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Help I dont know if my piggie is bloated :(

Natalia_W_500

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last week Paris was peeing blood and crying while passing stools. We took her to the vets and had a urine test done, she had a few blood cells in her urine but less crystals than before(she has them for a while now) the doctors said they dont know whats wrong and said we would have to drive 2 hrs for blood work which i cant do. Paris has been eating, drinking, and pooping normaly. But she has not been as active, she sits in her hut all day hunched over, cries when passing stools, she cries when i touch her stomach and is constantly passing gas. Ive been doing research all morning but i need help. Could this be bloat? Would it be Ok to give her the gas meds even if she may not have bloat? The only one available in my area would be the ovol for babies, how much do i give? Do i stop veg completely? Any thing else i should know or do? Thank you so much ❤️
 

Natalia_W_500

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last week Paris was peeing blood and crying while passing stools. We took her to the vets and had a urine test done, she had a few blood cells in her urine but less crystals than before(she has them for a while now) the doctors said they dont know whats wrong and said we would have to drive 2 hrs for blood work which i cant do. Paris has been eating, drinking, and pooping normaly. But she has not been as active, she sits in her hut all day hunched over, cries when passing stools, she cries when i touch her stomach and is constantly passing gas. Ive been doing research all morning but i need help. Could this be bloat? Would it be Ok to give her the gas meds even if she may not have bloat? The only one available in my area would be the ovol for babies, how much do i give? Do i stop veg completely? Any thing else i should know or do? Thank you so much ❤️
I Also have been giving her kale and parsley often ( which i stopped) which could have caused the bloat :(
 

Natalia_W_500

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Also, could this be mild bloat? Could it pass on it’s own if I stop veg?
 

Piggies&buns

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Kale and parsley are high in calcium and too much calcium can cause bladder problems - stone formation etc.
Kale is a brassica and brassicas can increase the risk of bloat.

This is our guide on bloat. You would need a vet diagnosis and any gut medication would need to be prescribed by the vet. Baby gas relief drops can be given in addition to prescribed medication for confirmed and acute cases.

Digestive Disorders: Diarrhea - Bloat - GI Stasis (No Gut Movement) And Not Eating
 

Wiebke

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Hi!

Please accept that we cannot answer your questions without access to your piggy; she truly needs a hands-on examination.

If she is crying constantly, then she either as a stone/sludge problem or suffers from a bacterial or sterile infection of the urinary tract. She definitely needs painkillers and ideally x-ray to see what is going on with bloating and the bladder. It is very likely that in your case the bloating is a secondary complication to what is going on in the urinary tract - which is clearly NOT improving. She would need anti-gassing gut stimulants if she was found to have gassing caused by the pain in the urinary tract. :(
The information in this guide will help you work out just how bad the bloating issue is:
Digestive Disorders: Diarrhea - Bloat - GI Stasis (No Gut Movement) And Not Eating
Please switch to weighing daily on your kitchen scales at the same time (remember that you cannot control the all important hay intake by eye) and step in with syringe feeding recovery formula or mushed pellets in a pinch in order to reapce the missing hay fibre.
Emergency, Crisis and Bridging Care until a Vet Appointment
Weight - Monitoring and Management
How To Pick Up And Weigh Your Guinea Pigs Safely
Complete Syringe Feeding Guide

Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets (see chapter on long term special diets for urinary tract related problems)
Please keep in mind that any diet changes will take several weeks to work through the system and that they are supportive long term measures that cannot replace any necessary medical care.
All the best.

Please stop any fresh veg but if things are that bad, then she really should be seen by a vet again; even if vet access is a LOT more difficult in your country. :(
 

Natalia_W_500

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Thank you to everyone who has responded. Parises crying has gotten worse when I picked her up today (I went away for 3 days) she’s still eating, drinking, passing stools normally, but still red pee. When we did the bladder test there was no bacteria or infection, a few red blood cells, and there were less crystals. If we took her to the vets it would have to be a 2 hr drive and we would have to do blood work, which I would do if I could drive on my own, but I’m young and don’t have my full licence. I don’t know what to do. As the vets near my house said they can’t do anything and have to refer me to the place 2 hrs away. I feel like a horrible guineapig owner for giving her kale and parsley, I should have done more reasearch. Thank you to everyone who has helped, I will look at my options :(.
 

Wiebke

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Hi

Have bladder stones and sludge been both excluded by palpitation and an x-ray?

