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Dental Help my sick Piggie eats very little hay

Yin

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So my little Bill has seen 2 vets now. Initially he had poop problems and lost a lot of weight and began to act not himself. I started feeding him critical care just before our 1st vet appointmemt and she prescribed some pain meds and some thing to help his gut move along. She said she suspected bloat. I was in a state as didnt sleep all night and fed him throughout the night. Then the next day I noticed that he wasnt chewing like he normally does and tried to bite pieces off with his front teeth, went back to the vet and she suggested sedating him to check his teeth...... this was booked for the next day. But during that time I was convinced it wasnt his teeth as he allowed me to feel around his jaw line and i couldnt feel any lumps.... also need to add this vet had never dealt with GP before which i was angry about because i asked for a savy vet when i called, got me worried. He already lost nearly 100g...... so i got a 2nd opinion. He now has worming meds, antibiotics, anti inflammatory pain meds and I am still feeding him CC in fear his gut will shut down...... he still isnt chewing like he normally does...... only seen him eat pellets VERY SLOWLY and a bit of parsley also very slowly.... anyone got any advice.... its been 3 days now
 

Piggies&buns

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Being able to feel along his jaw does not mean it isn’t dental problems. The molars can overgrow, rub on the cheeks, trap the tongue etc and you wouldn’t necessarily feel anything along the jaw.
Were his teeth actually checked? What was the outcome of that? Not being able to chew means there is likely something going on in the mouth - dental or oral thrush for example

If he is still losing weight then he needs to be syringe fed more. Weighing daily allows you to adjust the amount and frequency of syringe feeds. How often are you feeding him and how much (In mls) is he taking in a 24 hour period?

Are you in the uk?

Not Eating, Weight Loss And The Importance Of Syringe Feeding Fibre
Complete Syringe Feeding Guide
 

Siikibam

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:agr: With the above. He’s losing weight because he’s not eating enough hay. Pellets are a small fraction of their diet so won’t be enough to help him maintain. Another thing I wanted to pick up on was the deworming. guinea pigs don’t tend to get worms. Was the second vet piggy savvy? What medicine was prescribed and how often are you supposed to give it?
 

Yin

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Being able to feel along his jaw does not mean it isn’t dental problems. The molars can overgrow, rub on the cheeks, trap the tongue etc and you wouldn’t necessarily feel anything along the jaw.
Were his teeth actually checked? What was the outcome of that? Not being able to chew means there is likely something going on in the mouth - dental or oral thrush for example

If he is still losing weight then he needs to be syringe fed more. Weighing daily allows you to adjust the amount and frequency of syringe feeds. How often are you feeding him and how much (In mls) is he taking in a 24 hour period?

Are you in the uk?

Not Eating, Weight Loss And The Importance Of Syringe Feeding Fibre
Complete Syringe Feeding Guide
I'm the begining 4 days ago I was feeding him 10ml every 4/5 hours for 3 days. Today hes had 20mls in 12 hours.... he is interested but just doesnt seem to gobble it down like he usually does. The 2nd vet checked his teeth for me and said nothing to worry about his teeth...... i showed him a video of Bill playing around with some broccoli but he didnt seem too worried about it.....

He gave him some Baytrill, Loxicom and emeprid along with some wormer..... he wasnt sure about the worms but said to give this just in case. He was the only exotic vet I found close by.

I have been weighing him everyday for the past 5 days now. He hasnt lost any today but idk if thats because ive been feeding him. My heart is breaking and I'm so so tired
 

Piggies&buns

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I'm the begining 4 days ago I was feeding him 10ml every 4/5 hours for 3 days. Today hes had 20mls in 12 hours.... he is interested but just doesnt seem to gobble it down like he usually does. The 2nd vet checked his teeth for me and said nothing to worry about his teeth...... i showed him a video of Bill playing around with some broccoli but he didnt seem too worried about it.....

