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Vetark ProC and brown/black specks

KHBz

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I have been diluting Vetark ProC in the piggies' water and sprinkling it on their food for the past two days. The first time it was mixed with the water and I poured it into the bottle, I saw a brown speck and a floating sliver of plastic. I fished them out, thinking that the brown speck must have already been in the jug (although unlikely because I had checked it was thoroughly clean before using it). The piggies loved the water and Bianca has even been accepting the powder sprinkled on her nuggets (we've given up on getting Fibreplex down her.) Making another batch today, there were more brown specks which, without any doubt now, must have come from the powder. Taking a photo of a couple with zoom magnification, it looks as though they may well be lice of some sort (dead) -- unless, that is, the white powder always comes with longish black and brown specks here and there? If they are indeed lice, any that I missed would have easily gone through the drinking spout and they also wouldn't have shown up on nuggets. Should there be specks in the powder? I'm rather concerned for the piggies, particularly as we are giving it them because of Bianca's ongoing soft and dodgy poops.
 

KHBz

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I have been diluting Vetark ProC in the piggies' water and sprinkling it on their food for the past two days. The first time it was mixed with the water and I poured it into the bottle, I saw a brown speck and a floating sliver of plastic. I fished them out, thinking that the brown speck must have already been in the jug (although unlikely because I had checked it was thoroughly clean before using it). The piggies loved the water and Bianca has even been accepting the powder sprinkled on her nuggets (we've given up on getting Fibreplex down her.) Making another batch today, there were more brown specks which, without any doubt now, must have come from the powder. Taking a photo of a couple with zoom magnification, it looks as though they may well be lice of some sort (dead) -- unless, that is, the white powder always comes with longish black and brown specks here and there? If they are indeed lice, any that I missed would have easily gone through the drinking spout and they also wouldn't have shown up on nuggets. Should there be specks in the powder? I'm rather concerned for the piggies, particularly as we are giving it them because of Bianca's ongoing soft and dodgy poops.
Husband confirms that they are indeed lice-like creatures and not randomn flecks. I have contacted Vetark with the batch number and await their response. Should I worry for the piggies' sake?
 

Wiebke

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Husband confirms that they are indeed lice-like creatures and not randomn flecks. I have contacted Vetark with the batch number and await their response. Should I worry for the piggies' sake?
Hi!

Unless it is live guinea pig specific lice, there is no worry. But you were right to report it. Keep an eye on your piggies for coming 2-3 weeks. A healthy piggy hould be able to fend them off. See a vet if you notice any on the body and send the bill to vetark for reimbursment in that case.

Please do not add any vitamin C powder to the water bottle. It is not necessary in a grass hay based good diet and you can never control the intake. Most people are totally unaware that fresh grass is high in vitamin C and that grass hay also still contains some - as it makes around 80% of the daily food intake, this actually adds up to enough in combination with the vitamin C in the veg selection and in the tablespoon of pellets you are serving. There is a good reason why guinea pigs never had the need to make their own vitamin C. And a reason why we haven't ever seen any cases of scurvy in piggies on a good hay based diet in nearly 15 years on here or in our own piggies.

However, what we have come across more often is scurvy in guinea pigs who have adapted to very levels of vitamin C if the level did drop for some reason (like illness or a sudden drop in the oversupply). Ironically, the more vitamin C you throw at your piggies past that what they really need, the more you actually put your piggies at risk of suffering from acute scurvy (vitamin C defiency). :(
I would strongly recommend to review your diet and rather stick to a good quality long term safe diet that is preferably closer to the the one they have evolved on instead to feeding lots of supplements and too many high sugar veg like carrots pr pet shop treats etc...
All About Drinking And Bottles
Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
 

KHBz

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Hi!

Unless it is live guinea pig specific lice, there is no worry. But you were right to report it. Keep an eye on your piggies for coming 2-3 weeks. A healthy piggy hould be able to fend them off. See a vet if you notice any on the body and send the bill to vetark for reimbursment in that case.

Please do not add any vitamin C powder to the water bottle. It is not necessary in a grass hay based good diet and you can never control the intake. Most people are totally unaware that fresh grass is high in vitamin C and that grass hay also still contains some - as it makes around 80% of the daily food intake, this actually adds up to enough in combination with the vitamin C in the veg selection and in the tablespoon of pellets you are serving. There is a good reason why guinea pigs never had the need to make their own vitamin C. And a reason why we haven't ever seen any cases of scurvy in piggies on a good hay based diet in nearly 15 years on here or in our own piggies.