There is a not well known condition called sterile interstitial cystititis (or sterile IC), i.e. a non-bacterial recurring bladder infection in guinea pigs that doesn't react to in more severe cases or can only be temporarily suppressed but not healed in milder cases. I have mentioned it as a possible cause in my first post together with the others.

Sterile IC seems to particularly affect the natural glucosamine coating of the walls in the urinary tract that prevents the corrosive urine from coming into contact with raw tissue. Deep red porphyrine coloured pees are typical for the onset of any acute phase; symptoms in the urinary tract can be very similar so it is usually only diagnosed by default. It has become a lot more common over the last decade due to commercial mass breeding (whether that is pet shop suppliers or for sale breeders) but vets that do not see guinea pigs frequently. They may have perhaps heard of sterile feline cystitis (FSC); treatment of guinea pigs follows similar lines.

Management is with glucosamine and analgesics such as meloxicam (metacam). Glucosamine is classed as a food supplement and not as a medication (hence why it is generally not prescribed by vets) although in severe cases, high glucosamine medication such as a cartrofen, which is a widely used arthritis drug for humans and larger animals has recently shown to work in guinea pigs, too. You can get glucosamine as a food supplement for cats in capsules widely online (easier to dose) or even from a supermarket shelf as a human supplement (although you will have to grind that down and do the mathematics with dosages when mixing it with the correct amount of water. The piggies really don't like the taste but it is a lot cheaper). Glucosamine supplementing is not an instant cure; it takes weeks to build up in the body but it has shown to be the most important part of sterile IC management; especially in bringing the regular flare-ups under control. It is not curable, only manageable until it hopefully goes away on its own some years down the line. An analgesic (anti-inflammatory and painkiller) is also important in order to help with the pain of the inflamed tissue.

Could you discuss this with your local vet? We cannot diagnose sight unseen, just show up further avenues to pursue with your vet. In the UK, both metacam (meloxicam) and cartrofen are prescription-only medication.
Links - Interstitial Cystitis - Guinea Lynx Records
Dietary recommendations for sterile IC can be found in the urinary tract problems special diet recommendations chapter of our diet guide. Here is the link again: Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
 

Natalia_W_500

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Hi

Have bladder stones and sludge been both excluded by palpitation and an x-ray?

There is a not well known condition called sterile interstitial cystititis (or sterile IC), i.e. a non-bacterial recurring bladder infection in guinea pigs that doesn't react to in more severe cases or can only be temporarily suppressed but not healed in milder cases. I have mentioned it as a possible cause in my first post together with the others.

Sterile IC seems to particularly affect the natural glucosamine coating of the walls in the urinary tract that prevents the corrosive urine from coming into contact with raw tissue. Deep red porphyrine coloured pees are typical for the onset of any acute phase; symptoms in the urinary tract can be very similar so it is usually only diagnosed by default. It has become a lot more common over the last decade due to commercial mass breeding (whether that is pet shop suppliers or for sale breeders) but vets that do not see guinea pigs frequently. They may have perhaps heard of sterile feline cystitis (FSC); treatment of guinea pigs follows similar lines.

Management is with glucosamine and analgesics such as meloxicam (metacam). Glucosamine is classed as a food supplement and not as a medication (hence why it is generally not prescribed by vets) although in severe cases, high glucosamine medication such as a cartrofen, which is a widely used arthritis drug for humans and larger animals has recently shown to work in guinea pigs, too. You can get glucosamine as a food supplement for cats in capsules widely online (easier to dose) or even from a supermarket shelf as a human supplement (although you will have to grind that down and do the mathematics with dosages when mixing it with the correct amount of water. The piggies really don't like the taste but it is a lot cheaper). Glucosamine supplementing is not an instant cure; it takes weeks to build up in the body but it has shown to be the most important part of sterile IC management; especially in bringing the regular flare-ups under control. It is not curable, only manageable until it hopefully goes away on its own some years down the line. An analgesic (anti-inflammatory and painkiller) is also important in order to help with the pain of the inflamed tissue.

Could you discuss this with your local vet? We cannot diagnose sight unseen, just show up further avenues to pursue with your vet. In the UK, both metacam (meloxicam) and cartrofen are prescription-only medication.
Links - Interstitial Cystitis - Guinea Lynx Records
Dietary recommendations for sterile IC can be found in the urinary tract problems special diet recommendations chapter of our diet guide. Here is the link again: Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
Thank you so much for your help, I am calling my vet now to talk to her about this, and other options.
 

Swissgreys

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I really hope you can find a solution.
I know your local vet mentioned blood work, but usually an x-ray or ultra sound are the first steps in diagnosing a piggy who seems to have bladder or abdominal issues.
The good news is that if you local vet can do this they can always just send the images to a more experienced vet to look at and possibly save you the long trip.
 

