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Dental Month on from dental op, and guinea pig still losing weight and struggling to eat unaided

Carrotyd

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Hello all. We've had our rescue piggie Bruce for about 18 months now, and he is four years old. Within three months of us coming to live with us, he started to suffer dental issues, which I posted about here. Our vet diagnosed overgrowth of the back molars, and he was treated promptly and made a full recovery. So much so, his weight rebounded to 1.3kg.

The problem, however, re-occurred recently (13 months exactly to the day), after we tracked a steady, not-quite-weekly- decline in his body weight, from 1.3kg to 1.238kg. So he underwent a GA and had his back teeth trimmed again, as well as his front incisors too (which he didn't last time). The vet diagnosed him with a mis-aligned jaw during the course of this procedure, which is what she thinks is behind his recurring dental issues.

In the immediate aftermath of the operation, he seemed to be bouncing back as before, but struggling a little bit with his newly-trimmed front teeth. We compensated by stepping in with syringe feeds and chopping his vegetables into long spaghetti type strips, which he seemed to find easier to deal with. We gradually scaled back the syringe feeds when we noticed he was maintaining his weight at around the 1.240kg with relative ease all by himself.

He has still been struggling with picking things up; particularly his dry food, and over the last couple of days seems to have been finding it increasingly difficult to pick up his veggie strips too. He has also been hiding in his tunnel during meal times, so I've been coaxing him out. He'll have a sniff about before attempting to eat some bits but soon gives up again. His weight, consequently, has dropped down to 1.185kg, yesterday (as per his weekly weigh-in), and I've started up the syringe feeds again accordingly.

I had a look at his front teeth this morning and one of the top two is longer than the other, so not sure if that's behind it or if they trimmed them so far back last time he's still waiting from them to grow back in fully so they can be 100% operational and of use to him again. Any advice or experience gratefully received.

Needless to say, he is - of course - booked into see the vet first thing tomorrow morning, but - yeah - interested to hear from people far more experienced in the ways of guinea pig dentistry than me about what they think.
 

Wheekallweek

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I really suggest going to Simon Maddock at Cat & Rabbit clinic in Northampton. He's the best when it comes to dental piggies. He does it GA free which is beneficial to piggies.
Definitely agree, we have a pig currently in the sanctuary called Duke who, if I’m honest, was on deaths door when we took him to see Kim at the Cat and Rabbit clinic. He’d lost 300g and was skin and bone, couldn’t eat by himself and was still loosing weight despite near constant syringe feeding. This was after a basic dental by our normal vets who aren’t specialists but tried their best. He was too poorly to go under another GA.

After ten minutes with Kim, general anaesthetic free, he came back into the consultation room munching on some spinach!
Although his teeth still aren’t 100% right, he’s maintaining his weight and eating well!

Honestly it’s 100% worth it; it was a long journey for us but Duke still goes back every month or so for a check up and I wouldn’t hesitate to go again with any pig.

A7E56695-FAA9-4746-9011-0855358D4642.jpeg
 

Stuart74

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Hello all. We've had our rescue piggie Bruce for about 18 months now, and he is four years old. Within three months of us coming to live with us, he started to suffer dental issues, which I posted about here. Our vet diagnosed overgrowth of the back molars, and he was treated promptly and made a full recovery. So much so, his weight rebounded to 1.3kg.

The problem, however, re-occurred recently (13 months exactly to the day), after we tracked a steady, not-quite-weekly- decline in his body weight, from 1.3kg to 1.238kg. So he underwent a GA and had his back teeth trimmed again, as well as his front incisors too (which he didn't last time). The vet diagnosed him with a mis-aligned jaw during the course of this procedure, which is what she thinks is behind his recurring dental issues.

In the immediate aftermath of the operation, he seemed to be bouncing back as before, but struggling a little bit with his newly-trimmed front teeth. We compensated by stepping in with syringe feeds and chopping his vegetables into long spaghetti type strips, which he seemed to find easier to deal with. We gradually scaled back the syringe feeds when we noticed he was maintaining his weight at around the 1.240kg with relative ease all by himself.

He has still been struggling with picking things up; particularly his dry food, and over the last couple of days seems to have been finding it increasingly difficult to pick up his veggie strips too. He has also been hiding in his tunnel during meal times, so I've been coaxing him out. He'll have a sniff about before attempting to eat some bits but soon gives up again. His weight, consequently, has dropped down to 1.185kg, yesterday (as per his weekly weigh-in), and I've started up the syringe feeds again accordingly.

I had a look at his front teeth this morning and one of the top two is longer than the other, so not sure if that's behind it or if they trimmed them so far back last time he's still waiting from them to grow back in fully so they can be 100% operational and of use to him again. Any advice or experience gratefully received.

Needless to say, he is - of course - booked into see the vet first thing tomorrow morning, but - yeah - interested to hear from people far more experienced in the ways of guinea pig dentistry than me about what they think.
Hope hes not got what my one had in maluccusion.?
My one had the same symptons of not eating and not interaction..
Syring fed him for a while but he passed away after being put down as his teeth was very bad and over grown in the molars...
Sorry dont mean to worry you but make sure the vet is a expert on dentistry
 

furryfriends (TEAS)

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The only advice I can give is, go to Simon Maddock. I know he isn't local to you, but it will definitely be worth the trip and will save you money in the long run. We run a sanctuary for guinea pigs with ongoing dental issues and Simon is the reason that we exist, as we couldn't do what we do, without him. He's amazing!
 

Carrotyd

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I know just how highly Simon is thought of, which has to be a testament to his skill and expertise, and certainly would not rule out going to see him with Bruce in future, given his jaw alignment issues suggest his issues will reoccur.

