I cleaned them with some Nizoral shampoo in case it was fungal and the Ketoconazole (active ingredient) does any good. They are not swollen or sore looking, but looked more like there was a deposit of some sort. They seemed dry.
I´m adding a couple pics I took today (one here and one on another post):
She was a very small pig even as an adult, and seemed to be sterile--she had been with boars but never conceived.
(Is there a spell check somewhere that I am missing?)
That doesn´t sound very encouraging. I´ll keep my eye on them and see if I can get it cleared up. In the last month or so she has become much more dominant and been mounting her two mates where she had never done so before.
Second pic -- it could possibly be dry skin, not sure yet. I´ll try oiling it again:
If any fluid was coming out of a non nursing sows´ teat - I´d worry. Also if the teats seem unusually large. They don´t have to appear swollen, infected, or hot, just large. Abnormally large teats can be a sign of pyometra, infection of the lining of the uterus. The hormones get out of whack resulting in larger than normal teats. Checking for size abnormalities in teats is part of our weekly health check.
Perhaps some mineral oil will moisturize them enough for you to discern if there is something to worry about.
Pyometra can be "diagnosed" by ultrasound or palpating the tummy. An infected uterus is much larger than normal and should be easily felt. The only cure I know of for pyometra is spaying. Antibiotics do not travel well to the uterus lining(the gist of what my vet told me).
If she does have pyometra and it isn´t treated it will prove fatal in time.
A vet visit might be a good idea.
Samantha´s teats were twice of the other sows. She was diagnosed with pyometra via ultrasound. Sam had no whitish deposits on her teats.
Your pig´s unusual sexual activity could also be a sign of hormones out of whack. Yup, seems a vet visit might be a good idea.
- Little Jo Wheek
Hmmm. Pinta may be on to something. She just reminded me of more awful options if there´s
discharge from the teats. Cancers cause hormonal changes and unusual/atypical signs of reproduction (in addition to the valid pyometra suggestion). I don´t want to cause more worry, but I would definitely suggest a vet visit. If anything, it would only prove hypochondria (which I definitely have) or perhaps be an early diagnosis of a more serious problem.
Did the discharge/whitish substance return after the bath? Just curious.
A rescue pig--don´t know if she was ever pregnant or not had a weird look to her nipple. I actually managed to (very carefully) squeeze out this hard black round thing that looked very like a piggie poo, but wasn´t. I think it must have been a dried coagulation of milk, so I assumed,well she must have had babies before. She was very sensitive there, didn´t particular like me getting it out, but was much relieved when I did.
I don´t have much confidence in the few vets who treat cavies around here so I like to get as good an idea of what might be going on before hauling her to see one. I think a couple months ago she had a urinary tract infection -- got a course of baytril and some bactrim and seemed to heal up fine. I think I wrote you about that (this is the same pig). The vet had palpated her and felt nothing. She is not overweight so things are fairly accessible. For what it´s worth, I can´t feel anything lumpy either.
I think her grease gland is working overtime these days too.
If you have any advice for exactly what the vet should be looking for, that would help. I think often they don´t look very hard for things -- perhaps because some owners want simple answers and solutions instead of doing what it takes to find out what is really wrong.
I actually don´t know how long it´s been going on. Often you don´t notice things unless you look or they bite you in the face. She did see a vet who didn´t notice either (and it might not have been there a couple months back).
This is kind of why I would love to have a weekly check list put up in the reference forum for people who would like a few other things to watch. Maybe I´ll start a thread here and people can add things -- I can condense it and put it there later.
Well, good news -- the stuff came off pretty easily with softening, it doesn´t look red underneath. It had seemed fairly well attached before. I will keep an eye on the area and check it tomorrow to see if it indeed is still okay and not reddened. I think it was skin, though it was a strange place to get a build-up. Snowflake is also the only pig I have that also gets spur-like growths on her feet.
Well she is going to hate me now, I´m going to try and get it off. How exactly did you do it Lynx.
By the way, the deposits in guinea pig ears (the epitheal cells? don´t remember for sure how to spell it) are dark in dark eared piggies and light in light eared pigs. So a dark eared pig may look like it has dirt but it is just sloughing cells (there still may be dirt and wax that should be cleaned off).
Are her nipples somewhat bigger than other female´s nipples? You might not notice anything with the grease gland if she is dark. I think Snowflakes is more active than a typical female´s grease gland.
Maybe we need to come up with a special name for this condition. I used to call her my PMS pig -- might do, refers to hormones. We´ll have to give it a think.
Some people advocate spaying every sow to prevent ovarian tumours and/or cysts. The surgery is invasive and a spay is riskier for pigs than cats and dogs. If your vet is experienced and you are careful with post-op care, most spays are successful.
I have lost pigs to spaying surgeries and I have had successful spays done on 5-year-old sows. Personally I haven´t experienced the huge percentage of cysts that are "supposed" to occur in sows. The rate of cystic ovaries in our herd runs at about 25%. This is about the same rate others with large herds have experienced. Some textbooks report a rate of 79%(I think) but do not make clear whether these are lab animals or companion pets. Numbers can be skewed easily. If the high rate is among companion pets taken to the vet - it´s useless sonce the stats don´t take into account all the sows who have no health problems and NEVER see a vet. If it´s among lab animals - there is a question of genetics. Are the lab animals related? If someone has stats on these "studies" I´d love to see them.
I recently asked my vet if it was worth routinely spaying all sows to avoid problems like Pyometra(sp?). She felt the surgical risks outweighed the potential health benefits and recommended against routine spaying. So we only spay when medically required.
- Little Jo Wheek
As far as I know, I have had a very low incidence of ovarian cysts (and no confirmed ovarian tumors after biopsies/post mortems). The two sows I have had with ovarian cysts have been a mother and daughter, so genetics is definitely suspect. Two sows out of probably close to 50 in the past 18 years isn´t a bad ratio at all. Never had a pyo sow. The rate of reproductive cancers and tumors in dogs and cats seem much higher than pet cavies. You can bet on intact dogs and cats to develop some sort of malignancy when not altered at an early age. I´m sure lab cavies have higher incidences of ALL disorders in general. The care is much different, exposure to pathogens and artificial environments high, and gene pools are closely related. Let´s not even get into the fact that they are routinely destroyed and necropsied as soon as their purpose has been fulfilled.
I also think that there may be piggy menopause, decreased libido, or something like that later in life. I have had several sows over the age of 5 seem to have decreased/silent or non-existent estrus cycles when they had previously been more obvious.