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Small circle bald spot on the left side of my guinea pig.

TwitchingFool0

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I noticed it a day or so ago and I just checked again and its still there. It doesn't look irritated and her scratching has been minimal. I use a fleece liner and clean their cage every day. My other pig is fine and the pig with the spot is fully alert, eating, playing, and drinking. The spot isn't even red and she let me touch it and didn't react at all when I made contact. They're both pretty young and i've only had them for a few weeks now. Our local petco does adoption for most of its animals including pigs so i'll check back with them too. If its mites or something what should I do that i can do at home while I prepare for the vet visit? Unfortunately where I am is in the US and there isn't a vet nearby but I will take the 2 hour drive to get her there.
 

TwitchingFool0

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A little over a week and she didn't have that spot when I got her and her sibling. I'm keeping a close eye on her but she seems fine in everything else and her sibling has no signs of anything. I checked just to make sure. I'll try and see what I can do.
 

Wiebke

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I noticed it a day or so ago and I just checked again and its still there. It doesn't look irritated and her scratching has been minimal. I use a fleece liner and clean their cage every day. My other pig is fine and the pig with the spot is fully alert, eating, playing, and drinking. The spot isn't even red and she let me touch it and didn't react at all when I made contact. They're both pretty young and i've only had them for a few weeks now. Our local petco does adoption for most of its animals including pigs so i'll check back with them too. If its mites or something what should I do that i can do at home while I prepare for the vet visit? Unfortunately where I am is in the US and there isn't a vet nearby but I will take the 2 hour drive to get her there.
Hi and welcome!

Unfortunately we cannot tell you sight unseen what you may be dealing with, whether it is a fungal issue (ringworm) or one of the two guinea pig specific varieties of mites and without being able to handle your piggy.

Please don't home treat on spec and don't wipe the 'crime scene' with some cream or other as no vet will thank you making their job even more difficult. When you treat, it is ultimately cheaper to opt for vet grade medication that can get on top of the problem straight away. With any infectious issue (fungal or parasite), you will always have to treat all piggies in contact with each other, whether they are visibly affected or not because of the time lapse between infection/contraction of an issue and it becoming active/visible. For ringworm for instance the period between infection and acute outbreak is typically 10-14 days.

You may find the information in our new owners' most common problems guide link helpful, including your customer rights re. payment of treatment cost and vet fees depending on your country: New guinea pigs: Sexing, vet checks&customer rights, URI, ringworm and parasites
 

TwitchingFool0

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I haven't done anything to it but i've seen ivermectin. I'll just wait for my vet visit and try to be as clean as possible for her and her sister
 

Wiebke

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I haven't done anything to it but i've seen ivermectin. I'll just wait for my vet visit and try to be as clean as possible for her and her sister
Ivermectin won't help against ringworm although it can temporarily slow it down or suppress it; you also want it at the right strength. The two most common issues (skin parasites and ringworm) need different treatment; that is why it is important not to step in unless you know exactly what you are up against. It may even be something else. THEN you can throw the ideal sized kitchen sink much more effectively straight at the target. ;)

All the best! Since exposure and infection must have happened at the pet shop, you can reclaim any cost from them. You are in a much better position to do so with an official vet diagnosis and bill, which you can present together with the sales receipt. ;)
 

TwitchingFool0

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Ivermectin won't help against ringworm although it can temporarily slow it down or suppress it; you also want it at the right strength. The two most common issues (skin parasites and ringworm) need different treatment; that is why it is important not to step in unless you know exactly what you are up against. It may even be something else. THEN you can throw the ideal sized kitchen sink much more effectively straight at the target. ;)

All the best! Since exposure and infection must have happened at the pet shop, you can reclaim any cost from them. You are in a much better position to do so with an official vet diagnosis and bill, which you can present together with the sales receipt. ;)
I'd like to keep them though. Love those furry potatoes.
 

TwitchingFool0

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Well I checked again and it seems she has scratched herself there now and has an extremely tiny scab. Also just found another spot near her head on her upper shoulder. Not sure if that's part of the natural bald spot on their ears or something else. I'm quite scared to be honest. I don't want to lose another pig this year. My first one died in January. If I can't care for these 2 i guess i'll bite the bullet and return them. I must be doing something wrong. Maybe they just need to be saved from me.
 

Piggies&buns

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On her upper shoulder doesn’t sound like the bald spot behind their ears - the bald spot behind the ears is on both sides.
Your piggy needs to be seen by a vet for diagnosis and the correct treatment. Exercise good hygiene in case it is ringworm as ringworm can spread to humans
 

VeeAngel

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Well I checked again and it seems she has scratched herself there now and has an extremely tiny scab. Also just found another spot near her head on her upper shoulder. Not sure if that's part of the natural bald spot on their ears or something else. I'm quite scared to be honest. I don't want to lose another pig this year. My first one died in January. If I can't care for these 2 i guess i'll bite the bullet and return them. I must be doing something wrong. Maybe they just need to be saved from me.
Sorry you are having health issues with the new piggies. If it is mites or ring worm, sounds like it would have come from the pet store, not anything you have done or could have prevented.
I think petco has a vet “on site” for each store and has to take them back for treatment if you purchased them within 15 days. I believe they have to refund you and take the animals for treatment, then you rebuy your pet after treatment. Maybe call the store.

