Worried I began to forcefeed him and decided on a veterinary appointment on Wednesday. Wendesday morning before phoning the vet after force feeding 5ml of water and badly-blended pellets the night before, Ki seemed okay. Later I noticed him fluffing and sulking again so I called.
The vet gave him three injections: Antibiotics (Baytril), pain killers and Vitamin B (D?) to encourage him to want to eat. He was also given oral baytril to take at home (20ml given twice a day. I don't know the concentration.)
On Thursday I noticed that he was eating he just seemed to eat then give up or lose interest in eating. For example: I gave him a leaf of romaine lettuce to eat, he nibbled at a corner then turned to stare at the wall. I gave him a small leaf of lettuce, he ate it all. I put a vitamin C tablet in his mouth and he chewed and ate it.
I contined to syringe feed him, this time a pellet-water-rehydration-sachet combination. He took 15ml (including that which went on him and me) and between feeds I noticed that he was grinding his teeth. I thought: TEETH! His teeth hadn't been checked yet.
So Today (Friday) I forcefed him in the morning and spoke with my mum about his tooth grinding. We went in early morning for a vet appointment and the vet checked his teeth with one of those endiscope-thingies. Unconvinced he admited Ki for anasthetic for his teeth to be examined. At this point Ki weighed about 2lbs.
We recently got him back, the vet said that his molars are fine but there was a lump of food at the back of his throat which they removed like he was finding it difficult to swallow. They fed him afterwards and he seemed disinterested but nibbled but he's lighter now than he was when he went in.
Any thoughts? Suggestions? Any relations?
Klynne - After the toothgrinding (which encouraged me to go to the vet) he has returned from the vet. I mentioned the grinding to the vet although I had asked them to check his teeth since he began to grind his teeth when fed. As I mentioned, they found a glob of food that hadn't gone down into his stomach at the back of his throat. This has been removed. When he returned from the vet at about 4pm (it's now 7pm) I fed him some more of the pellet mixture with some science recovery mixed in (5ml) He ate it and afterwards I kept him with me, he hasn't repeated the teeth-grinding. I fed him some more after a break, he became agitated with me when I took too long (I was reading GL between feeding.) but again hasn't repeated the behaviour.
If he does begin to grind his teeth again, I'll definatly take him straight back. It's frustrating that I can't be sure of WHAT caused the pain in the first place: is he not eating because of the pain or is eating causing the pain, kind of thing.
Jennicat recently instructed me on how to find old threads (shows how much attention I pay to the small text of the front forum page.) which I thought were deleted after months of disuse (because that happens on another forum I'm on.) :/ Now I feel like a tech-idiot.
I put a warm water bottle in beside Kiyoshi once I'd fed him another 5ml of science recovery + pellet + veggie mix. I then went out, with the intention that going away from the house would stop me from continuously poking and prodding at him out of worry. Before I left, I offered both pigs a quarter of tomato. Tomato being another of his delicious delights.
He snatched it and turned to hide. Happy that he was being "possessive" of his tomato I left and now I'm back. I went to check in on him before I have to give him his baytril and nightly feed. First I searched for the tomato, all but a gooey blob was eaten. Before I left to get his FF and baytril ready I noticed him nosing in at the pellets. I squeeked with delight but I remember that Ghost use to poke at pellets then lose weight.
When I returned with his stuff I watched him nose through hay. I feel happier and I'm hoping that food perhaps just got caught at the back of his throat, perhaps which the vet cleared. That he's no longer sulking in a corner has cheered my mood.
I have given him 5ml of thick FF mixture, baytril and I'm about to VitC-dose him. I'll weigh him tomorrow morning.
- Let Sleeping Pigs Lie
At mealtimes, you can weigh Kiyoshi before feeding, and then afterwards. I do this with one of my pigs when I'm concerned if she's really eating.
I can't even imagine going to my cavy vet telling them one of my babies is straining to pee and poop and the the first thing out of their mouth not being, "We need to do x-rays". Something seems just not right.
I'm not happy that I can't point to an exact cause of why he stopped eating in the first place.
Maremma - My vet is as savvy as I can get here, they're keen to learn and have advanced in their guinea pig knowledge a lot since my first vet visits with them. Some vets are more savvy than others, and they're keen to consult each other - I'm happy with them.
Ki's straining was while pooping only, not peeing. At the time his poos were elongated and slimey, perhaps he was having difficulty passing them? I haven't noticed him straining when his poos have become firmer. My surgery tends to provide antibiotics and pain killers (which they did) first before they begin other tests, in this case it was anasthetic for a teeth check because that was what the symptoms (teeth grinding) made me think of first when I was consulting with Jennicat in IM's. If, at any point, I had considered the possibility of UTI or bladder stones, of which I've had a pig who DID present the symptoms of it, I would have pushed for an x-ray if his teeth were fine. As it happens, they found a glob of food at the back of his throat - it was removed yesterday and today he has begun eating again.
Thanks for your input, though.
- Cavies 'n Cobwebs
Avipro Plus or Bio Lapis powder or acidophilus capsules (split to release the powder) sprinkled over the food an hour or two after the Baytril will help settle the stomach by replacing any good bacteria killed off by the antibiotic. When I use it, I sprinkle a pinch over some wet veg twice a day, cucumber is good for this.
Although there will be pre and probiotic in the sachet feed it will depend when this is given in relation to the antibiotic so the additional may help.
A squashed up poop from a healthy pig mixed with a little water can help too as an alternative.
The other probiotics can be bought online (including from Thistle) or from your vet and acidophilus capsules can also be found in health food shops or good chemists.
Webs - I wasn't giving probiotics after the baytril, but after spying them on TC's page I had been debating investing in them. You never know when you'll need backup medication other than the herbivore-mix stuff. This time I was stealing poops from Cashew alongside those Ki did pass.
Would you suggest the sachets of probiotics or the acidophilus capsuels from health food shops? Is there a difference? And do you think that it makes a difference?