Guinea pigs are small rodents. Their constitution limits their resistance to diarrhea. This article gives you the keys to reacting well if your guinea pig suffers but also to understand the causes and prevent it from happening again.
Is my guinea pig suffering from diarrhea?
Guinea pig diarrhea leaves no room for doubt. The posterior is soiled because the feces are very soft, even liquid. They also give off a bad smell. This impacts the vitality of the animal which is often listless. Diarrhea is more common in young people than in adults.
Diarrhea is a real danger for small rodents the size of guinea pigs. These can die in 48 or 72 hours, sometimes less depending on what is causing the diarrhea and how the animal’s body reacts. Diarrhea causes a significant loss of water and minerals such as sodium and potassium. If these losses are not compensated for quickly, they cause dehydration. It is the whole balance of the organism that is at stake. the water is the first element essential to the feeding of the guinea pig (the second being hay). It participates in the balance of its intestinal flora, and allows it to regulate its body temperature and facilitate intestinal transit.
Causes of diarrhea in guinea pigs
Diarrhea is a common symptom of many disorders. The causes are therefore numerous.
a change of diet is a common cause. A newly introduced food is not suitable for the transit of your little companion. This happens in particular if your guinea pig is not used to eating vegetables (this is the case with guinea pigs bought from pet stores) and you suddenly give him food that you think is healthy, because you have informed before welcoming it. Alas, the transition is too brutal and it turns out to be too rich in water compared to what he was used to before. the lack of hay is also a cause of diarrhea: remember that a guinea pig must have hay at will.
A simple air flow can cause temporary digestive disorders.
From infectious agents can also be suspected. Bacteria like salmonella, or the like Pseudomonas Where Escherichia coli are present in our environments.
From toxins present in spoiled food, such as old hay or rotten vegetables, cause serious digestive problems which result in diarrhea.
The intestinal parasites cause terrible diarrhea. Coccidiosis is very feared because it causes profuse diarrhea, sometimes bloody with the presence of mucus.
Finally, diarrhea can also mean dysfunction of the kidneys, liver or pancreas.
Note that treatment with antibiotics can also cause loose or watery stools. But it is a problem generally anticipated by veterinarians when prescribing.
Is my guinea pig suffering from diarrhea: what to do?
The reaction to guinea pig diarrhea should be rapid and initially focus on limiting dehydration. If your pet has diarrhea in hot weather, your room for maneuver is even narrower. It is essential to help your small animal fight against the heat by placing it in a cool place or by wrapping it in fresh towels, taken out of the refrigerator, without wetting your animal or wrapping its head, which you renew regularly.
Logically, the body reacts naturally: when there is dehydration, the sensation of thirst appears. Nerve receptors located in the brain are alerted when the composition of the blood goes out of balance. In the event of diarrhea, it is therefore normal for the guinea pig to drink more than usual. You need to make sure that there is no lack of water. If you realize that he is no longer drinking, take him urgently to the vet, however, trying to give him a drink in the meantime (because you do not know when the vet will be able to examine him): for this he must use a syringe without needle with a capacity of a few milliliters. Hold the guinea pig upright, place the tip of the syringe on one side of the mouth, and squeeze the plunger in small strokes to give it time to swallow. If you are too brutal, you risk drowning him.
We give you here the average water requirements of a guinea pig: it takes 100 ml per kilo, spread over the day (out of the question to give it all at once), this need reaching 200 ml per kilo. kilo per day when it is hot. This quantity of water is partly provided by hay and green vegetables. If the guinea pig no longer feeds, it should only rely on liquid water.
Tap water is often hard, and therefore likely to promote urinary problems, it is preferable to give bottled water with low mineralization. But if you know for sure how hard your tap water is and it’s soft, then there’s no need to turn to bottled water. The water must be clean, free from any contamination. It must be renewed every day. Even on a hot day, the water should be lukewarm. Water that is too cold can increase diarrhea because it creates digestive problems. Too bad if you waste a little water, it is essential that the guinea pig hydrate at will.
Apart from the hydration itself, the cause of the diarrhea must be treated.
A balanced diet is one of the causes on which you can act on your own. If you’ve made any changes to their diet, go back. You can also use the rice cooking water for a while to hydrate it.
In the case of parasites, you can access antiparasitic treatment without necessarily going through a veterinarian. It is still necessary to be certain that it is about this type of problem. The diagnosis of an animal health professional often appears unavoidable.