What Gives Guinea Pigs Diarrhea? (Loose Stool In Guinea pigs)

What Gives Guinea Pigs Diarrhea? (Loose Stool In Guinea pigs)

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There are a plethora of things that can cause diarrhea in guinea pigs, all of which are listed below. The causes of gastrointestinal problems can range from poor diet and stress to medication and medical treatment, among other factors. It is critical to identify the source of the problem as soon as possible because diarrhea can be fatal to guinea pigs, especially young guinea pigs, if left untreated.Diarrhea in guinea pigs is typically a symptom of a more serious underlying disease such as Bacterial enteritis, Escherichia coli infection, mucoid enteropathy, or parasitic infection, among others. Owners frequently confuse diarrhea with unformed cecotropes, which can be caused by stress, unbalanced diets, a lack of exercise, and partially digested food in their animals.

Unformed cecotropes in guinea pigs are distinct from diarrhea in that they are not formed. Cecotropes are the dark pools of foul-smelling feces that have not formed, whereas diarrhea is caused by watery feces.

Diarrhea must be treated as soon as possible, especially in young guinea pigs, because diarrhea can result in life-threatening conditions in as little as a few hours.

You must seek the assistance of an exotic veterinarian, who will most likely recommend supportive medication as well as medical treatment to treat them as quickly as possible.

You must make certain that your guinea pigs remain calm and well-hydrated. If you want to keep diarrhea at bay, you should concentrate on providing a well-balanced diet, maintaining a stress-free living environment, and keeping the cage in good condition.

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What can cause diarrhea in guinea pigs?

It is unlikely that a sudden change in diet is the only factor contributing to diarrhea. Food changes cause their intestine to become upset, which usually results in an intestinal area blockage, an internal impaction, or the formation of cecotropes that have not yet formed.

Diarrhea, on the other hand, is always a symptom of a serious underlying problem, rather than the problem itself.

Running or soft stools can be caused by a poor diet or by changing one’s eating habits completely. However, this does not rule out the possibility of true diarrhea. Unformed cecotropes, which are another type of feces that guinea pigs eliminate, can be found in this feces.

Digestive problems

Guinea pigs are herbivores, and as a result, they have a unique pair of gut microflora that help them break down their food.

Some types of antibiotics, in particular, can cause damage to this delicate gut system by destroying the microflora that exists there. The absence of microflora allows deadly bacteria to flourish unchecked, resulting in the development of diarrhea.

It is always recommended that guinea pig owners look for veterinary clinics that are specialized in treating guinea pigs or that have an expert on staff who is knowledgeable about treating guinea pigs. Most of the time, you’ll need to consult with an exotic veterinarian.

In addition, an expert knows what types of medications are safe for your guinea pig to take and which types of other medications should be avoided unless there is no other option.

Antibiotics such as erythromycin, penicillin, clindamycin, and ampicillin are among the few that should be avoided in certain situations. Furthermore, there are a plethora of other antibiotics that can cause diarrhea.

If you have recently started treating your guinea pig with an antibiotic and it has started causing diarrhea, you must stop the treatment and contact your veterinarian immediately.

Bacterial Disease

Among the guinea pigs that are most susceptible to the bacterial disease are the young ones, who are between the ages of 7 and 10 weeks.

Guinea pigs’ intestines can be affected by this infection, which results in an excessive amount of mucous production.

Invariably, this results in mucous-laden diarrhea, abdominal bloating, and a jelly-filled belly cavity. All of these can be life-threatening for your guinea pig if they are not addressed immediately.

However, the cause of Bacterial disease (mucoid enteropathy) has not been determined at this time. However, according to the latest research, it is primarily caused by a poor diet.

An imbalance of gut bacteria or impaction are two problems that can arise as a result of a poor diet, with the latter serving primarily as a catalyst.

Parasites

Guinea pigs can be affected by a variety of internal parasites that can cause discomfort or trouble. The diarrhea is a symptom of two different infections: eimeria and pinworms.

It is possible that the pinworms will affect the young guinea pigs more severely than the older guinea pigs because the younger guinea pigs do not have stable microflora in their gut to fight off the infestations.

Pinworms are able to infect it more effectively and begin reproducing in the intestines of guinea pigs as a result of this process. Pinworms are particularly dangerous for young guinea pigs because, in addition to causing diarrhea, they can also cause weight loss and anorexia in the animals.

It is likely that a guinea pig will become infected with pinworms if he or she ingests contaminated feces. When it comes to treating pinworms, it can be difficult because your guinea pig will continue to become infected due to coprophagy.

A veterinarian will recommend an antiparasitic treatment to help you get rid of the parasites on your pet. Along with this, you must thoroughly clean your guinea pig’s enclosure in order to completely eliminate pinworms from the environment.

