These past few days, I have been taking care of a guinea pig called Tsuna. He belonged to friends of mine who are currently away on vacation. Usually he would have stayed with their other pigs for another friend of ours to take care of, but he started showing symptoms of some kind of problem a few days before their trip so he stayed with me for the time being as I had have more time to monitor him.
He would refuse to eat properly - or rather, he tried to but seemed to have problems chewing - and at first not even drink from his bottle so he needed to be hand-fed in addition to the antibiotics and painkillers he got. I took him to my vet a few days in because he also had a wound on the bottom-side of his foot I was worried about and she gave me stronger painkillers that actually led to him drinking on his own again and eating a bit of easy to chew food like the inner parts of a cucumber or salad. Additionally my vet asked to take X-rays of his jaw because she figured he might suffer from some osteoporosis-like thing that's not uncommon in certain breeds of guinea pigs (she told me the actual name once, but I forgot, I'm sorry), or it could be an inflamed tooth.
The appointment was earlier today. Turned out the acute problem indeed was a tooth that had broken and was loose; but his other teeth were problematic too, so she would most likely have to take them all out, which would result in weeks to months of followup treatment. And there was definitely something with his jaws; though it was not clear if it was said "osteoporosis" in was very likely. Moreover nursing a five-year-old guinea pig back to health after it dropped to less than half its original weight is tricky in itself.
In the end the vet and I decided to not wake him from anaesthesia. I'm more shaken than I thought I would be - I had actually expected this kind of outcome and even took last pictures yesterday evening. He's not even my pet! Then again, I've known him longer than I've had my own two current fatties, Miles and Nathan. It was even a dream about Tsuna that made me decide to get pigs of my own again! Having your friends' pet die under your care is still another matter altogether I guess, even though the rational part of my mind keeps telling me there was nothing I could have done about it either way.
I'll fetch my transport box from the vet's on friday. I slept through today's afternoon consultation time and tomorrow's is morning only when I'm at work... Aahah, I don't look forward to returning their own transport box to my friends when they return. (Theirs is remarkably bigger than mine, so I took my own to the vet because it's easier to take on the bus)
- Current Mood: melancholy