Totally riddled with guilt and sadness

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marlenes mom

Post   » Fri Dec 08, 2017 10:20 am

Hello everyone. This is my first post, sadly.

I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this or not, but I'm just a wreck.

My beautiful Marlene died yesterday. She had been struggling with a UTI, then stomach issues after the antibiotic. I feel so much guilt thinking of the things I *should* have done that I'm a mess. I took her to the emergency vet on a Saturday when I noticed the blood in her urine and coming out of her vulva area. We did an x-ray, no stones and no obvious ovarian cysts. He also did an ultraound, nothing obvious or apparent and so he diagnosed it as a UTI. He prescribed her Baytril, no probiotics. The blood stopped, though her poo was a little runny. A week later, she had a follow up appointment at her usual vet who decided she should stay on the antibiotic for one more week. He also gave us Bene Bac which he told us to use every third day. He didn't mention her weight, she was still eating well and acted really spritely, playing with her toys, wheeking up a storm, acting ravenously hungry so I didn't really worry about it. I left her and her cage mate, Amy, with my parents over Thanksgiving and when I returned, I could tell she had lost weight. Added on that, I thought I saw blood in her urine again. So back to the vet again, this time my husband took her (I wish I had...). The doctor was concerned over her small poos and gave her Reglan. My husband mentioned just two days ago that the vet commented on her weight loss, but didn't tell us to do anything specific to help out besides the Reglan.

That was last Friday. Tuesday, we took in a urine sample when we finally caught it - we still don't have the results. Wednesday morning, she seemed fine, ate a carrot/cucumber and some lettuce. When I got home from work, she was terribly ill. She wouldn't eat, she wouldn't come out of her home. I got on here and saw that I should feed her mashed up pellets and water using a syringe and so I did so all night Wednesday (even through the night) and the next morning (yesterday) she was unable to even lift her head. I rushed her to the vet and by the time we got there, she was laying on her side - dying. The vet said we should put her to sleep and so we did.

I am heartbroken. She was only 3 years old. I feel that I should have done more besides repeated vet visits. I should have feed her by hand, I should have weighed her, I should have researched all this before it was too late. But I didn't and my beautiful Marlene is gone. The doctor believes she had kidney disease and that we did all we could do, but I don't know.

I feel so guilty and now Amy is alone. I don't feel like I can even think of another pig after Marlene and the trauma that we went through with her. I'm not even sure if I should be allowed to get another pig given the fact I let Marlene down.

It all went so fast. A month ago, Marlene wasn't even sick.

Supporter in 2018

Post   » Fri Dec 08, 2017 11:05 am

I'm so sorry for your loss of Marlene. You need to know you did everything you knew to do. Don"t beat yourself up. The only way to know for sure why Marlene died would have been to do a necropsy.

Rest in peace, little Marlene. You are loved and missed.

And got the T-shirt

Post   » Fri Dec 08, 2017 12:01 pm

I'm so sorry you lost her.

But don't blame yourself. Your vet could have done a lot better with instructions to you. And please don't let that keep you from getting a buddy for Amy. She needs another pig, and it's no disrespect to Marlene if you get another. There are guinea pig rescues around you that would help you find a suitable friend for Amy.


Post   » Fri Dec 08, 2017 5:58 pm

I am sorry for your loss. As others have said, don't blame yourself. It is clear from your post you are a caring and compassionate owner. It's always hard to lose one, but there's another pig out there who needs someone like you and a buddy like Amy.

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Post   » Fri Dec 08, 2017 6:02 pm

I am so sorry for your loss. It is easy to blame yourself but I know you did the best you could. You might want to read over for Amy.

marlenes mom

Post   » Fri Dec 08, 2017 6:11 pm

Thank you all. I didn't realize I would be this devastated. My youngest son (10) is terribly upset as well as this is the first animal he's ever lost. We thought we would face a lot more time with her. :-(

Thank you for the info Lynx. I've begun reaching out to a couple of rescue organizations in the area. If you know of any in the Chapel Hill area in NC, please reach out to me. I weighed Amy for the first time (god I wish I had known to do that with them before) and she's a big girl (2lb 3oz)! I'll keep an eye on her.

Thanks for your kind words. I'm still feeling guilty, but with time I think our family will feel at peace.

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Post   » Sun Dec 10, 2017 7:50 pm

I'm so sorry for your loss. I tend to feel horrible guilt when my piggies die, and I can really feel your heartbreak. I agree with what has been said in this thread; your vet could have done a lot of things differently. She let you both down, and I feel like this is a reoccuring problem with vets when treating guinea pigs.

Baytril is a very powerful, broad spectrum antibiotic and will absolutely wipe out a guinea pigs natural gut bacteria. I find it absolutely insane that vets prescribe it without at least informing about how probiotics will counter this.

Don't let the guilt get you down. When I first found guinealynx and read all the posts I felt like the worst person in the world. I was doing a million things wrong. The important thing to remember is that you loved her and truly wanted the best for her. Now she is free from all the pain, and she would probably want the same for her family.

marlenes mom

Post   » Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:45 am

Yes, after going through this, I can't believe that neither the emergency vet nor the regular vet let me know more that I could do or things to watch out for. I should have trusted my instincts and searched for more information on my own. :-(

It's also the reason I'm getting scared about a companion again for Amy. I can't imagine going through it again...

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Post   » Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:47 am

I think life is a process of learning. We do our best the next time around. There may be a guinea pig out there that will give both Amy and you years of joy.

And got the T-shirt

Post   » Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:18 pm

Ditto Lynx. Don't let your last experience keep you from the joy of another pig. And there's plenty of help and support on this board, including folks who can tell you when your vet is screwing things up.

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