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Hernia

Sian25

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Hi all, I've not been active here for a long time and it's sad that the only time I have is when piggies have been poorly.

So we adopted Flo nearly 2 years ago and she's around 6 years old now. Has always appeared healthy, albeit a chunky girl at 1.4kg. Yesterday I noticed she had a little bit of gunk/crust in the corner of her eye, I bathed it with the view to book her in the vets Tuesday if no better. However, last night I felt she seemed a little off, eating veggies slower and possibly making a strange chewing noise. My thoughts were her teeth so I planned the vet visit for today. This morning she wasn't very enthusiastic at all over her veggies so I weighed her and was so shocked to see she was only just over 1kg, when she was 1.4kg at her last weigh in around a month ago! Immediately started to syringe while waiting for the vets to open. Managed to get her booked in but with our regular vet as opposed to an exotic due to it being Sunday.

So the vet checked her teeth and couldn't see anything wrong there but in true Flo style she was flinging her head back and biting the scope so he couldn't be 100%. She has not been drooling. On examining her, he found a small lump on her stomach which he says is a hernia. I'm pretty certain that has not always been there as I feel I would have noticed and I assume she was given a thorough check over when at Milhaven rescue. My vet admitted that it was out his depth and has referred us to Rutland house specialists, which we should have an appointment for in the next few days but I'm very worried about her in the meantime and also how the appointment will go. I'm assuming they will need to put her under anaesthetic to double check her teeth and to assess the hernia, but she is 6 years old :no:

The vet has sent us away with pain relief and recovery food. She is eating some on her own but evidently not enough, although she seemed brighter before (after pain relief) and was demanding pea flakes! Does anyone have any advice please? What can we expect? Has anyone had a pig develop a hernia randomly? How do hernias even occur? Could the issue still be her teeth even though she's not drooling? Thanks all
 

Wiebke

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Hi all, I've not been active here for a long time and it's sad that the only time I have is when piggies have been poorly.

So we adopted Flo nearly 2 years ago and she's around 6 years old now. Has always appeared healthy, albeit a chunky girl at 1.4kg. Yesterday I noticed she had a little bit of gunk/crust in the corner of her eye, I bathed it with the view to book her in the vets Tuesday if no better. However, last night I felt she seemed a little off, eating veggies slower and possibly making a strange chewing noise. My thoughts were her teeth so I planned the vet visit for today. This morning she wasn't very enthusiastic at all over her veggies so I weighed her and was so shocked to see she was only just over 1kg, when she was 1.4kg at her last weigh in around a month ago! Immediately started to syringe while waiting for the vets to open. Managed to get her booked in but with our regular vet as opposed to an exotic due to it being Sunday.

So the vet checked her teeth and couldn't see anything wrong there but in true Flo style she was flinging her head back and biting the scope so he couldn't be 100%. She has not been drooling. On examining her, he found a small lump on her stomach which he says is a hernia. I'm pretty certain that has not always been there as I feel I would have noticed and I assume she was given a thorough check over when at Milhaven rescue. My vet admitted that it was out his depth and has referred us to Rutland house specialists, which we should have an appointment for in the next few days but I'm very worried about her in the meantime and also how the appointment will go. I'm assuming they will need to put her under anaesthetic to double check her teeth and to assess the hernia, but she is 6 years old :no:

The vet has sent us away with pain relief and recovery food. She is eating some on her own but evidently not enough, although she seemed brighter before (after pain relief) and was demanding pea flakes! Does anyone have any advice please? What can we expect? Has anyone had a pig develop a hernia randomly? How do hernias even occur? Could the issue still be her teeth even though she's not drooling? Thanks all
Hi!

Hernias appear when a bit of tissue slips through a tiny crack in the lining of the of lower body cavity; if it is a bit of gut gets trapped, then that is generally the end of the road for piggies. It is how my Nosgan died two years after he developed an unoperable hernia some months after a private neutering operation (which happened before he came to me); by then he was 5 years old so at least he had a normal life span and a very happy life with his new 'bestie' Nye I found for him after he failed to find favour with any of my girls.

However, hernias are a pretty rare post-neutering operation complication (we have come across less than a handful in all those years on here, and this includes Nosgan). In sows, I have frankly never come across one. If it is really a hernia, then it is incredibly rare.

I would most definitely get a second opinion. Unfortunately, they are very painful, depending how much tissue and what gets trapped in there. My husband had two of them, one on each side.

All the best!
 

Sian25

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Hi!

Hernias appear when a bit of tissue slips through a tiny crack in the lining of the of lower body cavity; if it is a bit of gut gets trapped, then that is generally the end of the road for piggies. It is how my Nosgan died two years after he developed an unoperable hernia some months after a private neutering operation (which happened before he came to me); by then he was 5 years old so at least he had a normal life span and a very happy life with his new 'bestie' Nye I found for him after he failed to find favour with any of my girls.

However, hernias are a pretty rare post-neutering operation complication (we have come across less than a handful in all those years on here, and this includes Nosgan). In sows, I have frankly never come across one. If it is really a hernia, then it is incredibly rare.

