5 Things Guinea Pig Owners Need to Know about Adenovirus Infection

Posted on: 2 September 2015

There are many illnesses that affect guinea pigs, and as a new guinea pig owner, you need to monitor your new friends for signs of illness. Here are five things you need to know about one illness your pigs may acquire, adenovirus infection.

What are the symptoms of adenovirus infection?

Guinea pigs can be infected with adenovirus without suffering any ill effects; these pigs are carriers and can spread the virus to other guinea pigs, who will then become sick. Carriers may get sick if their immune system becomes compromised which can happen if they are stressed, old, or have recently undergone surgery.

Pigs that are sick with adenovirus infection will show cold-like symptoms. Guinea pigs don't get colds, so if you see your pig sniffling, coughing, or suffering from a runny nose, they need veterinary attention. Pigs that don't feel well may also stop eating, so if you notice that your pig isn't touching their pellets and hay, you should be concerned that they are sick.

Is it serious?

Fortunately, adenovirus infection isn't usually fatal to guinea pigs. As long as you take your pig to the vet right away, he or she will probably be fine.

Can vets treat adenovirus infection?

Vets can treat this infection. The focus of treatment is generally to ease the individual symptoms to make your pig more comfortable while their body fights off the virus. Your vet may give your pig intravenous fluids, supplemental feeding, painkillers, or other supportive treatments to make them feel better.

Is it contagious to humans?

Fortunately, the type of adenovirus that causes illness in guinea pigs doesn't spread to humans. There are other types of adenoviruses that can make people sick and lead to illnesses like the common cold, pink eye, pharyngitis, and pneumonia, but you won't catch those from your pig.

Will your other pigs get sick?

Adenovirus infection is very contagious, so you need to take steps to keep your other pigs healthy. You'll need to quarantine your sick pig until they've recovered. The cage also needs to be cleaned thoroughly to make sure that your healthy pigs aren't living in a contaminated environment. Make sure to remove all of the bedding from the cage, disinfect the entire cage and its contents, and then replace the bedding with new material.

Adenovirus infection is a potentially serious illness, so if you think your pig has it, take them to a vet like Foothills Animal Hospital.


Keeping Your Pets Healthy

After I started staying home full time instead of working, I realized that my pets weren't as healthy as I thought they were. They basically laid around the house all day, and I started growing increasingly concerned about their well-being. I wanted to know more about their health, so I visited a veterinarian in my area. He gave me a few really good tips on reducing their caloric intake and encouraging exercise. Now, I can say that my dogs are truly healthy and energetic. This blog is all about keeping your pets healthy so that you can continue to enjoy their company.