*URGENT* Passing blood...squeaking

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Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 9:22 pm

More good thoughts for Zachary. I'm glad the subcue went well!

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Post   » Fri Dec 21, 2007 9:49 pm

Thanks, tracis. I'm down to only a few of the 25-gauge winged sets, so I called the vet and they said they had 1 left. That should give me enough to get through the holidays.

Pax, I'm so sorry about Kirby. It's interesting that you mention massage...my husband was attempting to handfeed Zachary tonight, and somehow managed to get Zach on his back and in the most awkward position. I was just about to fuss at him for stretching Zachary in all directions, when we noticed that he was urinating and not hunching or crying very much at all! I don't know if it was a coicidence, but I was wondering if maybe the stretching and manuevering somehow helped. ?

Just a little while ago, though, he was back to hunching and crying. :(

He's getting approximately .05 cc's of Metacam; based on his weight (just over 1 kilo), he should only be getting .03, but the lower dose didn't seem to be doing much.

How much is Kirby getting?

The other thing worrying me, is his poops. He has been on Bactrim just over a week, and his poops are now tiny and mis-shaped. He's also losing his appetite. I'm going to drop the Bactrim, I think, in the hopes that it gets his gut back to semi-normal (it was small poops and gas that started this whole thing...still not sure how that fits with having stones).

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I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 5:42 am

Kirbs gets .15 2x's a day. Doesn't seem to do much good. We need piggie percocet.

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I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 12:06 pm

Somewhere on Gilbert and Sully's thread I'm sure that KState said the pigs could have a whole cc of Metacam. There was some discussion about it, but I know at least one of these pigs had a dose at least close to this.

In a situation so drastic I believe I'd be inclined to discuss this dose with my vet.

I ordered my butterfly sets from www.goldenhourmed.com (I think). You don't need a prescription for these.

Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 12:34 pm

According to TWP, Gilbert was receiving a dose of 1.3 ml of Metacam.


If you scroll down a little bit, you can read what her KState vet said.

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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 2:34 pm

Just checking in on Zachary today. Seeing how the little guy is doing.

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Supporter in '07

Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 2:37 pm

I sure hope that he is doing much better today. Unfortunately we aren't getting anywhere with our sick piggy.

Sending good thoughts out to all the little furries that don't feel well. Please get better so the holidays can be happy!

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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 4:55 pm

He's about the same today. His poops were very tiny and loose this morning so I give him some poop soup (compliments of Henry), Bene-bac and a small dose of Bio-Sponge. My vet called me back and said to stop the Bactrim and that I could increase the Metcam to .04cc. I still don't think that's going to do much, unless I give it twice a day. I'm really inclined to do that (she left me a message; I wasn't able to speak with her directly).

Somechick -- what is the name of that muscle relaxant you mentioned that your vet gave you for Nug? It's on my email at work, and I wanted to ask folks here what they think of me asking Dr. M about either an anti-spasmodic or a muscle relaxant (not sure how they differ-?). Noticed that when he was on the sofa with me earlier, and I was giving a deep massage on his sides, he urinated without any crying or hunching. Put him back in a cage a little while later, and he is hunching and crying again. I can tell that when he does that, his sides are really, really taut. He is really tensing up those muscles to eliminate.

Any thoughts on this type of drug? What would a muscle relaxant/ anti-spasmodic to do motility?

Another good subcue today, thank goodness. He is really fighting the Critical Care like crazy, which doesn't make sense to me. Just a few days ago, he couldn't seem to get enough. What has changed?


Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 5:55 pm

Yes, there was a great deal of discussion on this thread about Metacam doses. Here's the thread on Doses where our internist at K-State explained the dose. I would definitely discuss it with a vet first. The other thing is that we noticed Metacam can upset the GI system, and Henry, for example, might produce small and unhappy poop BECAUSE of the Metacam (even at the standard .15 mL dose). Gilbert, on the other hand, really benefited from the higher dose of Metacam, and the necropsy showed no ill effects on his kidneys.

You can quote me

Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 6:00 pm

You can mix NSAID's (Metacam, Rimadyl) with opiates (Torb, buprenex). You can't mix NSAID's and steroids (Dex, Pred).

In extreme cases we've mixed Metacam and Torb with no problem, if done carefully and at the minimum doses of both to be effective.

Note the emphasis on effective. IMO his Metacam needs to be 10X what you're giving him. MO only.

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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 6:16 pm

The medicine I have here for Nug, that I never had to use so I don't have any ideas of how well it works or reacts with these guys, is called Prazosin. My vet said it's used in cats for urethral spasms. We thought to give it to Henry if nothing else helped with the crying while peeing. Maybe to relax her girl parts. And of course the dose was much smaller.

It was a "well, let's see if this does *anything*" state we were in. It's not something she normally prescribes for pigs or anything. But then again, Henry wasn't your average case either.

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We miss our sweet Oreo

Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 6:18 pm

Oreo was taking Metacam and Torb at the same time, and it was ok.

I do agree about the metacam dosage being too low. Bilbo is on .24 ccs and Oreo was on .20 cc, once a day. I think there's something to be said for the larger dosage as opposed to a weaker one, based on what I've observed here.

