I still cant get over him

jordan1127

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I was away for a month doing research at a UC and during this time I left my guinea pig in the care of my family, when i came back i noticed that under and around his mouth was extremely wet and no matter how many times I cleaned him up it just keep happening, so I took him to the vet they said that it could be over grown teeth possibly but them my mom, who came with me remember the had jumped from someones arms and fell maybe six month prior. First they tried a simple front teeth trim but he still could not eat which made them think it was permanent jaw damage and i was, at this point feeding him critical care and giving him water through a syringe. As vet and I felt this was not a way of life for him who so desperately wanted to eat normally but couldn't decided it would be best to put him to sleep....
Not its been about a month and I still cant get over it I feel like I could have done more or been there when they did it (the vet said I was not allowed back with him) I still feel so guilty for this and cant even bring my self to clean his cage as I still don't want to believe that he is gone. Was it the right thing to do or should I have done more should I even feel this guilty and is he at peace did he suffer did i make the wrong decision all of these questions I still cant grasp...
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Hholmes

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So sorry for your loss. I have lost a younger pig to jaw/teeth problem. He had 2 ops too but he had an infection and couldn't save him. More recently had to have my guinea pig Ash pts due to stomach tumour and vet didn't allow me to go with him either, which as hard as it is I always stay with my pets, so I do sympathise with you. I know he had a peaceful passing and I suppose that is some comfort as seeing it another way is not nice at all. Take care xx♥
 

Betsy

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So very sorry for your loss. It is devasting.

I had to have my Velvet pts 2 weeks ago. It is not a nice feeling but you know its for the best. Your piggy was ill and you did what you could for him. Sometimes the call to go to The Rainbow Bridge is too strong and they just have to toddle off there despite you not wanting them to. Guilt is part of the grieving process and it's quite natural to feel it. The vet gave you his honest opinion and they do not recommend pts unless there is no choice. I wanted to be there when Velvet went on her final journey but I wasn't allowed to be either. I was assured that she would be snuggled up in a towel with the vet nurse cuddling her. You did your best for your piggy and showed him the final act of love. You wouldn't have wanted to see him suffer. He is now out of pain and loving it at the Rainbow Bridge, he has all his favourite foods and he can eat them again. He is making lots of new friends and is in his prime playing zoomies and popcorning away.

Sleep well little piggie.
 

Bill & Ted

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I’m so sorry that you have lost your piggie x You did all you could have done and made the right decision and not let him suffer. It would have been unfair for him if he could not eat for himself on a permanent basis as it’s a big enjoyable part of their little lives. Be kind to yourself, don’t feel guilty and try to remember all the wonderful times you had together.
Sleep tight little man x
 

Whortleberry

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I'm ever so sorry to hear that you lost your piggy. I'm glad you've managed to post on here.

I imagine it may have been especially hard for you because you'd been away, come back and realised he was poorly and fairly rapidly had to face the hardest (and kindest) decision to put him to sleep.

As @Betsy says, guilt is a normal part of grief. When we lose someone (including guinea pigs) close to us we often go through a lot of "if onlys" and soul searching. Sometimes it can even seem like we can make something un-happen in this way and we can get quite stuck in processing what has happened and coming to terms with the loss we are faced with.

I had a piggy put to sleep recently too and couldn't be with him as it happened. What I understand about this is that animals as small as guinea pigs need to have a gas anaesthetic as part of the process, so they aren't distressed and aren't aware of what is happening when they are given an injection. People (owners / a pig's person) aren't allowed to be exposed to the gas, so very sadly we can't be with them in their final moments. I don't know if you got to see him afterwards (from what you've said I imagine you didn't) but I suspect he would have appeared relaxed and comfortable - much as if in a very deep sleep.

The forum has some good information around bereavement which you might find helpful:
Human Bereavement - Grieving, coping tips and support links for guinea pig owners and their children

I hope you can find compassion and care for you while you work through the loss of your little one.

