Henry - crusty eyes, lethargic

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For all Wonkys & Winkys

Post   » Wed Sep 05, 2007 2:12 pm

No posts for a while.

How's Henry?

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Post   » Tue Sep 11, 2007 5:58 pm

Not too much change to report unfortunately. We're pretty much in the same place. We got the sutures removed and for a very short while we stopped feeding her since her weight (while lower than I would like) was stable. She was also crying less.

But today we are back to handfeeding 2x a day since her weight dropped again and she is crying more.

I don't really know where to go from here or what to do. She's active and happy otherwise. I don't know what kind of pain she's having, if it's really bad or kind of bad. I don't think I should put her to sleep because she *is* normal otherwise, but is keeping her in pain not fair? I don't know. The handfeeding - while inconvenient - isn't really my issue. It's the crying.

I don't want to keep her on Metacam long term so she's not on that. I tried the Shillintong for one day - but could barely get it into her. She does NOT like it, and I can't blame her, it smells (and probably tastes) nasty. I squirt it into her mouth but she'll dribble it out and make a huge fuss. I might try it again tonight if she'll even take it, but I don't know if it would help.

She's not getting any peppers or carrots, which are her favorite, but that seems to not matter. Not sure what my options are.

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Post   » Tue Sep 18, 2007 2:27 pm

I have a vet appointment tomorrow. Not sure what she'll say. Henry is crying more than ever while going potty and her weight is dropping. She was really great and stable for awhile. Then lost an ounce, and then another, and now she's slipping more. I'm handfeeding and giving Metacam, but nothing's doing.

Suggestions? I'm all out of ideas or options.

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For all Wonkys & Winkys

Post   » Tue Sep 18, 2007 3:21 pm

I'm so sorry to hear that Henry isn't doing well.
You both have been through so much.

I have no suggestions, but I do send good thoughts your way. Please let us know what the vet says.

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Thanks for the Memories

Post   » Tue Sep 18, 2007 3:43 pm

Has she been tested for kidney problems as well?

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Supporter in 2019

Post   » Tue Sep 18, 2007 3:45 pm

You know I'm thinking about you and the H-nug. Wish I could offer some helpful advice.

GP Lover
My home, ruled by pigs!

Post   » Tue Sep 18, 2007 3:49 pm

I'm so sorry to hear she won't tolerate the Shilintong. It's tough to know she feels pain when going to the bathroom...O:( Give her a hug and kiss for me. I hope your vet can come up with something. Is there anyway to get the Shilintong down? I know it smells awful but can you add something to it?

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Post   » Tue Sep 18, 2007 4:12 pm

I was going to try to mix it in with the critical care, but then I thought that was too risky as far as actually getting that portion in. Maybe she'll spit that part out, or that part will get stuck in the syringe, etc. It smells so foul, I don't know what I could mix it with to mask that. She knows what it is and is NOT pleased. Maybe I'll try carrot juice or something.

I don't remember if she had kidney testing. On the ultrasound it showed past infection. Maybe that's happening again. Would blood work show kidney infection? I just want to get the right tests tomorrow.

She's lively and everything - acting normal with eating hay and bopping around, but I know I can't let her weight drop to nothing, and I don't want her to be in pain.

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Post   » Tue Sep 18, 2007 5:08 pm

I know how awful it is to have your guinea pig in pain. GP Lover had to deal with this for months.

I hope you get some answers.

You can quote me

Post   » Tue Sep 18, 2007 8:11 pm

Brandilynn's trick for shilintong administration

I *think* bloodwork will show kidney problems. IIRC they have to be fairly severe before the parameters will be affected. White blood cell counts in general will also indicate an infection (somewhere) -- again, IIRC. I am not a vet, nor tech.

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Post   » Wed Sep 19, 2007 8:48 am

I don't know what IIRC is.

Well, I'll go tonight and get the standard tests; urine, fecal, bloodwork. Hopefully one of those will show something. I put the Shilintong in with the critical care this morning. She still noticed it so she fought more, but at least she didn't spit it out.

