Some guinea pig owners have reported seeing blood oozing from the bottom of their guinea pigs, leading them to believe that their guinea pigs are experiencing menstrual cramps. But, if they don’t have menstrual periods, what is the source of their bleeding? Is it possible that this is something serious? Let’s take a look and see!
Also see: Red urine in guinea pigs (in Spanish) (Causes and what to do)
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What is causing the bleeding from the bottom of my guinea pig?
Bleeding during the heat cycle or at any other time is a common occurrence in other mammals such as dogs, humans, and other primates; however, this is not the case in guinea pigs.
It is true that if your guinea pig is bleeding from the genitals, it is most likely a sign of some underlying health issues in them, and we recommend that you take them to a veterinarian as soon as possible to determine the exact source of the bleeding.
The following are some of the most common reasons for guinea pigs to bleed, according to veterinarians who have been interviewed. We discovered that the most common causes were urinary tract infections (UTIs), bladder stones, Pyometra, and tumors.
The different types of bleeding that can occur in guinea pigs
There are a variety of factors that can contribute to bleeding in guinea pigs. However, we have compiled a list of some of the most frequently cited reasons for the same today. So, let’s take a look at it:
Infection of the urinary tract
Inguinal guinea pigs are susceptible to urinary tract infection, also known as UTI, which is one of the most commonly diagnosed diseases and can result in subtle bleeding. Many people are under the impression that guinea pigs have periods, which would result in bleeding, but this is not true.
A urinary tract infection (UTI) occurs when there is an infection in the urinary tract combined with cystitis (bladder inflammation), which results in blood passing through the urine.
Numerous Guinea Pigs are frequently misled into believing that the bleeding is coming from their genital (vaginal) area when it is actually coming from their urine.
Considering that rodents’ bodies are so close to the ground, it is quite natural for bacteria to enter their urethra, resulting in an infection in these animals. The unsanitary living environment in which they live can lead to the formation of bacteria in their cage, which can result in UTI.
Guinea Pig Illnesses, Part 1: Upper Respiratory Infection (Urinary Tract Infection)
- Small amount of blood dripping from the female reproductive organs
- If you notice any blood stains in the urine at the bottom of the cage, call your veterinarian.
- The discovery of blood-tinged bedding
- urinating with a squeaky sound
- Urine has a foul odor.
- Your guinea pig will be more thirsty than ever after this experience.
Make your guinea pig urinate on a hard surface (e.g., an empty litter box or a kitchen counter) and collect the urine samples with a syringe to see if it helps. Your guinea pig can be examined and diagnosed by an exotic veterinarian to determine whether or not it is suffering from urinary tract infection (UTI).
- Increase the frequency with which you clean the cage and make sure that you replace the bedding every time you clean the cage. If you are using fleece, make sure to thoroughly wash it before reusing it.
- Make sure there is plenty of clean drinking water available at least twice a day. Because urinary tract infections (UTIs) frequently cause increased thirst, your guinea pig will require a lot of water.
- Offer some unsweetened cranberry juice as an alternative (fresh if possible). Although cranberry juice does not completely cure the infection, it does contain a high concentration of antioxidants that will help to remove some bacteria from the urine. As a result, your guinea pig will feel a little more at ease. This is an excellent method of keeping your guinea pig calm until you can take him to the veterinarian. (Consider it to be first aid. )
- Consult with a veterinarian to determine which antibiotics should be administered to your guinea pigs. Trimethoprim-sulfa, enrofloxacin, ciprofloxacin, chloramphenicol, and metronidazole are examples of conventional medications that are safe to use on guinea pigs for urinary tract infections. However, you should obtain a prescription before administering it to your guinea pigs.
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Another common cause of guinea pig bleeding is the development of a tumor in any part of the body or within the urinary tract itself.
Cancer is generally caused by an abnormal proliferation of body cells, which results in the formation of a lump of tissues. They can be either malignant (which means they spread quickly) or benign (harmless).
When tissues grow abnormally, they can cause irritation to other body organs around them or even cause bleeding in the tissues themselves, which can lead to the passage of blood from your guinea pigs’ reproductive tract. This is known as genital bleeding.
Despite the fact that the blood passes through the urinary tract in the same way as UTI, the two can be distinguished by the color of the blood, which is intense red as opposed to a little red in UTI.
- Include the appearance of lumps on the stomach or other parts of their body. Keep in mind that not all lumps are caused by the tumor, but you should have it checked out regardless.
- Perhaps you’ve noticed that your guinea pig isn’t eating as much as usual and has lost his or her appetite.
- It is possible that they will have bald patches in the area around the lumps or on other parts of their body.
