3 month Guinea is wobbly and falling a bit: Possible ear problem?

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Post   » Wed Oct 25, 2017 11:05 pm

My 3 month piggie - Freddie suddenly has lost his spunk. This happened literally overnight. I returned from a 2 week trip and the sitter - also a piggy owner said he was running around and just fine then 12 hours later, I see him like I describe below.

I first noticed he would sit in a ball and just stare. He usually runs from me but I could pet him and he stayed there. Then seemed to pop out of it but didn't move very far. Then a matter of hours later he was eating hay when he stretched his back foot out for about 10 seconds the tumbled over backwards. He wobbles and often tumbles to the side a bit but still gets around the cage. He doesn't wheep anymore nor runs around with his buddy. He does eat however. His weight gain has been only 20 grams compared to 50 for his brother.

I did take him to a vet who does see guinea pigs/ferrets and etc. He ruled out heart and lungs. I was thinking neurological but he seems more to be dizzy and he shakes his head. The vet said observe him and I am thinking inner ear.I have been hospitalized with severe vertigo - I know what that feels life and his symptoms seem similar.

I am not sure much can be done but if it is a potential inner ear infection gone bad that perhaps can be treated?
Any thoughts?

And got the T-shirt

Post   » Wed Oct 25, 2017 11:27 pm

It definitely sounds like an ear infection, and the sooner it is treated the less likely he is to have permanent residual symptoms.

He's too young to be started on Baytril, although that may become necessary if one of the other drugs doesn't clear it up. It stunts the bone growth in very young pigs, but sometimes it's the only thing that will work. However, they usually start with something else with a young pup. Bactrim can be used, although it's more effective against bacteria in the urinary tract. Doxycycline is another possibility.

Was this an exotic vet, or just a small animal vet that also sees pocket pets? Because what you describe is pretty common, and I've never heard of a vet not treating it with antibiotics right off the bat.


Post   » Thu Oct 26, 2017 8:47 pm

Thanks for the feedback. I called the vet with that request. I have been trying to speak to the vet for a day and a half. He called me right before he left the office for a 4 day weekend. I'm so angry right now!!!! He simply left a message saying that it could be like epilepsy and liver problems this and that and he may need surgery etc etc! He never even offered to fulfill an antibiotic. By random chance, I found a nearby vet who sees guinea pigs to see him tomorrow afternoon. Fingers crossed.

It's always better when the person on the phone expresses empathy. Sometimes that makes the biggest difference.

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