However, what we have come across more often is scurvy in guinea pigs who have adapted to very levels of vitamin C if the level did drop for some reason (like illness or a sudden drop in the oversupply). Ironically, the more vitamin C you throw at your piggies past that what they really need, the more you actually put your piggies at risk of suffering from acute scurvy (vitamin C defiency). :(
I would strongly recommend to review your diet and rather stick to a good quality long term safe diet that is preferably closer to the the one they have evolved on instead to feeding lots of supplements and too many high sugar veg like carrots pr pet shop treats etc...
All About Drinking And Bottles
Long Term Balanced General And Special Needs Guinea Pig Diets
Thank you very much for your reply. I really appreciate it.

I was not giving them ProC because of the vitamin C, however, but as a means to get probiotics/prebiotics into a guinea-pig with an ongoing soft-poo problem who won't take Fibreplex. You have, very recently, kindly given me advice on administering Fibreplex, but we have had to give up on trying to syringe-feed this for a few reasons, after having only managed to administer a few doses which weren't sufficient. When I posted on this forum in despair about not managing to get Fibreplex into the piggy, it was suggested by a couple of senior members that I try a different probiotic and the relevant link on this site was given. I chose ProC from that list and had, indeed, previously avoided it as my first choice precisely because I didn't want to give them extra Vitamin C unnecessarily. I also read every thread on here that mentioned ProC because I was so uncertain about giving the vitamin C that they didn't need and thereby upsetting their dietary balance.

The piggies have been off vegetables for weeks / months, and so their diet is well over 90% hay. (Besides dried forage [and that just consists mostly of very few scattered leaves], the only thing apart from hay is a portion each of 12 pellets a day.) The thread which details all the problems I have been having is 'Still soft poops after 5-6 days of no veg'. I didn't post this on that thread, however, both because I thought it would be missed (my last entry in that thread went unnoticed so I put the question again elsewhere) and because I thought this was a separate issue as I was focused on the product. I apologise that you therefore had an incomplete picture of why I would be giving them ProC!

So, even though ProC is recommended on this site for the probiotics and prebiotics, do I understand that I shouldn't actually be giving them it at all because of the unnecessary vitamin C? At this point, then, I'm stuck.

Many thanks for your time and help.
 

Wiebke

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Thank you very much for your reply. I really appreciate it.

I was not giving them ProC because of the vitamin C, however, but as a means to get probiotics/prebiotics into a guinea-pig with an ongoing soft-poo problem who won't take Fibreplex. You have, very recently, kindly given me advice on administering Fibreplex, but we have had to give up on trying to syringe-feed this for a few reasons, after having only managed to administer a few doses which weren't sufficient. When I posted on this forum in despair about not managing to get Fibreplex into the piggy, it was suggested by a couple of senior members that I try a different probiotic and the relevant link on this site was given. I chose ProC from that list and had, indeed, previously avoided it as my first choice precisely because I didn't want to give them extra Vitamin C unnecessarily. I also read every thread on here that mentioned ProC because I was so uncertain about giving the vitamin C that they didn't need and thereby upsetting their dietary balance.

The piggies have been off vegetables for weeks / months, and so their diet is well over 90% hay. (Besides dried forage [and that just consists mostly of very few scattered leaves], the only thing apart from hay is a portion each of 12 pellets a day.) The thread which details all the problems I have been having is 'Still soft poops after 5-6 days of no veg'. I didn't post this on that thread, however, both because I thought it would be missed (my last entry in that thread went unnoticed so I put the question again elsewhere) and because I thought this was a separate issue as I was focused on the product. I apologise that you therefore had an incomplete picture of why I would be giving them ProC!

So, even though ProC is recommended on this site for the probiotics and prebiotics, do I understand that I shouldn't actually be giving them it at all because of the unnecessary vitamin C? At this point, then, I'm stuck.

Many thanks for your time and help.
Hi!

Sorry, we do jump between lots of threads in a day, never mind any longer gap on top of a job, our own piggies and private life; we do this for free in our free time. After posting on literally tens of thousands of cases just on here in over a decade, please accept that unless you pick up your old thread and continue posting on there in order to allow us to refresh our memory re. background, you run the risk of not getting the advice you are after without giving a precis of the background. We are too lively a place to remember every single all the time unless it is a long running support thread.
You can use the 'Find Thread/Your Threads' option by the top bar on the home page to pick up your previous thread for ongoing support. We do have this option on here and we do ask every member to please keep any ongoing case to the same thread in order avoid getting personalised advice and not just a general answer based on the information you give in your first post in any new thread.
Please Start Your Own Thread with the Problem in the Title and Keep an Ongoing Case to One Thread

If this is the only way your can get your girl to pick up her probiotics and she is noticeably better, then please continue. If she is not well, extra vitamin C won't hurt; only for the long term in healthy piggies.
 