I would most definitely get a second opinion. Unfortunately, they are very painful, depending how much tissue and what gets trapped in there. My husband had two of them, one on each side.

All the best!
Thank you so much for this @Wiebke you have prompted me to gently feel Flos lump more thoroughly and now I am also not convinced its a hernia. I can pull (and when I say pull, I don't mean I'm tugging at her) but I can move it away from the body and get my fingers behind it. It feels like a really small, soft lump in the skin and not attached to her body like a hernia would be. But of course I'm no vet. Its not visible and it's pretty flat, doesn't stick out far and most certainly not very obvious, hence I've not noticed it, so I'm feeling a bit more hopeful. But the mystery still remains. I do think it's her teeth given that she also has crust in the corners of her eyes. Would she be drooling if it was teeth though as she is not. She's definitely more perkier after pain relief and has just eaten most of her veggies herself and has done quite well with syringe feeding, although she wasn't taking the recovery food very willingly. Her poos are about normal length but very skinny, I've not seen this before. When pigs have had gut issues in the past, the poos were tear shaped but flos are just really skinny like rice! I guess I'll have to wait for her referral appointment!
 

Freela

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Hernia's occur (in all species) when there is a separation in the muscles that allow a small piece of intestine or other viscera or protrude outside the abdominal wall. They can occur as a postop complication or after an injury. I've never had a guinea pig who has had one, but it's technically possible. However, guinea pigs also can get lipomas, cysts, abscesses, etc., so it's possible that this lump isn't actually a hernia. My 6.5-year-old pig has a fatty lipoma on the midline of her abdomen... I can see how a vet might mistake it for a hernia due to its size and location, but they vet was quite sure it was a lipoma. Hopefully the referral appointment will give you more information!
 

Wiebke

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Thank you so much for this @Wiebke you have prompted me to gently feel Flos lump more thoroughly and now I am also not convinced its a hernia. I can pull (and when I say pull, I don't mean I'm tugging at her) but I can move it away from the body and get my fingers behind it. It feels like a really small, soft lump in the skin and not attached to her body like a hernia would be. But of course I'm no vet. Its not visible and it's pretty flat, doesn't stick out far and most certainly not very obvious, hence I've not noticed it, so I'm feeling a bit more hopeful. But the mystery still remains. I do think it's her teeth given that she also has crust in the corners of her eyes. Would she be drooling if it was teeth though as she is not. She's definitely more perkier after pain relief and has just eaten most of her veggies herself and has done quite well with syringe feeding, although she wasn't taking the recovery food very willingly. Her poos are about normal length but very skinny, I've not seen this before. When pigs have had gut issues in the past, the poos were tear shaped but flos are just really skinny like rice! I guess I'll have to wait for her referral appointment!
Drooling is a sign that is piggy is either struggling to swallow or that there is a blockage somewhere in the digestive tract starting from the back of the mouth down to the anus which no longer allows the constantly produced saliva to pass through. It can but doesn't need to indicate a dental issue or a candida infection in the mouth.

It's by no means a perfect tool, have a look at her front teeth - if the edge is slanted, jagged or if the ends are inwards pointing and no longer self-sharpening, then it is a good indicator that something is now right either in the incisor roots (which are actually just in front of the premolars or in the premolar or molar teeth at the back.

I would however NOT recommend to concentrate too much on hanging your clothes on a certain peg because the more you do, the higher the odds are that your vet come up with something very different. It is much better to keep an open mind. ;)

However, it is a relief that it is not a hernia because you definitely cannot move that! It is likely just a normal 'lump', of which there is quite a selection that piggies can get.
 

Sian25

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Drooling is a sign that is piggy is either struggling to swallow or that there is a blockage somewhere in the digestive tract starting from the back of the mouth down to the anus which no longer allows the constantly produced saliva to pass through. It can but doesn't need to indicate a dental issue or a candida infection in the mouth.

It's by no means a perfect tool, have a look at her front teeth - if the edge is slanted, jagged or if the ends are inwards pointing and no longer self-sharpening, then it is a good indicator that something is now right either in the incisor roots (which are actually just in front of the premolars or in the premolar or molar teeth at the back.

I would however NOT recommend to concentrate too much on hanging your clothes on a certain peg because the more you do, the higher the odds are that your vet come up with something very different. It is much better to keep an open mind. ;)

However, it is a relief that it is not a hernia because you definitely cannot move that! It is likely just a normal 'lump', of which there is quite a selection that piggies can get.
Thanks for your help as always. She is not drooling. Here's her front teeth. Hopefully we will get to the bottom of it!
 

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Bill & Ted

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her teeth good pretty good to me, obviously self sharpening because they are nice and straight and white with no staining.
My Ted who had a dental spur on one of his molars had perfect front teeth too, so although it can be an indication that the back teeth are problematic it’s not always the case. The vet of choice for conscious dentals is Simon and Kim Maddock at the Cat and Rabbit Clinic in Northampton. Both amazing vets when it comes to treating guinea pigs and I find very reasonably price too. You don’t need a referral and they look right into the mouth using special tools and will perform any dental work needed there and then
 
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