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I have a guinea pig who’s close to two years old. He had an…

Hello, I have a...

Hello, I have a guinea pig who’s close to two years old. He had an infection under his chin and was treated about a month ago and made what seemed to be a full recovery. He looked normal earlier today but has just gone limp and is alive but not responding to anything, just limp.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. Have you looked to see if there is a wound on their foot?

No wound

Veterinarian's Assistant: What is the guinea pig's name?

Teddy

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Teddy?

He has a bit of brownish, smelly discharge under his chin.

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Answered in 3 minutes by:
1/31/2018
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18,403
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Verified

Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
The website did not say this was a ‘dog Vetrinarian.’ I only say that when the website sent me an email. My question is about a guinea pig. Should I cancel this request?

Although the question was submitted under dog veterinarian I am well acquainted with the medical needs of dogs, cats, and small pocket pets like guinea pigs, hamsters, gerbils and bunnies.

I'm very sorry to hear about your fellow Teddy's collapse tonight and brownish smelly discharge under his chin.

It is possible that when he collapsed his gastroesophageal sphincter relaxed, and his stomach contents refluxed up and are on his chin. The other concern with reflux is aspiration pneumonia.

How is he breathing? Is he breathing rapidly, irregularly or is he breathing with his abdominal muscles?

What does his gum color look like (gray, white, blue or a nice pink color)?

Has he been eating well?

Drinking normally?

Losing weight?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Hello Dr., thank you so much for your reply. Teddy is breathing normally with sharp gasps every so often. The smell under his chin is the same as it was the first time he had an infection. He was treated with antibiotics and seemed to be better. My trouble is that there are no Veterinary places open near me who can see a guinea pig right now. I’m afraid he won’t make it through the night to see his regular doctor. I have him on a heating pad and I’m giving him water with a syringe. Is there anything else I can do for him?

Is it possible that he ingested something toxic?

Is he a fellow that chews on and ingests things/foreign material?

Given his collapse and unresponsiveness he really needs an emergency clinic, but I see your dilemma with no options available.

His respiratory pattern is concerning.

Keep him quiet and on the heating pad, but make sure it doesn't get more than warm to the touch.

I would rub karo syrup (or pancake syrup) on his gums for a quick source of energy. Sugar/glucose is well absorbed across the gums.

Be careful trying to force liquids orally. With his unresponsive behavior I am worried he will aspirate liquids.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I will give I’m some syrup on his gums, thank you. I will also watch the heat and I’ll stop forcing water, only drops around his gums. Thank you so much. I’m in quite a dilemma. I called all across our county and the next one over to no avail.

Thank you for the pictures.

He's definitely refluxed water and likely liquid stomach contents.

He looks thin.

It looks like he is not blinking, so if you have artificial tears (or sterile saline, like contact users use) then a drop or two on each eye every hour until he is seen to keep his eyes lubricated is best.

Try to put his body on a gentle incline (head up the highest) to try to reduce any more passive reflux.

Keep him warm and quiet, you can rub/apply a couple drops of karo syrup every hour or so.

You can moisten a gauze square too and keep his gums moist that way.

The have him examined in the morning by his usual veterinarian.

He's in tough shape, but you are doing he best you can for him support-wise.

If the emergency clinics aren't comfortable seeing guinea pigs then it's best to wait.

I would want him on fluids, but they can get that started in the morning.

Do you have any questions for me?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Forgot to answer your question. I did not see him get into anything and ingest Anthony toxic. We have his area very secured. We thought his original injury or abcess could have been from hay but there’s no way to know for sure. -Your email just came in as I was writing you. Thank you so, so much for all of this information. I really appreciate it. I will follow everything you have said. You are right, he is not blinking so I will give him some drops. He is very thin. When his first infection started, he dropped so much weight but it came back when he was on antibiotics. He has suddenly lost the weight again. One last weird question. I saw onna survival show that if someone can’t drink water or if the water is bad, that a person can be hydrated and saved with an enima. Is that true for guinea pigs too? I have a tiny eye dropper. I’m just desperate to get him hydrated.

This may be secondary to sepsis from a tooth root abscess or a migrating piece of plant material. The inability to chew properly could affect his ability to properly digest and absorb food nutrients, and of course the demands of a severe infection would burn a tremendous amount of calories.

I understand your wish to hydrate him but I would be hesitant to give him anything rectally, as it could drop his core body temperature, act like an enema and lead to diarrhea, which would further dehydrate him, and it is very easy to traumatize delicate rectal tissue.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Hello Dr. Teddy just now passed away. Thank you for your help and kindness. At least I had someone to talk with in my time of need. Sincerely, Leah

I am so very sorry. My deepest condolences on your loss. You did your best for him, and I doubt he suffered as it sounds like he was mentally unaware at the end. I'm sure that was hard for you to see, but truly a gift for him. Take care, Dr. Kara.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Thank you so much Dr. Kara. I truly appreciate your kind words.
Sincerely, Leah

You are very welcome.

Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18,403
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Verified
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Satisfied Customers: 18,403
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