He gave him some Baytrill, Loxicom and emeprid along with some wormer..... he wasnt sure about the worms but said to give this just in case. He was the only exotic vet I found close by.

I have been weighing him everyday for the past 5 days now. He hasnt lost any today but idk if thats because ive been feeding him. My heart is breaking and I'm so so tired
Weighing him is the only way to be able to guide yourself with how often to feed. If he ate well yesterday then that will be why he hasn’t lost weight today, but only having had 20mls in 12 hours is a very tiny amount. Generally though When dealing with a total lack of appetite or inability to eat, you need to be getting at least 60ml into them in a 24 hour period, feeding little and often - more like feeding every 2/3 hours and at least once during the night.

Again though, can you answer what checks were done on this teeth and the outcome?
 

Bill & Ted

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Can you tell us where you live? We may be able to advise you of a good knowledgeable vet
 

Yin

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Weighing him is the only way to be able to guide yourself with how often to feed. If he ate well yesterday then that will be why he hasn’t lost weight today, but only having had 20mls in 12 hours is a very tiny amount. Generally though When dealing with a total lack of appetite or inability to eat, you need to be getting at least 60ml into them in a 24 hour period, feeding little and often - more like feeding every 2/3 hours and at least once during the night.

Again though, can you answer what checks were done on this teeth and the outcome?
I wasn't in the room when the vet checked 😭 i had to wait in the car.... but he said he checked his molars and they seemed fine and he found his voice. Bill doesnt like anyone but me touching him and will cry but i noticed he wasnt as vocal as he usually is.

I got some more CC today as my reserves have ran out and currently getting ready to feed him again. Is there anything else it could be? Ive seen him trying to eat some grass hay but after one piece he stopped....
 

Piggies&buns

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I wasn't in the room when the vet checked 😭 i had to wait in the car.... but he said he checked his molars and they seemed fine and he found his voice. Bill doesnt like anyone but me touching him and will cry but i noticed he wasnt as vocal as he usually is.

I got some more CC today as my reserves have ran out and currently getting ready to feed him again. Is there anything else it could be? Ive seen him trying to eat some grass hay but after one piece he stopped....
Are you in the uk? If so, whereabouts?

We aren’t vets so can’t diagnose anything but the fact he doesn’t seem to be able to chew suggests mouth issues of some sort
 

Yin

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I'm in East Yorkshire. The vet assured me he was knowledgable ..... and seemed to talk with confidence........ I'm thinking I should go back and check his teeth again.....
 

Wiebke

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I'm the begining 4 days ago I was feeding him 10ml every 4/5 hours for 3 days. Today hes had 20mls in 12 hours.... he is interested but just doesnt seem to gobble it down like he usually does. The 2nd vet checked his teeth for me and said nothing to worry about his teeth...... i showed him a video of Bill playing around with some broccoli but he didnt seem too worried about it.....

He gave him some Baytrill, Loxicom and emeprid along with some wormer..... he wasnt sure about the worms but said to give this just in case. He was the only exotic vet I found close by.

I have been weighing him everyday for the past 5 days now. He hasnt lost any today but idk if thats because ive been feeding him. My heart is breaking and I'm so so tired
BIG HUGS

Syringe feeding a piggy around the clock is very exhausting. Please try to aim for 60-90 ml in 24 hours with a piggy that is willing to take on food. 40 ml is the very minimum to aim for. Try to get on a 3 hours rhythm during the day, feed just before you go to bed and then get up once in the middle of night so you have got two good chunks to sleep yourself. Then feed again first thing in the morning.

Has the vet really looked at the crucial back teeth and also checked for potential root abscesses, oral thrush (fungal mouth infection) which can cause similar symptoms. Rodent teeth and especially dental treatment are not something that features on any vet's curriculum.

