December 11th, 2009

planet

sick pig update II

lemme tell you, until you've had a sick guinea pig cough rodent snot on your clothes you haven't really experienced ALL the joys of pet ownership.

Billy Dee is back on meds since he almost died last weekend. The saga kinda began a week ago, I just didn't really have the heart to tell the story because I was so afraid I'd be, like, typing it and he'd just go. Anyway Friday morning I'm getting ready for work and heard Billy sounding positively awful, like he was trying to breath underwater or something. I went downstairs and gave all the pigs some fresh hay and watched him a little. He's spend the night in a pigloo near the window, which was a little cold. It was about 60° downstairs... one of the issues with loft living is that in the winter we have a ten degree difference between the floors and there's not a lot we can do about it. But anyway that's a bit cold for guinea pigs, they're supposed to be kept between 65-80.

While I'm watching the pigs Billy started walking away from the hay, wheezing his head off, then suddenly misstepped and fell flat over on his side. I screamed and scooped him up because I was sure he'd died right there in front of me. But he was okay.

Soooo we called the vet again, got a refill on the cortisone, and asked what our options were. The vet said based on his xrays (from last month, showing scar tissue in the lungs) "there's not much we can do".

During the day Billy seemed fine, kinda breathing loud but he didn't sound like death, so we thought maybe the medicine was kicking in or it had just been a fluke of a bad night.

But when I woke up at 1am on Friday night I heard him again and he sounded bad. I laid there for a minute and decided I had to do something, so I threw some old towels in a laundry basket, set up a special dish of pellets and extra water bottle, and brought billy upstairs to sleep in my room where it was warmer. He'd wheeze, then STOP WHEEZING FOR A WHILE, then sneeze, then start wheezing again. We did not sleep well that night.

Saturday we had our big party and just had billy spend the night in the basket again as a precaution.

This week we turned the heat on, kept medicating him, moved the pigloos away from the window and kept close watch and he's been better, sort of. Doesn't sound terrible, no stumbling, maybe it was just a bad weekend? Either way all week we've felt like we were walking on eggshells, with this helpless little furball we can't really make better.