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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 7:02 pm

Blocked ureters most certainly is a critical situation. We actually had scheduled Elvis for a surgery to remove one of his kidneys but he went into acute renal failure and didn't make it.

Fluids and pain management certainly is the best you can do now. Some of the pain might be due to the stones/sludge settling in the bladder. That's why massage is so effective. It sort of keeps the shards from embedding into the bladder wall.

Sef, was the quote you got from Circle City here in Indianapolis? One thing I found out was that who actually calls them makes a big difference in their price quotes. I got an outrageous price quote for an ultrasound there, but when a different vet (who works closely with them) called for a quote, it was a third of the cost. They really are a premiere facility. However, if both ureters are blocked, I'm not sure I'd opt for surgery myself.

If you get up to the Indy area, I have tons of butterfly sets and an entire bole of metacam. I haven't changed my profile (and probably won't) but if you let me know here, I'll get in touch with you.

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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 8:52 pm

He has one blocked ureter, and one that has a single stone in it. I have been desperately trying to find information on how to keep the second one from clogging, too, and it seems that fluid therapy and maybe a pellet-less diet are the best way to go?

What would your thoughts on a muscle relaxant be? What would you suggest on pain management? Higher doses of Metacam? Torb? Both?

And for trying to prevent the second ureter from becoming blocked?

What recommendation would you make on fluids? Out vet suggested around 15cc's daily. Is that too much? Too little?

I would really appreciate your thoughts.

Zachary is playing with one of his toys this evening, which is the first time he has shown any playfulness in well over a week.

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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 9:00 pm

My experience is limited and not very encouraging, I'm afraid. I think Josephine is on now and would be much more reliable source than me.

Certainly fluids are essential as I imagine pain meds also are. Elvis only had a small stone in his ureter and had moderate pain from it. The metacam seemed to take care of the pain.

I also imagine that any movement of the materials in the ureter would increase the pain and this might explain why sometimes he's better than other times.

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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 10:45 pm

I just don't see surgery in Indy as an option. Even if it "only" cost a third of $6,000, that's still $2,000 -- money we don't have. I wonder if there are any vets in Louisville that might be capable of doing that type of surgery for less than that?

I also wonder what the success rate is for that type of surgery.

Do you know what the likelihood would be of him passing the ureteral stones on his own? I mean, is it unheard of for that to happen? Or is there a possibility?

What is your own personal opinion on subcues for this type of fluid therapy? Do you think daily is too much? Is 12-15cc's daily too little? Vet had said something about not wanting to "over-tax" the kidneys by giving too much at a time...I'm just not sure what's considered "too much" for a stone pig. With the holidays, I've had a hard time reaching her.

I thought I might go ahead and "up" the fluids tomorrow to 15cc's, since I've only been doing 12cc (is it the only size syringe I had until today when I picked up larger ones).

Would a muscle relaxant do anything to help the stones pass from the ureter? I'm not sure I understand why they're getting stuck there and not moving on down to the bladder (other than the 1 that is in the bladder).

Can anyone give me an opinion on whether or not removing the bladder stone would have any benefit?


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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 11:10 pm

I also wanted to add to the above: should I pursue Polycitra with my vet? She stated that she would look into it, but I'd like to get GL feedback on whether it might be useful in preventing more crystals from forming into stones in his other ureter.

I'm willing to try anything.

There is also a supplment on KV Vet that claims to have a "high success rate" in dissolving crystals "of all kinds." I started a thread on it quite some time ago, but couldn't find it when I did a search earlier today. Here is the product. I contacted KV Vet about it yesterday, and they in turn contacted the manufactuer to ask if it is considered safe to use in guinea pigs. They were told that it is.


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I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 11:12 pm

As far as I know there is nothing that will dissolve stones - which seems to be your biggest problem at the moment. Unfortunately, there are never guarantees with surgery.

I wish I could help you to feel optimistic, but stones are a total crapshoot as far as I know.

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Post   » Sat Dec 22, 2007 11:27 pm

I guess my feeling is this: surgery to remove the stones in the left ureter is just not an option. Even if we could afford it (the only way would be if we could get the cost down to around $1,000, and I were to borrow against my retirement), it seems awfully risky. Nobody can really tell me what the success rate is for that type of surgery. And then there's always the chance of recurrence.

So I'm thinking -- we could remove the bladder stone if there's a possibility of it helping with the pain. Our vet felt confident that it could be done as successfully as Sebastian's. She just couldn't say for sure if it was the source of some or most of the discomfort.

The big thing, as I understand it, is trying to prevent more stones from forming in both of those ureters. That's why I was looking for something that might dissolve crystals -- the crystals lead to stones (right?).

If we could prevent the other ureter from getting clogged up, and manage the pain from the one that is, isn't there a chance he could still have a halfway normal life for a while yet? Even without one kidney functioning normally?

Or is this just wishful thinking?

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Post   » Sun Dec 23, 2007 7:25 am

It's also my understanding that these stones are not really going to dissolve. On rare occasions bladder stones are passed but I don't recall a good prognosis with stones in the ureters.

I am so sorry you are in this situation. We will all support whatever decision you make.

DaCourt's guinea pig Scooter had a string of stones in one ureter:


More pics and xrays on this page:

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