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Garth\'s Foot
Garth's Foot  
Hello, the past couple of weeks i have noticed my GP has a growing lump on the middle toe on his back foot. The lump feels hard and doesn't seem to bother him when i touch it.
There isn't a cut anywhere oh his foot, his cage is a solid plastic base with fleece bedding so its not from his cage, and he is a lone GP so another GP hasn't injured him.
Just a bit concerned what this could be, I got him from an animal shelter and was told he is around 2 years old. He had been given up for adoption twice before i got him so i am not sure if this has been an issue in the past for him.
Any advise would be most appreciated. I have attached a picture of the lump.

Many Thanks
Emma

Answer
Than you for the picture. It's always more helpful to see when you're trying to give a description.

It could be some kind of a benign bone tumor. Since it doesn't bother him when you press on it or touch it I would not worry about it. It doesn't appear to be red or any sign of infection. The pink you see is just the color of his skin because his feet are white. Anywhere that a pig has white hair, the skin underneath is pink.

I don't see anything that is a red flag or something to worry about. Nor do I think there's a connection between given up for adoption and this lump on his foot. Many times people bring home an animal that is cute and cuddly, but forget that there is maintenance that goes with any animal. They get tired of cleaning up after it, and back it goes.

Just looking at the foot I can tell he is a longhaired breed, but without a full picture I can't tell if he is a Peruvian, Silky or Coronet. I'm sure you already know that the longhaired breeds need more attention to their hair than the shorter varieties. But that's neither here nor there.

I would not worry about this foot as long as he is not showing any signs of it getting worse or causing him trouble or pain. It's possible that at one point in his life he injured that toe in some way, perhaps even a small fracture. As bones heal they will often become a bit deformed, but that deformity is nothing more than cosmetic.  

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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.

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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.

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Graduate in nursing. Certified in emergency medicine.

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