You can try and have a little assessment yourself by looking at the front teeth. It is not 100% correct, but it is not the worst indicator for trouble at the back. Is the edge of the front teeth nice and even (normal), is it slanted (i.e. your piggy has toothache on one side, most likely from a developing root abscess either in an incisor or at the back), is the edge jagged (i.e. dental growth at the back is not even) or are the incisors inward pointing and no longer self-sharpening (this means that the teeth at the back are no longer meeting.

A dental abscess can cause toothache long before you can see or feel it, and it can cause this gradual loss of appetite. Can you have a gentle feel along the jaw and cheeks to see whether your piggy has a sore spot or a lump on just one side? Please be aware that the pain could sit in the upper jaw rather than the lower.
I've been through this with my Dylan just before Christmas. A friend thankfully looked after him over Christmas and New Year while I was out of the country for a long planned family visit but in January Dylan lost his appetite completely during the second course of a very strong antibiotic and I had to syringe feed around the clock for a good week. Thankfully the combination of a maximum dose of analgesic and two courses of the strongest antibiotic did work against the vet's expectations so Dylan didn't need any open abscess treatment in the end.

Please try to offer plenty of fresh green dog-pee free grass if you have access to it, fresh herbs, finely shredded lettuce, mushed up pellets (softened with some hot water and then stirred into a slushy mix) in addition to the syringe feed and see whether he is willing to eat soft food because the hard food hurts him as much as you with a really bad toothache.

How much painkiller and antibiotic is he on and what is his current weight? If he can hold his weight with just 20 ml top up, then he is still abkle to eat partly by himself.
 

Yin

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BIG HUGS

Syringe feeding a piggy around the clock is very exhausting. Please try to aim for 60-90 ml in 24 hours with a piggy that is willing to take on food. 40 ml is the very minimum to aim for. Try to get on a 3 hours rhythm during the day, feed just before you go to bed and then get up once in the middle of night so you have got two good chunks to sleep yourself. Then feed again first thing in the morning.

Has the vet really looked at the crucial back teeth and also checked for potential root abscesses, oral thrush (fungal mouth infection) which can cause similar symptoms. Rodent teeth and especially dental treatment are not something that features on any vet's curriculum.

You can try and have a little assessment yourself by looking at the front teeth. It is not 100% correct, but it is not the worst indicator for trouble at the back. Is the edge of the front teeth nice and even (normal), is it slanted (i.e. your piggy has toothache on one side, most likely from a developing root abscess either in an incisor or at the back), is the edge jagged (i.e. dental growth at the back is not even) or are the incisors inward pointing and no longer self-sharpening (this means that the teeth at the back are no longer meeting.

A dental abscess can cause toothache long before you can see or feel it, and it can cause this gradual loss of appetite. Can you have a gentle feel along the jaw and cheeks to see whether your piggy has a sore spot or a lump on just one side? Please be aware that the pain could sit in the upper jaw rather than the lower.
I've been through this with my Dylan just before Christmas. A friend thankfully looked after him over Christmas and New Year while I was out of the country for a long planned family visit but in January Dylan lost his appetite completely during the second course of a very strong antibiotic and I had to syringe feed around the clock for a good week. Thankfully the combination of a maximum dose of analgesic and two courses of the strongest antibiotic did work against the vet's expectations so Dylan didn't need any open abscess treatment in the end.

Please try to offer plenty of fresh green dog-pee free grass if you have access to it, fresh herbs, finely shredded lettuce, mushed up pellets (softened with some hot water and then stirred into a slushy mix) in addition to the syringe feed and see whether he is willing to eat soft food because the hard food hurts him as much as you with a really bad toothache.

