Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Sick Alpaca

I'm so worried about Lars (Polaris) that I woke up at 4 this morning and had to go out to the barn to check on him. In three months he has lost 40 pounds and is constantly drooling and foaming from his mouth. I think that he has just about stopped eating. Two and a half weeks ago I had Vet Russ out to examine him. He drew blood, removed a little loose tooth, snipped off his fighting teeth, and got a stool specimen. The specimen indicated that he had some stomach worms so I dosed him for 3 days and have been giving him GastroGuard twice a day. He's just not getting better and he's annoyed that I'm shoving medicine into his mouth so it's getting harder for me to handle him by myself.
I'm going to call the vets' office as soon as they open. I'm thinking that I may have to hook up the trailer and haul him to Michigan State.
Sick Alpaca update: Vet Russ stopped by about noon to look at our boy again and suggested that we take him to Michigan State. Beth ran home and got her van and dear Lars jumped right in. He stood up all the way there and back home, humming the whole way, so he must be pretty tired tonight. Sparing you a long story, they x-rayed his head and found 3 teeth on the lower right abscessed with bone degeneration under them. Poor guy must have been uncomfortable. No wonder he lost so much weight. Must have really hurt to try to eat.
Treatment is rather simple - 9 cc of an antibiotic every 4 days for a month. The only trouble is I have to give the injection SQ, which is just under the skin. I think this is rather hard with all the fleece. The first time I gave an SQ, I slid it under the skin and out, like sewing. It's much easier to just pop it into a muscle.
Of course, being the tidy alpaca that he is, he didn't poop or pee the whole 4 hours that we were gone. After he relieved himself, Beth and I gave him a dose of GastroGuard for his tummy and an injection of Banimine to relax him and hopefully, ease his pain.
Life is good again!