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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-21-2012, 10:20 AM Thread Starter
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Question Degu eating trouble

So, I have 2 female deguīs, almost 4 years old.
The other one, Hulda, has always been healthy, but the other one, Hertta, started having tooth-related problems last December.
She lost weight, she used to be bigger of the two.
Her lower front incisors grew too long, and it made it hard for her to eat anymore.
I fed her some crushed pellets at that time.
She weighed about 140 grams when we took her to see the vet.

So, we took her to a vet back then, and the vet clipped her teeth, and removed one of her molar tooth.

They gave me a 3-day prescription of Baytril, and some Critical Care to syringe feed her, and she got better pretty quickly.
She gained most of her weight back, and started eating hay and pellets normally.

Everything went well for a few months.
But just a week ago, I noticed, that one of her lower front incisors was missing.
She still ate normally, though.
I monitored the situation, to see if it got worse, or anything.
Well, after few days from that, the place, where the tooth were missing, started to get a bit swollen and sore around the lip.
I called the vet immediately, and got an appointment (It was this monday)

They looked Hertta, and clipped her upper incisors a bit.
Her molar tooth were good.

They also cleaned her rash in her lip a bit.
And they gave me another 3-day prescription for Baytril.
And some cleaning stuff for her rash.

Now, itīs Wednesday, so 2 days after the vet appointment.
Hertta has gotten better, she eats some crushed pellets, and I have fed her some dried carrot pieces and little pieces of wood.
The problem is:

How do I make her eat more hay?
(Or at least more hard food, to keep teeth for growing too long?)

Could it be, that the mouth is too sore, that I just have to wait?

She hasnīt touched hay since the pet visit.
It would be important for her to get eating hay, to keep her teeth short. (Her teeth are orange, as should be )

And, when I try to feed her pellets, she just puts it between paws, and drops it.
(But, he eats crushed pellets, as mentioned before)
And I have been syringe-feeding her Critical Care, she likes it.

I have been said, that itīs a good sign, that she eats something, so she has appetite. and she is energetic, she likes to "chirp" with her friend, and acts normally.

I gave her a whole hazelnut today, and she eated it, I saw, that she used her all 4 incisor teeth, so I quess thatīs a good sign.
It took her a while to eat it, but I had to get her chew something.

Any tips for our situation, would be greatly appreciated.

-As for the rash around mouth, it is gotten better, no swelling, and I have been cleaning it everyday

And the vet said, that it should heal in 2-3 weeks, itīs normal rash. And the fur around the chin should grow back, too.

Any help would be appreciated, I love Hertta so much <3
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-21-2012, 07:27 PM
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Try hay blocks. They're not ideal long-term but are much better than no hay . Another idea would be to offer fresh grasses and weeds from outside, they'll be softer and possibly easier to eat.

If you think it's due to pain, ask for painkillers and see if there's any improvement. I honestly can't remember what they prescribed but I was once able to get a painkiller for a degu (she had to be stitched up after a fight).

Good luck!

~Stephanie

"We weep for a bird's cry, but not for a fish's blood. Blessed are those with a voice."





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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-22-2012, 12:41 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info, I will try it

I am just about to give her the last antibiotic with syringe this morning.

Itīs weird, that she eats hard food like dried carrot and such, but no hay O_o

Well, just gotta keep trying.
I will ask those painkillers if any improvement isnīt seen today.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-23-2012, 04:11 AM Thread Starter
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Phew ^^
Just thought to inform, that Hertta is doing fine now

She started eating hay this morning.

Could it be, that the antibiotics made her sleepy and dizzy these past few days? (And maybe lost interest in drinking water..?)

īCause, yesterday, I gave her her last antibiotic doze, and she was sleeping a lot, and was acting lazy, even when eating, and it took long time for her to eat.

But this morning, she was just like the Hertta I know
Acting totally normal, thank God..
She drank water normally, and eats hay.
(But still not touching pellets, well, with time, I quess)

Her rash on her lower lip and chin is getting better.
The fur in his chin is growing back.
But maybe another week or so for it to completely heal, according to our vet.

So, I keep using Betadine with water, to clean it daily, until itīs fully healed.

So glad to have the good old Hertta back
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-23-2012, 07:35 PM
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Yay, that's great to hear!! Yeah, don't worry about the pellets. Hay is the most important part of the diet, the pellets aren't even necessary technically.

~Stephanie

"We weep for a bird's cry, but not for a fish's blood. Blessed are those with a voice."





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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 05:07 AM Thread Starter
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Talking

Yeah

I always feed them good-quality hay, and 50/50 % Chinchilla/Guinea-pig pellets, just about 20 grams pellets per day, so they eat more hay (In Finland, we donīt have pellets designed for degu only, so..)

And they get whole hazelnut as a treat once a month

This whole hand-feeding process has helped Hertta get "closer" to me.

She always was the shyer one of the two, but now I just need to go to the cage, and she wantīs to come out

Aww~~
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 12:45 AM
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WHY was the molar removed? The opposite molar may grow long points that will grow into the opposing area into the gum. VERY painful. Get her teeth checked every month. Most malocclusions are genetic. Went through it with a Chin - trims every 6 weeks!
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