I took him and Snickers to the vet today for checkups. Snickers is doing well, except for a bit of arthritis in his front left leg, but he's already on glucosamine for it,so that was no big deal.
Diablo, on the other hand, has quite a few problems. The most obvious problem is his head tilt, but the vet says it's probably from an old bacterial infection. He does want me to make sure he is eating solid foods, to make sure it's not a tooth problem. He is now munching away on hay, and ate pellets when I offered them, so that doesn't seem to be the problem. The vet also found some bites on his skin, so he's now separated, poor guy.
He also got a bite on his eye, which is now a corneal ulcer, so he's on some AB eye drops for that.
He is als really skinny-only 750G. The vet gave me some Critical Care, so I am handfeeding him to try to get his weight up. Since he didn't previously get many veggies, he is also getting 0.4 mL of vitamin C liquid a day.
I am thinking that to plump him up a bit, I will feed him unlimited pellets (he is currently around 4 years old) and extra veggies. Is this a good idea?
Anyway, one he is fattened up and healthier, I will try to reintroduce them. This time I'll try harder to make it work. I'll clean out the cag and put in new coroplast, and I will do a buddy bath. Of course, this probably won't be happening for another few months.
Diablo is doing well and has hit the 2 pound mark. He's going to the vet tommorow for a follow up on tooth problems, his eye, and how oddly he walks. He's eating really well and runs like crazy during floor time, so I am sure he will do really well in the long run. I'm also picking up some Coroplast tommorow, and I will build him a nice 2X3. I'm planning to put it on top of the main cage, on the same level as the hayloft, but set 3/4 of a cube to the right, so that the hayloft is still accessible. That way, he'll be able to see and interact with the other pigs. If that winds up being too difficult, we'll have the C&C on the table he's on now.
The other pigs are just fine. Hannah is her cranky old self, Elsie is still neurotic and cowlike, and Snicker still looovvees his womenses!
By the way, if anybody wants to see Diablo's medical thread, it is here.
By the way, he is doing really well as far as health is concerned. He is nice and chubby now. He is on Baytril for an ear infection, and should be totally fine after that!
The exciting new change is a mix-up of the herds! Yesterday I sectioned off most of the lowest level of the cage, and moved Diablo in there. At first there was a lot of chattering and rumblestrutting, but it calmed down overnight. This afternoon I tried moving Elsie in with Diablo. They have been getting along great, not a single chatter or bite! *knock on wood* Eventually, I would like to be able to combine them all into one big herd, but I'm not going to get my hopes up.
Here's the new happy couple.
Diablo is thrilled with the new arrangements
While Elsie merely tolerates them.
Snickers and Hannah have spent the day sulking
And occasionally descending the ramp to glare and chatter.
When I returned home from watching Pirates for the second time, I went downstairs to the computer for my beloved GL. I had been watching "Pig TV" before I left, so the computer chair was facing the pig cage. I pulled the chair towards the computer, and what do I find? A little crooked white face staring at me from under the cage.
Yes, Diablo had jumped out of the cage! So, I gasped and picked him up and made sure he hadn't hurt himself. He was fine, so I put him back in the cage. Just then, I see Snickers running past, in Diablo's part of the cage! As far as I can tell, Snickers jumped from the ramp into Diablo's cage, and chased him around. Diablo has a tendency to run into walls, so he probably did just that and managed to fall out.
The cage has been re-enforced, and everything should be OK now.
Diablo passed away in my arms in the early hours of December 23rd, 2007. He had been losing motor control in the days prior to his death, due to the neurological problems caused by his previous ear infection. The night of his death, I found him lying on his side, unable to get up. I knew it was his time to go, so I held him for a few hours until he had passed.
Hannah developed a tumor in her dewlap in the summer of 2008. It grew rapidly larger, and Dr. Crum believed it was inoperable. We tried draining fluids from the tumor, but it filled back up rapidly. In the middle of August, she lost interest in food and became lethargic. I made the decision to have her put down, but she passed away of her own accord before I could make the appointment, on August 20th, 2008.
Snickers and Elsie continue to do wonderfully. Snickers has developed bladder stones, but they rarely bother him, so for now we are just leaving them be.
In September, I decided to start fostering for MGPR. My first foster was Scooter, a golden agouti & white silkie. He came to the rescue from a good Samaritan who had found him running around in her backyard and brought him to us. He was severely underweight and had respiratory problems, but by January, he was healthy enough to be adopted, and went to his new forever home. I've heard that his new mommy has now developed a liking for longhairs, and is interested in adopting another from the rescue!
After Scooter's adoption, the next few fosters came and went in rapid succession: Bella, Horus, Porthos, and D'Artagnon.
But one foster pig on the website really caught my eye.
His name was Mack, and he was deaf. He was up for adoption with his brother, Duff.
I immediately knew that I wanted to take them home for good.
When the foster pig I had at the time got adopted, I immediately brought home Mack and Duff, and got to enjoy my two most-anticipated fosters. They were both fantastic cuddlers, and some of the sweetest pigs around. Although I have not managed to convince my parents to adopt them, I'm enjoying their company while they stay with me.
When I heard that MGPR was asked to take 20 pigs from the DC shelter or they would be put to sleep, I knew I had to help. I volunteered to take a pair, and pulled Diablo's old 2X3 out of the attic. I soon brought home Faline and Bambi, a mother-daughter pair named in honor of the doe I saw die after being hit by a car on the way home from picking them up, and her two orphaned fawns.