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Piggy bladder sludge/too much calcium in wee

Kaysroberts1

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My guinea pig has been hunching whilst wearing and crying out whilst doing so, so I took him to the vets and they managed to extract some of his urine which proved that he has a large amount of calcium in his bladder which is piling up and stopping him from urinating properly. They have told me that they will either have to keep him in for a week and regularly hydrate him or if this does not work he will have to be operated on. We decided to take him home as we were given a long dose of antibiotics, anti-inflammatories and pain relief (Tralieve, Metacam & Sulfatrim). We have been giving him the required dosage now for 3 days and unfortunately have not really seen any signs of improvement but I understand that this may just take time. I am lost with what things to feed him at the moment as he is refusing to drink but we need to keep his fluids up so try and flush the bladder sludge out, any suggestions would really help. He is also very bloated, my mum picked him up today and very lightly rubbed his belly and a large amount of very cloudy and chalky urine came out so I am wondering whether his bloating is not helping him in passing urine too. We have set up a very large pen for him in our conservatory so he is able to get lots of exercise in the hopes that this will help him to urinate. I am really stuck with what to do and am so worried about him as the vets have told me his kidneys will fail and he will pass away if he does not get any better. Any food suggestions would be really appreciated, along with any suggestions to manually allow him to pass urine as well such as bathing etc. Thank you.
 

Siikibam

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I can only talk about food. Kale, spinach and parsley are three of the high calcium veg. Dandelion leaves are also high in calcium. Pellets should be kept to a tablespoon each day and you can give them filtered water if you’re in a hard water area. Pellets and water can actually contribute quite a lot of calcium to their diet.

I’m sorry you’re having trouble with him. I’ll tag in @VickiA and @Wiebke to help you with the rest. Hope they can get to the bottom of it soon.

In the meantime please can you add your location to your profile.
 

Kaysroberts1

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I can only talk about food. Kale, spinach and parsley are three of the high calcium veg. Dandelion leaves are also high in calcium. Pellets should be kept to a tablespoon each day and you can give them filtered water if you’re in a hard water area. Pellets and water can actually contribute quite a lot of calcium to their diet.

I’m sorry you’re having trouble with him. I’ll tag in @VickiA and @Wiebke to help you with the rest. Hope they can get to the bottom of it soon.

In the meantime please can you add your location to your profile.

Thank you so much! So should I avoid giving him those vegetables? Just as many people have said to not completely strip calcium out of their diet but I also don’t want to make it worse. I’ve been giving him filtered water as I live in a hard water area so that’s all good. I’ve also been giving him cucumber and celery to try and help contribute his water intake but I’m really not sure if I’m definitely feeding him the best things. He’s not had pellets since coming back from the vets so maybe I can introduce them in very small amounts each day? Any advise is really all I need at the moment. I’ve added my location to my profile now :)

again thank you!
 

Siikibam

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You can’t completely cut out calcium and you shouldn’t. They still need it, but it’s best to avoid the veg high in it for piggies with bladder stones issues. I’d say cut those three veg out completely. It’s good you’re filtering the water already. There are pellets on here that quite a few people use for their piggies. They’re grain free science selective if I remember correctly. I think they’re low in calcium but not entirely sure. You can have a look at the comparison link below. I’ll also put the link to the feeding guide. There’s a section in there for special dietary needs. You could perhaps add lettuce to his diet.
Nugget Comparison Chart
Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
 

Kaysroberts1

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You can’t completely cut out calcium and you shouldn’t. They still need it, but it’s best to avoid the veg high in it for piggies with bladder stones issues. I’d say cut those three veg out completely. It’s good you’re filtering the water already. There are pellets on here that quite a few people use for their piggies. They’re grain free science selective if I remember correctly. I think they’re low in calcium but not entirely sure. You can have a look at the comparison link below. I’ll also put the link to the feeding guide. There’s a section in there for special dietary needs. You could perhaps add lettuce to his diet.
Nugget Comparison Chart
Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
Ah okay, thank you so much for your help and sending those links! Really appreciate it 😊
 

alpacasqueak

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17DDB30D-28C7-4950-8793-4FFE23E69F77.jpegSorry messy bag there as the top was tied!:doh: :))
I use this food with my three pigs after my past piggy Rupert had two bladder stones (at different times) and lots of sludge too. I continue to use it as I like it and so do the pigs. But they only get a very small amount (maybe 10-12g between them) in the morning. They get porridge oats in the evening and loads of hay too, as well as their veg.
Hope your little guy feels better soon x
 

Swissgreys

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To be honest if he has a sludge build up that is making it difficult for him to wee, this really needs to be dealt with first.
If he is having problems urinating I am not sure why they didn't offer to treat this immediately as it can indeed cause severe and long term problems if the sludge builds up and ends up causing a total blockage - at this point the situation becomes a real emergency.

We have a bladder sludge piggy and what really helped her was;
- offering a very small amount of grain free pellets (grains can be an irritant)
- feeding 'wet' veg. All fresh veg is rinsed in filtered water and just a small amount of excess shaken off
- only using filtered water
- following the long term diet guide linked above

Clearly you are already doing a lot of that which is great, but maybe try offering wet veg and seeing if that helps.
 

Piggies&buns

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:agr:

Changing his diet to a lower calcium one will help going forward, but his current bladder issues need dealing with (The diet changes probably won’t help with the current problems as diet changes take a long time to have a positive effect).

I also feed the science selective grain free pellets, but even the lower calcium pellets contain a lot of calcium so still need to be kept strictly limited. Mine also get around 10g of pellets to share between the two of them
 

alpacasqueak

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Yes sorry, I should’ve said that my guinea pig Rupert did have (emergency) surgery with his first stone and his bladder flushed then I started him on the Science Selective food. He then developed a second stone months later. So I’d definitely agree getting the sludge dealt with if he’s having trouble urinating and causing him issues.
(Slightly different for him as it was his stone that was blocking him urinating rather than the sludge causing it).
 

VickiA

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:agr: If bladder sludge has built up to the extent that your vets indicate, then he really does need a bladder flush. This is a procedure that is not without risk but is relatively safe in the hands of experienced vets. The bladder sludge needs to be dealt with (plus the infection and inflammation) before looking for improvements from changes in diet etc.
Personally I would go for the bladder flush if your vets are experienced and you trust them. Then address diet to reduce calcium. If you follow our low calcium diet (veggies) for bladder piggies, switch your pellets to grain free versions, filter water to remove calcium and encourage drinking more, then these will help manage symptoms in the longer term. But firstly the sludge needs to be addressed.
 
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