KHBz

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Yes, I'm sorry I didn't put it on my now long-standing (!) thread. I just thought that without its own separate heading it would get lost, as my questions re dried forage and upset tummies have done. I anticipate having to post more on this subject so any such posts will go back there!

I am relieved that I can give Bianca a short dose of ProC. This is my last-ditch attempt to normalise things before taking her to a different vet (going a third time to a vet who has said their stools are healthy and show that the piggies are well hydrated isn't likely to give me a different response). We've lost some of Bianca's trust through our clumsy attempts to give her Fibreplex one way or another. She still runs away when we offer her individual nuggets, assuming that they will all be spiked 😉, so when she actually ate the nuggets in her bowl that were sprinkled with ProC and drank the water, I was astonished. I am going to give it a week and then take her to one of your recommended vets. I haven't done so earlier because, not driving, the logistics of it all are quite complicated. Do you think a week is long enough to give it all a chance to settle?

On another note, it is my younger daughter's twelfth birthday today, and along with another guinea-pig themed present, I have given her a year's subscription to the Guinea Pig Magazine, together with a binder and a back issue :nod: ! She has wanted this for a long time.

Thank you again.
 

Wiebke

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Yes, I'm sorry I didn't put it on my now long-standing (!) thread. I just thought that without its own separate heading it would get lost, as my questions re dried forage and upset tummies have done. I anticipate having to post more on this subject so any such posts will go back there!

I am relieved that I can give Bianca a short dose of ProC. This is my last-ditch attempt to normalise things before taking her to a different vet (going a third time to a vet who has said their stools are healthy and show that the piggies are well hydrated isn't likely to give me a different response). We've lost some of Bianca's trust through our clumsy attempts to give her Fibreplex one way or another. She still runs away when we offer her individual nuggets, assuming that they will all be spiked 😉, so when she actually ate the nuggets in her bowl that were sprinkled with ProC and drank the water, I was astonished. I am going to give it a week and then take her to one of your recommended vets. I haven't done so earlier because, not driving, the logistics of it all are quite complicated. Do you think a week is long enough to give it all a chance to settle?

On another note, it is my younger daughter's twelfth birthday today, and along with another guinea-pig themed present, I have given her a year's subscription to the Guinea Pig Magazine, together with a binder and a back issue :nod: ! She has wanted this for a long time.

Thank you again.
Hi!

You can always tag any of us into your support thread by typing @ immediately followed by the username; when the list comes up, click on the username you want to tag. This will generate an alert when the normal watch alerts are not coming on and hopefully the next one of us coming on will answer.

You should hopefully see an improvement within a week, especially if she is taking to her food. If not, then she really needs to see a vet anyway!

Having had to travel to my specialist vet in Northampton by train, bus or taxi with my own piggies and visited rescues for adoptions around the country on public transport, I am fully aware that can be a bit tricky; I've had my various adventures!

PS: We are currently rather busy with putting the November/Christmas issue together so it is at the printers on time; there is usually lots of Christmassy stuff there as well. I hope that your daughter will enjoy it!
I am finishing this year's article series about following a guinea pig's life from start to end, from what happens in the first hours after birth (in the January issue) through all the development stages to looking at Old Age and the end of life in the coming issue - that is a bit of a bitter-sweet one... The current September issue is about the Adult Years.
 

KHBz

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Hi!

You can always tag any of us into your support thread by typing @ immediately followed by the username; when the list comes up, click on the username you want to tag. This will generate an alert when the normal watch alerts are not coming on and hopefully the next one of us coming on will answer.

You should hopefully see an improvement within a week, especially if she is taking to her food. If not, then she really needs to see a vet anyway!

Having had to travel to my specialist vet in Northampton by train, bus or taxi with my own piggies and visited rescues for adoptions around the country on public transport, I am fully aware that can be a bit tricky; I've had my various adventures!

PS: We are currently rather busy with putting the November/Christmas issue together so it is at the printers on time; there is usually lots of Christmassy stuff there as well. I hope that your daughter will enjoy it!
I am finishing this year's article series about following a guinea pig's life from start to end, from what happens in the first hours after birth (in the January issue) through all the development stages to looking at Old Age and the end of life in the coming issue - that is a bit of a bitter-sweet one... The current September issue is about the Adult Years.
My daughter is already planning to use her birthday money to buy the back issues with your articles charting the guinea-pig's life, so that she has the complete set. That present was a success! Good luck with getting the latest one to the printers on time. No pressure there!

Many thanks again for all your help.
 
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