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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 20837
Experience:  General practice veterinary surgeon with extensive experience in a wide range of species.
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My guinea pig ate several inches of string, now she is sick

Customer Question

My guinea pig ate several inches of green string, now she is sick what can I do....
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year 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:

How long ago did she eat the string? What was it made from?

Has she continued to eat for you?

Is she passing stools?

Do you think her belly is tender/sore?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She ate the string maybe 4 days ago...string is sort of like thin yarn..she is eating, bowels are moving she is somewhat better today....she does not want to drink water so I am using a syringe....she is still bloated and stomach is tender..I am assuming she ate the string because it is missing from her straw house that I had tied to the cage....she is still not using her back legs very well....but appears better than last night
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you,

I have to say if she is bloated and tender, then I am quite concerned that we may have at least a partial obstruction if the string was eaten. And I have to say that if she is painful enough to make it obvious for us (since as a prey species they do pretend all is well until they just cannot), then this is likely quite severe and really an indication that we'd want her local vet to assess this and at least start her on cavy safe pain relief.

Otherwise, you can try encouraging (or syringing) fiber rich foods into her. You can offer pureed pumpkin or use a fiber rich critical care diet like Oxbow or Supreme Recovery diet. As well, we could also give her a small daily dose of cat hair ball treatment. Together these can help push the string through if it can be. Otherwise, since we have bloating (and a risk of gut microflora imbalance) you may want to also treat with a guinea pig specific probiotic to try and reduce that.

Finally, since she isn't taking fluids willing, you are right to syringe them. In regards ***** ***** much to give, do make sure you are giving her a daily total of 4.8ml per 100grams of her weight. This can be water but you can also offer or syringe a rehydration formula (ie Lectaid, Resorb) or even Pedialyte.

Overall, I am glad that she is eating and passing stool but this belly discomfort and bloating are very worrisome. Therefore, I would use the above as part of your supportive care but otherwise consider having her seen to make sure this string isn't stuck and needing removal and to make sure we get her discomfort under control for her.

Please take care,

Dr. B.


If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. *Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need, as this is the only way I receive credit for helping you today. Thank you! : )

Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hi Veva,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Kibbles. How is everything going?
Dr. B.