Crackling noise from my little pig

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TedandHoney

Post   » Sun Apr 03, 2011 2:46 pm


Hi, I have a pig who is about a year and a half old neutered male. He lives with a female guinea pig who is about one year old.

The male made a slight crackling noise when breathing yesterday. I haven't heard him make this noise before. He was loudest when in his cage, I went straight over and got him out, as he was on my knee the noise become quieter and quieter until there was no noise at all. He is a long hair guinea pig so I gave him a groom after this and then cleaned out his cage. This was last night and he has not made any noise similar since. He is happy interacting with his cage mate, eating and drinking, and running about.

I have been reading other threads about URI's and heart problems, and I am going to ring my vets asap tomorrow morning to see what they think. my vet is quite knowledgeable on cavies. The same pig has had problems before, after being neutered but this was months ago and skin related. I am wondering if he may have allergies and if this may be the cause of the noise, does anyone know much about cavy allorgies?

Up until maybe 2-3 months ago I kept both pigs on carefresh and hay. About 1 1/2 months ago my female appeared to have a skin problem, she went straight to the vets, had two injections and this has since cleared up. My vet recommended only keeping them on burgess or timothy hay, which I now do. I do however keep my pigs on shavings, as about 3 months ago I built them a huge indoor cage and carefresh was costing me too much to use. I have heard about using fleece, but I can really only clean them out once/twice a week and they aren't quite litter trained. I am worried that using the shavings might have irritated my males nose though. He has always done the occasional sneeze and there haven't been many more than normal, but could he be allergic to the shavings?

After the crackling stopped and I had cut his hair a little, I cleaned out their cage as usual and replaced the hay and shavings. He has since not made the noise again, his breathing isn't any more visible or rapid, as I have read about this being quite serious, so I keep checking.

Sorry this is such a long description, I'm just a little worried about him. He seems completely fine in himself now, but I know that pigs can hide their illnesses well.

Any help would be much appreciated, I am new to the forum and only came across it through another great guinea pig information website :)

Debs4Pigs

Post   » Sun Apr 03, 2011 3:10 pm


Is it dusty at all or the hay? Crackling isn't good.

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TedandHoney

Post   » Sun Apr 03, 2011 3:38 pm


The hay doesn't seem very dusty. I make sure I buy dust extracted hay, to avoid mights as well as any unwanted dust. The shavings are quite fine though and I'm wondering if this might be a problem.

Debs4Pigs

Post   » Sun Apr 03, 2011 5:58 pm


It's good that he's still eating and acting normal. See what your vet says. But, keeping them only on hay isn't very absorbent. They would get pee all over them.

C Cole-Chakotay

Post   » Sun Apr 03, 2011 7:45 pm


A good alternative to hay for bedding is fleece. Many people use fleece over towels for their pigs. I use it for my three and it works very nicely.

I'm glad you're consulting your vet about your boy. Best of luck to you both.

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sus4rabbitsnpigs

Post   » Mon Apr 04, 2011 2:05 am


You should still feed them hay to eat but ditto not using hay as bedding.

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TedandHoney

Post   » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:41 am


I don't keep them on hay alone, to be honest this would be impossible as my girl pig eats every piece of hay you give her so there would hardly be anything on the floor! I use shavings and hay at the moment. I meant when I give them hay I don't buy the cheaper kind, I only give them Timothy or Burgess.

C. Cole-Chakotay can I ask how often you change the fleece? I have seen that a lot of people use fleece instead, but I can only really clean the cage twice a week at the moment.

My vets said that I should keep an eye on him and if the noise or any other symptoms appear I should call them straight away. He seems perfectly fine today. He has always been the "problem" pig out of the two though so I am keeping a close eye on him.

Thanks for all your help :)

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worldangel

Post   » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:52 am


I used fleece and I only need to change them every 3 to 4 days. It doesn't smell that bad especially when now they have been using the 'toilet' area more often. I cleaned out the 'toilet' daily though.

The fleece remains dry and clean even up to 3 days. I put a thick bath towel underneath the fleece to soak up any urine they might have accidentally leaked onto the fleece and so far it has been working well. And yes, they enjoyed running around on the fleece to the point that if I put them on any other material now, they refused to run and sit down anymore, they will just 'stand' as if they can't stand the feel of it >.< Talk about spoilt princesses!

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Jaycey
Supporter in 2014

Post   » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:26 am


It could be the wood shavings that they're bedded on.

My Fozzy was quite a sensitive guy, and I couldn't use the hay from Pets At Home. I asked them if it was dust extracted and they claimed it was. He was fine when I swapped over to Megazorb and only gave him Timothy Hay.

C Cole-Chakotay

Post   » Mon Apr 04, 2011 8:09 pm


It depends on the pig how often you change the fleece. Right now, I can go two weeks for Tulip because she does most of her business in her litter pan. Buffy and Ginger are also on fleece, but I think I will change theirs more often. If I feel the fleece is really dirty, I change it before two weeks.

Tulip is in a 2 x 5 C&C cage with a 1 x 2 kitchen area. Buffy and Ginger are in a 2 x 5 C&C cage and their litter pan takes up about 1 x 1 grid. I'm thinking of making their kitchen larger by building my own coroplast pan.

dmppiggie

Post   » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:15 pm


I go about 4 days with my girls--three pigs in a 2x4 C&C. I'm hoping when I expand their cage they can go a little longer.

dmppiggie

Post   » Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:37 pm


I go about 4 days with my girls--three pigs in a 2x4 C&C. I'm hoping when I expand their cage they can go a little longer.

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TedandHoney

Post   » Sun Apr 10, 2011 1:55 pm


Thanks for all your help. After another trip to the vets yesterday (he started making the noise again and this time it lasted a lot longer) he was diagnosed with URI. The vets say I did very well to pick it up as it is in its very early stages. He is now on a course of baytril and is still happy running around his cage.

I am still keeping him on shavings for now, with a view of changing once I have used up this last batch, so thanks for all the help and information about fleece. I have a 3x4 C&C cage and Carefresh is just not an option as it is so expensive.

I do keep him with a cage mate and I asked the vet if URIs are contagious. He said that it is unsure how they are caught, is this true? I will be keeping a close eye on my other pig, but if URIs are transmittable between guinea pigs I would rather separate her so she stands a chance of not catching it too.

Thanks again for all your help!

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