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Anna, Pet Expert/Biologist
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11508
Experience:  40 yrs.: herps, pocket pets, rabbits, poultry, dogs, horses. Biology degree. Vet assistant.
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Anna, I was noticing something strange. some of the Cavy

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I was noticing something strange. some of the Cavy urine that got on the PVC is a dark brown or black. When I see it, the samples are dry, so i do not know if the urine itself is colored. so I am basically wondering why it would be like that.

Have you seen any brown or black urine elsewhere in the cage?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

the urine in the cage goes through the mesh into the litter pans below. So I do not see it fresh except when they miss the pan somehow. and usually it is milky, which is the norm for a cavy as I understand it. There are no solids (like if this was diarrhea) it has a pure liquid splash pattern.

Thank you. Yes, normal urine can be chalky or clear. Young guinea pigs often have an orange or brown tint to their urine. Urine can also dry to a brown or orange tint. This would be normal. Certain vegetables and fruits in the diet can also cause urine to be that color. Black urine, however, would indicate a problem. It is a sign of an aspergillosis infection, which has to be treated with prescription anti-fungal medicine. However, I suspect that what you may be seeing is the result of an interaction of the urine with the surface of the PVC - a corrosion of sorts.

To be sure, place paper towels in the tray where they normally urinate. Don't take them out right away, but wait for the urine to dry. If it dries black, you'll need to see a vet. I suspect that won't happen, but it never hurts to check to be safe.

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