Natalia_W_500

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Hello everyone, I just got off the phone with the vets. I was told last week she had red blood cells in the urine and today on the phone they said she didn’t... the vet explained that she may have had a few red blood cells but not enough to be seen as peeing blood. I wish I knew that earlier. She also said they she doesn’t have steril IC because she didn’t see any bacteria in the bladder, but I thought that was a non bacterial infection? I didn’t wanna argue because I hope the vets know what their doing. We will probably do a x ray, i wish I could drive to see the specialist, I hate seeing her in pain. Prayers would be appreciated 😭❤️
 

Piggies&buns

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Hello everyone, I just got off the phone with the vets. I was told last week she had red blood cells in the urine and today on the phone they said she didn’t... the vet explained that she may have had a few red blood cells but not enough to be seen as peeing blood. I wish I knew that earlier. She also said they she doesn’t have steril IC because she didn’t see any bacteria in the bladder, but I thought that was a non bacterial infection? I didn’t wanna argue because I hope the vets know what their doing. We will probably do a x ray, i wish I could drive to see the specialist, I hate seeing her in pain. Prayers would be appreciated 😭❤️

You are right - sterile cystitis is not a bacterial infection

Sending you and your piggy best wishes
 

Wiebke

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Sterile cystitis is characterised by the absence of bacteria or a very low bacterial count. As said, sadly many vets are not aware of this illness.

It characteristically has got intense red pees during acute phases, which are usually mistaken for blood but are actually porphyrine-coloured (a natural colourant). Blood may or may not be present but not in quantities that could account for the colouring of the urine. So please try not worry over the urine colour.

I would strongly recommend to try a course of glucosamine. It is not effective instantly because it needs time to build up but it is the most effective measure for piggies with sterile IC.
Glucosamine is not classed as a medication but as a food supplement and is widely available. You can either google for glucosamine based cat bladder supplement capsules (for ease of application) or look for human glucosamine tablets, which are much cheaper but generally don't taste nice at all and which you have to grind down and then compute the dosage for mixing with water.
It is also not harmful to the body, so since you have tried to go through your vet and have not got any support, you can try this safely on your own to help ease your piggy's discomfort.

@Freela - Do you have any product recommendations Canadian glucosamine support products?
 

Natalia_W_500

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Sterile cystitis is characterised by the absence of bacteria or a very low bacterial count. As said, sadly many vets are not aware of this illness.

It characteristically has got intense red pees during acute phases, which are usually mistaken for blood but are actually porphyrine-coloured (a natural colourant). Blood may or may not be present but not in quantities that could account for the colouring of the urine. So please try not worry over the urine colour.

I would strongly recommend to try a course of glucosamine. It is not effective instantly because it needs time to build up but it is the most effective measure for piggies with sterile IC.
Glucosamine is not classed as a medication but as a food supplement and is widely available. You can either google for glucosamine based cat bladder supplement capsules (for ease of application) or look for human glucosamine tablets, which are much cheaper but generally don't taste nice at all and which you have to grind down and then compute the dosage for mixing with water.
It is also not harmful to the body, so since you have tried to go through your vet and have not got any support, you can try this safely on your own to help ease your piggy's discomfort.

@Freela - Do you have any product recommendations Canadian glucosamine support products?
Thank you so much for your help. I will try the glucosamine tablets when I get the recommendation ❤️. Is there anyway I can donate to the form or pay you for your time? I am very greatful.
 

Freela

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In Canada the easiest way to get glucosamine is probably on Amazon (although most products will be dosed for dogs/cats and you will probably need a vet recommendation on dosing.) I can't give a specific brand, unfortunately, it's not something I've had to buy so far. Vets may also carry and sell this and similar products through their offices.
 

Natalia_W_500

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I am looking at buying this one, (in picture) is it ok in liquid form? Paris hasn’t been crying as much, only when I hold her, and still red pee. But she constantly looks uncomfortable ☹️. Any one know how much and how often I should give?
 

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Natalia_W_500

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Hello everyone, I ordered the liquid one and it arrived today. I read the ingredients and it says contains shellfish. Is this something to be worried about? we are going to give half a pump each day unless someone else advises otherwise. Thank you
 

Piggies&buns

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Its recommended to use a vegan/vegetarian one - one that does not contain shellfish.
 

Siikibam

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Check and see if you can return it. Maybe tell them you can’t give one with shellfish in it. I wouldn’t at all.
 
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