Henry's Thread

Post Reply

Post   » Sun Jan 18, 2009 12:50 am

We did buy a glass bottle but we haven't installed it yet.

Supporter in '13

Post   » Tue Jan 20, 2009 7:50 pm

Poor Henry. I hope his fungus can be treated easily. I wonder if senior pigs have more trouble fending off skin problems? Momiji has been struggling with a bacterial skin problem on her back for a while that causes crusty skin and fur that pulls out in little tufts.


Post   » Tue Jan 20, 2009 8:00 pm

Henry was in top form at the vet's office and was flirty with the vet techs and the vet. I actually overheard one of the vet techs telling another in an excited voice that Henry let her pet him.

Our vet doesn't think it's fungus...at this point, she thinks it's some sort of low-grade bacterial infection caused by the goop that comes out of his eye not being cleaned away well. So she wants us to try eye antibiotic ointment for a week and see if that does it.

User avatar
Supporter in 2019

Post   » Wed Jan 21, 2009 12:25 pm

I'm probably grasping at straws, but I've always used plastic bottles, and wondered if there might be some correlation there (thinking some funky bacterial thing?). Although, it seems like an issue with bacteria in the water bottles would present more as a gastrointestinal issue than urinary tract, but I'm running out of ideas here.

I just ordered 4 of the 8 oz. glass Lixit bottles from Rabbistop.com today to try out...

Good luck with the eye ointment. I hope it helps.


Post   » Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:06 am

Henry isn't really eating his pellets much right now, but he's still eating hay and veggies. We noticed he was down a couple of ounces so I made him so Critical Care, which he snarfed down. I'm not sure what to guess...issues with teeth? another stone? Or maybe the CC will get his gut back to normal and he'll be fine?

Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:11 am

Henry is such a wonderful guy. :)

Not sure if this is helpful; just thought I'd mention it:

Some of the members with senior pigs have reported that sometimes pellets can be too hard to chew. Softening them with water, or another liquid, seems to make it a little easier.


Post   » Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:44 am

Ah. So this really could just be old agedness, instead of a serious problem?

Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:52 am

I don't know. I am hoping it is a senior thing, rather than something more serious.

The way you wrote about Henry eagerly eating the CC caused me to wonder if he was avoiding the pellets because he could not chew as well. (Which, of course, could be dental as well.)

Other people will have more input for you and Henry, I hope! :)


Post   » Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:15 am

I agree; he did eat the Critical Care so voraciously that I felt like I've been starving him.

He didn't seem to have this issue with the previous bag of KM's pellets; he's only been avoiding them since the new bag arrived, though they don't smell any different.

Sometimes he stops eating if his intestines aren't 100%. We'll see what happens over the next few days. I'll give him CC and perhaps he'll get back to normal.

Supporter in '13

Post   » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:16 am

I hope Henry is feeling ok. Maybe he's just nuts about Critical Care? A few of our pigs are crazy about it and will eat it anytime. I understand where you're coming from with poor Henry and his tummy troubles. Momiji is a senior pig, too (not quite as amazingly old as Super Henry!) and she has battled gas problems for quite some time.


Post   » Fri Jan 30, 2009 6:01 am

Oh gosh, I always worry when I see this thread pop up. I hope the handsome Henry is ok. Sending lots of good thoughts.

User avatar

Post   » Sat Feb 14, 2009 2:42 am

Henry continues to be his active, sweet little self. Pretty good, considering we are near his tenth birthday and third anniversary with us. However, we've been watching his weight, and it has dipped down below two pounds.

For the first couple of years with us (ages 7-8), he hovered around 2 lb 6 oz pretty consistently, occasionally gaining to as much as 2 lb 8 to 2 lb 10 oz, but returning to around 2 lb 6 oz.

In August, he was at just under 2 lb 6 oz. Eight days post-surgery (on 10/26), he was at 1 lb 15 7/8 oz. Four days later, he was back to 2 lbs, and has been around 2 lb 1 oz to 2 lb 2 oz for most of the time since then.

On 1/29, he was 1 lb 15 3/4 oz, and today (2/14) he is at 1 lb 14 1/4 oz.