Guinea pigs suffer from diarrhea caused by the Eimeria stiedae bacteria, which is also found in other species. Guinea pigs are susceptible to infection by this type of protozoal parasite, which differs from the rest of the eimeria family, which is restricted to the guinea pig’s intestine and does not infect the liver.

Guinea pigs can develop hepatic coccidiosis as a result of this parasite, which can result in diarrhea. If this condition is not treated, it can result in a variety of negative health consequences, including the development of a potentially life-threatening condition.

Your veterinarian will provide the necessary treatment for the same. The enclosures of guinea pigs should be thoroughly cleaned, just as they should be for other pests.

Bacterial Enteritis

The unfortunate reality is that bacterial enteritis is extremely common in young guinea pigs who are denied access to their mothers’ milk in the early stages of their lives. Young guinea pigs should not be weaned until they are 3-4 weeks old or older, depending on the breed.

It is not until the age of around 2-3 weeks that young guinea pigs begin to consume solid foods that their intestinal environment becomes contaminated.

Baby guinea pigs’ gut microflora develops during the weaning process because of the antibodies and beneficial bacteria found in their mothers’ milk. These antibodies and good bacteria are critical in keeping bad bacteria out of the system and preventing infection.

Weaned too early, guinea pigs are susceptible to developing intestinal problems very quickly.

It is most likely a form of bacterial inflammation of the organ in question. It is believed that this bacterial enteritis is caused by an excessive growth of bacteria in the gut, which results in inflammation of the intestinal lining and diarrhea. For young guinea pigs, diarrhea can become life-threatening.

They are more susceptible to infection from harmful bacteria when they are weaned before their gut microflora has had a chance to establish itself properly.

If you want to purchase a young guinea pig, you should look for a reputable breeder or meet with a rescue group or a shelter to find out more information.

E. coli

Escherichia coli is known by the abbreviated name E. coli, which stands for Escherichia coli. The guinea pigs will become infected with this type of bacteria, which will result in watery diarrhea. Stools containing blood or mucous are considered to be bloody.

There is currently no treatment available for Escherichia coli infection. Depending on the severity of the infection, supportive therapies can be used to treat the patient. The majority of these will be devoted to keeping the guinea pigs safe and well-hydrated.

Is diarrhea common in guinea pigs?

Guinea pigs rarely have diarrhea, and this is due to the fact that they are small. A guinea pig experiencing diarrhea is usually an indication that the animal is suffering from a serious health problem.

Diarrhea can be life threatening in and of itself, as it can cause severe dehydration and cause organ failure.

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Diarrhea vs. Cecotropes

Differentiating between true diarrhea and cecotropes in guinea pigs is critical for their welfare. Diarrhea is characterized by a watery stool. Cecotropes are clumps of dark, soft, shiny, and sticky stools that are difficult to remove.

Cecotropes, on the other hand, are a perfectly healthy and natural movement of the intestine, whereas diarrhea is not (s). Guinea pigs excrete two types of stools: cecotropes, which are dark in color and round in shape, and pellets, which are round in shape and which you should be familiar with.

Because of your long association with these, it’s possible that you’re not well known. Here’s why.

Coprophagy is the practice of eating one’s own feces by other animals. Either it is the product of other animals or it is their own product. Cecotropes are the type of food that your guinea pigs will most likely consume.

Normally, guinea pigs excrete this type of stool during the evening hours and swallow it immediately. As a result, the cecotropes in the guinea pigs’ enclosure are hidden from view by their owners.

Guinea pigs can absorb leftover nutrients from their food if they consume cecotropes, which they do by eating them. The discovery of cecotropes during the daytime indicates that your guinea pig is not consuming them at that time. This is something you should be concerned about because it indicates that your guinea pig may be sick.

Guinea pigs consume cecotropes in their entirety and consume it directly from the anus. Generally speaking, guinea pigs will not consume unformed cecotropes, which are commonly mistaken for diarrhea.

Soft cecotropes in guinea pigs

Differentiating between true diarrhea and cecotropes in guinea pigs is critical for their welfare. Diarrhea is characterized by a watery stool. Cecotropes are clumps of dark, soft, shiny, and sticky stools that are difficult to remove.

Cecotropes, on the other hand, are a perfectly healthy and natural movement of the intestine, whereas diarrhea is not (s). Guinea pigs excrete two types of stools: cecotropes, which are dark in color and round in shape, and pellets, which are round in shape and which you should be familiar with.

Because of your long association with these, it’s possible that you’re not well known. Here’s why.

Coprophagy is the practice of eating one’s own feces by other animals. Either it is the product of other animals or it is their own product. Cecotropes are the type of food that your guinea pigs will most likely consume.

