Cavy Tips - Medical Guide

Common Ailments of Guinea Pigs


Guinea pigs are prey animals so they do have the tendency to hide their illness(es) well. Take note of any change in the level of appetite and alertness. When they look lethargic and/or disinterested in their usual favourite food, it is usually a red alert and they should be brought to a vet without delay.


Ailments and Symptoms

Upper Respiratory Infection (URI)
  • Refusal to eat or drink
  • No stools (as a result of not eating)
  • Heavy breathing / wheezing
  • Sneezing, coughing
  • Crusty eyes, eyes that are almost sealed shut
  • Abnormal discharge from eyes or nose
  • Dull and/or receding eyes
  • Rough or puffed-up coat
  • Lethargy, hunched posture
Bladder Stones
  • Blood in urine
  • Squeaking while urinating
  • Squeaking while passing stools
  • Decrease in appetite
  • Refusal to drink water
  • Pee less frequently
  • Less active
  • Heavy breathing
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
  • Blood in Urine
  • Squeaking/whining when peeing or passing stools
Mites, Fungus or other skin problems
  • Excessive scratching
  • Balding patches
  • Refusal to eat or drink
  • Abdominal region appears swollen, and pig might feel pain when touched
  • Little or no stools
  • Little or no pee
  • Lethargy
  • Loose or wet stools
  • Lethargy
  • Dehydration from excessive diarrhoea
  • Clean the wound with saline solution and pat dry
  • Apply the coconut oil on the feet
  • Wet the dressing pad with coconut oil
  • Place the pad on the wound and then bandage the feet
  • Recommended to change the bandage daily so you can monitor the condition of sore
  • If sore gets worse (bigger/showing signs of pus), please bring to vet
  • Prepare diluted Epsom salt for soaking (mix half cup of water with 1/8 teaspoon of Epsom) and soak 2 - 3 times a day if sore gets worse

Elaine Leong & Guinea Lynx's Pododermatitis section

Taken from POGS Brochure 1st edition, 5th June 2014 written by Lim Wei Qian & edited by Shireen Lim


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