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Post op respiratory infection

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jacksmum

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#1
My poor guinea pig had an eye removed on the 1st November and was sent home with antibiotic cover (Baytril) and lacri lube for his other eye.

He was recovering well and surgically the operation was a success unfortunately on 6th November he developed respiratory symptoms (flanks moving jerkily, nasal discharge and from time to time a loud cough). He has seen 2 vets since. The first vet he saw as an emergency did nothing because he was already on Baytril. The second, who performed the operation said he didn't think that more Baytril would help as it hadn't so far but gave him a further course as he said there were no other antibiotic options and also prescibed a homeopathic remedy.

It has been a week since that last visit to the vet and unfortunately, my poor piggy doesn't seem to be showing any change. I am giving him 4 homeopathic doses per day and 0.2ml Baytril twice per day but we are coming to the end of the bottle. He has been living indoors since prior to the op and is on towels for bedding. He isn't eating much but hasn't given up eating altogether.

I just wondered if anyone could offer any further advice/support. I so want him to get well and be re-united with his buddy but I don't want him to suffer indefinitely if there is no chance of recovery now.

Thanks so much for reading this long post x
 

paulag

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#2
I'm sorry that your piggie is unwell.

The homeopathic remedy is worse than useless because it makes you feel you are treating the infection when you aren't. I have no idea why a vet would prescribe one.

If he isn't responding to the baytril then he needs a different treatment. I would try a different vet.

Paula
 

mobunny

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#3
Hi,

Not sure Baytril is the best treatment in this case, although I'm no vet. When my piggy had a respitory infection he had a course of injections of an antibiotic
but it was not Baytril.

I would go back to the vets and question this if I was you, I will try and remeber what it was they gave him .

If you not sure get a second opinion from another vet.

Maureen
 
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#4
Baytril is the only antibioitic licensed for piggies. .....but there are others that can be (and are routinely) used..... However your vet is either not prepared to prescribe off license....or knows virtually nothing about piggies

Your piggie has every chance of recovery if you can change antibioitics to a stronger/more suitable one without any further delay and keep him eating, drinking and pooping.

Septrin (paediatric suspension) is commonly prescribed by vets now for piggies...it is less likely to cause a GI upset than baytril and has better pentrating power for stuboorn infections such as urinary tract. In this case, as the URI isn;t responding to baytril, then septrin would be the next choice......

Azithromycin is a very strong anitbioitic but is also now being used to treat stubborn infections such as abcesses - Check with Furry Friends that her vet, Simon Maddock at the Cat and Rabbit clinic Dunston, Northampton, would be happy to talk to your vets about prescribing it. Simon;s number is 01604 478888

In view of how long your piggie has been suffering with the infection it may be that you need to miss out septrin and go straight for azithromycin.....especially since this URI could be a result of some residual infection in the eye cavity that is getting through to the respiratory system, possibly via the tear ducts

Finally some vets are prepared to try an injection (it MUST be an injection not oral) of long acting tetracycline which will knock out not only bacteria but also mycoplasma (which the other antibiotics won;t) which could be an alternative cause of the respiratory infection.


I haven't got the dosages to hand - I suggest you ring your vets tomorrow as a matter of urgency and mention these other antibioitics and ask if they are prepared to prescribe them.....better still, ask them to ring simon to discuss azithromycin. If they say no, then change your vets.


Whereabouts are you - perhaps we can recommend a piggy savvy vet near you?
HTH
x
 
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#5
Please try and get your piggie on one of the medications pebble talked about.

I lost a piggie after weeks of baytril and septrin...I wish I had known more.

I really hope your piggie is ok x
 

jacksmum

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#6
Thanks so much for your advice and support - it really means a lot

We are off to the vets this afternoon armed with your advice. I will let you know how we get on

We are on the Isle of Wight if you know of any piggy savvy vets on our little outpost!
 

doglovinpiggylover

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#7
if they keep your pig on baytril, maybe giving a probiotic will help with its tum as baytril is nasty on their guts, thats if you arent already, but i couldnt see if you mentioned one in your posts.

