Iggy the piggy is sick

What a couple of weeks i'm having. Iggy went to bed thursday night and didn't get up friday morning. (that was two weeks ago). So i watched. and then saturday started to panic. He still did not want to move. His temp was 104. and anyone that knows pigs knows you can't take their temp easily. He never flinched. I called 7 vets. NO ONE wants to work on pigs. Especially one that is just a pet. Found a local vet who was nice enough, but heck he only said give 2 aspirins twice a day. If he's not better by tuesday call him again. So i kept calling around, I finally found one that is 70 miles from me. AND willing to come out. WOOOHOO! And come out she did. With all sorts of piggy wellness gadgets. Again, if you know pigs you know you can't just restrain them with out them trying to kill you. Sick and all. So out came the ISO tank to put him under so she could check him out.

What a funny experience. Poor vet had to do all this in the closet in my bedroom. That is where piggy was and that is where we put him under...Too funny!

Did i mention Iggy is 250 lbs?

She gave him wormer and meds. Tried to take blood, which was no use. We couldn't find the vein in the ear. His femural. Or his jugular. She tried the Vena Cava, but then thought better of that. Though she did take some urine. So that went to culture.

She left me instructions to keep giving shots daily of Naxcel. Interesting. And some banamine. eek. Again, another 3 days and he allowed me to give him shots without a problem. He was that sick. On day 4 of meds he did get up a bit. but not better. Temp went up and down from 103 -106...

on day 7 i started him on Trimethorprin Sulfa 2 tabs twice a day. AND get this.... an appetite stimulant. For a pig.. LOL. Pharmacy was in stitches when i went to pick up that prescription. Iggy the piggy my label says.. ciproheptad. 18 little pills.. egads. But it worked. Plus the 2 tmz tabs. Within hours of taking the TMZ he was up walking around and doing his business. woohoo.. worst is over right?


Vet called with the bacteria found in the culture. Its a doozy. Her words not mine.

-Klebsiella pneumoniae

-Enterobacter cloacae

-Pseudomonas aeruginosa

-Acinetobacter baumannii

I'm looking up some of these now. They say the are nonsocomial type bacterias. people can get them from hospitals. dirty hands. not cleaning hospital equipment properly etc. Mostly the old and disabled already immuno suppressed people (and animals). They are all opportunistic bacteria and are everywhere. In the soil. Water. Feedstuffs. Piggy's immuned system was compromised and this is how he got it. I'm not sure how it got that way but none the less. not fun stuff. I do want to know how his body got depressed. My theory is that its too dang hot. His pool broke and i haven't fixed it. i hose him 2 times a day, but still, he can't regulate body temp. On top of that there was a two week period it rained everyday. I was flooded. Piggy was in heaven. Rolling around and snooting the mud and dirt, and obviously these lovely bacteria.

The only antibiotic that could be fed orally and that took care of all the bacteria? ciprofloxacin... And whats worse, a very bitter pill. I am having a heck of time trying to get piggy to eat anything that the cipro touched. He's just too dang smart. At least i know his nose is still working.

To make matters worse, on day 5 of this, he got dippity pig. A secondary stress related disease of the skin. Not much is known about it. Mostly its self -limiting and should resolve itself in 4-7 days. But obviously he's really stressed out. The skin cracks and peels, and its awful. You can't touch his back without him crying out in pain. It comes in stages too. First the back, then the legs and now the ears and tail. He looks like a manatee that got cut up in the blades of a speed boat. The skin starts out as little pus pockets. From there it opens. and then the taut skin breaks further. My poor Iggy.! What a mess.

I'm on day 4 of cipro. only got 2 pills down him. But i see a difference already. The vet said to get some grenadine, mix with water and crush the pill in that... HECK! That's a Shirley Temple... :) I'm also getting more peanut butter, cream cheese, and anything else i can find to help mask the taste.

He's back outside during the day. On the patio. He might go out and root around for a bit. but, that is it...At night he comes back in the house. For some reason though he hasn't gone near the closet. From all this i finally got my closet back!


  1. psssst.....how about beer? when good old edwina lived with us, i could talk her into just about anything with a can of bud light!

    bless your heart! i just want you to know that i'm praying for you and the zoo crew and sending lots of healing thoughts your way!

  2. LOL... for me or him? I was thinking about that.. wine too! what a mess. i've wasted more pills on trying to get him to eat than him actually eating....

  3. Thanks for this post very helpful My pig is experiencing the same thing Kim from NC


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