Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Piggy Saga

This is a post far too long in the making, but it's time I get it up here for you to see.

As longtime readers of the blog will know, we here at the ranch are raising guinea pigs. It's a small operation, and with only little girl piggies it's destined to stay small.

We started out last year with Lillie and Duchess.

Then this summer, in a moment of tremendous weakness, I allowed Anna to get a third guinea pig named Mia (or Mina, as Alyssa calls her).

All was fine in piggy land until around Halloween, when Duchess got sick. Her little lymph glands grew to the size of large marbles, and after a course of antibiotics they still weren't reduced. About this same time, Lillie's glands started to swell as well.

So the vet lanced Duchess' glands and gave us a different antibiotic - enough for both Duchess and Lillie. The new antibiotic worked on the infection, but it also robbed the piggies of their appetites. Neither one would eat anything.

Despite our best efforts to nurse her back to health, Duchess passed away on November 30th, and Lillie had lost so much weight she seemed destined to follow.

Kara, however, was determined to keep Lillie alive. For two weeks, she made a mash of parsley, grass, and pellets, and fed this to Lillie with a syringe.

After a what seemed like forever, Lillie finally started eating a little on her own, and now her appetite for grass and dandelions has outstripped the ability of our December yard to produce. And she's gained back most of the weight she lost while being sick.

So, for now, all is well here on the guinea pig farm.

2 comments:

One Cluttered Brain said...

Oh. So sorry to hear you lost one! But Kudos to Kara for nursing the other one back to health! YEAH!

The Brinkerhoff Barn said...

Wow! Those are cool guinnea pigs! I wish I had a pet like that. Jessica~