Sully's a little under the weather, or, I'm a hypochondriac.

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TwoWhitePiggies

Post   » Tue Nov 15, 2005 8:50 pm


For the past couple of days, Sully will have spells were he's all fluffed up, making little wheeks. Then, a few hours later, he'll happily run around, eat, drink, etc. His ears and feet are cold, but then our outdoor temperatures just plummeted. We checked him for impaction and he doesn't seem to be having trouble there. His eyes and nose are clear. He's not coughing or sneezing. Should I be concerned? Could he be having built up gas or something?

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Tue Nov 15, 2005 8:54 pm


Look to see if he is passing sludge.

TwoWhitePiggies

Post   » Tue Nov 15, 2005 9:01 pm


What does sludge look like?

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salana
GL is Just Peachy

Post   » Tue Nov 15, 2005 9:07 pm


Get him to pee on a towel (not a yellow or tan towel, though). It looks like sand. Also look for blood.

TwoWhitePiggies

Post   » Tue Nov 15, 2005 9:09 pm


You know, I think this might be what's going on. I will check when I get home from work tonight, but I noticed an odd splotch on their bedding towels that was really white, but unlike their usual urine, looked a little grainy. Of course, I saw just the one splot, and I have no idea which pig did it. Do they just expel the sludge, or is this a sign of a bigger problem?

Is this a vet emergency, or do I just adjust his diet? From what I'm seeing on the web site, it looks like sludge is caused by too much calcium.

ellenvega
Skol Pigs!

Post   » Tue Nov 15, 2005 10:09 pm


Check out the stones page: http://www.guinealynx.info/stones.html

If he's passing blood, having difficulty urinating or acting like he's in pain he needs a vet quickly.

TwoWhitePiggies

Post   » Tue Nov 15, 2005 10:28 pm


I just got home from work and looked in the cage. The one little pile of possible sludge is the only one I'm seeing. Sully is running around and eating and drinking water. I'm going to isolate him for a little while to see if he urinates.

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TWP_2

Post   » Tue Nov 15, 2005 10:45 pm


All right, we're going to isolate him for a while tonight and have a 'pee vigil'. Then we'll know for sure who's doing what, and whether there are sandy crystals in the pee of either piggie.

No illness permitted! It's a rule!

TwoWhitePiggies

Post   » Wed Nov 16, 2005 9:41 am


We isolated Sully for about 45 minutes and he urinated quite normally and made several poos. Some of them were normal, some of them were small, thin and a lighter color. When I get home from work tonight, I will check him again for impaction to make sure I didn't miss something.

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TWP_2

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 12:13 am


Update: When I got home tonight, I noticed many Gilbert-sized poos in the cage, but no Sully poos. And then, right before my eyes, Sully peed blood. I called the vet, who was just about to leave the clinic.

We brought Sully in (and Gilbert, who can't seem to be left without Sully, came along for the ride). She checked to make sure his bladder was still emptying and then gave him some antibiotics. We go back in tomorrow morning for x-rays and any additional treatment/surgery. The good news is that within about four hours of starting antibiotics, Sully started pooping again, and continues to pee in a dribbling fashion. We're scheduled to bring him in at 8:30 n the morning.

(Doh! I just noticed I'm logged in as Jim (TWP_2) and not myself (TwoWhitePiggies).)

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 12:22 am


I wish you the best.

TwoWhitePiggies

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 12:52 am


Thanks for the good wishes, Lynx. It just breaks my heart to hear him squeaking as he pees, poor little guy.

Naturally, Sully would have to get sick now that the temperatures have dropped into the 30s outside, which makes me have to worry about exposing him to the cold.

TwoWhitePiggies

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 11:08 am


We took Sully to the vet this morning and he got his x-ray. (I wish doctors' offices and hospitals for humans could turn x-rays around that fast!) Dr. Miller showed us the x-ray, which indicated one relatively large stone in his bladder. She said that it was too big to lodge in his ureter, but that there could be other sludge in there that could give Sully more trouble, and that the stone would probably grow and continue to aggrevate him over time.

Since there didn't seem to be any immediate risk, we decided to take Sully home and give him a couple of days on the antibiotics to get his current discomfort under control. We're debating what to do...we are more than willing to take him back early next week to do the surgery if it will help in the long run, but there is always risk involved with surgery, and that makes us nervous.

Does anyone here have any advice?

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amyjane

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 1:15 pm


I would suggest you get the surgery. Pippin has had two stone removals so far. One was a pea-sized stone that had indeed lodged in his urethra. Never say never on stones not leaving the bladder, in my opinion.

I know you're nervous about the surgery with Sully feeling under the weather, but I think you should proceed anyway. I kept hoping Pippin would feel a little better, but with the stone, it just wasn't happening. They go downhill VERY quickly sometimes with stones. You also have other worries with the longer you keep the stone in, such as uremic poisoning.

Just for clarification, because I think you're confused (or maybe its just a typo). Ureters go from the kidney to the bladder. The urethra goes from the bladder to the penis (or vagina, if that's the case).

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 1:17 pm


If he's basically healthy and you can manage AND you have an experienced vet, I would have the stone removed. They don't dissolve away and no matter what the vet says, I think there is always a possibility of lodging in the ureter or causing serious life threatening complications.

--------------------------

I just read your remarks above, amyjane. I guess I'm one of the people who confuses the two.

Do read all you can on Becky's stones diet.
www.guinealynx.info/stones.html

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amyjane

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 1:22 pm


They sound so darn similar, its easy to confuse them. I just like to clarify, because a stone lodged in the ureter is bad news, while a stone in the urethra is often operable.

Oh, if you do proceed with the surgery, be sure and ask your vet to send the stone off for analysis. Good to know what kind of stone you're dealing with.

TwoWhitePiggies

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 9:44 pm


The vet did tell us that the stone won't disolve, and that she expects it is made up of calcium (I can't remember the exact word she used, but it sounded like calcium).

Our vet has done guinea pig spaying and neutering, and has removed lots of stones from dogs and cats, but has not had much experience removing stones from guinea pigs. (Part of the problem is that in this city, guinea pigs are disposable, so why not just get another pig if the one you have is sick?) It sounds like they do lots of surgeries on rodents in general, though, because they have pretty set procedures for handling rodents (putting them on antibiotics after surgery, doing the surgery in the morning when possible so that they have all day to recover and be watched by vets and technicians, sending them home late in the afternoon because they tend to be freaked out by staying at the clinic over night, etc.) She said they use...it sounded like "internal disolvable sutures."

We'll ask lots more questions of the vet, but I have a few questions about what to do about Gilbert:

Gilbert totally freaked out being left home alone this morning. He was cowering in the corner when we got back from the vet, and then he physically guarded Sully the rest of the morning after we put Sully back in the cage. How can we relieve Gilbert's anxiety?

How long will Sully need to have his own space to recover?

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TWP_2

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 9:57 pm


They may fight on occasion, but their devotion to each other is very strong. It's kind of a tear-jerker to see how willing Gilbert is to put himself between Sully and anything that might hurt Sully.

Jim

pinta

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 10:22 pm


Send them both to the vet when Sully gets his surgery. It will help Sully when he wakes up to be next to his buddy. We always send a buddy with a pig to the vets to reduce stress. They wait together in the basket for the surgery and then share the basket when the Patient comes back.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Thu Nov 17, 2005 10:50 pm


The one surgery that took some recovery time (Snowflake's spay), she was in a warm, enclosed recovery chamber -- I'
m guessing maybe 2' square (my memory may be faulty). Would a pig that is sedated need to wake up on his own? Would a second pig be upset and nudge him before he woke?

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