In the meantime, our vet yesterday gave him a very thorough look over, and said the gums around his lower incisors are inflamed, which might be a source of some discomfort to him. He checked all around his jaw for lumps and bumps, to no avail, and said his teeth looked in good shape.

So he's given us a six-day course of metacam, and told us to come back early next week for another check-up. It has certainly perked Bruce up a bit, and he's eating far more hay on his own and with much more gusto than before he had the pain relief. So we shall see.
 

Carrotyd

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Soooooo... Bruce went back to the vets this week to have a little bit more shaved off one of his back molars, as the vet said he thinks some spurring was missed last time, which *might* be why he's been struggling to eat a bit since his last procedure. The front incisors were not trimmed again this time, thankfully, and the inflammation around his bottom incisors has cleared up completely. So we've been told to keep syringe feeding him for the moment and hopefully he will get back to being a bit more self-sufficient in time. His weight is holding steady at around 1.240-1.260kg on the day-to-day.

Now, I'm happy to wait it out to see if things improve, but I am also extremely open to the idea of getting him an appointment with Simon so we can get Bruce back to his best again, and trying to plan now how we would do that.

So keen to hear from anyone who has made the journey from far away (we're about 90 minutes from his practice) about how they've gone about it. Would we need a referral for Bruce? Also, do you take him for a consultation and leave him there and travel back? Given how in demand Simon seems to be, is there a waiting list or anything?

Any guidance would be warmly welcomed. @Bill & Ted @furryfriends (TEAS) @Wheekallweek
 

furryfriends (TEAS)

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I'd definitely recommend a trip to Simon. You don't need a referral, you can just ring for an appointment. Dental work is done in the appointment time, so you wont need to leave Bruce with them. I would suggest you ring for an appointment now, as they do book up quickly. 01604 478888
 

Stuart74

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Soooooo... Bruce went back to the vets this week to have a little bit more shaved off one of his back molars, as the vet said he thinks some spurring was missed last time, which *might* be why he's been struggling to eat a bit since his last procedure. The front incisors were not trimmed again this time, thankfully, and the inflammation around his bottom incisors has cleared up completely. So we've been told to keep syringe feeding him for the moment and hopefully he will get back to being a bit more self-sufficient in time. His weight is holding steady at around 1.240-1.260kg on the day-to-day.

Now, I'm happy to wait it out to see if things improve, but I am also extremely open to the idea of getting him an appointment with Simon so we can get Bruce back to his best again, and trying to plan now how we would do that.

So keen to hear from anyone who has made the journey from far away (we're about 90 minutes from his practice) about how they've gone about it. Would we need a referral for Bruce? Also, do you take him for a consultation and leave him there and travel back? Given how in demand Simon seems to be, is there a waiting list or anything?

Any guidance would be warmly welcomed. @Bill & Ted @furryfriends (TEAS) @Wheekallweek
My one was very bad but even a expert said his would need to be shaven back every 6 weeks at £100 a time as he had 4 in growing teeth...
 

Bill & Ted

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Soooooo... Bruce went back to the vets this week to have a little bit more shaved off one of his back molars, as the vet said he thinks some spurring was missed last time, which *might* be why he's been struggling to eat a bit since his last procedure. The front incisors were not trimmed again this time, thankfully, and the inflammation around his bottom incisors has cleared up completely. So we've been told to keep syringe feeding him for the moment and hopefully he will get back to being a bit more self-sufficient in time. His weight is holding steady at around 1.240-1.260kg on the day-to-day.

Now, I'm happy to wait it out to see if things improve, but I am also extremely open to the idea of getting him an appointment with Simon so we can get Bruce back to his best again, and trying to plan now how we would do that.

So keen to hear from anyone who has made the journey from far away (we're about 90 minutes from his practice) about how they've gone about it. Would we need a referral for Bruce? Also, do you take him for a consultation and leave him there and travel back? Given how in demand Simon seems to be, is there a waiting list or anything?

Any guidance would be warmly welcomed. @Bill & Ted @furryfriends (TEAS) @Wheekallweek
My Ted goes for a conscious dental around every 3 months. We travel up and stay overnight as it’s too far in one day. You don’t need a referral, but if you have Bruce’s vet records you can ask them to email them over to Simon once you have booked an appointment. The dental takes about 10 minutes, Ted has a strange peg tooth next to a pre molar and gets a bit spikey as it has little to wear against. You just wait in the surgery and then they bring him out all fine and you can go home. He has had three dentals, since my local vet did GA dental which left Ted unable to eat for a month as he cut his incisors so short that they didn’t even meet and had to be syringe fed and gradually hand fed as his incisors grew back, but the vet did not solve his pre molar problem at all. He lost quite a bit of weight which is always a worry. Went to see Simon and Ted was eating hay within 10 minutes after the conscious dental, something he had struggled with for over 2/3 months. He is very reasonable price wise, especially if you return to have repeat dentals. There is an initial fee, then so much for a dental, a lot cheaper than local vet which cost around £180 to make him far worse!
 

KathT

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My Jack sees Simon once a month at the moment due to his bad dental alignment. You just phone and make an appointment and they do any dental work there and then without anaesthetic, which is why I went there initially. Vets round here only do dentals by putting them under, which isn’t good for older pigs I feel. I travel down from Nottingham which takes about 80 minutes depending on traffic on the M1. It’s definitly worth it for the great service by Simon and Kim. You have to pay a consultation fee (cant remember how much) on your first visit plus any dental work but after it’s just for the dental work, which is £48.
 
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