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Guinea pig still won’t eat or drink

miloandhugo

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Hi,
I’m really desperate for help. I noticed my boar Milo wasn’t himself just less than a week ago. He wasn’t eating much, wasn’t moving around, had a weepy eye and crusts around his eye, was really lethargic and not himself. I took him to the vet and they said it was an infection and he was prescribed baytril and metacam for pain 4 days ago. (He’s had no previous health issues). However he continued to not eat. His eyes are back to normal, he’s moving around a lot now and he’s much more alert but he refuses to drink anything and only eats a few vegetables and some hay.
I had to pick up some recovery plus on New Year’s Day at an emergency vet for him. It’s so hard to get him to syringe feed as he wriggles around. But he’s had a fair amount of it.
I took him to a different vet today who checked him over (teeth and everything) and found nothing wrong except obvious dehydration (I’ve been syringe feeding him water but obviously that wasn’t enough). He gave him fluid under the skin which cost me £50 and said he should get better soon and to stop his metacam completely and stop his baytril until Monday.
He still isn’t eating and I’m so worried about him. I’m only 18, my family aren’t very well off especially this time of year so I’m having to spend my own money to treat him which isn’t a problem but It’s costed me £165 so far and I can’t afford to keep taking him for consultations when nothing is making him eat. I will ring the vet again tomorrow and tell him he’s still not eating much but until then I don’t know what to do. I’m desperate for him to get better, it’s making me so upset and I don’t want him to be in pain.
if anyone has had any similar experiences and has some tips, I would really appreciate it. Thank you :/
 

Piggies&buns

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Baytril can cause them to lose their appetite As it kills the good gut bacteria as well as the bad bacteria causing the infection. It is advisable to give a probiotic when a piggy is on antibiotics. Poop soup which you can make from the very fresh poops of his companion healthy companion is also a good idea As it replaces the gut bacteria.

Switch from weekly weighing to weighing him daily while he is unwell. If he isn’t eating enough hay, he will be losing weight. You need to syringe feed enough to him in a 24 hour period to stop the weight loss - you will know you’re getting the amount right by weighing the next day. You are aiming for around 60ml of syringe feed in a 24 hour period to replace the hay he isn’t eating for himself.

Once he is feeling better he will start to eat for himself again. However, if there still something wrong and he doesn’t eat (ie due to the antibiotic course not being long enough), then he needs to be seen by the vet again.

The guides below will help you

Not Eating, Weight Loss And The Importance Of Syringe Feeding Fibre
Complete Syringe Feeding Guide
Probiotics, Recovery Foods And Vitamin C: Overview With Product Links
Weight - Monitoring and Management
 

Sophia_Oreo108

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Have you tried syringe feeding?
My thoughts are with you as I know it's hard seeing you piggie struggle. X
 

miloandhugo

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Baytril can cause them to lose their appetite As it kills the good gut bacteria as well as the bad bacteria causing the infection. It is advisable to give a probiotic when a piggy is on antibiotics. Poop soup which you can make from the very fresh poops of his companion healthy companion is also a good idea As it replaces the gut bacteria.

Switch from weekly weighing to weighing him daily while he is unwell. If he isn’t eating enough hay, he will be losing weight. You need to syringe feed enough to him in a 24 hour period to stop the weight loss - you will know you’re getting the amount right by weighing the next day. You are aiming for around 60ml of syringe feed in a 24 hour period to replace the hay he isn’t eating for himself.

Once he is feeling better he will start to eat for himself again. However, if there still something wrong and he doesn’t eat (ie due to the antibiotic course not being long enough), then he needs to be seen by the vet again.

The guides below will help you

Not Eating, Weight Loss And The Importance Of Syringe Feeding Fibre
Complete Syringe Feeding Guide
Probiotics, Recovery Foods And Vitamin C: Overview With Product Links
Weight - Monitoring and Management
Thank you. I’ve been weighing him daily and he has been losing weight. I am trying to syringe feed him as much as I can but he is really resistant to taking it. And yeah I researched baytril and heard this happens. I will try to get my hands on a probiotic but in the mean time I’ll look into using his brothers poop. Thank you very much.
 

Siikibam

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I wouldn’t stop the baytril and metacam until you speak to the vet who originally prescribed them.

Try Amazon or pet shops for the probiotic. You will just have to be firm with regards to syringe feeding him. You’ll have to feed him a little every 2 hours. To get 60ml in a 24 hour period that equates to 5ml every two hours. You could also try offering him mushed pellets - offer them in a bowl or on a spoon. I hope your boy starts improving soon.
 

miloandhugo

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Have you tried syringe feeding?
My thoughts are with you as I know it's hard seeing you piggie struggle. X
Yes I have. I’m currently syringing him recovery plus which was recommended by my vet but he is really hard to syringe feed as he moves and won’t let us get it in his mouth easily. However we have been doing it. Am just concerned that he isn’t eating and drinking on his own. Thank you xx
 

miloandhugo

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I wouldn’t stop the baytril and metacam until you speak to the vet who originally prescribed them.
The vet who originally prescribed them was supposed to call me today but he didn’t get around to it I guess. He also isn’t well versed in caring for guinea pigs and recommended taking him elsewhere if there were issues which is why I took him to a different vet who has much more experience with piggies. Maybe I should continue with them then..
 

Piggies&buns

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You have to be quite determined to get the syringe feed into him. As he is losing weight, then he isn’t getting enough. That in itself can cause its own issues so really do try and, not force him, but be forceful. It is easier to feed little and often - so a few ml every hour or two rather than try to do a lot at a time. Keep a chart of the total amounts so you can aim for more the next day to stabilise his weight.

As I said, until he feels better (ie the medication has worked) he isn’t going to want to eat on his own so you must continue to syringe feed for the entire time. It may well be that the course of meds isn’t long enough.

This video might help you
Today's instructional video on our Facebook page - Syringe feeding
 
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