- Breathing difficulties and sluggish behavior are two other common symptoms that occur after the lumps are discovered.
- If the tumor is located in the urinary tract, you may notice some traces of blood in their urine as a result of the tumor.
While external tumors can be examined by taking a sample of the tumor and studying the nature of the tumor to determine whether it is a benign or malignant tumor, if the tumor is internal, you may need to take your guinea pig in for additional testing.
An X-ray, ultrasound, or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are some of the standard tests used to determine the cause of a tumor in guinea pigs.
- With the use of appropriate medication, a benign tumor can be kept under control. If your veterinarian determines that surgery is necessary, he or she may recommend that you have it removed through a minor procedure. In general, these types of tumors are not particularly deadly.
- A malignant tumor necessitates immediate surgical intervention because the likelihood of the tumor spreading and causing damage to other organs is quite high in this type of tumor. In this situation, surgery may be the only viable option.
Blood in the genital area and urine of your guinea pigs could be due to the presence of a bladder stone, which is yet another possible explanation. Some owners are often perplexed by the bleeding, believing that their guinea pigs are experiencing periods, which is not the case, but in reality, this is not the case.
According to a study, females are more likely than males to develop kidney stones. It is usually caused by an excess of oxalates and other minerals in the guinea pig’s body, which causes calcification.
High calcium diets in guinea pigs can lead to the development of bladder stones in these small animals.
- Blood in the urine or white gritty spots on the skin when the urine dries up.
- Urination is difficult due to a physical disability.
- Lethargic and less likely to move around
- Appetite suppression
X-ray is one of the first tests used to confirm the presence of bladder stones in guinea pigs, and it is also one of the most accurate. If stones are discovered, the veterinarian may conduct a more in-depth investigation to determine what caused the formation of the stones.
Treatment for bladder stones in guinea pigs includes a small surgical procedure performed by a veterinarian to remove the stone from the animal’s body.
Pyometra is one of the most common diseases found in pets such as dogs and cats, and it can be fatal. Nowadays, even guinea pigs are susceptible to contracting the disease. Inguinal Pyometra is caused by a bad infection that causes an excessive amount of pus to accumulate in the uterus of your guinea pig’s uterus.
In most cases, you will notice some vaginal discharge of pus mixed with blood or urine, but this will be infrequent. People are sometimes perplexed by the appearance of blood in their guinea pigs’ urine and genital area, leading them to believe that their guinea pigs are menstruating, which would explain the bleeding, when in fact this is not the case.
Aside from that, it can be difficult to differentiate between UTI and pyometra at times. If you are in any doubt or believe that your guinea pig is exhibiting any signs of illness, we recommend that you consult a veterinarian.
- An increase in thirst and urination is observed.
- Appetite sluggishness
- Fever and vomiting are common symptoms.
- I’ve been feeling lethargic and weak.
A visit to the veterinarian is required for a proper diagnosis of pyometra. A urine test, as well as a few other tests, may be performed by the veterinarian to determine the source of the problem.
Surgery and spraying your guinea pigs may be necessary for the treatment of pyometra, as the bacteria that causes the disease is too powerful for mild antibiotics to be effective. Furthermore, guinea pigs cannot be given strong antibiotics like dogs because doing so could kill some bacteria in their intestines and even worsen the situation in some cases.
What methods can we use to keep guinea pigs from bleeding?
Some of the preventative measures for bleeding in guinea pigs include the following measures:
- Ensure that your guinea pig is fed a nutritious diet that contains the proper balance of high-quality hay, pellets, and freshly prepared vegetables. This is an excellent method of preventing diseases such as bladder stones.
- It is critical to maintain the cleanliness of the enclosure and to use high-quality bedding. As a result, the environment is more hygienic, and the likelihood of bacterial infection, which can lead to UTI and Pyometra is reduced significantly.
- It is extremely effective to spray a female guinea pig when she is 5-6 months old in order to prevent tumors and infections in her urinary tract.
- Always make certain that your guinea pigs have enough floortime, a large cage, and other basic needs that will keep them happy and active during the day. This is one of the most effective things you can do to prevent the majority of diseases associated with obesity.
In other words, although guinea pigs do menstruate, they do not bleed like other mammals, as we have already learned from our previous discussion. If you notice that your guinea pig is bleeding from the genitals, you should take him to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Periods are not the cause of such bleedings, so you should seek medical attention right away.
It is recommended that you read the following articles if you want to learn more about some common health problems in guinea pigs as well as other general health-care needs.
- Do Guinea Pigs Shed?
- Vitamin C For Guinea Pigs
- Guinea Pig First Aid Kit
- Do Guinea Pigs Need Vaccination?
MSD VET MANUAL