Henry's Thread

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Got Pigs?

Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 10:21 am

Henry I hope you feel better soon. Diana I loved that picture you posted with Henry and you.


Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 5:25 pm

Grandpa Henry has a stone about the size of a green pea.

The good news is that it's too big to get stuck.

The bad news is that it's too big to pass.

There is no sign of sludge, and he is otherwise healthy and perky.

I don't know what we're going to do.

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Bugs Mom

Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 5:29 pm

Poor Henry. Hugs to him. Tough decision you guys have. Unfortunately, since it's bothering him, you have to make a decision. Stupid stones!


Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 5:29 pm

Oh, damn. Can you tell if the metacam helps at all with the discomfort?

Lethal Lover

Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 5:57 pm

I'm sorry you guys. Stones are terrible at any age for a piggie, but with Henry's "advanced" age it's tougher. I know you'll do what's right for Henry and keep him comfortable.

I'm glad he is still perky and happy. My girl Brianca was also and then one day her old body couldn't take her kidney and bladder stone anymore. My good thoughts are with you. Kisses to Henry.


Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 6:25 pm

I'd like some advice.

Henry doesn't tolerate the Metacam very well. Dr. Miller consulted that book by Carpenter and came out with two suggestions:

1. Diluted baby Tylenol
2. Rimadyl (Carprofen)

Does anyone have experience with either of these things?

The problem with the Metacam is that it really irritates Henry's GI system after a few days.

You can quote me

Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 6:41 pm

We had extremely good luck with diluted baby Tylenol. IIRC dose was 1 mg for a roughly 1 kilo pig once a day. We diluted 80 mg of the infant's suspension in 80 mL of Gerber fruit juice, and he took 1 cc of that willingly.

On occasion we gave him more. It only helped and never seemed to hurt him. This pig was on this regimen for over three years.


Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 6:54 pm

That's good to know, Talishan. Dr. Miller thought that of the two, the diluted baby Tylenol would be more work to prepare, but easier on his GI system.

You can quote me

Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 7:08 pm

If you get the little Gerber fruit juice bottles, measure out however many cc's you need to get to 80 (I think they have 123 mL or something like that in them, so remove 43 cc's or whatever it is). Then, dump 80 mg of baby Tylenol into that (our pig liked grape. The baby Tylenol has an 80 mg dose marked, or it's easily figurable, one; I can't remember exactly and it's not in front of me ... but it's a straightforward calculation) and shake violently.

This keeps for 48-60 hours in the fridge. Our pig liked pear. Grape + pear = yuck but he liked it. ;-)

As he aged, we occasionally just shot 1, 2, even 5 mg of the grape suspension straight into his mouth. He never seemed to have difficulty with it ... no evidence of GI problems, nervousness, bleeding, anything.

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Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 9:23 pm

I know Pinta used Rimadyl for years. It used to be all we recommended. I would give it a try (it seems to work better for a few pigs).

I am sorry about the stone.

You can quote me

Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 9:33 pm

Rimadyl does have more of a proven track record in cavies. I suspect it will be harder on his GI tract, and possibly liver.

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I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 10:11 pm

Oh no - not Henry with a stone!

Bad news on the Metacam too.

I can't believe you guys are having to go through this with another pig.

Did you consider Actigall? I had a friend who had a huge success with it - it did dissolve the stone.

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Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 11:10 pm

The information I've found on Actigall shows that it and its metabolic products are excreted into the GI tract and expelled with feces. I can't find a mechanism where it would have an effect on the bladder.

Are you sure the friend used Actigall and it dissolved a /bladder/ stone and not a /gall/ stone?

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I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 11:21 pm

Yes, 100% sure. Dr. Ridgeway treated her pig - the pig is about 8 years old.

I've had trouble getting her to write it up, although I know it's true and she's discussed the details with me several times.

Pinta originally posted a thread on the success of Actigall, and based on that this person tried it down here.


Post   » Tue Aug 26, 2008 11:25 pm

Could you e-mail me the contact for the vet who did the treatment? Maybe my vet could talk with him/her about it.

Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Wed Aug 27, 2008 1:21 am

I am so sorry that Henry has a stone.

Henry is such an amazing guy, and so fortunate to have you and TWP2 caring for him. I hope the Tylenol helps.


Post   » Wed Aug 27, 2008 1:26 am

I just feel like the pigs who come to live with us are doomed. Is it the water? Am I (or Jim) carrying some sort of low-grade infection that the pigs are catching? Is there something in our house?

He lived seven years on a crappy diet! Why is he having problems now?

We knew that we wouldn't have a ton of time with him when we adopted him - I just hate to lose him like this.

Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Wed Aug 27, 2008 1:32 am

I'd rather believe that the guinea pigs who need the most help seem to find the people who will take the best care of them.

It may also be that the years that Henry did not have the best diet have now contributed to his stone.

GP Lover
My home, ruled by pigs!

Post   » Wed Aug 27, 2008 7:11 am

I'm sorry Henry has a stone! Have you installed a water filter? I do think it is a factor so you may want to consider it.

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Post   » Wed Aug 27, 2008 10:09 am

They drink only water that has gone through a Brita filter. And our local water is not chlorinated--they have an advanced ozone filtration system. The water quality is actually far superior to most other locations in the state.

We are considering all options. I would very much like to find a veterinarian or vet teaching hospital that has experience with either chemical bladder flushing to dissolve stones, or ultrasound stone breaking.

There must be a non-surgical solution to this problem.

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