My precious little Teddy wasn’t doing so well Sunday night. I had noticed he wasn’t moving around as much lately, but his appetite was still pretty good so I figured the heat was probably just making him lazy. Then, while just sitting in the middle of the cage, he started to squeak rather loudly. After a couple seconds of that, he raised his haunches and squeaked some more. That’s not good – even beyond the squeaking, guinea pigs don’t really pick up their butts that much when going to the bathroom (I really love that expression when talking about pets, as if the little guy was up on the toilet or something).
Lisa and I were growing rather concerned at this point, so we brought him and Jessie out on the kitchen floor to get some exercise and see what was up. Teddy seemed ok at first, but then he went through the same motions as before. And this time, without the bedding material in the way, I could see the urine was a reddish-brown. There was blood.
This is the first time either of these guys has had anything this serious. And, unlike when I’m sick, I couldn’t just ignore it. GPs have very delicate constitutions and illnesses can become serious rather quickly. So we started looking up numbers and locations for vets to take him the next morning. But coupled with my own rundownedness (we’re going to make that a word for the sake of this sentence), I could barely sleep. When it was finally time to get up, I managed to make a morning apointment for him at a nearby animal hospital and let work know I would be late.
Waiting in the actual waiting room wasn’t a big deal, but standing in the exam room with my little piggie somewhat distraught on a table really got to me. The staff and doctor were great, but I was still a bit of a wreck. The doctor flipped Teddy around to feel for stones and get him to pee on the table for testing which really freaked him out. And by him I mean me. While the tests were run I spent the time comforting Teddy in order to calm myself down. Fortunately it turned out to just be a bacterial infection that is treatable, but they did have to give him a shot to start out the treatment.
A shot! He was just over two pounds! A needle would go right through him!
Fortunately I was not present for the shot, as that was asking far too much. My little piggie could handle that better on his own. Although the squeals definitely got to me. In the end, he’s back in with Jessie (minus a clump of hair he lost with all of the stress) and we’re working on ways to trick him into eating his meds.
It’s funny how you don’t even blink at forking over the credit card to spend more than 5 times as much on treatment for an animal as they cost in the pet store to begin with. But one look at those critters and I get sad at the thought of losing either or both.