Normally, guinea pigs excrete this type of stool during the evening hours and swallow it immediately. As a result, the cecotropes in the guinea pigs’ enclosure are hidden from view by their owners.

Guinea pigs can absorb leftover nutrients from their food if they consume cecotropes, which they do by eating them. The discovery of cecotropes during the daytime indicates that your guinea pig is not consuming them at that time. This is something you should be concerned about because it indicates that your guinea pig may be sick.

Guinea pigs consume cecotropes in their entirety and consume it directly from the anus. Generally speaking, guinea pigs will not consume unformed cecotropes, which are commonly mistaken for diarrhea.

Improper Diet

Unwillingness to respond to sudden changes in guinea pigs’ diet can be caused by unhealthy diets, which can cause problems to develop quickly in the animals.

A guinea pig’s overall health is dependent on the amount of fiber he or she consumes. Furthermore, in addition to the regular pellets, guinea pigs should always consume an excessive amount of grass hay, as pellets are insufficient for a balanced diet.

You will notice that the internal system of some guinea pigs is slow to move as a result of a lack of fiber in their diet. That can cause their digestion of digested food to be delayed, and the bacteria associated with it can cause serious disruptions in the microflora of their cecum and gut.

This internal movement that is slow or inactive can lead to an increase in harmful bacteria populations, which can result in a severe breakout. There are numerous types of bacteria that can cause diarrhea, some of which have already been mentioned.

If a guinea pig has a particularly delicate intestine, he or she may experience diarrhea if they consume certain pellet varieties.

When it comes to changing the diet of your guinea pig, always proceed with caution. Adding a new food to your guinea pig’s daily diet may cause soft cecotropes or diarrhea, and you will need to remove the newly added food from their diet as a result of these symptoms.

A lot of Stress

Stress can also be a cause of soft cecotropes.

If your guinea pig is under stress, the cecum may become alkaline as a result. The gut microflora can be upset as a result of this because it allows more bad bacteria to grow immediately and without any control.

Furthermore, this type of imbalance can result in the development of other conditions, such as bacterial infections. These have the potential to cause diarrhea. Stress, on the other hand, has the potential to cause soft cecotropes.

Stress-induced soft cecotropes are more sensitive in guinea pigs that have recently been weaned or are young.

Young guinea pigs are more susceptible to diarrhea than older guinea pigs because of the imbalance in their developing microflora. If they are stressed for an extended period of time, they are more susceptible to diarrhea.

There are a variety of factors that can cause stress in guinea pigs, including the following:

  1. Shifted to a new environment
  2. Improper enclosures
  3. Some Factors of the living environment (smells, noises, other animals)
  4. New guinea pigs in the household
  5. Discomfort and pain

Lack of exercise

A lack of physical activity can also result in Cecal dysbiosis as a result of health issues that arise as a result of obesity and neurologic disorders.

Pigs that are overweight or obese are more likely to develop diseases that are harmful to their health. Obesity can also be a contributing factor to soft cecotropes.

It is not possible to take your guinea pig for a stroll around the neighborhood.. There are a variety of other methods for getting your guinea pig to exercise, however.

Allowing your guinea pig to follow you around the house or providing them with toys to play with in a large enclosure can make their activity virtually effortless.

What foods cause diarrhea in guinea pigs

Guinea pigs are strictly herbivores, which means they eat only plants. However, there are a variety of fruits, plants, and vegetables that can cause upset in your guinea pig’s gastrointestinal tract or digestive system, depending on the variety.

It’s also important not to overfeed your guinea pig’s safe food, as this can cause digestive problems for the animal as well.

In addition, some foods can be harmful to one’s health. Typically, diarrhea by itself is a symptom of consuming toxic food, which causes the digestive system to become upset.

Food is almost always the only cause of diarrhea in guinea pigs, especially when the food is bad and the body of the guinea pig is trying to flush out the substance on its own.

When food is the cause of diarrhea, it is usually watery and includes mucous. Additionally, it can have an unusual smell and color.

Vegetables that can lead to diarrhea in guinea pigs

When Guinea pigs are born, they are only allowed to consume herbs and grass hay. In addition, vegetables provide numerous benefits to guinea pigs’ diets, and it appears that they enjoy eating fresh vegetables.

It is acceptable to provide one cup of vegetables per day. You must ensure that all vegetables cannot be fed on a daily basis.

