About 20 minutes later, Jim discovered that Linus had pulled part of a plastic bag our newspapers come in through the grids of the cage. It was heavily chewed, and a couple of little pieces are missing.
Now he's acting fine, drinking and eating. We called the vet at K-State, and she said that if he's breathing, the main thing will be to watch and make sure he's pooping.
*sigh* I feel horrible that that bag was so close to the cage. Anything else we need to watch for?
I hope Linus will be ok. It seems like the most danger could be them choking or suffocating on it.
Meggielou, that's basically what happened here. I use those bags the newspaper comes in to shovel poop into , and just like May, Linus was fascinated with it. After nearly choking on it, he seemed to swallow it. The poops are still coming out, and he's acting fine.
Also, the little bits that are missing--any of them pouch-shaped, can you tell? As in, a corner of that bag or something? That is what would worry me most--if you got something inside Linus that could then fill up with fecal matter and possibly cause a blockage.
Fingers crossed that this too shall pass.
As painstaking as it is keep him on towels and begin checking all his poops to be sure it comes out. It can stay stuck inside him somewhere for days, weeks or months then later the problem from it being stuck in there arises.
Do whatever you can to keep him eating a LOT of hay. Try different hays just to keep him eating a lot of it. if he isn't a big drinker keep syringing fluids into him.
He eats tons of hay. I toss in clumps large enough to require to hands to carry them (the piles are usually taller than the guinea pigs), and he and Tom work on them until there isn't a strand left. This usually takes three hours.
I will call my vet and see what she thinks. Interestingly, one of her big questions was what type of plastic was it - a soft plastic (like grocery bags) or a hard plastic (probably like coroplast).
But he also said that they tend to chew things up very tiny so it passes through their system. It's not like the pig can swallow a bag whole.
My pig ate one of those wee wee pads - a lot of it too - and we found no zinc and nothing became of it.
- You can quote me
If he were mine I'd make sure he has plenty of fluids, plenty of hay, and a little mineral oil. Then I swear I'd go through every single dropping he produced and pick it apart, until I either 1) found the piece or 2) went stark raving mad.
If it was only a small piece, I think the chances are very good he'll pass it without it causing any more problems. Was it by any chance an odd color? Sometimes the newspapers use pink, white or another color than clear. That'd be easier to see.
He's drinking plenty of water and eating lots of hay and everything else we put in front of him. I did call the vet and asked her opinion about the mineral oil. She said it wouldn't hurt, but we would have to be able to monitor him closely to make sure that he was drinking enough water. She also said that the mineral oil was more effective on things that really get lodged, like hairballs, and didn't know how much of a difference it would make on really chewed up plastic (which this was).