Noddy's sick. Aerococcus. Please help

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Hilary Holmes

Post   » Sun Nov 27, 2011 11:54 am

So I'm home now, and BamBam has done the most amazing job of saving Noddy.

He is still very weak, eating very little and has clearly lost weight. I don't know how much, as I'm trying not to disturb him too much, apart from feeding him, although I will do so before the day is out. He is eating very little spontaneously, and also moving around very little. I don't know if he's passing urine, as he hasn't wet me, whilst I've been nursing him, and his poops are almost black, presumably because of the charcoal he had yesterday and tiny, almost like mouse droppings.

At the moment, I'm trying to get at least 5mls water with Vit C in every 30 mins, and the same of CC, an hour. He will take it, albeit with a bit of a fight at times.

My questions are, is this enough? Should I be giving him a pro-biotic in addition? Should I offer him any vegetables? Could I give him a few tasty morsels, like celery leaves, to tempt him to eat?

Even if you can't answer my questions, please keep hold Noddy in your thoughts and prayers.

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Bugs Mom

Post   » Sun Nov 27, 2011 1:17 pm

Pro-biotics never hurt. You're ideally trying to get as close to 50-60 mls of food per day, hand feeding, as you can. I would weigh throughout the day to accurately monitor his weight.

I would try and temp him with a bit of lettuce, celery leaves or whatever he's interested in.

Of course good thoughts are being held for Noddy here.

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Sun Nov 27, 2011 3:27 pm

Thanks Bugs Mom. I think with what BamBam gave him this morning, and I've given him since, he will have had more than that, which is vey reassuring. I'll start the pro-biotics later.

What about him eating the poops? He seems to need help with clearing his poops and is showing interest in eating them. I know he needs to eat them, but my worry is that he might be eating potentially infected poops, and re-infecting himself. Is this is a possibility? I can't give him those from another pig, because MaggieMae hangs on to hers. Advice please.

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Post   » Sun Nov 27, 2011 8:37 pm

I think the benefits of eating his own special poops outweigh any risk (I don't think there is much risk).

You can quote me

Post   » Mon Nov 28, 2011 12:12 am

" ... and is showing interest in eating them ... "

Ditto Lynx. Clean him out and then (eurgh) offer them to him to eat. Ugh to us, but good for them.

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Tue Nov 29, 2011 3:17 pm

Thanks again guys for all the advice and support. I'm pleased to report Noddy is holding his own, a massive release, though I still dont feel confident to leave him over night without checking on him. And then I come done in the morning, worried about what I might fine. And so far. I've found him up and about, and showing interest in the hay.

I'm giving pro-biotics, but should I be giving extra Vit C as well, or will there be sufficient (or any) in the pro-biotic?

At what point should I stop hand feeding? He's eating more himself, so is it a case of stop now, and weigh daily to keep an eye on it, or should I carry on supplementing for a bit longer.

Having pulled him back from the brink, I don't want to take any chances with him, so all advice is welcome.

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Post   » Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:08 pm

Extra C should help any ill guinea pig. If you have some, I would go ahead and give some.

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Mon Dec 12, 2011 10:52 am

Thanks Lynx. I'm relieved to report that Noddy is still with us, and I've been giving him extra Vit C, but cut back on the probiotic as his gut seems to have settled down (fingers crossed).

He is still losing weight and sleeping more, I guess that is inevitable, given both his liver and kidneys are failing.
I don't think he is in pain, in that there has been no great teeth chattering (apart from when MaggieMae annoys him!), but there are times when he is fluffed up and appears "not quite right", so I give him a dose of Meloxicam, which seems to help. I don't want to give it too regularly, because of the load on his kidneys, but then I certainly don't want him in pain, either.

I discussed the possibility of swapping to Rimadyl with the vet (cavy savvy), but she felt there was nothing to be gained from it. She suggested a new drug Onsior (robenacoxib) as an alternative, but wanted to discuss it with the manufacturers first, as it has only
been used in cats and rabbits, as far as she is aware.

The upshot of her discussions is that we've decided to stay with the meloxicam as he seems to tolerate that OK. The Onsior hasn't been tested on guinea pigs, and we can't assume that just because it's OK in rabbits it will be the same in guineas.

Noddy is the most adorable pig. He is so sweet natured and gentle, it breaks my heart to see him declining in this way. I know what the eventual outcome will be, and am honoured to havehad him as long as I have, but I just want to keep him as happy and comfortable for as possible, however long that may be. He is loved, warm and dry, has hay, veg, water, extra Vit C and Critical Care. Is there anything else I could or should be doing?

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Post   » Mon Dec 12, 2011 9:19 pm

It sounds like you are providing all you can at this time. Pain medication and love. Does hand feeding help at all to keep up his weight?

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:25 am

Lynx, thanks for your continued advice and interest in Noddy. He is not maintaining his weight, even with hand feeding. The loss is slower though, compared with times when I haven't been able to supplement his diet so frequently, like when I'm at work.

