The reason for this thread is because today, I went to the Nevada Humane Society to see if they had any guinea pigs and if so to visit with them. I do that from time to time if for no other reason than curiosity. What I saw was a bit of inexperienced care. Don't get me wrong here; they do their absolute best to care for every animal. One of the cages had the same sugary Wild Harvest pellets that almost killed Scruffy. Luckily, it was an empty cage. When I pointed it out, the technician said that most of the small animal food is donated. I might have to donate some good guinea pig pellets.
There were 4 little girls in pairs of two and a single boar. Two of the girls were in really good shape. Both pretty vibrant and the one named Foxy was doing zoomies and popcorning in an obvious effort to sell herself. What a ham!! I felt for her, but not only can I take on more than the 4 I have, I can't flirt with disaster by getting sows because I do have the 4 boars. Anyway, her partner was enjoying some relaxation and a snack in the hay. The lone boar hid in his house and refused to come out. He was pretty small, so I doubt he was more than a couple of months old and probably scared out of his wits.
In the other cage, one of the girls, who is named Shortcake came up to the side of the cage to sniff my hand. Obviously, she is used to people and not the least bit apprehensive. Her partner, Strawberry was a different story. She didn't move at all and her breathing was extremely labored. She a bit smaller than her partner and when Shortcake climbed over her to get some hay, she barely moved. My first thought was a URI. Every time she breathed in, you could see her sides suck way in. She raised up slightly with each breath like it was uncomfortable.
I called the technician in and showed her. She was a dog expert and had no idea what to do for a guinea pig so she called another guy in to look at Strawberry. He knew a little more; enough to pick her up and listen for wheezing. She had enough of one for him to hear, so he wrote up a referral to the vet. Unfortunately, she might not get to see one until tomorrow at the soonest. Sometimes the vet gets Saturday off, so if tomorrow is one of those times, she'll have to wait until Monday. I stressed to him the urgency of the problem and that she can't wait much longer before she's in real trouble.
That was the second time I have noticed a piggie in distress; the first being at PetSmart. So I'm just wondering if any of you ever check on the piggies in rescue or pet stores. I felt so bad for Strawberry that I was tempted to adopt her and Shortcake (since they're a pair) and take her to the vet myself. Of course, having 4 boars, that wasn't a good idea, so I'll keep checking on her and make sure she gets medical attention.
Strawberry is too cute to be in rescue
So I took 10 lbs of pellets to the Humane Society and checked on Strawberry today. She looks better, but still having a little bit of labored breathing. I took a video of it. We were wondering if she might be pregnant with the way her sides move when she breathes. She did see a vet yesterday, but they didn't have any notes on what they found. The technician promised me that he would keep an eye on her. I'm still going to go see her every couple of days because he's got a lot of animals to take care of.