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  #11  
Old 01-22-2018, 08:09 AM United States
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ticklechin ticklechin is offline
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Bouts of loose poo and gas, it would come and go every couple of weeks.
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“When I buy cookies I eat just four and throw the rest away. But first I spray them with Raid so I won’t dig them out of the garbage later. Be careful, though, because that Raid really doesn’t taste that bad.”
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  #12  
Old 02-07-2018, 01:01 PM United States
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Oh man... just spent 20 minutes composing a reply and I lost connection to the server! Starting over, I'll try to keep it concise:
Thanks for the mention Dawn but Toby does not seem to have those symptoms. His poo is either normal, what I call "shaggy" or liquid, as in diarrhea. Can be all three in a single day. First antibiotic reduced occurrences of diarrhea but didn’t completely stop it (Flagyl). Second antibiotic was too hard on his appetite and energy level (Baytril) so I stopped after 7 days. He wouldn’t even take Critical Care and forcing him beyond a certain point was too stressful for both of us. Now I think the vet doesn’t know what else to do because she is suggesting he goes back on Flagyl or I go get a special consult from UC Davis (they have a veterinary college I think?)
Things I’ve done:
  1. Disinfect cage almost daily.
  2. Reduced amount of pellets, added probiotic powder, increased amount of hay.
  3. Cut out all treats a month ago.
  4. Kept him separate from his cage mate.

Next steps I’m considering, and if you all have opinions please do chime in:
  1. Insist on additional giardia tests? I’ve read that sometimes the chin’s poo needs to be tested multiple times. My vet did a single test to rule it out months ago.
  2. Combine Panacur with Flagyl? I’ve also read that sometimes it takes a combination to knock out the tougher bugs.
  3. Is there a different medication altogether I could inquire about?
  4. Change out his pellets. Currently Oxbow, I could go back to Mazuri but that would mean ordering online only as it’s not locally available. I used Chewy.com for the chin’s hay and just stopped ordering from them because the quality, although it was Oxbow, seemed like crap with a lot of broken down small pieces and brown patches.

Aside from this digestive tract drama, Toby seems very normal. Great energy, loves his out of cage play time, bright eyed and inquisitive, comes to me willingly, eats and drinks like a champ. But he is not putting back on any of the weight he has lost after months of being sick so I’m very worried about him.
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  #13  
Old 02-08-2018, 09:57 AM United States
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What was the course of flagyl? Was it something like 5 days on, three off, 5 on?
Have they done any xrays or ultrasound of the gut yet?
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Dawn

“When I buy cookies I eat just four and throw the rest away. But first I spray them with Raid so I won’t dig them out of the garbage later. Be careful, though, because that Raid really doesn’t taste that bad.”

Last edited by ticklechin; 02-08-2018 at 10:02 AM.
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  #14  
Old 02-09-2018, 12:19 AM United States
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The Flagyl was prescribed for 7 days every 12 hours, a 0.3 mL dose
Toby’s tests included: fecal float for Giardia, blood & urine tests and an ultrasound.
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  #15  
Old 02-09-2018, 09:35 AM United States
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I would go for the flagyl again, as long as the chin did ok on it, its worth a try that the original course was not long enough.
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Dawn

“When I buy cookies I eat just four and throw the rest away. But first I spray them with Raid so I won’t dig them out of the garbage later. Be careful, though, because that Raid really doesn’t taste that bad.”
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  #16  
Old 02-19-2018, 11:33 PM United States
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Thank you. I took Toby to the vet again and got the flagyl precribed for two weeks this time. The vet also added of 0.1ml Panacur once a day for 5 day’s. Fingers crossed this works!
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  #17  
Old 03-30-2018, 03:22 PM United States
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Well I guess at this point, I'm just continuing this thread for posterity! And hoping to keep updated with useful information when I find any that may help the next poor chin/owner going through something similar. After FIVE months of almost daily diarrhea and various tests and antibiotics, my vet has officially given up on us and suggested I take Toby to the Veterinary Teaching Hosiptal at UC Davis. I'll have to take a vacation day to travel up there since it's a 2 or 3 hour drive, depending on traffic. I hope they'll be able to help, Toby has lost over 100g since this started :-(
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  #18  
Old 04-30-2018, 11:30 PM United States
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Default One month later

Poor Toby is down to 490 grams still having daily episodes of diarrhea, second opinion vet did full body X-rays, another fecal float, even some preventive teeth trimming/filing because he saw some slight abnormalities. He talked to an internal medicine specialist who recommended a supplement called Young Again; said she amazing improvement in some rabbits that had similar problems. Two weeks on it and no effects so far, really.

On the plus side, he remains bright-eyed and energetic. Appetite and liquid intake is good/normal. Other than his daily attacks, he seems his completely normal self. He’s managed to stump two veterinarians now... my poor little boy with his mystery illness!
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  #19  
Old 06-13-2018, 10:43 AM United States
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Default Two months later

The third round of Flagyl only helped intermittently, while Toby was on it. As soon as it was over his diarrhea came back with a vengeance. I finally was able to take time off from work and braved the four hour commute to take Toby up to UC Davis Veterinary Hospital. He is receiving excellent supportive care (more critical care than pellets/hay and sub-Q injections) and is gaining weight. He had dropped below 400 grams and I was panicking.

The vet did the whole spectrum of tests again. X-ray, ultrasound, urine, blood, etc. They even ruled out dental disease that may not have been picked up on his last x-ray, and also any heart disease.

Amazingly he has not had any more diarrhea, so even though they noticed a thickening of his intestinal wall, instead of a GI problem, they are now focusing on his kidneys and trying to understand whether the problem is acute, or chronic. They are going to wait until he is more hydrated and then re-test to see if the kidney values change.

I dropped him off on Monday, hopefully I can pick him up on Friday.
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  #20  
Old 06-21-2018, 07:56 PM United States
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Default June follow up

So Toby was in the veterinary teaching hospital up at UC Davis for a total of FOUR days. Lucky that I have this resource nearby, even if traffic stretched a one way 90 minute drive to over three hours. His blood values show chronic kidney failure and they do not know which came first, the GI problems that infected the kidneys or the kidneys that sparked GI problems. Basically the vet told me he has probably only weeks to live.

I was sent home with Tramadol for pain, Nystatin (an antifungal for his gut yeast imbalance), Famotadine tablets cut into quarters, and Marbofloxacin (antibiotic). This medication routine along with the supportive care feeding instructions is quite intensive, and I only got through this first week by working from home for the first three days. He has gained about 30 grams since being home but that puts him only at 430. I'm going to take him to the local vet this Saturday for a follow up visit and probably more sub Q shots. I tried to increase his hydration at home by feeding him Critical Care, Emeraide, Romaine lettuce (apparently the only greens he likes) and mixing Pedialyte in his water.

After three days I took him off the Tramadol and his disposition improved by leaps and bounds. It is an opiate so pretty strong stuff, and made him quite drowsy. He is still very energetic, bright and active, always happy and excited to see me when I approach the cage, never lethargic or hiding in his hut. His poops are not 100% normal but at least he has not had diarrhea for the past week. This is so difficult! I know chins hide their symptoms extremely well, but my gut tells me it is not quite time to make the hard decision. People have told me, “he will let you know when he’s ready,” i.e. there will definitely be some obvious signs, but… I don’t know. For being such a sick boy, he’s handling it like it’s nothing! But I love him as much as I would any member of my family, so neither do I want him to suffer longer than necessary. :-(((
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