Exotis ISSN 2398-2985

Guinea Pigs

Heat stress

Synonym(s): Heat stroke

Contributor(s): Cathy Johnson-Delaney, Lianne Foxall

Introduction

  • Cause: ambient temperature 21°C/69.8°F or higher, particularly above 28°C/82.4°F
  • Signs: prostration, excess salivation, shallow rapid respiration, death.
  • Diagnosis: elevated body temperature, history.
  • Treatment: controlled cooling of body temperature, fluids (subcutaneous, intraperitoneal).
  • Prognosis: poor.
Print off the Owner factsheets on Common health problems and Heat stress to give to your clients.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Elevated or prolonged ambient temperatures. Usually above 28°C/82.4°F, but effects may be seen as low as 21°C/69.8°F if humidity is elevated particularly in obese, stressed or pregnant guinea pigs.

Predisposing factors

General

  • Obese, stressed, pregnant.

Specific

  • A stressed guinea pig may be one with poor husbandry, nutrition or any concurrent illness or injury.

Pathophysiology

  • Elevated brain temperature, multi-organ dysfunction.

Timecourse

  • Usually takes at least 30 min of high ambient temperature to manifest, but time course for elevated body temperature is variable.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

Other sources of information

  • Antinoff N (2011) Heatstroke. In: Blackwell's Five-Minute Veterinary Consult: Small Mammal. Ed: Oglesbee B L. Wiley-Blackwell. pp 265-266.
  • Harkness J E et al (2010) Clinical Signs and Differential Diagnoses. In: Harkness & Wagner's Biology and Medicine of Rabbits and Rodents. 5th edn. Wiley-Blackwell, Ames, IA, USA. pp 195-247.
  • Johnson-Delaney C (2010) Guinea Pigs, Chinchillas, Degus and Duprasi. In: BSAVA Manual of Exotic Pets. 5th edn. Eds: Meredith A & Johnson-Delaney C. British Small Animal Veterinary Association. pp 28-62.
  • Hollamy S (2009) Rodents: Neurological and Musculoskeletal Disorders. In: BSAVA Manual of Rodents and Ferrets. Eds: Keeble E & Meredith A. BSAVA, Quedgely, Gloucester, UK. pp 161-168.


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