Rest in peace little piggy 🌈
 

VickiA

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This is all part of the grieving process, I’m afraid. Many of us have had the same feelings - we wonder what we could or should have done differently, we blame ourselves or other people, we feel a huge sense of loss and responsibility. it’s all part of the grieving process and once you accept that it does start to make some sense of what you are feeling. I’m so sorry for your loss. Having lost a foster piggy only this week I, too, have similar feelings at times.
Wiebke has written this very helpful guide about the grieving process. Please have a look - you may find it helps you. Human Bereavement - Grieving, coping tips and support links for guinea pig owners and their children
 

Claire W

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I am so very sorry for your loss :( I lost a young piggy to dental problems and I feel guilty everyday for having him pts but he hated the syringe and would have the problem for life so we thought it kinder to let him go :(

Grief is such a terrible feeling but you made the kindest decision for your piggy and I promise you that the pain you feel now will gradually get easier. Take your time to grieve and be kind to yourself xx
 

Eriathwen

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I'm so sorry for your loss. I hope it is a comfort that you absolutely did the right thing, jaw damage is next to impossible to fix with guinea pigs, the sheer amount they eat, causing jaw movements even if it's liquid feed, means immobilising the jaw long enough for it to heal often just can't be done.

As everyone else has said, the guilt is part of the normal grieving process. I have lost 3 of my own in the last 10 months and there are still many days when the losses feel as raw as the day they happened. Coming to terms with losing a much loved piggy takes time, I hope you're able to get to the point where the pain lessens and the happy memories are comforting soon.
 

Wiebke

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I was away for a month doing research at a UC and during this time I left my guinea pig in the care of my family, when i came back i noticed that under and around his mouth was extremely wet and no matter how many times I cleaned him up it just keep happening, so I took him to the vet they said that it could be over grown teeth possibly but them my mom, who came with me remember the had jumped from someones arms and fell maybe six month prior. First they tried a simple front teeth trim but he still could not eat which made them think it was permanent jaw damage and i was, at this point feeding him critical care and giving him water through a syringe. As vet and I felt this was not a way of life for him who so desperately wanted to eat normally but couldn't decided it would be best to put him to sleep....
Not its been about a month and I still cant get over it I feel like I could have done more or been there when they did it (the vet said I was not allowed back with him) I still feel so guilty for this and cant even bring my self to clean his cage as I still don't want to believe that he is gone. Was it the right thing to do or should I have done more should I even feel this guilty and is he at peace did he suffer did i make the wrong decision all of these questions I still cant grasp...
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I am so very sorry! it is always so much harder when you are not there to step in and see a vet soon enough and when you don't have reliable care in your absence. and when you come up against a problem that a general vet is not equipped to deal with.
You have made the right decision as the back teeth would have kept on growing unchecked and he was in major pain. :(

Please be aware that the crucial teeth are the one that you do not see, the 14 molars and premolars at the back. They are ground down by the very abrasive silica from eating unlimited hay, which should make over 80% of the daily food intake (and not veg or pellets) for this reason.
If that is no longer the case for whatever reason, then the premolars first will grow spurs that bridge and trap the tongue and make swallowing very difficult. It take an experienced piggy savvy vet to carefully trim those teeth back. If they are left to grow, then they will eventually dislocate the jaw. If it was jaw damage, then it is basically not fixable in a guinea pig but I would have expected it to cause problems sooner as guinea pig teeth overgrow every quickly.
The front teeth are normally self sharpening in a balanced system; they are used for picking up and cutting. If they are slanted, jagged or inward pointing this usually means that there is a problem with the teeth at the back.

I am very sorry that you haven't had the care from your family nor access to an more piggy savvy exotics vet as rodents (never mind rodent dentals) do not feature much in a general vet's curriculum. I don't think that your vet did take an x-ray to check for a break or dislocation of the jaw and for overgrown back teeth? :(
The Guinea pig Guru
The Guinea pig Guru

Please take the time to read this guide below. It will hopefully help you process what has happened, understand your feelings better and where to look for qualified and understanding help if you feel you could do with it. Talking is the best thing you can do. Love transcends species; you have to grieve as much as you have loved - and you have obviously loved your boy A LOT!
Human Bereavement: Grieving, Coping and Support Links for Guinea Pig Owners and Their Children
 

Lj1981

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Sorry to hear about the passing of your lil guinea.
I understand completely about the cage, we lost Broly a few months back, and I just don’t have the heart to clean out his final bedding, muchless take it down. Everything is still as it was the night we rushed him to the emergency vet. There times I still think he’ll be coming out of his house to bite the cage to get our attention to give him his carrots.

We miss him tremendously, just like I know you miss your piggy, he’ll always be loved.
 

sport_billy

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I am so sorry for your loss, you did all you could and made the right choice for them. They had a wonderful life with you please remember that.

Sleep well little one

x x
 
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