I'm giving him CC, both ordinary and fine grind, as I'm told they taste different (haven't tried it myself though). I'm also making it up with either blackcurrant or orange flavoured Vit C which has been dissolved in water. I've tried mushing up his pellets and adding CC to that, but he's not quite so keen on it that way. I'm just trying to tempt him with different flavours. Could I try no added sugar cranberry juice? Any other flavours you can think of?

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Post   » Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:33 am

Sure, you could certainly try the no added sugar cranberry juice. A good choice, if he likes it.

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Post   » Tue Dec 13, 2011 12:44 pm

Can we get pumpkin here?

Is it pumpkin that I'm thinking about? Something that our US pigsters seem to like.

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:21 pm

Thanks Lynx, I'll give it a try and see how he likes it, now I'm certain it will do no harm.

BamBam, as ever, a good thought. Do you think they are those large orange ones people hollow out for Hallowe'en? I wonder if it can be bought in the supermarket? US posters, any advice would be very gratefully received.

C Cole-Chakotay

Post   » Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:42 pm

In the US pumpkin is sold in the can for use in baking, especially pumpkin pie. I've heard the pigs like it and I think I'll try my girls on it sometime.

You can quote me

Post   » Wed Dec 14, 2011 12:22 am

"Do you think they are those large orange ones people hollow out for Hallowe'en?"

No, at least I don't think so. Canned pumpkin in the US I THINK (and I do not work in the canned food industry!!) is made from smaller, "pie" pumpkins.

I will say if you want to try *fresh* pumpkin, our pigs have vastly preferred chunks of the great big ones (not available except around Hallowe'en) to chunks of the littler ones.

You are looking for this:


NOT the pie filling. Pumpkin *only* in the can, no spices, etc.

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:20 am

So Noddy continues his slow decline, but up until this morning had seemed fairly bright and energetic. He loves running up and down my kitchen, being chased by MaggieMae.
I though he might be in pain yesterday. Nothing major, but a bit of teeth chattering and hair on the back of his neck fluffed up. He had a dose of 0.6 ml Metacam (0.5mg/ ml) and that seemed to settle things down. He weighs 1100g now, so I think that is an appropriate dose.
Last night he was fine,sat on my knee quite happily and took some extra fluids and CC. Also produced a pile of normal looking poops!
This morning I came down to find him sitting in a pile of poop (not that unusual), but he refused to eat any of it, including a caecotrope (very unusual). He has since produced some more, much smaller, and very dark, poops. He has refused all his very favourite foods, and as far as I can tell, isn't even eating hay. He just sits in the corner, hanging his head.
I've managed to get about 12ml CC into him this morning, as well as some water with Vit C in, but I just don't know what else to do. I can't give him any more Metacam until tonight, and have to go to work shortly. I'm hoping a friend might ride to the rescue, but if not, I'll just have to try and get more CC into him before I go and hope for the best.
Is there anything else I could try? Any advice gratefully received.

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Post   » Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:19 am


We are tucking into some more CC now and that done I will pop out and find some fresh grass to try and tempt him.

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Post   » Sat Dec 31, 2011 1:30 pm

I've been following this thread with interst, but not posted as I have not had anything helpfull to add. However, when Noddy now seems to be in pain, I wonder if you have seen the discussions about higher doses of Metacam, and if that could be beneficial for him at this point.

TwoWhitePiggies' vet said piggies can have as much as 1 - 2 mg Metacam pr kg. You can read about that in the thread about maximum doses here.

Feel better soon, Noddy!

Hilary Holmes

Post   » Sat Dec 31, 2011 4:09 pm

Thanks BamBam, as ever, for your sterling efforts with Noddy whilst I was at work.
poppypiggy, thank you for keeping an eye on what's been happening with Noddy. It's good to know people are watching what's happening, even if they don't post anything. Thank you for the info about metacam doses, I will discuss it with the vet as soon as they open next week. (Trying to be positive and assume there will be something to discuss!) Noddy has renal failure, we know, whihc would be a reason to keep the dose low, but it also needs to keep his pain under control. I think we're looking at quality, rather than quantity of life now.
Still, we'll plod on, and even though I wasn't planning on staying up to see in the New Year, I'm sure I'll see it in when I'm up syringe feeding!

You can quote me

Post   » Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:41 pm

"Noddy has renal failure, we know, whihc would be a reason to keep the dose low, but it also needs to keep his pain under control. I think we're looking at quality, rather than quantity of life now."

If you are absolutely positively unconditionally sure that Noddy does in fact have renal failure, if it were my pig I'd up the dose by quite a bit and let him be comfortable, even if it shortens his time.

The vet as well as many GL members may (vehemently) disagree, and that's fine. This is my opinion only. Take all into account when deciding what's best for Noddy.

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