Otherwise, you could get small pet insurance to help with vet costs. They unfortunately won’t cover me here in Canada, but I was researching earlier and found some options available in the US for guinea pigs. Guinea pig Insurance

and also Nationwode which is recommended by the LA Guinea Pig Rescue. Every Pet Insurance

(My sister is in Austin and she’s very happy with her pet coverage, although she doesn’t currently have exotics).
 

TwitchingFool0

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Sorry you are having health issues with the new piggies. If it is mites or ring worm, sounds like it would have come from the pet store, not anything you have done or could have prevented.
I think petco has a vet “on site” for each store and has to take them back for treatment if you purchased them within 15 days. I believe they have to refund you and take the animals for treatment, then you rebuy your pet after treatment. Maybe call the store.

Otherwise, you could get small pet insurance to help with vet costs. They unfortunately won’t cover me here in Canada, but I was researching earlier and found some options available in the US for guinea pigs. Guinea pig Insurance

and also Nationwode which is recommended by the LA Guinea Pig Rescue. Every Pet Insurance

(My sister is in Austin and she’s very happy with her pet coverage, although she doesn’t currently have exotics).
I'll look into it. If I can keep the pigs I will. Guinea pigs are my life and I'm afraid I'm not the right person for a guinea pig. My first one lived about 5 years before he died from what we think was an aneurism. I just hope I'm not the problem here. Up until he died, he was in perfect health and had no problems at all. I just start to think the worst now. They're my babies.
 

Siikibam

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Please get your piggies (yes, both) seen by an independent vet. Then you can speak to the pet shop about them covering the cost. I wouldn’t take them back there.
 

TwitchingFool0

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Please get your piggies (yes, both) seen by an independent vet. Then you can speak to the pet shop about them covering the cost. I wouldn’t take them back there.
My guinea pig has scab on her shoulder that we're treating and I want to know if we should peel it off. We're not sure if the ointment is working as its just sitting on the scab. I imagine we need to wait for it to fall off but she keeps scratching it. Let me know if there's anything I can do about it.
 

Siikibam

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Don’t peel it off, leave it alone. Did you get the ointment from a vet?
 

TwitchingFool0

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Don’t peel it off, leave it alone. Did you get the ointment from a vet?
He didn't but he said Lotrimin and if that doesn't work try ivermectin. We'll even bathe her carefully if it doesn't work. He spotted right away that she had ringworm and said a skin scraping wasn't needed as they can be unreliable. The patch on her side looks way better bug near the shoulder is a scab that has gotten bigger. We're being as clean as possible and she seems to stop itching for the most part. I guess I just need to be patient.
 

Siikibam

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Don’t wash her in the shampoo. I’ll tag @Wiebke but please be patient. I don’t know much, but reading the guide it looks like itrafungol (administered orally) is what’s suggested for ringworm. Is the Lotrimin a cream?
Ringworm: Hygiene And Pictures
 

Wiebke

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He didn't but he said Lotrimin and if that doesn't work try ivermectin. We'll even bathe her carefully if it doesn't work. He spotted right away that she had ringworm and said a skin scraping wasn't needed as they can be unreliable. The patch on her side looks way better bug near the shoulder is a scab that has gotten bigger. We're being as clean as possible and she seems to stop itching for the most part. I guess I just need to be patient.
Lotrimin is better known as daktarin cream in the UK; it is an antifungal cream. Unfortunately, any creaming on affected spots cannot prevent invisible ringworm spores being shed and starting another spot of infection elsewhere on the body. You only reach the bald spot but not fully the much wider already affected area the ringworm sits at the hair roots. All affected hairs have to come out to get on top of the spores.

Please do not wash in normal shampoo. But you can give her a nizoral anti-dandruff bath every three days for three times. It is very rough on guinea pig skin so we normally don't recommend to use it more than once, if at all; but it will be more effective in terms of ringworm than the over the counter cream.
Please follow our very detailed and comprehensive hygiene advice in our ringworm guide if you want to get on top of it once and for all and not turn it in a long running saga. in 15 years of existence and ringworm both in our own piggies and sadly far too many newly bought guinea pigs passing through here, we have had time to work out all the ways ringworm can be transmitted on and how to address each angle effectively to stop it once and for all. That is why our guide really works.
Here is the link; please read it and please follow ALL the hygiene tips to make it work: Ringworm: Hygiene And Pictures

Unfortunately ivermectin will only suppress ringworm temporarily but not cure it.
 
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