Because some of the vegetables can cause unformed cecotropes, diarrhea, and impaction, it is important to avoid them. The following vegetables can be provided to your guinea pig on a daily basis:

  1. Dill
  2. Bok choy
  3. Zucchini 
  4. Red leaf lettuce
  5. Bell peppers
  6. Fennel
  7. Watercress
  8. Carrot tops
  9. Romaine lettuce
  10. Cucumber
  11. Mint

Those vegetables that need to provide only once in a week are:

  1. Cabbage
  2. Broccoli ( leaves and stems only)
  3. Spinach
  4. Clover
  5. Kale

As previously stated, it is critical to provide guinea pigs with a diet that is composed primarily of grass hay (85-90 percent grass hay). You can also cause diarrhea in your guinea pig if you overfeed it with vegetables at one time.

Fruits that can lead to diarrhea in guinea pigs

Guinea pigs can be fed fruit, which is one of the few foods that are completely safe to feed them. However, you must exercise caution when feeding fruit to your guinea pig because it can upset its digestive system.

The fruits are naturally very sweet and starchy due to their high sugar content. If you give your guinea pig too many fruits, it may become ill and suffer from diarrhea. When it comes to guinea pigs, it is best to feed them only high-quality food to ensure their health.

Guinea pig owners only need to provide the fruit 1-2 times per week for their pets. The portion size should be kept to a minimum.

Keep in mind that fruits are similar to a sweet treat for your guinea pig in terms of nutritional value. Among the fruits that we can serve in small quantities are the following:

  1. Raspberries
  2. Grapes
  3. Banana
  4. Papaya
  5. Blueberries
  6. Apples ( stemless and seedless only)
  7. Cherries
  8. Oranges 
  9. Strawberries
  10. Plums
  11. Pears

You only need to serve the fruits 1-2 times per week, depending on your schedule. If you don’t, your guinea pig may suffer from diarrhea.

Can guinea pigs die from diarrhea?

If your guinea pig’s diarrhea is left untreated, it could be very dangerous for him or her. Despite the fact that it is typically a symptom of a more serious illness. However, diarrhea can also result in severe dehydration.

Diarrhea in young guinea pigs can quickly deteriorate into life-threatening conditions within a few hours.

As a result, it is recommended that you contact your veterinary surgeon as soon as possible if your guinea pig is experiencing diarrhea or vomiting. Especially if you notice any of the following signs:

  1. Lethargy
  2. Hiding more than usual
  3. Shivering
  4. Dirty bottom
  5. Tooth grinding
  6. Hunched position
  7. Loss of appetite
  8. Bloating
  9. Weight loss

In some cases, obtaining a sample of diarrhea can be beneficial to your veterinarian because it may be easier for your veterinarian to diagnose the problem with a sample of stool.

Home remedies guinea pig diarrhea

Here are some home remedies that you can use to treat your guinea pig at home if he or she is suffering from diarrhea:

  1. If your guinea pigs’ feces are softer than usual, you should refrain from feeding them vegetables. In the diet of guinea pigs, you must substitute grass hay for the vegetables they consume. Timothy hay is the most beneficial type of grass hay for your guinea pig.
  2. Make certain that your guinea pig is getting plenty of fresh water to drink. If your guinea pig is experiencing diarrhea, make sure to refill its water bottle twice daily.
  3. Don’t try to treat your guinea pig on your own; seek professional assistance. Because some antibiotics can cause debilitating diarrhea and even life-threatening conditions, it is important to choose wisely. If your diarrhea does not improve within a few days, you should contact a veterinary surgeon right away for help.
  4. It is also possible for guinea pigs to experience diarrhea as a result of a change in their diet. As soon as you notice signs of diarrhea in your guinea pig after adding a new food to their diet, remove that food item from their diet immediately and consult a veterinarian.

What food to feed to guinea pigs with diarrhea?

When it comes to changing the diet of your guinea pig, it is critical to be cautious. Also, do not attempt to treat true diarrhea on your own without first consulting your veterinary surgeon for assistance. An alteration in the diet of an animal’s diet can be harmful, depending on the cause of the diarrhea.

The food items listed below are those that you can give to your guinea pig to help them recover from diarrhea if they become ill. These are the ones:

  1. Carrots: Carrots have been shown to help reduce diarrhea.
  2. Blueberries: The blueberries are effective in preventing diarrhea.
  3. Apple: When consumed in moderation, an apple can alleviate diarrhea.
  4. Oregano leaves: The oregano leaves help to improve the health of the digestive tract and to prevent the infection of bacteria in the intestine by eating them.
  5. Thyme: Thyme stimulates the appetite, aids in the treatment of bacterial infections, and relieves gas in the digestive tract.
  6. Strawberries: Strawberries are beneficial to the digestive tract’s health.
  7. Dill: A small sprig of dill can help to increase one’s desire to eat..

It is essential to make sure that your guinea pig drinks plenty of freshwaters. Diarrhea can lead to dehydration which can be life-threatening as well.