With all my pigs, I set red bell pepper in front of them before starting the subcue. Most of them start munching the pepper after the second subcue. Mad and Itchy seem to wait for the stick, and once it's in, they start eating. I guess it's a distraction.
If Dr. R says no surgery, then it's probably not a good idea. In my experience, he is a very optimistic vet and willing to do surgery even if it is a little risky.
With stones occurring, there is always a possibility that there is kidney malfunction. If so, more stones will likely occur. Since Valentine came into the rescue very malnourished, with scurvy and bad mites, it wouldn't surprise me if there was damage to the kidneys. One of the pigs I subcue, Itchy, came in this condition with his brother and ultrasound showed that they both had damaged kidneys.
We think that the others in Valentine's group may be 6 or 7 years old. One died this year of possible heart failure. So perhaps this might be an issue of making her comfortable. You did a very kind thing by adopting a senior pig and gave her a chance of having a wonderful home, so whatever happens remember that she has had a great second life.
- You are my sunshine
Subsequent x-rays showed that the stones had not passed so we were keeping her comfortable with heart and pain medicines.
In January 2008, Mum (who has been incredibly helpful in so many ways), sent me a link posted by pinta about the drug Actigall for bladder stones.
I took that to Dr. R and here is his information:
I have been conservatively treating a 9+ year old female intact guinea pig for a 2 – 3 mm bladder stone. I did not believe she was a good candidate for anaesthesia and cystotomy based upon the size of her heart and her age.
At the urging of the owner and great information from www.guinealynx.info/, I started her on a regimen of Ursodiol (Actigall®).
In a little over 6 weeks the bladder stone resolved radiographically and the guinea pig’s clinical symptoms resolved (blood in the urine and discomfort urinating).
The dosage we used was:
Mix one 300 mg capsule of Ursodiol (Actigall®) with 2 mls of mixing liquid, give 0.5 cc orally one time a day for 8 days, then mix one 300 mg capsule of Ursodiol (Actigall®) with 4 mls of mixing liquid, give 0.5 cc orally daily for 1 – 2 months.
William V. Ridgeway, Jr., D.V.M.
Long Beach Animal Hospital, Inc.
3816 E. Anaheim Street
Long Beach, CA 90804-4005
In addition to her medicine I supplemented her diet with Critical Care every day.
Valentine continued to have a great quality of life. She was happy, perky and very opinionated until a few days ago when she passed away at 4:00 a.m. in my arms.