Guinea Pigs' lifestyle, Uncategorized

Power struggle

Kirk is back home. Not cleared, but stable and not in need for oxygen therapy. So all the other medicines can be given at home.

After three days of being the king of the pen, Archy seemed a little bit disturbed by Kirk’s return. Kirk didn’t take it well neither, so they picked a fight. Not the usual rumbling and teeth chattering, but really some biting and Kirk ended up with some scratches on his nose.

The logical thing to do was to separate them. Kirk is still under treatment and avoiding supplementary stress should be a priority. Of course, from the logistic point of view, this separation caused a mess.

The grids were used to build a shelf. Now the shelf had to be dismantled in a hurry (kids were demanding attention too). The VetBed was placed in such way that they both sleep on it, but is not large enough to cover the full cage. So it had to be moved. And redecorating was necessary too.

img_20180809_080630

On the other hand, Spock was out of the house for less than nine hours. When he got back, both Data and him were so happy for the reunion that they hid in the same little wood house and just enjoyed the closeness.

Now we just hope Kirk and Archy will accept once again to share the same cage.

Advertisements
Guinea Pigs' health, Uncategorized

Bumblefoot and The Gang

Disclaimer: This is not medical advise. This is just our experience with pododermatites in Guinea Pigs and the purpose of this post is to offer our experience in case it can help others. Please talk to your vet before administrating any treatment.  

Worf had pododermatites to his back paws and one of the front. We didn’t realized and, by the time we got to the vet, it was pretty bad.

The vet we had at that time said it was quite common in Guinea Pigs and, unfortunately, there was not much we could do. But she proposed laser therapy.

After 14 sittings, he was cleared. His paws were “like new”.

The vet that performed the laser therapy suggested to use VetBed too, at least in his hidings where he loved to hide and sleep. By the time it was ordered and arrived, Worf got pneumonia and died. (I feel like crying now.)

Data had pododermatites. He has some soft poop, we are trying to clear that out now, and it gets stuck to his paws so the moisture got to him. Not as bad as Worf had.

The old vet noticed nothing. The new vet saw it immediately. We missed it, of course.

The new vet proposed Traumeel cream (composition for 100g: arnica montana radix D3 1,5 g, calendula officinalis Ø 0,45 g, hamamelis virginiana Ø 0,45 g, echinacea Ø 0,15 g, echinacea purpurea Ø 0,15 g, chamomilla Ø 0,15 g, symphytum officinale D4 0,1 g, bellis perennis Ø 0,1 g, hypericum perforatum D6 0,09 g, millefolium Ø 0,09 g, aconitum napellus D1 0,05 g, belladonna D1 0,05 g, mercurius solubilis D6 0,04 g, hepar sulphur D6 0,025 g). We had to apply this twice per day for about one month. Paws got cleared.

VetBed was implemented in their cage. Spock takes advantage of it too.

Archy had / still has some pododermatites. He used to have saw dust as bedding and most probably the wet one was not cleaned often.

I have noticed some dried “skin” hanging from his soles and clipped it while taking care of his nails. As it didn’t get worse, we leave it like this and mentioned it to the vet when we were last week. She showed me some scars (little ones) and said it was pododermatites, but almost cured so no need to do anything else.

Archy is on VetBed since 10 July and most probably this helped a lot. Vitamine C and the fact that he is younger too.

Our conclusion: bumblefoot can be treated. But, most important, it can be prevented!

  • Use a bedding or clean the bedding as often as needed so it stays dry under their buts.
  • If your piggy doesn’t move a lot due to age or other conditions, definitely invest in VetBed.
  • Paws check should be part of the weekly routine, along with weighting and feeling for lumps.

Live long and prosper!

img_20180726_0824257422647609217177915.jpg

Guinea Pigs' lifestyle, Uncategorized

Open Fence Days

Ms M broke all the written and unwritten laws of binding two guinea pigs males. She followed her gut and apparently it works.

Kirk and Archy were out on the couch for few times and they didn’t seem impressed one to each other. They were on the couch, passing by, but not really doing something together.

Wednesday afternoon Ms M decided to open the fence between the two of them and see what happens. The main thing she skipped (and please don’t do this at home!) was cleaning the cages and making sure the odors are neutral. But the boys didn’t seem to mind this.

She had two main concerns: how the boys will react at being together and how the white ones (Spock & Data) will react to meeting Archy at the fence. Spock can be very nasty with Data if something bothers him at the fence.

Well, everything went pretty well. A little bit of teeth chattering, but no biting, no fighting.

Still Ms M hadn’t had the guts to leave them like this over the night, so the fence was back late in the evening.

Fortunately, the other adult biped was at home on Thursday and Friday and the fence was up again, this time for the night too. The boys are fine together, although we do not see any huge friendship there. But tolerance is acceptable if this gives them a bigger space.

Archy is still getting scared of the movement around him, but less and less and being with Kirk seems to diminish it. So far s good!

And Ms M is happy she can take nice photos of both of them. 😀

Uncategorized

10 days after…

This is the human writing. A sad, restless human.

I was taking a shower this evening and started crying. It’s becoming a habit since Worf died last Thursday morning. Probably because it’s the only moment when I am somehow alone and no one would ask me what’s wrong.

This time is different. This time I cry, sob and silent scream. Because I finally manage to name what bothers me a lot.

I feel like I failed him. I am so so sorry that I failed him.

I deeply regret everything that happened, starting with his pododermatitis and the need to take him out three times per week for the laser therapy. And continuing with his pneumonia and our bad management of the situation.

He was our responsibility and we failed him.

Another very profound regret is that on Wednesday when I left him in the veterinary clinic, all small, looking bad and scared, I failed to hug him and tell him I loved him. I just hope he knew it.

