Vet did a fecal float and found nothing so a sample was sent off for a culture. I should have the results in a couple of days.
In the meantime, we are going to try a round of Flagyl. The compounding pharmacy is mixing it up today and I should have it in a day or two(they ship to me).
I'm hoping we see some improvement. If not, the vet said there are other antibiotics to try. She mentioned Baytril, although I don't know how that would help with soft poops, and she also mentioned a couple of different sulfa drugs. Playing it by ear.
I am hoping the culture shows SOMEthing that can be treated. I know some pigs can suffer from chronic soft poops for no apparent reason and I am hoping Zoey isn't one of them. I'll be hesitant to have her in with my other girls if this is the case. Everyone would have poop shoes and I would probably have to limit greens...for everyone.
Other than the soft poops, she is very healthy and happy. And very happy to be back home.
- Supporter in '10, '11, & '12
Bytxlaura, was a culture ever done or did you just give the Flagyl without knowing what was going on?
I can't wait to start with the Flagyl and would be beyond happy if it cleared this up. It's very troubling to see her stepping all over it, having to bathe it off every day, and wondering if she'll ever get to be in with my girls and have friends. I'd hate for this to be ongoing and for her to have to end up being a solitary girl. :(
- Remembering Nemo
Another of my pigs, Lucy, starts having softer than normal poops when she is about to get bloated. She suffers from chronic bloating episodes so I have to closely monitor her. She gets softer poop, followed by a wet belly, and then she bloats. If I get her simethicone as soon as the poop softens, she gets back to normal right away. Needless to say, her cage is inspected for poop quality all the time :-)
- You can quote me
Our Littletan was like this. One day I finally hauled a ziploc bag up to the vets and asked them just to look at it under the microscope.
At first they said they found nothing, but then one of the senior vets got interested and intrigued and determined. She finally found what she described as "a slight overgrowth of a naturally occurring protozoan" in their system.
She said basically as it was it wasn't dangerous or a problem for him. If it got any worse she would give me some metronidazole. It never got any worse and his eating, drinking, urinating, defecating and behavior never changed.
Caveat: he was a solo pig. Had he been housed with others I would have asked the vet for the metronidazole.
She had chronic mushy poops as well. I never knew why but looking back now, I suspect it could have been from a one time round of Baytril she had had. I can't even remember why she was given baytril but I think it was for some hair loss on her back. I'm sure she probably had a case of mites and needed a course of Ivermectin. The vet never mentioned Ivermectin and I had no idea.
Anyway, I never knew why she had the loose poops. It could have been bacterial or some kind of parasite or her gut flora thrown off from the baytril.
Unfortunately, I had a horrible vet and didn't know it. They never found a cause, I never looked further to find a cause, and just assumed the loose poops were her new normal.
It was not fun. Each morning we had our foot bath routine, for both her and her cage mate. This went on for 3(or so) years until they both passed when they were nearing their 5 year birthday.
I feel so bad now looking back now that I maybe could have gotten her poops back to normal had I known to research more and find a better vet.
Although I do have to say, she maintained a normal healthy weight, ate and drank well, and was a very happy and spunky girl other than the mushy poops.
I'm blabbing. Anyway. I'm going to try everything I can possibly try to resolve this with Zoey.
Her fecal float showed no parasites and the culture didn't grow anything. So at least we can rule out anything contagious being passed to Latte and Goldie.
We decided to do a course of Flagyl anyway in case something was missed.
Zoey has been on the Flagyl for 14 days(as of yesterday). She's had times where I thought the soft poos were resolving and things looked really great, only to have them return again, then look better the next day... and so on. I have only been giving her leafy greens, no other veggies.
She has also had a watery left eye on and off. I see her wiping it and sometimes there is a slight crust. I see no signs of injury or irritation of the eye itself.
She also "snuffs" quite often. Not a sneeze, just an outward snuff is the only way I can explain it. I would bet my life that she does NOT have an URI or anything like that. I know I would see more signs. She is a GREAT eater, seems energetic and spunky, drinks well, etc. My thoughts keep telling me, heart. I hate to jump to that but the runny eye thing was one of my Brownie's beginning signs of her heart issues.
The vet and I had a phone chat day before yesterday and have agreed to try Zoey on Baytril. I have stopped the flagyl and she had her first dose of baytril this morning. Our hope is that it may hit something else causing the loose poos that the flagyl didn't. Also, this seems like a good step to take before starting a trial of heart meds to rule out any kind of respiratory infection. I think we are talking a good month on bactrim.
My gut tells me that Zoey will just continue to have soft poos on occasion. My gut also tells me that she is starting to show signs of heart issues and that after the bactrim, she will go on heart meds.
I decided to introduce her to Goldie and Latte this morning. It's been well over a month since she's been with us and she SO needed to be with her kind. It is time. I could just tell. I'll elaborate more over on cavy chat. :)
And oh, today when I weighed everyone, they were all about 10 ounces more than the last time I weighed them(a week ago). What the what????!!!
I went out and bought a new battery for my scale and will reweigh tomorrow morning. It's got to be the battery....
For the past couple of days they had been mushy again. I thought that could have been from introduction day and all of the treats(lettuces mainly, but lots of them) they got. Her poos weren't terrible, same as they have been off and on, sticky/mushy and sticking to everyone's feet if they stepped on them. Not fun to clean up the cage and pigs' feet 5 or so times a day.
Anyway, now tonight they look terrible. Way wetter and mushier than normal. The cage is a mess. She's been bathed once today already and now has poo on her feet, her head, and some on her butt area. This is the worst I've seen it. And it is smelly again.
She is on day three of baytril and has only had hay, pellets, and some baby spring greens for lunch, which she usually does fine with.
Her appetite is great. She seems happy and otherwise healthy. She's drinking water, eating hay and pellets, and getting along really well with the girls. I just can't figure this out.
Should I go NO greens at all?? Probably, right? I know this will be difficult for her as she wheeks daily for her greens and really looks forward to them.
This also means that I would have to take her out of Goldie and Latte's cage and put her back in the large pet store cage. All alone. I really really don't want to do that.
But how will I take this poo mess with three pigs daily?? And how can I give them greens and not her?? Maybe take her out and snuggle for a bit while they eat theirs? Ugh. I did not expect this and just keep waiting for things to improve. They are not. They are getting worst. What can i do for this girl??
If she's still having these mushy/watery poos tomorrow, I'll have to get her in to see the vet. I have no idea what she will do though. ?? It seems as if we have covered every base. We've had the float and culture and she's on her second antibiotic. Could the bactrim be causing the poo to get mushier?