I may be speaking too soon, but I think we're out of the scary part, and now we just need to keep an eye on him and make sure he heals well.
He's been an extremely good sport about the leg wrap and hasn't attempted to get it off that we can tell. He's still getting around fine in his mini-apartment and seems to be eating and drinking (and going to the bathroom) without any problems. He's actually gained a bit of weight, maybe half an ounce. We took him for a re-wrap on Wednesday and introduced him to our normal vet. He and his brother really turned on the charm faucet for the vet's assistant.
But, alas, all is not well in the world of Ianto. He's suddenly developed a bit of eye crust just on one eye-- not much, not accompanied by any noticeable wheezing, sneezing, sniffling, etc. He seems as alert and active as ever, but we're absolutely not taking our chances with the little guy. He has another rewrap scheduled for Wednesday, but we're going to call the vet tomorrow morning and see if she thinks he should come in sooner.
We took little Ianto in to the vet on Wednesday, as it turned out. She took a look at his eye and stained it to look for scratches, and didn't see anything unusual. He's breathing okay (so no infection there) and seems pretty perky. His bandage was getting pretty gross, so she rewrapped it and checked to make sure he's doing okay under there. He's lost a little fur from the tape, so she padded it with some splint padding stuff and made sure it's not too tight or full of gunk. Overall, he appears to be healing up okay and is still eating, drinking, running around pooping like crazy, eating hay and so on. We have another appointment next Wednesday when they'll take an X-ray and see how well he's healing up in there.
I think he's getting a little tired of being poked all the time, and our doctor thought the bandage was getting itchy. He's become a little less happy about being picked up and poked all the time, so I'm trying to give him more attention at times very separate from times when we give him medication and check his toes and poke him and stuff, so he doesn't associate us with constant torture and prodding. I also really hope we can take down the divider again so he can run around with the other two pigs soon.
Anyway, the doctor said he looks like he's doing fine, even with the little bit of eye stuff. That's not too bad, and she said to keep an eye on it and if anything odd happens to give her a call right away, and otherwise she'll take another look at our next visit.
It's not visibly knitting on the x-ray, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. The vet said it seems to be healing, but calcium hasn't moved into the new bone (this is sort of hard to explain, but she's not worried and they'll x-ray in another couple of weeks).
Having his bandage replaced last week seems to have cleared up his bitey habits, so it looks like it was itching and uncomfortable. He's been much more calm and amenable to being handled since then and is back to his normal self.
So, it's a long process, but he's doing okay. I tried putting him back in with his brother and our older pig for a while, since he's been isolated for quite a while now. They got along pretty well, although Captain Jack tries to mount Ianto occasionally... I think it would be better for him socially (and he'd be less inclined to sit around in his pee and get his bandage wet), but I want to take it slow since Captain Jack is the alpha pig and will push him around a bunch...
He went back to the doctor again today (they're looking at him weekly to make sure the bandage is good and he's healing up). He seems to be doing well. They'll take another x-ray next week to see, too. They gave me eyedrops for his eyes in case they get crusty again. The vet thinks that's because he can't really use his back legs for cleaning and stuff as well-- his ears are waxy, too. But he's eating and keeping his weight up and pooping and so on and doing pig stuff. I've been reintroducing him back into herd life and I think once his leg is clearly healing (ideally that'll show up on the x-rays next week) I'll move him back in with the other guys full-time...
He's still a tiny sweet little piggy guy. We're taking good care of him...
- Supporter in '11
Good news that Ianto is recovering well thanks to your dedicated care and attention. The updates have been interesting.
I am a fellow Torchwood fan. I rent the episodes through Netflix. My husband is not a fan so I usually watch Torchwood by myself late at night, which is kinda perfect for such an odd creepy show.
(And nope, no Owen right now... Perhaps future pigs. We just got the two new little dudes and named them Ianto and Captain Jack. Captain Jack is definitely the alpha pig and tries to, well, mount everything he can. The name seems to fit, anyway.)
So, the news!
Ianto decided on Saturday that he was done with his bandage-- he managed to peel it off overnight and Saturday morning I came in to find him trailing most of it in a sort of grassy wad. I trimmed it off and tried to carefully bandage him down at least well enough to last until Tuesday. It lasted until about noon. Meanwhile, we made an appointment for Tuesday morning (that's the earliest our vet would be in-- why do they always do these things on weekends?). We kept him separated still and watched to be sure he wasn't hurting himself more or anything. He seemed to be getting around fine. Better than with it wrapped, for sure.
This morning, 9:00am, we were off to the vet! Dr. Hawklyn took a look at him and checked out his legs-- he seemed to be walking on it okay. We put him down and watched him trundle along, and he wasn't favoring it or anything-- that leg is skinnier (since he hasn't really used it in over a month) and kind of patchy where the bandage was, but overall? Not too bad. She tried to take some x-rays, but he's a squirmy fellow and they didn't really get a good one. In the end, I left him there while they gave him some piggy drugs (a little sedation to calm him down a bit-- she'd been doing this all along for wrapping his leg, since otherwise he struggled a lot and would just hurt himself more) so they could get a good clear x-ray. And so they did!
It's healing up-- in the last x-ray, there was no obvious bone growth and there were pointy ends visible. Now the pointy bits have rounded off and the clearly-delineated cracks have started to fill in. He's healing! He seems to be happy enough walking around on his leg, too, so after talking about it we decided to leave him unwrapped! He's wandering around at home now, and seems to be using his leg just fine. I'm trying to remember all the details, but the short version is that she's confident that he's healing up and it'll now be better for him to be separated (so the other guys don't pile on him and maybe rebreak it) but using the leg so the muscles don't totally atrophy.
He seems much more cheerful without a giant bandage around his butt, too, although the patchy bits where it rubbed are pretty sad. His hair will grow back, though, and then he'll be all soft and fuzzy again. (And his skin is so pink and soft!)
So, we'll give him another week or two in his separate pig apartment, and he's still getting the metacam for a while (basically because we want him to walk on his leg to regain the use of it, and if it hurts he won't). When we have a free afternoon or two to reintroduce him to the other guys, we'll put them in together and make sure they still get along. I suspect they'll be fine after a little getting used to one another again.
Thank you, everyone, for your support and encouragement... This has been scary, and I've learned a lot about piggy health and anatomy. Shoot, at this point I think I've seen more x-rays of Ianto than I have of myself...