Hope your piggy recovers soon x
 

jacksmum

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#8
We saw a different vet at the same practice and he gave Jack Black an injection of 'alamycin'. He's to have further injections every 2 days next week until he improves. So here's hoping that he'll start to improve over the weekend....

I showed him your advice Pebbles and he said yep, they know what they're talking about! He hadn't heard of Septrin

Thanks again all - you're lovely people x
 

mobunny

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Hi,

Found out what my piggy was given and it was Tetracycline as Pebble said.
My vet has used it on 3 of my pigs one I was looking after for a lady who came to me as a boarder very ill and he made a full recovery. It can take a few injection an I believe there is no limit to how many they give.

Good Luck fingers x

Maureen
 

Millie's-Mummy

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#10
So glad you saw a different vet who was able to offer more help.
Fingers crossed your little one improves now, sending lots of healing vibes your way and please keep us updated x
 

jacksmum

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Just an update on Jack. We went to the vets this afternoon for his 2nd alamycin injection. We saw yet another vet at the same practice. She was very nice and thorough and checked his mouth, tummy and chest. She found some ulceration in his mouth to add to our problems.
She was keen to treat the whole situation and not just give antibiotics for the infection, so as well as the alamycin injection he had a multi vitamin injection plus an injection of anti inflammatories/pain killer for his mouth - poor little chap, he was so good. She's also given me 2 sachets of 'Supreme Science Recovery' liquid food to hopefully help get his digestive system up and running and his strength back. I measured out 5g of the sachet and mixed with 17.5ml warm water and syringe fed him about half of it but I don't feel confident about how much to give/how often. Does anyone else have any experience with this?

Thank you x
 

paulag

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#12
Glad to hear that he is getting good treatment now.

There are much more experienced members here with syringe feeding, I tend to try to calmly feed as much as a piggy will take about four times a day make sure each mouthful is swallowed before syringing any more.

Paula
 

jacksmum

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#13
Well, Jack Black has now had 4 alamycin (long acting tetracycline) injections and STILL his chest infection refuses to go away and he continues with a nasal and eye discharge :-(( The vet gave me a sachet of Bisolvon to add a tiny pinch to his liquid recovery food once per day. Apparently it is prescribed to horses, cattle and dogs where mucus is a complicating factor but is way off licence for guinea pigs. Worth a try though I guess. They are running out of ideas and the vet seemed to suggest that if this doesn't work they will put him to sleep :-(( It would be awful if it comes to that as he is not terribly subdued and eating okay - miniture poo so things can't be perfect in that department but he munches on anything I put out for him (grass, hay, carrot, apple, cucmber, greens, pear, celery..). Maybe he's just not eating enough of his dry food. Oh dear.
 
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#14
If, as you say, he is alert, pooping and eating OK, and is not in respiratory distress or un-manageable pain, then in my opinion it is far too early to make a decision about putting Jack to sleep..


Monitor his weight daily to ensure he isn;t losing any and keep feeding the critical care/bisolvon - you want to feed about 20ml at a time up to 3x per day if he is not eating anything else....but less if he is still eating dried food/veggies/hay. You may find he will eat it off a spoon rather than have to be syringe fed and obviously you need to work at getting his poos back to a better size. You can also mix bio-lapis a probioitc powder with the CC.

If he is in pain, give metacam....it is also an anti-inflammatory.

As Jack has been on antibiotics for so long it is possibly not worth at this stage taking a swab now to try and identify the causative organism. In order to stand a chance of culturing the bug you would first have to withdraw all antibiotic treatment for at least 5 days..... and this could be risky in Jack;s case as the nasal/eye discharge **** indicates that there is possibly an infection present ....however you may wish to at least attempt this ...and put him back on a different antibioitic if he starts to go downhill. This should be discussed with your vet.

