It’s very sad being sick both for us and our pets. No matter how we provide a good guinea pig care, they could be ill sometimes, just like us. In this article, we will inform you about guinea pig diseases which you wondered or your guinea pig may get.
What are the common guinea pig diseases? What can i do for my sick guinea pig? Do guinea pigs carry any diseases?What are the guinea pig skin diseases? Your guinea pig is sick, so what to do?
You may have many other questions like them and for a solution may be you want to go to your vet. That’s a right choice of course but just as our diseases we better have some information about guinea pig diseases i think. Also it would be beneficial for guinea pig care.
Guinea Pig Diseases
Guinea pig diseases have similarities with ours sometimes, but of course there are quite different ones. Their diseases are different from ours especially because of their fur. Parasites, fleas and ticks come first in the skin diseases.
Guinea pigs can itch sometimes that’s a normal acting and sometimes they can even irritate their skin. If those itchings get disturbing, you can start to worry. In that case, you should be suspicious about diseases.
If your guinea pig is itching uncomfortably, there could be the reasons;
- Lice or Fleas
Most common parasites are mange mites. Mange mites cause a very painfull itch on guinea pigs although they are small enough to be invisible. They must be cured immediately. For the cure of mange mites, ivermectin would be used most probably.
Mange mites don’t come up from nowhere. There must be reasons that your pet have them. There are two main reasons of them;
- Contact with other animals
- Cantact with a place hosting parasites or parasites’ eggs
Most of the mange mites can’t live on human body so there is a very low chance to be contaminated by your guinepig to you. And it’s same chance for being contaminated by you to your guinea pig. Only one mite named Cheyletiella Parasitivorax can live on human skin, causes itchy bubbles. There is another chance that your guinea pigs may have the mites much earlier. Then why do they come up now? Even if these parasites live on your guinea pigs, they are repressed by immun system and stay inactive for a long time. And when immun system of your guinea pig get weak, mange mites show themselves.
Reasons for Parasites
This situation is seen on the animals gotten from inappropriate farms or petshops. In a normal process, when a guinea pig which has mange is detected, infected one and the other guinea pigs which contact with it must be quarantined and cured in another place by guinea pig breeders. Sometimes, especially because of commercial purposes, animals not showing disease symptoms aren’t quarantined and cured. They can be preferred to be sold as soon as possible, but not showing disease symptoms doesn’t mean that they are healthy. Especially mange mites are very infectious. Transmitted mites from an ill animal can come up later in your house.
So maybe you should think twice before buying a guinea pig for sale. Adopting could be a better choice.
Advices for Parasites
Although ivermectin would be used to cure mange infected guinea pig, to determine the right dose and decision you must take your pet to an experienced vet about guinea pigs immediately. Your guinea pig could have a different illness. Sometimes guinea pigs have several diseases at the same time. For example, with the mange they can host lice or fleas either. Insomuch that lack of vitamin C can come along with them. Lack of vitamin C can cause hair loss. Feed them with guinea pig food rich in vitamin C. You must be sensitive about their nutrition. If you wish, you can read our Guinea Pig Diet – Guinea Pig Food With All Details article to get more information.
One of the most important things before you get your guinea pig to vet is a proper cleaning. Your guinea pig cage and other contacted matterials (guinea pig toys, guinea pig accessories, guinea pig bedding matterials etc.) can contain parasites and their eggs. Therefore you should clean all the cage and matterials thoroughly.
Lastly, your vet would say it probably but we want to remind it again to point out the importance of it, cure of mange mites takes a specific period and this period continues even after disease symptoms are passed because your guinea pig still can has eggs. So keep up with the cure to the last unconditionally.
Lice and Fleas
Fleas are extremely troublesome invaders for pets. Flea is a wingless type of bug. With its transverse boddy, it can move along easily in your guinea pig’s fur. Its mouth structure is developed to suck blood. They can make long distance jumping with their legs. They feed with blood of invaded animal. Their life consist of 4 stages; egg, larva, pupa and grown flea. Complications can show up on an animal which is invaded by enough fleas. Some main complications are like;
- Allergic Dermatitis
- Taeniae Infections
You can detect fleas with your eyes sometimes, and if you can do that i ensure you there is a serious infestation. Another detection method is flea comb. This comb has notches designed very close to take out everything in the fur. And sometimes you can get a bite and then notice that there are fleas. In a situation like that, there must be a serious infestation because fleas can’t live on human body but if they even bite you then your guinea pig must host lots of fleas on its body.
To cure the lice and fleas, generally Advantage is used. It’s very effective on fleas. You can reach to the prospectus of Advantage by link below.
There are shampoos and spreys for lice and fleas. You can get them from petshops very easily but be careful about using it, beacuse like the other local medicines, these are designed for cats and dogs and the dosages are regulated for them. Guinea pigs are small and very sensitive animals. Be careful about dosage. By the way don’t use them with other local medicines, although they could eliminate each others effection, they can also make extra effect and poison your guinea pig.
Ticks are blood sucker ectoparasites which have several disease microorganisms. They could carry virus or parasites on them. Main diseases ticks can cause are like;
- Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever
- Lyme Disease
The chance of gettin ticks is very low for your guinea pigs living at home. If your guinea pig didn’t go out but has a tick on it, then you must have carried the tick to your house. Ticks can’t fly and jump. They can exist in forested lands, bushes and grass. They can be sticked on your clothes in areas like those and carried to home with you. If you let your guinea pigs out, be sure that the places are safe to them.
In a very low possibility, if you see a tick sticked on your guinea pig, don’t try to take it out from your guinea pig’s body. Get help from your vet immediately. When ticks are tryed to pulled out, their body and head can split and head can remain under skin. On the other hand, when it get crushed or exposed to chemicals, you can cause to vomit it which means viruses and parasites on it can spread to all your guinea pigs body system.
If you have a tick sticked on your body, you must go to a medical institution immediately.
I hope that’s a helpful article about guinea pig skin diseases. If you have questions you can write your comments below.
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