Please help 5 month old with pneumonia

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tislindsey

Post   » Sun Feb 11, 2024 7:48 pm


I've been obsessively researching the health of my guinea pig, Wilbur. I have come to this thread in hopes of finding some useful advice to save his life.

Wilbur came in to my life December 23, 2023. Three weeks into living with us, I noticed clicking, or slight grunting. His body would rock with his breathing. I took him to an exotics vet the following day. They diagnosed him with a URI and sent me home with: Baytril, Metoclopramide, Cisapride, Meloxidyl, all to be given twice a day for 14 days.

I did not notice any improvement for a week, in fact, he lost his appetite and felt super skinny. I was feeding him Critical Care, and I immediately scheduled another appointment. At his first visit he weighed 568g, now he weighed 520g. The vet sent me home on a 2nd antibiotic to add to his routine, Doxycycline, as well as an appetite stimulator, Mirataz (which I only gave 3 times before he gained his appetite back). SHe had also given him a shot of lasix.

A week went by before his next appointment. At this time he was doing great, eating, popcorning, running around excited to see me. EXCEPT his lungs still sounded very congested and he seemed uncomfortable when trying to lay down. At the 3rd follow-up appointment (2/09/2024) the vet suggested an x-ray which showed pneumonia in his upper lobes. His weight increased to 585g! The 14 days of Baytril ended so she put him on Bactrim for 14 days and to continue the Doxycycline, Metoclopramide, Cisapride, and Meloxidyl. SO this progressed from a URI to pneumonia. Something is not working. I mentioned nebulizer antibiotics which I saw that many of you have mentioned. The vet did not seem interested in that suggestion. She had also given him another shot of Lasix. When I took him home that night, I thought he was going to die. He was not eating or drinking and I thought the Lasix this time was going to kill him. It didn't improve his breathing. Luckily at night, he came around after stressing me out all day.

But it has been almost 48 hours on Bactrim and I do not notice an improvement with his breathing. Again, his mood and personality seem totally okay and his appetite returned fully with nice poops (except he has no interest in his water bottle and only gets water from syringes, carrots, lettuce, and cucumbers).

I am at a loss, I am not sure what to do. I do not want to lose him and I want to prevent this thing from getting worse. Please help us with your suggestions. I appreciate everyone who took the time to read this.

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Lynx
Celebrate!!!

Post   » Sun Feb 11, 2024 8:22 pm


It sounds like you have thoroughly researched this and have a pretty good vet (though I wish he/she would have considered a nebulizer when you suggested it). I take it the lasix should help remove some of the fluid in his lungs, no? Did the vet give you any guidelines concerning perhaps increasing or decreasing the lasix depending on response? There is a wide range of doses. How much are you giving?
https://www.guinealynx.info/cardiovascu ... html#lasix

tislindsey

Post   » Sun Feb 11, 2024 8:29 pm


Lynx, thank you for your reply. I have been reading a lot of your posts these past several days.
The Lasix was just a single injection given at the vet. The first time he received it, he came home and began to eat and seemed better than he was before I brought him in. The second time he received the injection (about a week later), he did not have any relief from it, and didn't eat/drink/do anything in the 10 hours that followed. I understand Lasix has a short half life, so I am assuming he perked up when it left his system? Or it could've been because I force fed him water in fear of him going into renal failure. I did not receive any Lasix to go home, though.

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Lynx
Celebrate!!!

Post   » Sun Feb 11, 2024 8:37 pm


Ah. That explains why it is not removing the fluid.

You might also want to read this over, though it is an older page:
https://www.guinealynx.info/heart.html

tislindsey

Post   » Sun Feb 11, 2024 8:44 pm


I mentioned possible congenital cardiac disease to the vet. The vet had stated that his heart did not appear enlarged on x-ray, and she did not hear a murmur on auscultation, although it may have been masked by his grunting.
I am reading this thread you attached, I will mention to the vet the possibility of trialing a cardiac medication.
This was also my fear seeing that he does not have any mucus, discharge, or crusties that others had mentioned with their guinea was sick with URI/pneumonia.

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Lynx
Celebrate!!!

Post   » Sun Feb 11, 2024 9:28 pm


I cannot say heart is the issue but it would seem lasix is required more regularly. I am sorry your guinea pig is having these issues.

tislindsey

Post   » Sun Feb 11, 2024 9:32 pm


With your experience, is there anything else I should try or bring up to the vet? I appreciate all of the replies.

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Lynx
Celebrate!!!

Post   » Sun Feb 11, 2024 9:41 pm


Take my advice with a grain of salt. I do not have a medical background AND have not had to deal with a guinea pig with this condition.

That said, I try to accumulate advice from people who know more than I do - but your best bet is an experienced vet.

Talishan
You can quote me

Post   » Mon Feb 12, 2024 2:38 pm


Lasix can hit them pretty hard. If it's needed, it's needed, but they need to stay hydrated while on it especially.

Try offering unflavored Pedialyte via syringe. Many pigs love this, and will readily take it from a 3 or 6 cc oral syringe. It may help him.

If he likes it, get a couple bottles and keep it on hand. It has no preservatives and keeps only 48 hours in the fridge. It's not cheap, but has been a Godsend for some of ours.

Blessings and best to him.

tislindsey

Post   » Mon Feb 12, 2024 4:36 pm


Thank you Talishan ❤️ I am going to grab some omw home from work tonight. I'll try anything.
Did anyone have any luck with Sudafed for congestion? Does it help with pneumonia?

Talishan
You can quote me

Post   » Mon Feb 19, 2024 7:04 pm


I don't think I'd use Sudafed. It's got an ingredient in it that can act as a significant stimulant; not sure it'd be safe for a small animal.

In the past we've used chlorpheniramine maleate (Chlor-Trimeton; Walmart carries a knockoff that's probably fine if you can't find the name brand) that's worked well for us, and safely, at the recommendation of a prior vet.

Search under my name here and Chlor-Trimeton for the dose. I THINK it's 0.5-1.0 mg/kg (the tablets dissolve readily in water) every 8-12 hours as needed but PLEASE CHECK THAT, either here or with a vet. It's been years since I used it.

Good luck and continued good wishes to him and to you.

Edit: not sure if this will work, but here goes:

https://guinealynx.info/forums/search.p ... mit=Search

https://guinealynx.info/forums/viewtopi ... e#p2257635

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Lynx
Celebrate!!!

Post   » Mon Feb 19, 2024 7:18 pm


Links work great! Always good to remember one has offered advice before so one can find and refer to it.

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