I write all this while crying in my bed with my daughter in my arms and my son sleeping aside me. And the feeling that I failed Worf is so strong that I barely can breathe anymore.
I f@#£_& failed him! It’s all I can think about.

He is no longer here because us, the humans, the adults, took some bad decisions and failed him.

I failed him and I am so very sorry. I miss him and I must learn to live with this.

P.S. I really hope we’ve learned our lesson.

P.S. 2 If you ever feel that your veterinarian is not doing everything and you should ask for a second opinion, don’t hesitate. Ever!

Data's tales, Uncategorized

This Spock will drive us crazy

data_profile_2It’s been two weeks from our last post and much happened with Spock in the meanwhile. And it’s still not over.

He started eating veggies for few days, but it was obvious something was still bothering him. We all supposed it’s just due to the psychological trauma. He was not touching the hay, although it was clear he would love to. The humans tried some fancy hay in fancy paper bags and still nothing.

His birthday passed uncelebrated, but filled with worries.

Two days after it, last Friday evening, the human female took him out for a check-up, including weight. And she noticed a lump on his jaw, on the left side of his head. That was a horrible moment. She immediately called the veterinary clinic and took an emergency appointment with our vet who, fortunately, had consultations on Saturday too.

The vet was shocked to see him, as she thought he was on his way to recovery. And the option she gave for the lump were not the brightest… Either a tumour, either an abscess. If an abscess (a better news than a tumour), still the chances of a full recovery were not 100%. He got an appointment for Tuesday for anaesthesia, x-ray and surgery, if it was prove to be an abscess.

We’ve spent Saturday afternoon being gloomy. The worst of us was the human female who was crying and sobbing all the time. Spock went once again on Critical Care and lots of TLC.

Sunday evening it seemed like the whole house made peace with the situation. And we were decided to make the best of it. If it was a tumour, everyone was decided to take care of him as good as we could until it wouldn’t be possible anymore. If it proved to be an abscess, to give him the best shot and surgery.

In the meanwhile the human female made a lot of research, got in contact with a second vet and hoped it was an abscess.

Spock spent Tuesday morning in the office with the human female. He looked better after some normal feeds of Critical Care and even gained weight. Because he was quite scared in an unknown environment, he spent around two hours on the human female’s lap being very calm and relaxed.

At 11 am he went under anaesthesia. At 3 pm the news were pretty good, that the surgery went well. Well, if it was a surgery than for sure it wasn’t a tumour!

The human female went to pick him up and had a debriefing with the vet. It was a nasty abscess, hidden behind the muscle. Unfortunately the cause was not obvious, so the vet could say what was the source. But she managed to clean it well, left the incision opened (even stitched the muscle to stay opened at least 5 days) so it can be cleaned daily at home.

Spock looked awful. The human female turned white when she first saw him. And he was more like a veggie.

Once at home, he was isolated from me. This I don’t really understand, but as long as I can see him and sniff him through the fence, it’s fine. Apparently they need to keep an eye on how much he eats exactly.

The human female spent the next two days working from home just to stay close to him and make sure he manages to survive. First day when she had to flush the wound, she was literally freaking out. But she managed. Today was the third time and she seemed better prepared already.

Spock started chewing veggies less than 24h after the surgery, but no hay. Until this morning when we saw him delicately munching some. We all stopped breathing and became very quiet just not to distract him.

I would say that he is not cleared yet, but we are optimistic. We are still afraid for him, but we hope he will make a full recovery. And we also hope he understands he needs to eat hay! It’s a must for keeping his teeth well. I keep telling him this… He looks normal, not shaggy and miserable anymore.

I’m not going to share a photo with his head as it looks right now as it is not at all flattering. But I’ll share a photo of him on the lap of the human female.

wp_20170221_006

Happy birthday Spock! Live long and prosper!

(I’ve heard the humans would like to move into another appartment. You need to be healthy so we can pee together all over the floor. 😀 )

Data's tales, guinea pigs tales, Uncategorized

Update on us

data_profile_2OMG! More than one month since our last post… Auch! Oups! Agrhhhh!

To be honest, we are very busy keeping away from the Little Rascal. And training her for our future benefit. But human kids are more difficult to be trained than guinea pigs pups. Of course, everything is more difficult with humans!

So, this is an update on us and our projects, just to assure you we are still alive.

The book had a setback but now it seems to be getting on the right track again. Hopefully it will come out this spring.

Worf and Kirk were separated following Worf’s decision that he can’t stand sharing the same room with Kirk. Weird… Now Worf is always at the fence and chit chatting with us. We are even considering accepting to share a bigger room with him. And the crazy humans are considering getting (maybe!) another flat mate for Kirk. But all this decisions would have to wait until later this spring when the human female will be at home with the second human baby.

Worf even lost some weight due to the stress. And we were quite upset with Kirk. I mean, come on! You are a great psychiatrist but you can’t see the stress signs in your own flat mate?!

And Spock has some dental issues. Probably. I mean it looks like this, but the vet has still to confirm and to treat whatever it is. The thing is that he looks miserable, tries to eat but obviously can’t manage to chew hard veggies like fennel. So he will be on a course of Critical Care until Friday when he gets to the vet.

I am fine, just one fatty eye to report. But nothing serious.

Kirk seems fine too. Even popcorning from time to time. By the way, 2 weeks ago was his birthday. He got lots of pellets. Us too. 😀

Before going back to our book and managing that project, I’ll insert some recent photos of us.

Kirk on his birthday

wp_20170115_001

Spock and I few days ago (Spock was still fine at the time)

wp_20170113_007

Worf

wp_20170113_004

The new set up of our apartment. Not ideal, but it should get better in two or three months.

wp_20170108_024