Unfortunately when it comes to exotics many vets just arent educated enough to properly diagnose and treat them. I have seen this many times with my bearded dragons. Many clinics turned me away, including emergency clinics! Then when I found a couple that took exotics even they were still learning and often I was telling them the problem and asking for the right medications and helping with the dosing! Its crazy and even the vets will admit that we probably know more then they do sometimes when it comes to the exotics we put so much care and research into.
Its sad, but true. Hopefully in the future it will get better, until then we have places like this!
- I GAVE, dammit!
First, my vet just got done telling me about 2 months ago that SOME pigs were resistant to ivermectin in an oral dose. It was written up somewhere, she is getting the info for me. She told me the vets name but I didn't write it down. It's a woman, I think.
SO, since I had 2 pigs here that were still showing obvious signs of mites even though they had been treated 3-4 doses each, and 2 rounds of it, we decided to try the injectible ivermectin topically. If that didn't work, we were going to try injections (blech!)
Well, the topical dosing worked very well for these pigs, and both are growing their hair back. One had a round circle of missing hair in the middle of her back, and Bosco had a very huge V. His is getting better, but after 5 weekly doses of topical ivermectin, he is not nearly 100%. If it doesn't continue to improve, we will go for injections.
So, before you shoot the vet that said ivermectin injections are the only way to be sure you've gotten the mites, for some pigs, he might be right, according to this new info from my vet.
Oh, and just for some background, both of these pigs have also been agressively treated for fungus, lice and dry skin, etc.
KM, I have a lot of respect for your knowledge. But I strongly object to posting on a public forum that one vet heard from another vet that oral Ivermectin is not effective in some pigs. I would really appreciate if people would back up assertions like that (this also happened with the kaopectate incident), before you go sending thousands of hapless cavy owners back to the vet for Ivermectin injections.
It is probably true that a small percantage--and I mean SMALL--of guinea pigs may react better to topical than oral Ivermectin. However, I have neither seen nor heard of any guinea pigs who respond to NEITHER, in which case the idea of injections at the vet is still a moot point. It is EXPENSIVE, PAINFUL, and UNNECCESSARY. IMO, it is just a way for greedy vets to make a buck, and you know that's exactly what this vet was doing.
So I'm still going to maintain: INJECTIONS OF IVERMECTIN are not necessary. It's a rip-off, as far as I'm concerned. And most vets don't know how to treat it properly anyway.
However, I completely agree with trying topical after oral Ivermectin doesn't work. Or, as is the case in rescues, trying topical first, since it treats lice as well.
Let's please be careful with slinging around medical hearsay until we have documentation to back it up. I just live in fear that some of the wonderful work people have done on this site helping people care for their cavies will be undone by people posting, "well, my vet said." Vets don't always know best. As a matter of fact (and don't we all know this by now?), they usually DON'T when it comes to guinea pigs.
BTW, your story doesn't correspond with that idea if topical was effective for your pigs.
In addition, I HIGHLY suspect that any such study did not factor in topical dosing into the research. Most vets don't even seem to know that you can dose topically.
We need to think about the position that we're in here. People consider this site authoritative (as do I), and I'd like to believe that it is based on sound evidence.
- I GAVE, dammit!
>>In addition, I HIGHLY suspect that any such study did not factor in topical dosing into the research. Most vets don't even seem to know that you can dose topically.<<
You don't need to suspect, I'll come right out and tell you. I immediately asked my vet about topical, and she said the article DID NOT mention topical at all, and SHE was not sure if topical would work.
I tried really hard to qualify my vet's position. Let me do it again like this.
If you have treated your pigs ORALLY for mites, the correct dosage, 7-10 days apart for at least 4 doses, and the pig showed NO IMPROVEMENT, then your pig MAY be one of the VERY RARE ones that does not respond to ORAL ivermectin.
Bosco is showing "some" improvement. In my own opinion, I am waiting for a couple weeks to determine hair re-growth. He is absolutely less sensitive.
Here is what I'll do. I'll get the article from my vet. I think it's important as new info comes out that we be open minded and present these things.
I don't believe it was just hearsay, though, since this was a written article, not just one vet to another.
I'll find the source. We all need to know. I agree with you dosing topically. I was very interested in what my vet told me, because I always treat orally! That's because I use Advantage for lice, topically, and I don't want both meds on my pigs' skin.
So I'll take your chastising, but I would not have posted this had I not had the info from my vet. I'm not one that tends to go around blathering hearsay.
Perhaps I delivered it wrong, or came across wrong.
There is no need to apologize. We need to be made aware of changes in treatment methods, changes in ingredients, etc., as it may very well affect our guinea pigs' lives.
Here is a link of interest regarding Ivermectin Pharmacokinetics:
I can't seem to get the pdf version to load properly on my computer so I'm also including a link to the html version.
The html version:
http://220.127.116.11/search?q=cache:myEZWeLyElUJ:www.vf.uni ... =en&ie=UTF-8
Perhaps this is what your vet was talking about.
I will continue to recommend it and use it myself.
- I GAVE, dammit!
I don't believe ANYWHERE I said that ivermectin was ineffective. I said some pigs are shown to be resistant to ORAL ivermectin.
Man, I always knew how badly things get twisted around on a forum.
Comfortable or not with this info, if it is legitimate, we should just keep our mouths shut?
I'm not understanding this AT ALL.
*Still waiting for the callback from my vet*. You'd think she was busy or something. Sheesh.
This is like people putting out scares for feeding different foods. If you use moderation and general guidelines (so long as there is not a specific medical problem with your pig that would require a different diet), many foods are just fine.
I think the problem lies in the fact that your vet says that perhaps ORAL dosing is not effective in some cases, and therefore your conclusion was that
before you shoot the vet that said ivermectin injections are the only way to be sure you've gotten the mites, for some pigs, he might be right, according to this new info from my vet
This conclusion doesn't even take into account topical dosing, so I don't think you would have gotten such a hot response if you had not said that injections could perhaps be the "only way."
I'm really interested in seeing the evidence when you get it. I'd like to know what the dosage rates were in that study and how many doses were given, etc.
One should keep in mind ivermectin is also used for intestinal parasites. It may also be that different routes are better to treat different bugs. But persistence will still win out (i.e. repeat treatments).