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Guinea Pig still won't eat after teeth clipping

Discussion in 'Health & Illness' started by Tinker, Jun 27, 2011.

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  1. Tinker

    Tinker New Member

    Jun 27, 2011
    Sophocles is just coming up to three years old. We realised he was not eating, dribbling and dropping weight. He was taken to the vet and had a full teeth clipping with some spurs removed from his molars. However, he has now been home for a week and still won't eat.

    We are currently feeding him a packet of post-recovery a day, some in a syringe and he will eat some off a spoon, we have also been giving him a vitamin enriched yoghurt which he enjoys. However, he will not eat and hard food though he will show interest, wrestle with his brother for it and will bite it but then loses interest. He is also very objectionable to babyfood and mashed vegetables which we have tried him on.

    He remains stable at a low weight and seems largely normal though his eyes are becoming crustier than normal. Anyone have any ideas?
  2. hazeyg

    hazeyg Adult Guinea Pig

    Jun 26, 2011
    Bathgate, Scotland
    Getting piggie to eat

    I have had two poorly little piggies with on and off dental problem. Theo was ill for about 5months with his teeth.
    Sometimes post dental treatment the mouth is really tender and once they get put off they get very scared of trying again. So its firstly a matter of perseverence and getting the weight on and this requires dedication on your part, a piggie wont want to eat unless it feels better within itself.
    Firstly the recovery food you get needs to be specifically for guinea pigs, the ones vets give are usually general ones and they dont have enough fibre to get a guineas system going properly again and are usually alfalfa based. Critical care is better and available from thisle cavies a scottish rescue charity that has an online shop.
    However these recovery type diets are really expensive and your piggie has only had a dental problem so I would advised buy a decent pellet food, hopefully your already using one and adding hot water,cover with cling film and leave to soak (some pellets will take longer than other- anything up to an hour) then use that to syringe, add more hot water to the consistancy you require. Serving it warm (not HOT) is yummier to piggies :).
    Using a pellet food makes it easier for the guinea pig to start eating normally as it has the same food. To the mushed up pellet I add probiotic, which you can buy at pets at home( add as directed) and a vitamin c liquid supplement, also available at most pet shops). I give initially 2-5ml every two-three hours to restart the gut function properly. Please remeber guineas dont have our digestive system they need it to go constantly so leaving a guinea all night can defeat all the good work done during the day. A pig that is used to hand feeding will turn away when its had enough. Giving too much food at once can cause bloat and do them no good. Watch for a swollen belly. Little and often is the key. If no weight goes on....it's not enough try 7ml and then 10ml if still not enough. My boys took 15ml each every 3hours but thats only my boys.
    Also a major important thing is tempt with soft fresh veggies cut up small to minimise chewing. Lettuce although not the best for them is my boys favourite and without it I would never have got them to eat again. Also try grass if you can get a hold of some fresh, free of pesticides and grass treatments. Also cabbage, tomatoes and cucumbers. Grass is probably the best all rounder. Once he was trying and eating quite a lot of the fresh stuff I added in celery and carrots.
    Monitor his weight daily, it is important that its done at the same time and not straight after feeding.
    If the piggie starts to try more himself reduce the hand feeding gradually, I went from every 2-3 hours to every 4 hours/5hours then 3 times a day to 2times a day and then not at all :). Alongside increase the time between feeds, I lessen the amount of water added to the pellets, this makes it really hard to get in the syringe but it gets the piggie used to a thicker constistancy. Eventually I have to just use my pinky finger to scoop some up and place in their mouth, my piggies are extremely trusting and placid. But usually by this point they will be licking it off your finger.
    Its really important you put in all the time in the next couple weeks as without it you'll end up with the same issue all over again as the teeth will overgrow.
    Alvin was eating normally in 5 days, Theo took 3-4 months. This seems really long I know but each week there was small improvements :).
    Good luck X
  3. Waypoint

    Waypoint New Member

    Dec 30, 2011
    This same thing happened to me. You need to GET HIM EATING RIGHT AWAY! or he will DIE! If he has gone more then 2 days without food he is in critical condition even if he seems normal! Here is what you need to do:

    1. Get some MYLICON (human) Infant Gas Drops. Use .3ml twice per day for a piggy of 3lbs

    2. Get some Critical Care food sold by Oxbow. No it is not prescribed, just go pick it up. find it here http://www.oxbowanimalhealth.com/contact/find_products or here www.oxbowanimalhealth.com (instuctions on the package). Baby food doesnt have the nutrients they need and soaking their pellets in water didnt work for me because the mixture was too chunky to get through any syringe i used. and I let mine sit in hot water for an hour. so just get this stuff.

    3. then have his rear molars checked! he/she may have rear molar malocclusion. Yes they have rear molars, they have 20 teeth total i think.

    Not eating causes GAS, which can cause their stomach to become 2x to 3x their size. it will push their other organs back where they arnt supposed to be. It will cause them not to eat. This is the biggest problem, you have to reduce the gas so there is room in their tummy for them to eat food. There is also a surgical procedure which can be done where they are momentarly sedated and a tube it driven down to their stomach and the gas is relieved. An xray will reveal if they have gas or not.

    Its hard to tell from the outside, but an xray makes it plain as day. Beware if your vet says that they just have a little gas, a little gas is all that's needed to prevent them from eating.

    *A large tummy can also be due to blockage, in which something is blocking processed food somewhere in their intestine. if this is the case, you should be able to squeeze their sides just in front of their hind legs and it will be "Hard as a Rock", if it is just gas from not eating, then it will be soft and squishy.

    You need to realize that all vets and vetinarians are different. they may be good at clipping front teeth but have no knowledge of rear teeth or how dangerous it is for a pig to go days without food, its really not that difficult to understand, try it yourself and see how hard it is.

    Also vets will, not care, take their time, not understand, tell you to wait for a couple of days, ect when your piggie has little or no time left before they pass the threshold of no recovery. Simply follow the rule that if they have not eaten for 1 or 2 days, then they are in critical condition. my piggie didnt even show any amount of discomfort until the last two days during his 10 days of starvation. My piggy was a real trooper, most wont last 5 days and i feel horrible that I didnt do more the help him, when he didnt give up on me.
  4. Waypoint

    Waypoint New Member

    Dec 30, 2011
    Lastly there are some vets with very good knowledge of exotic animals. they are way better than a general practicioner and may have 24hour ICU labs. an example is one near where I live http://www.pendervet.com/.

    If you have an emergency, such as a piggy that hasnt eaten in 2 days, they should allow an emergency visit for a premium. standard visit with my place was $75 exam fee or $125 for emergency visit (they are bumping other ppl with appointments)
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