All was well until a few weeks later when I noticed Purdie occasionally squeaking when she peed - she wasn't always squeaking but sometimes she would.
On the 8th of July we took Purdie back to the vets and her urine sample did show up traces of blood (not visible to the naked eye). Once more we were given the 10 day course of Baytril but told to come back after the 10 days for her to be checked again. We brought her back but for once Purdie had an empty bladder so there was no sample to test. The vet did physically examine her bladder though and said it definitely didn't feel swollen at all.
Fast forward to this week and once again Purdie is occasionally squeaking when she pees. Is this a really stubborn UTI and if so what length of treatment does she need? Or does this point to it being something else, bladder stones?
She doesn't seem to have a problem pooping at all, her behaviour is normal, her weight has gone up 2-3oz the last couple of months but I wasn't overly concerned about that as she is such a slim wee thing - she's 2lb 6oz now but still looks small next to the others.
I'll make sure they properly test her urine this time around and ask about trying bactrim.
She hasn't had an x-ray no, the local vets will not do one without sedation for some reason. I'll try and find out if good vet will do one properly for us.
- You can quote me
Our vets will try an x-ray without sedation on a calm pig. They won't try on a wriggly one. If Purdie is a real wriggle-butt, you might want to have her lightly sedated for x-ray, unless, without reading back, there's a serious reason for her not to have sedation.
Stones can hide and be hard to find; two views (usually ventral-dorsal and lateral, but with fancy equipment you can do others) are necessary to make sure the vet doesn't miss anything. This is one case where they really need to be still and the x-rays really need to be clear.
You're not an eejit. I suspect your local vets jump to Baytril without considering trimeth. Many vets that are reasonably competent but truly aren't super cavy and exotics experts do just that.
I wouldn't mind her being lightly sedated if we really need to, I'm just very wary after the time we had Rosie sedated for her x-ray last year and being an undiagnosed heart pig she took about 2 weeks to get over it, needing handfed round the clock and so on. It scared the bejeezus out of me, and while I don't suspect Purdie of being a heart pig at all, I'd rather avoid the sedation if possible. If she needs it I'll get good vet to do it :)
I'll definitely get good vet to do it I think, he knows his piggie stuff and I need to know I can trust the results.
I think I'm so used to just telling the local vets what I want done, I expect them to miss things so I shouldn't be missing them as well! I think what I'll do is get Purdie her bactrim this week and talk to good vet about an x-ray for her next week. If he agrees to do them without sedation especially I could always take Rosie along and get a newer x-ray done of her as well.
Thank you for all the advice again!
The sample was too small for a culture to be done, but we have a prescription of Septrim (Bactrim) for her with the instructions that if there is no improvement at the weekend to get her an x-ray. We will book an x-ray with Good vet and devise a plan of action with him.
I am very worried that this is going to turn out to be bladder stones but I'm hoping for the best, that it is a UTI that the Septrim/Bactrim will fix.
Thankfully today was our appointment with our far away but super guinea pig vet. He ran several x-rays of her and did not find any evidence of bladder stones in her bladder or any lodged in her urethra. However, her bladder lining was very thickened. He compared a fresh urine sample with the one I collected late last night and while the older one had blood in it, the newer one was totally clear! We could quite clearly see the difference visually when he showed us, the older sample was decidedly pink and a bit murky looking as well.
Nothing really out of the ordinary showed up on her x-ray at all (this is a really good vet who has treated hundreds, if not more!, guinea pigs) but given the presence of blood in the older sample, our case history over the past few months, and her thickened bladder wall, he is going with a diagnosis of suspected interstitial cystitis.
Obviously I'm glad no stones are present in her at all, but this is not the diagnosis I was holding out hope for. However, we are remaining positive right now, just like Purdie always does :)
Our vet recommended a three week course of Septrim, and at least two weeks of Rimadyl. I am very glad of the latter as hopefully this will ease her discomfort. As I type, Purdie has been totally fine today! But as I have come to realise, this means nothing about what tomorrow will bring.
I have one slight snag in that because the vet didn't have Septrim in stock I had to pick it up from my local vets, and they have given me it at the dose of 0.5ml once daily, when I am pretty sure (using the GL calculator, and having found that Septrim is identical to Bactrim in chemical make-up and suspension) that she should be on 0.65ml twice daily. (Weighing as she does at just over 1kg). I'm pretty sure this is why it seemed to have so little effect before as well :/
Jon is going to phone the far away vets practise in the morning and get conformation of what our good vet wrote down as the dosage so we can know for sure. I have no problem demanding more meds when needed from the local vets!
Good vet also asked us back in exactly two weeks so he can check her progress. I'm hopeful that perhaps this extended antibiotic course will clear her up, but if it is an ongoing problem we will be talking about the best methods of prevention and treatment for her comfort. I'll be reading up on all the interstitial cystitis info and threads on Guinea Lynx in the meantime!
(PS, good vet used Purdie's x-ray to compare with a suspected heart pig in at the same time and so Purdie inadvertently helped diagnose a heart piggie - yay!)
I noticed also that high calcium foods made her miserable,so she's been doing very well these last two weeks without any romaine and just a sprig of parsley twice a week.
That is definitely a possibility Lynx :/ I would guess that if the Rimadyl does not succeed in bringing the thickness of the bladder wall down after the two weeks then it is likely it could be sludge. I will definitely bring that up at the follow up appointment.
Thank you for the links tracis :) I am going to be spending this weekend reading through them all and learning up on the condition and treatments for Purdie.
Thanks for mentioning the high calcium foods Yuugi, I'm going to tamper around with the diet a bit and see if I can get a menu together that falls in the right ratio every day.