Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Cannoli Got Gooped

Unhappy Boadicea on top of unhappier Cannoli
Cannoli has continued to lose weight.  She stabilized after our trip to the vet in June.  In the last week or two she dropped under 900g.  It's so puzzling.  She acts fine:  she's cheerful, eats with gusto, runs around, wheeks loudly and grouses at Boadicea.  I have seen her relax and lounge a bit more than usual, but it's not the "I'm exhausted" flop I've seen with sick pigs.  No matter how fine she looks, something is wrong.  Obviously she's not eating enough and no guinea pig I know willingly goes on a diet.  We packed the pigs and headed to the vet last week.

We managed to arrive at the clinic before the vet.  While waiting I was invited to check out Starboard the duck as he paddled around a large sink.  He had hurt his leg; the swimming was to help strengthen it.  Starboard was talkative and a brat - he liked to pinch the vet tech.  I kept my hands well away!  I thought he was very pretty with his grey and white that matched the stainless steal sink.

Back to our appointment:  neither pig was happy to be there, even though Cannoli was the only one being seen.  At one point they had both stuffed themselves into the back of the cozy, Boadicea climbing on top of Noli in an effort to hide.  No flirting with the staff like Willow or Pinniped used to do.  Get us out of here!

Ultrasound done, getting the goop off Noli's bare belly
Cannoli was weighed and her teeth were examined.  Then it was off to the dreaded ultrasound.  Gotta get that belly shaved and gooped up!  Noli didn't struggle too much, but at some point she'd had enough and started wheeking loudly.  Otherwise, she was good and never tried to bite.

Nothing abnormal showed on the screen.  So that ruled out ovarian cysts causing the weight loss.  Next was a mouth swab and a fecal sample.  Noli supplied several fresh pellets on me as we returned to Boadicea, probably in protest of her manhandling.  Then she got her mouth swabbed, like right out of CSI.

The results came back yesterday:  all tests were negative.  We're stumped.  Not cysts.  Not teeth.  Not a variety of viruses or infections.  The vet is doing some research and I'm sure we'll be back for more tests.  The good news is, Cannoli isn't in pain and seems quite happy enough.  I just wish she'd fatten up a bit and stop being such a skinny-minny.


  1. You must be so worried. I know I was when Piglet was losing weight and taking a very long time to eat. The vet couldn't see anything wrong with him so guessed that he needed a dental. The dental (which can only be diagnosed by x-ray, so it wasn't done, just booked in) was under anesthetic so I was beside myself with worry. He survived though and went back to normal after a few days. I was shocked because I always make sure they have hay etc. I had to separate the two pigs so that they could have a fair share of food. I don't want to worry you, but maybe it's possible the teeth have overgrown a bit?

    1. Thank you for your concern. It doesn't appear to be teeth. I've had several pigs that have had overgrown teeth, and Cannoli is not showing any of the symptoms. She sucks down her food, has no problems grasping or chewing pellets (or any other food), has straight incisors, does not drool.


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