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I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Wed Sep 19, 2007 8:54 am

Good luck! I hope you find out something. I know it must be so stressful to not know what the heck is going on with her and how best to help her. *hugs*

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Post   » Wed Sep 19, 2007 7:36 pm

Okay so today our x-ray shows flecks by the urethra. Dr. D does not think that it's a stone. She thinks she has crystals either lodged in her urethra or in the opening so that it's causing pain. She said females have larger urethras than males so she should be able to pass this, but if they're lodged in there, well. If left untreated it could turn to stones. Last time the ultrasound and x-ray showed nothing at all. This might be an isolated incident.

So next Tuesday we're shaving the belly again just to ultrasound the kidney/bladder area to see if anything else shows and Dr. D is going to flush the crystals out.

Poor nugget!

And of course she mentioned this happens by giving calcium-rich foods. Okay. So I looked at the Ca/Ph ratio chart here. I can't feed romaine because it tends to give my girls sludge. So I have been feeding (their whole lives mind you - 2 years nearly) green and red leaf lettuce. Henry also likes dill a lot. Both of these seem high on the chart, which is bad I guess. I stopped giving treats to Henry because I thought carrots, peppers, tomatoes would make her worse. But maybe those things balanced out the high ratio of the lettuce and dill. Am I totally doing this wrong? It does seem that since I've cut out the "treats" she's been grumpier. But maybe that's just coincidence too.

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Post   » Wed Sep 19, 2007 11:18 pm

Yikes. Well, at least Dr. D. has a good idea of what's going on this time around. Not that it's a good thing to have crystals showing up, but it's a better scenario than mysterious bleeding that can't be explained or treated.

It truly is always something with these guys, though, and as another member put it, "...and nothing is ever simple." I'll drink to that.

Give Henry a gentle hug for me.

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GL is Just Peachy

Post   » Thu Sep 20, 2007 12:39 am

Different pigs are sensitive to different things. Some pigs just need low calcium, some can't stand oxalates, and some go out of whack when they have an imbalanced ratio. I don't remember what Henry's previous stone(s) were. If they were calcium oxalate, you will want to avoid oxalates in the form of parsley, spinach, and carrots.

If they were calcium carbonate, you may have to fiddle around with the ratios. Looseleaf lettuce has a moderate amount of calcium and a slightly high ratio, though nothing to worry about. Dill has a lot of calcium and a high ratio, so perhaps it would be good to try to cut down on her calcium without lowering the ratio below 1.5:1.

Some moderate to low calcium veggies in the ideal range, that my pigs like, are:

Chicory (curly endive)
Boston or Bibb lettuce

Some moderate to low calcium veggies and fruits a little below the ideal range, that can be fed sparingly along with the looseleaf or dill, are:

Swiss chard
Green beans
Pink grapefruit (I think momof911kids's pig Rayna is the world's biggest fan of pink grapefruit)
Bell pepper (tiny pieces)

Download the Ca:P calculator if you haven't already, and keep your scale on your counter to weigh veggies!

So, some menus that you might come up with are:
40g celery
30g cherries
50g cilantro
100g red or green leaf lettuce

for a ratio of 1.89, with 122.0mg of calcium.

Or here's another one I just came up with:
20g dill
150g escarole
60g red bell pepper

fo a ratio of 1.88 with 125.0 mg of calcium.

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I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Thu Sep 20, 2007 1:06 am

I'm sorry you're still having so much trouble - I think salana has given you very helpful advice.

Ditto on using the calculator. Some pigs seem to be fine, but others are clearly much more sensitive and do seem to benefit from having a diet in the exact ca/ph ratio.

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Post   » Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:17 am

Thanks everyone, I will check out different ratios and meals for Henry. She has not had any previous stones so I guess I don't know if they're oxalate or carbonate. Hopefully nothing else major will show up on Tuesday and we can flush this out.

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Post   » Thu Sep 20, 2007 10:53 am

With Zachary (who has I/C), I can't change one damned thing in his diet or he'll start bleeding. So they all get:

green leaf lettuce
red leaf lettuce
Boston lettuce

That's pretty much it. I'll occasionally add a little grape tomato, and that seems well tolerated. Sometimes a little corn husk. Zero fruit. Zero romaine.

Can't remember...what pellet are your pigs on?

GP Lover
My home, ruled by pigs!

Post   » Thu Sep 20, 2007 11:57 am

I would continue to give her the shilintong. I hope she gets relief and soon.

You can quote me

Post   » Thu Sep 20, 2007 6:25 pm

IIRC = if I recall correctly

I'm hoping the flush will do the trick, actually.

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