moving around

moving around much and not... Show More
moving around much and not using front legs much. Can't afford vet care at this time. My kids are very upset. Please help.

Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Veterinary
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replied 6 years ago.

alhdvm :

Hi there

I'm sorry your guinea pig is sick. How long have you had her?

Customer :

About a year and a half. We have two, but only one is sick

alhdvm :

Have you changed anything recently like the diet? New treats? New type of bedding? Any chance of trauma?

Customer :

I did change bedding. She cut her foot on the regular bedding about 6 months ago so I read online that fleece blanket is good to use so we've been doing that. We wash the blankets 3 to 4 times a week to keep it clean

alhdvm :

I have never heard of using a fleece as bedding. The best bedding to use is Care Fresh. Regardless I don't think that is the problem. Unfortunately, when they get so sick that they are not moving, they usually need aggressive care to try to pull them through. I would highly recommend getting him into a veterinary clinic as soon as possible. They may need to give fluids, vitamin C injections, start giving oral (or syringe-feeding) Critical Care for Herbivores (a powdered food product that works well for pets like guinea pigs, to try to get calories into them). Other medications may be needed depending on what they determine.

I know you can't afford the vet so at home there's not much else you can do other than trying to get food and water into her.

You can try using a syringe or dropper to get water into her. You can also try offering high calorie foods, such as sweetened instant oatmeal, baby food, grits, or cooked eggs.

Here is a good website article that may be helpful to you:

http://www.petplace.com/small-mammals/what-to-do-when-your-pocket-pet-is-sick/page1.aspx

Customer :

So there's nothing we can do. Like I said I can't afford vet care right now. My husband recently passed away and I have been laid off so anything you can recommend would be highly appreciated

alhdvm :

Yes, you can try but I don't want you to get your hopes up that she will make it without veterinary care. Did you see my second post above?

Customer :

I just saw the website you posted haven't gone on it yet. I have been looking online for a while. Most of the things I read said to force feed through a syringe but I'm not sure what and how

alhdvm :

As I said above, you can try force feeding her high calorie foods, such as sweetened instant oatmeal, baby food, grits, or cooked eggs. You put the food in a syringe (you can buy them at feed stores and I think regular drug stores) and then hold the guinea pig wrapped in a towel with only the head sticking out and try to force the end of the syringe in her mouth. You need to do this with water too. I would try to feed 3cc (3ml) every 4 to 6 hours and give 3cc of water every 4 to 6 hours.

If she isn't using her front legs though I'm not sure that feeding and keeping her hydrated is going to "fix" her. The legs may be injured like broken or there may be neurological issues there.

Customer :

I really don't think her legs are broken. I just think she's weak and is scooting. When she moves we will try the feeding and water and I guess see how she is in the morning. We have separated them and put the sick one in a small cage by herself

alhdvm :

Yes, separating them is a good idea. Make sure the sick one is out of any drafty areas so she stays warm. What do you normally feed her?

Customer :

I buy the pellets with the timothy hay and my daughter likes to give them apples and carrots

alhdvm :

That sounds good. Sounds like you take very good care of them. I would change the bedding though. Here is a link about Care Fresh: http://www.carefresh.com/products/

I hope she didn't eat some of the fleece (they do chew on things). If she did, that material can become stuck in the intestinal tract and make them sick.

Customer :

Ok thank you for your help

alhdvm :

You are welcome. I wish you all the best. Just be diligent with the syringe feedings and I hope that helps. There is no medications you can give so don't give anything like aspirin, pepto, etc. They can't take those products.

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