How much painkiller and antibiotic is he on and what is his current weight? If he can hold his weight with just 20 ml top up, then he is still abkle to eat partly by himself.
Thank you for your advice. I couldnt keep him still long enough for me to check his teeth. I just tried to encourage him with some carrot and he seemed to chew little bits off fine but still not his normal self..... the initial problem was his soft poo and now its developed into this 😭😭. Anyways ive set my alarm for 3 hours but i know i wont be able to sleep..... he seems to be drinking fine on his own and chewing a few pellets ..... so idk 😭
 

Siikibam

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You won’t be able to check his teeth properly so it needs to be done by a vet. As may have already been mentioned, pellets and veg make up a small portion of their diet so don’t affect weight loss. It’s not eating hay that has the biggest impact. Have a look at the vet locator as well and see. If you could get to Simon and Kim’s surgery I. Northampton that would be the ideal. The below vets are nearest to you. Unfortunately there isn’t any recommended vet in East Yorkshire.

Please add your location to your profile so we don’t have to keep asking.
Vet LocatorC7494AE7-063C-4A7B-9BA0-B114D6214B03.png2A38D08F-553D-4781-B0AD-BD27E84F3A49.pngD5AA7A5D-4D73-4CE1-BA1D-EDCD6C46F1DD.pngD36E8305-2BA3-4B68-BEA1-6C552A7D6366.png
 

Bill & Ted

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If you are concerned your Bill’s problem Is his teeth then I would seriously think about getting an appointment at the Cat and Rabbit Clinic with Simon or Kim Maddock in Northampton They can look into the back of the mouth and access the molars and check for any problems like dental spurs. They will also do a conscious dental if needed there and then which takes around 10 minutes. Often piggies are then back eating hay on the way back home. You will find out once and for all if it’s a dental problem, they see many many guinea pigs a week. Owners travel from all over the country, me included from Cornwall, it’s definitely worth the journey for their vast experience treating guinea pigs x
 

Yin

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Thank you everyone for your advice. I have another appointment tomorrow with the vet. Today bill still didnt eat any hay but i watched him eat a slice of apple no problem so IDK if it is his teeth 🤷🏻‍♀️. Maybe his tounge has been sore honestly who knows..... I have still been feeding him CC and have a GP Cam to alert me when they move so i can see if he has drank or eaten anything.... I'm still going to feed him his CC tho. He hasn't lost any more weight so thats a good sign i just need him to chew his hay now
 

Siikibam

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They need to check his teeth properly if they didn’t do it last time. I would highly recommend Simon and Kim in Northampton. They’ve done a lot for members’ piggies with dental issues. Even if it isn’t you’d get to find out one way or the other.

Unfortunately not many exotic vets are experienced in treating teeth. Good luck tomorrow and do let us know how you get on.
 

Yin

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Thank you eveyone for your kind responses. I have been in a state the past couple of days. The 'exotic' vet turned out to be rubbish cause he said nothing was wrong with his teeth....... so after a few days now I called the rescue (i did calle them before but no answer) and they sorted his teeth for me..... he is staying there with his brother Ted for a couple of days so fingers crossed and I promised not to call every hour......

I am just so angry at my vets..... I'm actually still waiting for a call back from this morning......... i want my money back so I can give it to the rescue. Anyway thanks eveyone
 

Piggies&buns

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Thank you eveyone for your kind responses. I have been in a state the past couple of days. The 'exotic' vet turned out to be rubbish cause he said nothing was wrong with his teeth....... so after a few days now I called the rescue (i did calle them before but no answer) and they sorted his teeth for me..... he is staying there with his brother Ted for a couple of days so fingers crossed and I promised not to call every hour......

I am just so angry at my vets..... I'm actually still waiting for a call back from this morning......... i want my money back so I can give it to the rescue. Anyway thanks eveyone
So the rescue took your piggy to their own vet then?
 

Yin

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No...... why would they do that? I simply went there for help and advice happends that they have an onsite qualified GP dentist. I was in a bit of a state when I called her and she offered to help. She helped my poor Bill and is now nursing him for me....
 

Siikibam

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Your post wasn’t clear and she just wanted clarification. Let’s hope he gets better soon and starts improving.

Also be aware that not many (exotic) vets are experienced in treating guinea pigs with dental issues. So don’t say that your vet was rubbish. Also be careful about what you say, especially on here.
 
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