Guinea Pig Health Care

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For your guinea pig health care you should know some common guinea pig diseases and their remedies.

Pneumonia

Signs include wheezing, difficulty breathing, tiredness, lack of appetite, and discharge from the nose or eyes. This is brought on by bacteria and your cavy (guinea pig) should be taken to your vet for antibiotics.

Lack of vitamin C can cause scurvy in a cavy.

While other mammals are able to manufacture their own vitamin C both humans and guinea pigs are unable to do so. So we must get it from our food. Lack of this vitamin will cause scurvy in humans as well as cavies. Symptoms will include easily bleeding gums for no reason. There can be swollen and stiff joints resulting in difficulty and reluctance to moving. The ribs can be swollen and painful.

Even though the vitamin is supposed to be included in pellets that particular vitamin can be damaged by poor storage techniques.

Foods with vitamin C need to be included in the diet like vegetables such as carrots, cabbage, broccoli, celery, spinach and fruits such as apples.

Scurvy can cause death in a cavy if you suspect it may be scurvy take your pet to the vet for a diagnosis and an injection of vitamin C.

Lice

Lice make their home in the coat of the cavy and they and their eggs will be attached to the hairs. You can detect lice by combing through their hair they are small flat and brown, unless it’s “running lice” which can be seen moving through the hair. The eggs of these lice appear as white or black specs on the hair. Other signs include excessive scratching by you cavy or sensitivity to being touched he might even display some irritation when you touch him. An insecticide shampoo is usually prescribed. You bathe him and use the shampoo on him and it will get rid of the lice.

The good news is it is usually transferred from pig to pig but if there is no infected pig around the chances are pretty remote that he will get it. Other good news is the lice that affect cavies don’t affect humans.

Diarrhea

Diarrhea can throw off their electrolyte balance and be fatal to them. Antibiotics will wipe out all the bacteria in the intestines including the good bacteria which will cause diarrhea or it could be you’ve fed him too many vegetables or wet food. If this is the case increase his hay intake. In any case, especially if it’s antibiotics, go to the health food store and get some acidophilus of lactobacillus in capsule form and feed the contents to your cavy. This will restore the good bacteria.

Pink or milky white urine

Normally they have clear white urine but if it is thick or solid white it can mean too much calcium in the diet so cut down. If it is pink or red it may be blood from bladder stones so take him to the vet.

Coughing

Cavies will cough occasionally but if there is a lot of coughing and wheezing it’s probably a respiratory tract infection. Bring him to the vet for treatment.

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Source by Russ Cooper

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