He does not appear to have any discomfort--he runs around just fine, we have (thank God) not heard any squeaking while peeing, and his poops are usually pretty decent. He has not been enthusiastic about pellets, but eats hay, lettuce, and the other normal foods just fine. His cagemate, Frost, also has not been enthusiastic about the pellets. We've given him a small amount of critical care for the past few days, hoping to boost his appetite for pellets or at least put a little weight on him.

Our thoughts are that it could be:

1. Age-related weight loss.
2. Effects of his daily Actigall or Vetprofen meds.
3. Possible recurring stone (though no evidence for this has yet presented itself).
4. Unrelated medical issue.
5. Non-specific, non-medical weight loss.

Should we be worried? Should we be checking anything else?

We're considering consulting with our vet to reduce the actigall dose to see if his weight rebounds. I am hesitant to do anything that could promote the recurrance of a stone, though.


User avatar

Post   » Sat Feb 14, 2009 2:52 am

Is he starting to feel boney around his hip bones and pudgey around his belly like a Booda?

I don't have a lot of advise for you. My eldest pig is slight and I struggle to keep weight on him. I give him a lot of pellet mush and special TLC time to eat and it doesn't help a whole lot. I think all you can truly do is keep an eye on him which we all know you already do. Oh, and give him kishes from us of course.

User avatar

Post   » Sat Feb 14, 2009 7:40 am

You have a good batch of "thoughts". I don't know what the right one would be. That he's active is great. Ditto rshevin on maybe a little mush, especially if he is fond of it.

GP Estates
Supporter in '08

Post   » Sat Feb 14, 2009 10:43 am

I've had trouble keeping weight on all my older ones, even without illness - and none have lived anywhere near as long as Henry! I wish I could say I've found something that works to put weight on them but that's no the case. I have given several of them daily dishes of mashed potato consistency CC and they love it but I can't say they've gained weight on it.

Sorry, not much help here but he sounds happy and healthy so it sounds like you're really doing everything right.

User avatar

Post   » Sat Feb 14, 2009 1:19 pm

Rshevin, you nailed it--boney hips (and spine, too), but belly fat is there.

It is like his weight shifted when he had the post-surgery weight loss and then regained. He lost it uniformly, but then what he gained back he gained back in his belly.

To be honest, I think he's more comfortable running around at around 2 pounds than he was at closer to 2.5. We just don't want to stop being vigilant about his health.

User avatar

Post   » Sat Feb 14, 2009 1:20 pm

Oh, and he gets plenty of "kishes". We haven't had as much lap time since the surgery, but occasionally we do--and he enjoyed his lap time last night cuddled up on the couch.

User avatar

Post   » Thu Feb 26, 2009 3:48 pm

Henry is losing weight pretty seriously. He is down to about 1 lb 12 ounces, which is about four ounces below his post-surgery weight, and about fourteen ounces below his all-time high weight while he has been with us.

He does not show signs of serious discomfort, though he has had some 'strange' sleeping habits (sometimes sleeping with his nose to a wall, rather than going into a pigloo). He does lie down, he sleeps well, he is bright-eyed, playful, and loving. By every factor except his weight, he seems to be doing great.

We would like to try and boost his weight up above 2 lbs. We don't want to use too much critical care, because on that he sludges pretty badly and we worry about stone reformation. What can we get that is high in calories, palateable, and low in calcium?

I'm off to look up the veggie table on the main GL site, but if you have suggestions we would really appreciate them.

User avatar

Post   » Thu Feb 26, 2009 4:27 pm

Looking at the veggie chart, it looks like a 50/50 mix of kale and carrot would give us a 1.6:1 Ca:P ratio. We're thinking of pulling him out for a third daily meal (so we don't have to feed Frost too and wind up with a fat Frost) and giving him that mix.

I'm also looking at his overall symptoms and wondering if Vit. C is a problem. We quit giving C supplements out of suspicion that one of the inactive ingredients is Calcium Carbonate. I just tested it...and didn't find any evidence of calc. carbo., so we will start him on some C supplements today too.

User avatar
Still supporting in 2014

Post   » Thu Feb 26, 2009 4:41 pm

I'm no expert, but it sounds like a good plan. It sounds like our Old Man is just getting old. My grandpa always had a few beers to help keep some weight on. I'm not sure how you'd keep Frost off the bottle, though. Good luck, Henry. We all love you.

Post Reply
658 posts