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Dental Dental Piggy Help

MCpiggy

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Hello all!

Unfortunate that this has to be my reason for joining & first post in the forums, but here it goes.

I have an intact boar (3yo) who has been through three sedated molar trimmings and a dental abscess drainage/tooth removal since June 25th of this year. Two months of Critical Care, metacam, and cisapride/chloramphenicol on/off (with a recent addition of a little Emeraid), he is finally eating lots of veggies. No hay or pellets, although I have seen him nibble at fresh grass with his brother. At his lowest a month or two ago, he dipped down to 655g - today he's 835g. He is still bright and happy, but I continue to worry that his malocclusion is going to return. Today, I noticed that his incisors are growing in slanted. I promptly booked a vet appointment for a few days from now, but am wondering if there is anything else that I can do for my boy. I am offering pellets, botanical, orchard grass, and timothy hay, along with willow balls, timothy hay chews, and chewable hidies.

His care is beginning to be very expensive, and although he has come very far, I am worried that his case will eventually become a death sentence. Any and all help or advice is very much appreciated.

(I have tried to post a picture, but am having trouble. oops.)
 

Wiebke

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Hello all!

Unfortunate that this has to be my reason for joining & first post in the forums, but here it goes.

I have an intact boar (3yo) who has been through three sedated molar trimmings and a dental abscess drainage/tooth removal since June 25th of this year. Two months of Critical Care, metacam, and cisapride/chloramphenicol on/off (with a recent addition of a little Emeraid), he is finally eating lots of veggies. No hay or pellets, although I have seen him nibble at fresh grass with his brother. At his lowest a month or two ago, he dipped down to 655g - today he's 835g. He is still bright and happy, but I continue to worry that his malocclusion is going to return. Today, I noticed that his incisors are growing in slanted. I promptly booked a vet appointment for a few days from now, but am wondering if there is anything else that I can do for my boy. I am offering pellets, botanical, orchard grass, and timothy hay, along with willow balls, timothy hay chews, and chewable hidies.

His care is beginning to be very expensive, and although he has come very far, I am worried that his case will eventually become a death sentence. Any and all help or advice is very much appreciated.

(I have tried to post a picture, but am having trouble. oops.)
Hi!

I am linking @furryfriends (TEAS) , who is our most experienced member when it comes to dental problems as she runs a sanctuary for guinea pigs with chronic dental disease in the UK. Unfortunately she is also very busy with looking after her own high needs charges and is not always around...

Slanted incisors are generally either a sign that the back teeth on side have started overgrowing again or (in your case unlikely) that there is a developing root abscess in one of the incisors or jaw.

Vet cost and access in Canada are unfortunately very prohibitive. Depending what is causing the uneven chewing/overgrowth you may look at chronic problem but I would recommend to wait for more answers.

Until you are in a position to know exactly what is going on and what your prospects are in order to make any longer term decisions, please continue to syringe and support feed. The molars are mainly ground down by the very abrasive silica in grass and hay against which they have evolved. If that doesn't happen for any length of time, then the teeth will over grow again.

Ideally, dental problems are corrected in a pretty short succession as soon as overgrowth starts again and not after overgrowth has happened again. This is only possible if dentals can be done conscious every few weeks until the dental system is rebalanced and the cause of the problem has been addressed. With a good dental vet (and they are sadly rarer than gold dust as guinea pig dentals don't feature on a curriculum), piggies should be able to eat on their own immediately or very soon after treatment.
 

MCpiggy

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Thank you for the info in your updated post - unfortunately my guy is not taking well to grass or hay, but I will keep trying to tempt him by mixing it into greens. He is mostly eating on his own and gaining weight consistently, I syringe as little or as much as he's willing to take at night time each day. He also gets a "treat" of 1 tsp EmerAid herbivore 1-2 times daily.

I trust my vet wholeheartedly as he has done amazing things for my boys, but I am open to looking at different cavy savvy vets in Ontario, Canada if anyone knows of one who can do conscious dentals.
 

Wiebke

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Thank you for the info in your updated post - unfortunately my guy is not taking well to grass or hay, but I will keep trying to tempt him by mixing it into greens. He is mostly eating on his own and gaining weight consistently, I syringe as little or as much as he's willing to take at night time each day. He also gets a "treat" of 1 tsp EmerAid herbivore 1-2 times daily.

I trust my vet wholeheartedly as he has done amazing things for my boys, but I am open to looking at different cavy savvy vets in Ontario, Canada if anyone knows of one who can do conscious dentals.
I don't think that there is any vet in Canada who will do this. There are only two vets in the UK doing it but especially the one who has been doing this for some years now has had amazing success. You are most likely already seeing the best vet around.

But if your boy is still eating on his own and is gaining weight, then that means that he is well in himself and the problem may just be starting up again so you have still got a lot to play for!

Guinea pigs sadly don't feature large on any vets curriculum; they usually fall into the gap of being classed as an exotic, despite being one of the more common pets, but are generally considered too pedestrian for the real exotics buffs...
The growing need for expert guinea pig dentals are something that is only slowly penetrating vet conscience, so there is no schooling and very little experience around. The need is sorely felt everywhere around the world. :(
 

MCpiggy

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I don't think that there is any vet in Canada who will do this. There are only two vets in the UK doing it but especially the one who has been doing this for some years now has had amazing success. You are most likely already seeing the best vet around.

But if your boy is still eating on his own and is gaining weight, then that means that he is well in himself and the problem may just be starting up again so you have still got a lot to play for!

Guinea pigs sadly don't feature large on any vets curriculum; they usually fall into the gap of being classed as an exotic, despite being one of the more common pets, but are generally considered too pedestrian for the real exotics buffs...
The growing need for expert guinea pig dentals are something that is only slowly penetrating vet conscience, so there is no schooling and very little experience around. The need is sorely felt everywhere around the world. :(

Wonderful, then I will cross my fingers and wait until our vet visit Thursday. I guess he and I both are doing the best we can :). Good to know that I am likely seeing the best vet possible (although I already believed I was), such a shame that these wonderful creatures fall through the cracks so often.

Definitely going to be offering my boys even more fresh grass in order to give my dental piggie a fighting chance. Any tips on getting my picky boy to take to it better?
 

Wiebke

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Wonderful, then I will cross my fingers and wait until our vet visit Thursday. I guess he and I both are doing the best we can :). Good to know that I am likely seeing the best vet possible (although I already believed I was), such a shame that these wonderful creatures fall through the cracks so often.

Definitely going to be offering my boys even more fresh grass in order to give my dental piggie a fighting chance. Any tips on getting my picky boy to take to it better?
Perhaps cut it in little bits and hand feed?
 
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