Oh dear - thisa is what happens when I let my heart rule my head....

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tylerina

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I have acquired 2 new boys!!

They were unwanted because they have quite severe head tilt - one worse than the other - but I fell in love and couldn't leave them! drooldrooldrool

They are soooo happy and popcorny - they haven't stopped eating since I got them home about an hour ago! They don't even have any names bless them so any ideas gratefully received - pictures to follow asap. Sadly I have to got to work for a couple of hours but I will be rushing home as fast as I can this afty and will try to get a couple of pigtures for you all. :<>:<>:<>
 

Nicolaj36

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Awwww! I wouldn't have been able to leave them either. Hope work passes quick for you. Can't wait to see pics! :)
 
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Aww they sound adorable! I don't know anything about head tilt in guinea pigs, just in bunnies. Is it like EC in rabbits? Good luck with your new arrivals, hope they are settling in well and I bet you can't wait to get home! Looking forward to 'meeting' your newbies ;)
 

gizmo01

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our piglet has a head tilt doesnt bother him at all, just cute because he always looks confused :)
 

AudioHeart

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Awwwwwwwww x) cant wait for pigtures x) Do they have names? :))
 

tylerina

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Thanks guys - I still can't believe I have them here with me!

Well - they have settled in wonderfully so far - they are having a lovely snooze atm - all snuggled up together with their eyes closed awwwwwwww! Of course - they have yet to meet the rest of the family! Hubby popped home from work to have a look at them and has fallen in love with them - well, who wouldn't? I don't like to disturb them yet with the camera so I may wait till tomorrow - sorry!

Any info on head tilt would be good as I must admit, i don't know enough about it either or the implications. Interesting to hear other people's experiences of piggies with the condition. I was told they have been seen by the vet for the last month who has tried them on 2 different antibiotics and they are no different so they have come to the conclusion that they must have had it for a long time and they are probably stuck with it now. I am wondering whether to take them to my vet which is only across the road just for a second opinion. Wouldn't hurt I suppose... I must say though - it certainly isn't bothering them at all! They are full of beans!

Oh - and daughter has said she wants to call them Cookie and Crumble - not sure what my son will say though!
 

Suzygpr

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According to Guinea Piglopaedia, pg 108. Otitis Media - an infection in the middle ear, which may lead to head tilt.

If you do not have this book already I highly recommend getting it.

"A major sign is disturbances of the sense of balance, which is located in the middle ear. The head will tilt to the effected side, and the guinea pig may circle around or fall on it's side. Despite that, many pigs seem relatively unaffected and eat well. However, otitis is sometimes seen as a complication to pnuenomia, and such pigs are usually depressed. Some pigs have otitis media without showing any signs, but have the disease diagnosed as an incidental finding at post mortem.

Radiography is the only reliable diagnosis. There is no therapy available to cure the disease. Damage to balance is usually irreversible, but a single pet may be able to live a decent life despite it's disability. Affected pigs from a colony should be euthanased because of the infection risk."

I have only had one pig come in with head tilt - sadly she passed away very quickly.

Suzy x
 

gizmo01

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piglets is whats left from an old ear infection the vet said it may be permanant
 

tylerina

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Thanks for all your good wishes guys! ANd Suzy - thanks so much for the info you posted up. I hope it isn't anything contagious as I have 2 other boars who are about 10 months old now....

Well, they are now actually called Cookie and Cream! They seem to have settled down quite nicely but seem a bit bewildered by the fact there is yet more fresh food today! I suspect they aren't used to having fresh meals daily sadly.....they are stuffing the nuggets and hay though.
And popcorning like crazy again hee hee!

I had them both out separately last night for a quick cuddle. They both were thrashing around, throwing their heads around and practically bending backwards......they are very very difficult to keep hold of so I will be wrapping them firmly in a blanket tonight when I try and get them out again. Do you think that is anything to do with their head tilt and balance problems or I wonder if they are just not used to any human contact ....Ido think from what I was told that the only human contact they have really had is just being grabbed by the vet etc and having the syringe shoved in their mouths. Certainly doesn't seem as if they are used to gentle snuggles although they will let me stroke them for a bit through the cage door.

One is purring occasionally and wheeks very quietly when he is excited! The other just snuffles. I am also a tad concerned about their hearing as they do not startle at all when there are any noises whatsoever - not even whistling or clapping etc (which my older 2 hate and they will burr when they hear it.) They jump up in the air if you touch them in the cage and they haven't seen you coming towards them......ah, well., Not to worry if they are - they seem so happy anyway. I love them so much......
 

Suzygpr

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What colour are the boys? The behaviour you're describing is very similar to deaf/blind piggies. It is possible that they are microphthalmic pigs - better know as lethal gene. If they are pure white with pink eyes that are smaller than normal, then there is a possiblity that they are. Very, very few pink eyed white pigs are lethals - it is a genetic combination from roan or dalmation breeding.

Suzy x
 

tylerina

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Ok - pictures of Cream Puff (blame my daughter for the name...!)

PatchyandCreamPuff020.jpg


PatchyandCreamPuff022.jpg
 

AudioHeart

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Cream puff looks similar to my maisie moo x)
MeandMaisiemoo.jpg


:)) Beautiful piggie btw!
 

tylerina

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Sorry they are not very clear - he is a naughty thing who won't keep still - I will have to get some pics when he is out on my hubby's lap this evening!

They seem to be improving hour by hour! They are eating a bit more every day - although I have yet to find their favourite veggie as I am taking it quite slowly. The head tilt issue seems to be improving too - esp when they are relaxed in their cage - when I get them out they still thrash around a lot but I am thinking that they will settle in time. I am wondering if it's too soon to let them out for a little run around on the carpet - I think I will only let them have a small space to start with as they still seem a tad unsteady on their feet...I have only had them since Monday - any thoughts?
 

tylerina

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Awwww Laura - Maisie Moo is gorgeous....better not let Cream Puff see that pic - he gets a tad frisky you know! ;)

ok - hopefully a couple of pics of Cookie...

Cookie003.jpg


Cookie002.jpg
 

Suzygpr

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Lovely to see pics of these special boys - and thankfully they are definitley not lethal gene piggies - phew!

Hopefully their balance problems will improve, as it sounds they have done a bit already. Having them out for floortime on carpet - or fleece - will help as they will not be on a slippery surface. Their confidence in walking should improve with practice and they should be able to have a bigger space when they can cope with it. When placing them down hold them between your hands with the feet on the floor for a moment or two before realeasing them so they have time to get their balance.

I've had a few piggies with vestibular syndrome and they have coped very well. Normally I set the cage up the same after each clean out so they know the layout, often with a clean run around the outside edges as they like to follow a path all around the cage. When they got very excited they ran around in circles, sometimes falling over so don't be surprised at that, a gentle hand to steady them usually calms them down. They lived full and happy lives though not as long as most of my other piggies.

All the pigs that were affected like this came from the same source and I believe it was poor breeding practices that caused it - not illness. Sadly the shop that sold them didn't think selling animals with congential problems was wrong and so I've had several like it as their owners didn't feel they could cope with a disabled pig.

Suzy x
 

tylerina

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Suzy - thank you so much for all your advice. That last post was very helpful indeed - they do tend to run in circles when they get excitable and they have fallen over onto their sides several times but have managed to get up under their own steam most times.

I had already thought about keeping the cage quite sparse and everything in the same place as I can see already that it helps them. It's just my hubby that's the problem - I will have to restrain him from buying them loads of toys and beds hee hee hee! He does like to fill the cages up.......

Will give them a try on the floor this evening I think - if they are keen!
 
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