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Guinea Pigs/help me he's now having diarrhea..


QUESTION: I just bought a new guinea pig, but actually my mom didn't allow me to buy him in the first place, said it's going to be a carrier of toxoplasma gondii, you know, like cats or dogs. I currently live in a very small studio apartment so of course I will be sleeping in the same room with it, I feel weird for asking, but I do feel like I need to know whether it will be a danger to live with it in the same room. Can Guinea pigs be a carrier for toxoplasma? if it can, then is there any injection or vaccination I can give to him? bcause the toxoplasma vaccination I can find are for dogs and cats.

ANSWER: No, guinea pigs do not carry toxoplasmosis, a parasitic disease whose primary hosts are cats. The danger comes from ingesting the meat of an infected animal or by handling the fecal material, not the animal itself. The World Health Organization says that one third of the world's population carry Toxoplasmosis but have no affect from it.

A poor immune system makes the carrier more susceptible to illness from it, but healthy people have no problem. Pregnant women are warned not to handle cat litter during pregnancy as they could pass the infection to the fetus.

Guinea pigs carry no internal parasites or diseases that we know of. If you're concerned (or you just want to give reassurance to mom) you can wear disposable gloves when you change the cage bedding and just make sure to wash your hands with soap and water afterward. So assure mom that you aren't going to get anything from your guinea pig.   

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QUESTION: My new baby guinea pig had a diarrhea earlier today. I'm so worried, what am I supposed to do. I'm planning to go to vet tomorrow, is there anything I can do right now? thing is I'm currently living in China, so I don't even know whether the vet here will be as good and as knowledgeable. and it s also quite hard to find the meds. I'm quite sure his diarrhea didnt come from other anti-biotics meds. he's been eating hay all day yesterday, but the night before he's been eating a lot of pellets and drink a lot of water, and today i found that his stool have a very foul smell, and tho werent black in color, it's watery and have no shape.
what am i supposed to do? is diarrhea fatal for guinea pigs? bcs i read quite a lot in the internet, diarrhea was quite fatal and serious for small animals.

It's very probable the diarrhea was caused by the antibiotics. Guinea pigs don't tolerate antibiotics and if there's a real necessity for antibiotics they need to be accompanied by probiotics. Some antibiotics kill the normal good bacteria in the intestinal system, and the result is just what you have, diarrhea.

There is a little trick you can try, it's rice water. You boil some rice in a lot of water (not the instant kind eiither). You cook it to the point that you have a gluey white broth from the rice. Let it cool and give it to him in his water bottle.

We use that same remedy on humans and it works. The gluten in the rice gives substance to the bowel and helps stop the diarrhea.

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Pat VanAllen


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.


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.

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.

Graduate in nursing. Certified in emergency medicine.

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