I have two further suggestions which i think should be tried before any further consideration is given as to whether Jack should be PTS .....

Firstly with respect to the chest infection .......furoseamide diuretic (Lasix) helps shift fluid in the lungs which can result from a chronic lower respiratory infection/pneumonia and helps the antibiotic to work. Start off with up to 10mg/kg dose the first day and give 5mg/kg twice daily for the next couple of days being careful to monitor for dehydration..(these first few days the diuretic would normally be given as an injection) .....but then maintain on an oral dose of 2mg/kg twice (or thrice) daily for a number of weeks until the vet can hear improved respiratory sounds (I grind up a 20mg tablet, add 5ml water and syringe x ml where x = (piggie weight/2). Alternatively you can use frussol oral suspension.

Secondly the nasal and eye discharge are what is concerning me most as it indicates there is possibly still a bug present and this could be in the eye cavity..I would definitly now try azithromycin antibiotic as nothing else so far has worked....so please get your vet to ring Simon......azithromycin has been used successfully in piggies to clear these types of stubborn infection in difficult to pentrate areas including abcesses in soft tissue and bone

Please do not give up on Jack yet!

Just over a year ago 9 of my piggies developed chronic penumonia (of unknown origin)....baytril/septrin etc didn;t work; we swabbed for microbes and found multi-resistant staph and strep in their poos but nothing from throat swabs. We stopped antibiotics because we couldn;t find a bacterial cause.....and put them all on furoseamide and monitored progress for the next 6 months....gradually once the respiratory condition in a piggie stabilised the furosemide was withdrawn. Today only two are still on furosemide - this is because they have a diagnosed heart condition and odema in their front paws so they are also given fortekor (1mg/kg) twice daily.

Only 2 out of the 9 suffering this chronic pneumonia were finally PTS ....this was 9 months later when the fruseamide stopped having any effect despite gradually increaing the dosage. Their lungs became too full of fluid and they went into respiratory distress....which I was watching for and took them up to the vet immediately they started to show any signs. PM results showed chronic pneumonia but there was no histopathology to indicate a microbiological cause (not even viral inclusion bodies) and it deffo wasn;t the staph or strep.....or lymphoma....which was our other theory

We may not have identified/cured the cause.....but my vet and I have worked together to successfully manage the clinical symptoms....and some of the survivors have since had major surgery for lumps and bumps and sailed through with no problems during GA...they also get checked every 4 months and other than a slight respiratory crackle are all absolutely fine and perky.

I know how frustrating/upsetting it is as I have been there myself. But in view of my experience above, please do not give up hope or let your vet persuade you to give up hope yet just because to date nothing has worked..Your vet may have run out of ideas (as my first vet did) but there are other piggie vets out there who may be able to offer the benefit of their own piggie experiences. Obviously in view of your location it would be difficult to be referred to a vet on the mainland as I was....but there's nothing to stop your vet ringing up Simon in Northampton. Jack could have many happy piggy years ahead of him providing the symptoms are successfully managed.

All piggies here are keeping their paws crossed for Jack and sending him healing wheeks.

HTH
x
 
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#15
He hadn't heard of Septrin
Paediatric septrin suspension (banana flavour) is the GLaxoSmithKline brand name for a combination of two antibioitics: Trimethoprim and sulfamethoxazole at concentrations of 40mg and 200mg/5ml respectively. Septrin is also available in tablet form...but the paediatric suspension is by far the best preparation to give piggies.

It is manufacturerd by other companies under the names of Bactrim, Tribrissen, co-trimoxadole...which I expect your vet may be more familiar with

Max dosage is 30mg/kg of the combined drugs given twice daily....so the most common dosage for piggies weighing approx 1-1.2kg is 0.5ml twice daily.

x
 

Freela

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#16
There are other piggy antibiotics apart from Baytril... one of my pigs was on another med for quite some time in an effort to treat an abscess. If the Baytril is not working, I would see another vet and try to switch to another antibiotic. HTH a bit... poor little piggy!
 
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