Otis is a black and brown American Guinea pig who I found at Wasatch Animal Rescue in Salt Lake City. He was dropped off at the rescue in December 2003 with his cagemate Andy. They were really sick. Their previous owner didn’t know how to take care of Guinea pigs – they were kept in a very small 9”x12” cage with a wire upper level, a wire ramp and a running wheel. Their little feet would fall through the wire and twist their ankles. They also hated the running wheel… most people don’t know that Guinea pigs aren’t built like hamsters and gerbils and running wheels and balls are bad for their backs. They were also living on cedar bedding, which is toxic to Guinea pigs.
However, the worst part of it was that they were both really sick and their owner hadn’t taken them to a vet. Thank goodness they brought these pigs to Wasatch Animal Rescue. The people at the rescue thought they had deformed feet because with their constant diarrhea it was matted in their toes to make them look like hoofs rather than paws. The pigs were given baths and their feet were scrubbed to reveal cute little (normal) piggy toes!
Otis’ cagemate, Andy, was soooo skinny. His bones protruded and his stomach was sunken in. The nice people at WA Rescue took the boys to a vet and a fecal test showed they had coccidia, a horrible intestinal bug. They were given antibiotics but it was too late to save Andy. He died just a couple days later. However they diligently nursed Otis back to health.
If it weren’t for the wonderful people at WA Rescue, Otis wouldn’t be here today. They gave Otis another chance at life.
Otis has been such a wonderful addition to our family. He lived at my office for several months while he was sick so he wouldn’t infect my other pigs. We celebrated the day the test results showed the coccidia was gone! He was finally able to move home and become immersed in real family life.
Otis is a lover of a pig and gets along well with the other boys. We have lots of nicknames for him, Spotis, Spodes, Flounder, but my favorite is “Spodelicious!”
What a lover of a boy – he adores being held and will actually “melt” into my chest. When lying on the couch with him, this little three-pound pig feels like a 10-pound stone! With every breath he sinks deeper and deeper into my chest to the point where I have to pick him up to move him in order to breathe again. Talk about true relaxation!
Otis is a great little communicator. He will tug when he wants to get down. If I’m holding him in a towel, he'll tug on the towel. If not, he'll tug on my shirt, and if I don’t respond, he’ll inch his way up to my neck and tug on my skin, OUCH!! This boy does NOT want to be ignored again.
I’m so happy he found his way into my life. Thanks again for all you do for so many little critters.
Sunny, Otis’ mommy
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