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Guinea Pigs/brown wet/dirty behind?

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QUESTION: my guinea pig is a couple of months old and around her anus (vagina?..) has a wet brown kindda water on it. she has been eating ok and driking ok but only when I put her at that place (next to the eating bowl and putting the drinking thing next to her mouth) im not sure what she does at night but now she is not active at all.

all she does all day is lay down tucking her head like a sleeping position and she literally does that the whole day unless I put her right next to the food bowl. im wondering if this has any relation with that incident one day when I was cleaning out the little hay-house but I didnt know she was in it and accidentaly  dropped her from my waist height onto the grass. but she landed on her feet and started running away fine. (pretty fast) She shreeks really loud when I hold her now.

because my other guinea pig (male) was in the hay house too and he landed on his back and seriously injured himself and atlast died. He didnt run away like my other guinea pig did.

At first I thought she just urinate and dip her butt in her urine but the wet stuff around her anus is getting thicker and much dark coloured.

Now my question is what is that wet brown stuff around her anus (...vagina) does it have any relation of her falling down from my waist height to the ground (landed on feet) and is it serious? she havent been very active lately and she shreeks really loud when I hold her. is there anything I can do to help her?

ANSWER: Honestly, no I don't think it has anything to do with her being dropped. I have a few pigs that are like that, just dirty. They're all Teddies and they're all white. Because the Teddy coat is fluffy it seems to hold onto whatever it is that's making them such a mess.

None of my short coated Americans are that way, just my four white "dirty pigs."  They're not showing any sign of illness so I think that it's just urine that stains the coat. When I've bathed them it didn't completely wash out either.  

If any of my other pigs are that way I can't tell because of their coloring. But to be honest I think that some of them are just lazy little pigs that don't mind if they're backsides are stained and dirty.

You can try giving her a bath to see if it helps, but when the coat is stained it's very hard to get clean again. The brown stuff is just a buildup of the debris that she's collected.  

Two of my girls are old ladies and periodically I have to sit them in a tub of water and let them soak their hineys because of the buildup. One of them gets literally raw on her skin from it, so I clean her up and put A & D ointment, Bag Balm or some kind of grease type ointment that forms a barrier and helps keep it from happening.  

My two old ladies just seem to stay in one spot, eat and pee right where they are and that may be part of the problem. They're also extremely obese from lack of exercise. But because of their ages I don't bother them. They've been faithful friends, so they're living out their retirement the way they want to.  

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I was just worried because Sugar (my guinea pig I was talking about) does not move even if she wants food. She just tries to stretch her head and if she doesnt get it she just go back to lying down with her eyes half closed.

every time I put her in her little box to play with her a little, when I move box just a little bit to the side, she kindda 'slips' and her whole body turns upside down then she struggles to get up but her legs arent really moving. should I be worried?

-Im really relieved that the brown stuffs are nothing serious and thankyou sooo much for helping out. :)

Answer
You didn't say how old Sugar is and whether or not she's a "portly" little girl. Both my old girls do similar things. It's as though it's just too much effort to move their pudgy little frames.  Both of them are approaching six years old, and that's pretty old for a guinea pig.

When a guinea pig is on their back it's not easy for even a slender, young pig to upright itself because of the way their weight is distributed. Their bodies are very large for the size of their legs, so they tend to twist back and forth to get gravity to roll them back on their feet.

This is one of the reasons that we don't put wire floors on guinea pig cages. Rabbits have enormous back legs that can support their weight. Guinea pigs do not. They easily get sores on the bottoms of their feet from the weight of the body on a wire floor. Rabbits hop when they move. You seldom see them walk.  Guinea pigs waddle and walk. Occasionally they will use the back legs and hop for a few steps, but that's about it.

I don't know if you've seen the move G-Force. All of those pigs came from our cavy club and were used as computer models. If you watch Darwin, ;the lead pig with the white spot on his head you will notice when he is filmed running from behind you can see the movements.

My pig was used in those running scenes because they liked the way he waddled and ran. He gave a good representation of how all guinea pigs move.

If Sugar is getting on in years she may be just getting lazy. If she's an old girl like mine she's earned the right to just lay around.

I hope this gives you a little help. And I'd love to see a picture of Sugar.

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Pat VanAllen

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As is sometimes the case, people in urgent need of information have a higher degree of expectation than those of us as experts are able to give. The experts on this site do their best to give the most accurate and responsible answers possible. We ask that you remember that it is not our intention nor place to criticize the professional advice given by your veterinarian, nor is it appropriate for us to comment on the correctness of a diagnosis made by a licensed physician. Our knowledge is experience based. Although many years of breeding and showing cavies gives me a wealth of experience it cannot change the fact that we as experts are not veterinarians and therefore may occasionally have to reject questions that appear to be asking us to criticize advice given by the licensed professional. Having raised and exhibited cavies for many years I have extensive experience in cavy care and husbandry. I currently have an active breeding program for pedigreed show animals but do not encourage backyard breeding for inexperienced owners. Although I don't encourage breeding for fun I'm always happy to answer any questions from an owner who is in sincere need of help. Pet owners wanting to breed should understand that even experienced breeders have litter losses. The mortality rate is high in cavies. The chance for losing both sow and pups is always present, even with experience. Although this is a site for experts to assist owners, there is no expert in any field who has all the answers. The wisest thing a good expert can know is their limitations. Not having an answer does not diminish one's ability or knowledge. It simply shows that we recognize our limitations and operate within them.

Experience

Raised and shown cavies for many years, having aquired my first cavies in the early 1970's as pets. My caviary currently handles 65 + animals in two different breeds and several varieties. Having been in the health care industry as a licensed nurse for 35 years I have hands on experience with care and needs in both humans and cavies. Member of American Rabbit Breeders Association and American Cavy Breeders Association.

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Awarded Lifetime Membership in of one of the oldest cavy clubs in the United States, on whose Board I served as Sec/Treas for six years and currently serving as President. Also editor/publisher of the club's quarterly newsletter. We are strong supporters of our youth exhibitors, most of whom are 4H members who are working on cavy projects. Through these projects they become good responsible citizens. We deal with all aspects of showing, breeding, caring for and sharing experiences in the fancy. The cavy fancy is not a new one but in some areas is still relatively unknown. Our goal is to inspire interest in high quality, responsible breeding to improve the species, not just the reproduction of guinea pigs. Our job is to educate owners to help them make the right decisions and choices in the care of their cavies.

Education/Credentials
Graduate in nursing. Certified in emergency medicine.

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