Recurring head tilt?

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beefyduck

Post   » Sun Aug 13, 2017 1:59 pm


Exactly one week ago my 2 year old guinea pig had a pretty bad head tilt. We took him to the vet and were prescribed baytril for 10 days. After about 3 or 4 days his head was no longer tilting. Since that first day he's had an interest for food but won't eat anything but grapes and the colored pellets. We've had to put his medicine onto the colored pellets for him to even get near it. Today I'm noticing that his head tilt is coming back. It is very slight but I am worried about it. Is this a serious problem? Should I just continue with the course of baytril and maybe he'll get better or do I need to go back to the vet?

bpatters
And got the T-shirt

Post   » Sun Aug 13, 2017 2:24 pm


You do need to continue the Baytril, but he also needs a serious diet upgrade.

Colored pellets are junk, and are not good for them. He needs a plain timothy pellet -- KMS Hayloft and Oxbow are the best two brands.

You give liquid medications by syringe, not by putting it on food. He may not like it, but he's a guinea pig and you're a large human. You're equipped to win this battle.

You also should be giving a probiotic an hour or so after every dose of antibiotic. Bene-Bac is good if you can get it locally. It's definitely available from Amazon.

Grapes should be only a very occasional treat. They've got a lot of sugar, and too much of it can cause a bad GI upset. You don't want him with another illness in addition to his ear problem.


beefyduck

Post   » Sun Aug 13, 2017 5:09 pm


Don't worry! I haven't just been feeding him grapes all week.

And is putting the antibiotic on the pellet going to hurt him? The baytril is still effective isn't it? He hates being held so I figured if I could feed him that way and save him some stress I'll do it.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Sun Aug 13, 2017 5:13 pm


I don't know if it would affect the ability of it to work but it might mean he's not getting a full dose. Baytril tastes pretty bad, from what I understand.

Read over www.guinealynx.info/tips.html too.

beefyduck

Post   » Thu Aug 17, 2017 11:35 am


Hi again everyone! Beef finished his course of baytril yesterday but he still has a head tilt. The vet gave us some extra baytril so should I go ahead and continue giving him medicine? I called them to ask but am still waiting for them to get back to me.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Thu Aug 17, 2017 9:48 pm


If he is eating well and not losing weight, I would continue the meds and call tomorrow.

beefyduck

Post   » Fri Aug 18, 2017 12:36 am


His weight is fine. His appetite isn't how it used to be. He won't eat his veggies but he is eating hay and pellets. Is this considered eating well?

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Fri Aug 18, 2017 8:55 am


If you are weighing daily right now and your guinea pig is maintaining weight on hay and pellets, that is indeed a good sign.

What kind of pellets are you giving? Not all are equal.

beefyduck

Post   » Fri Aug 18, 2017 12:10 pm


I have been feeding them a kaytee brand pellet. I will order a different kind today if those are not good enough.

Also, do you have any tips on how to make weighing easier?

bpatters
And got the T-shirt

Post   » Fri Aug 18, 2017 1:55 pm


I just plop my pigs in the bowl on the scale. They're scared enough that they don't move.

Kaytee is a lousy brand of pellet. KMS Hayloft and Oxbow are the best ones, and Oxbow would probably be cheaper for you.

CavyGirl04

Post   » Sun Aug 20, 2017 11:11 am


One of my piggies will wander off no matter what, so I use a large (and clean!) cottage cheese container since the sides keep them from going out. I don't know how big your guinea pig is but the fit doesn't need to be too spacious; plop him in, write down the weight, and take him out.
Also, if you think there is ANY chance he might get out, make sure you weigh him in a place where he can't jump out and hurt himself, like on the floor.

I hope this helps! Good luck!

beefyduck

Post   » Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:47 am


Thanks everyone for the help so far :)

I have taken him back to the vet. She believes the infection is too deep in his ear to he cured without se getting into his ear and draining some fluid. She gave us sulfatrim to try but she wasn't hopeful that it'll work because the baytril didn't work. Assuming we don't go the route with more extreme procedures, would Beef be able to make it for much longer with the infection? He eats his hay and pellets and drinks lots of water. He comes to me when I wiggle my fingers. The only thing thats really different about him is he will barely eat vegetables and of course his head tilt. We got some critical care and vitamin c t to make sure he is well nourished. Also, does anyone know if he is in horrible pain or discomfort with his condition?

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Lynx
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Post   » Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:14 pm


I do not know. Look over this page and watch for signs of pain.
www.guinealynx.info/pain.html

Sometimes combinations of antibiotics can be more effective. Not rereading but has he had an xray?

beefyduck

Post   » Mon Aug 21, 2017 11:58 pm


He has not had an xray

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Tue Aug 22, 2017 8:34 am


I believe an xray can show the location and extent of an infection in the ear/skull. You can ask your vet about this.

beefyduck

Post   » Tue Aug 22, 2017 1:06 pm


The vet said an xray wouldn't change the way she wanted to treat him so she chose not to sedate him for a scan.

Just an update on how he is:
-Seems to fall into these short dazes where you can tell he's not really "here" mentally
-poops are very light brown but he is eating critical care and hay and very small bits of lettuce
-sleeps laying down more often than he used to

Talishan
You can quote me

Post   » Tue Aug 22, 2017 2:36 pm


Inner ear infections are usually most responsive to Baytril. That said, bad ones can require an extended course (like as in a month or more) to fully resolve. Sometimes a mild residual tilt is "left over" even after the infection is gone. Most pigs manage just fine with this, but since your pig seemed to improve after the first few days on Baytril, I suspect he needs a higher dose, an extended course, or both.

Chloramphenicol penetrates better than Baytril, but may not be as effective as Baytril. You can ask the vet about it. Also, sometimes a topical ear medication used in conjunction with Baytril orally can help. Ask your vet about adding Baytril Otic (a goopy ear cream applied to the ear) into his treatment regimen.

Sometimes "pulsing" an AB works -- two weeks on, two weeks off; two weeks on, one week off, etc. Ask your vet about this, too.

Some ear infections hurt horribly; some don't hurt at all, and everywhere in between. Do read the signs of pain page linked to above.

My gut hunch is that he needs a longer (or repeated, or both) course of Baytril.

Is this an exotics vet?

http://www.guinealynx.info/records/viewtopic.php?f=66&t=267

(NYC starts about halfway down)

Jersey and Philly just in case:

http://www.guinealynx.info/records/viewtopic.php?f=64&t=265

http://www.guinealynx.info/records/viewtopic.php?f=72&t=272

beefyduck

Post   » Tue Aug 22, 2017 10:37 pm


We do see an exotic vet.

When the baytril didn't work the doctor gave us sulfatrim to try. Do you think going back to baytril would work after being off of it for a week or possibly more?

Also would the vet give me the baytril without actually seeing my pig? They've already seen him twice and they charge so much just for the visit itself.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Wed Aug 23, 2017 7:06 am


You can call and ask about this. If it is not resolving, the vet may be able to change and up the medication. Be aware that baytril can cause issues (primarily losing appetite and sometimes diarrhea).
www.guinealynx.info/antibiotic_advice.html

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