You woke up and went to your guinea pig’s hutch to carry out the daily routine, and alas, you see your guinea pig dragging back legs as they walk, you start panicking and wondering whether he/she is paralyzed. This article will discuss the reasons behind your guinea pig dragging hind legs, and possible treatments for it.

Let’s begin

Why is My guinea pig dragging back legs?

Encephalitozoon cuniculi is primarily the cause of your guinea pig dragging its hind legs. Encephalitozoon is a parasite that can affect your guinea pig’s spine, brain, or kidneys.

This can affect your guinea pig’s hind legs because they can become unstable. Your guinea pigs will feel stress using their hind legs. They will drag their back legs because they will not bear the weight. Complete paralysis can also occur in this case.

Things to note:

  • Encephalitozoon cuniculi or E cuniculi can last more than a year. 
  • It’s is caused by the ingestion of spores causes it. 
  • The spores spread in the blood to the brain and other parts of the body. 
  • It is excreted in the urine and becomes a source of infection.

This disease can be difficult to detect, but don’t be alarmed. Some of the symptoms of encephalitis include.

  1. Lack of voluntary control of urination.
  2. Discharge from the eyes.
  3. Head tilt 
  4. Neck spasms.

If your guinea pigs are experiencing such problems, then be sure to wear gloves when picking them or touching them in any way.

This parasite can also be transmitted to humans and may cause illness in people with weakened immune systems.

Blood tests can identify encephalitis.

If this parasite is detected, steroids can kill it. Seek professional veterinary advice on this. Owners should clean guinea pig cages regularly as disinfectants will kill the parasite in the guinea pig’s urine.

Calcium deficiency – guinea pig dragging back legs

Another major cause of guinea pigs dragging their hind legs may be the lack of calcium in their diet.

Yes, a high calcium diet is not suitable for our guinea pigs, but the same applies to a deficient calcium diet. It is essential to balance the nutrition needed to prevent such problems in our guinea pigs. The guinea pig’s hind leg problem is common. Every guinea pig will experience this problem once in its life. This happens as the guinea pig grows older. Diseases and painful injuries can also exacerbate these problems. Wear and tear on the muscles and bones is not the only problem. It can lead to paralysis if early and proper treatment isn’t available.

A common cause of weakness in the hind legs is joint problems. Make sure your guinea pig’s leg is not sprained or broken. Spinal problems, such as herniated discs or dislocated bones, are also a significant risk. In addition, regularly check for medical problems such as tumors and strokes.

Guinea pigs that are unable to use their hind legs need regular support.

Losing a hind leg can have a devastating effect on your guinea pig. It can also affect their health.

Interesting reads: Is My Guinea Pig Dead Or In Shock? Symptoms and Care

The Ultimate Guinea Pig Guide – For beginners and veterans

Did my guinea pig hurt his hind legs?

There are many ways that guinea pigs can injure their hind legs.

Some of the main ways are

Falling from a high place

Improper handling of the building by the owner

A guinea pig can injure itself by falling from a high place. In addition, when owners do not pick their guinea pigs in the right way, guinea pigs can jump off their owners’ arms and hurt themselves in such situations.

Owners should make sure to provide their guinea pig with a cage that has enough room to relax, as the guinea pig can rotate its legs into abnormal positions. This can cause their leg to dislocate from the guinea pig’s spine. This is called a dislocation.

Causes of dislocation in guinea pigs

Dislocation can cause paralysis of the guinea pig’s hind legs. It can be restricted or intact. It depends on how severe the subluxation that occurred was.

It takes time to heal and to get your guinea pig back to its original state. It can take several months for your guinea pig to recover fully. The treatment for this type of problem is rest and patience.

Your guinea pig may also require some medication to relieve the pain. To overcome the swelling, flunixin glucosamine will help.

To get proper rest, your guinea pig must stay in the cage for a month. This can make your guinea pig irritable and bored.

You can help by spending as much time as possible with them. Being bored and feeling lonely can progress to stress and depression in your guinea pig.

If your guinea pig’s leg is completely dislocated from the spine, they may never return to their original self. In this case, please take your guinea pig to the vet immediately.

My guinea pig has a broken hind leg.

A broken leg in a guinea pig may be less or more of a problem than a dislocated leg. Cleanliness and resting areas play a role in determining this.

As prey, guinea pigs are very good at hiding their pain. You must observe your guinea pig’s movements to detect their pain.

If your guinea pig is not putting weight on its hind legs while walking, take your guinea pig to your veterinarian for an x-ray.

How to treat guinea pig’s broken hind leg

The treatment for a broken hind leg is rest and lots of it.

In addition, a visit to the met may be required. 

 In many cases, your VET will brand the broken leg up with a brace.

It’s important to note that this treatment can be expensive for some, and we recommend you make your homemade brace and save some money doing so in return.

Here’s how;

  • Wrap the leg in gauze or bleached plain cotton.
  • Use a popsicle stick or any splint. It will be used as a brace.
  • Ensure you do not wrap the leg too tightly because it will stop the blood flow.

For several weeks after this, your guinea pig will need proper rest. While they are resting in their cage, you can give them some willow bark.

This will act as a painkiller and will also distract your guinea pig.

My guinea pig’s hind legs are shaking.

A guinea pig’s shaky hind legs can be a reaction to overheating or a sign of impending paralysis.

In the case of overheating, you can take such measures to overcome it.

Remove the guinea pig from the heat source. Avoid direct sunlight and bring them to a cooler place.

Do not rinse your guinea pig with cold water. This will shock your guinea pig.

Mist their ears. Their ears help them exchange heat, which cools their bodies.

Provide cold water for your guinea pig.

Groom your guinea pig to remove excess fur.

If you have a guinea pig at your home, place it on a cool tile.

Signs of overheating include

  • Red ears
  • breathlessness 
  • lethargy 
  • drooling
  • confusion

If your guinea pig is not overheating, then the cause of leg tremors may be a warning sign of impending paralysis. The weakening of the guinea pig’s hind legs may be a gradual process.

My guinea pig’s hind legs are not moving.

If a guinea pig’s hind legs are not moving, there may be many factors behind it. Some common causes include

  • Frequent wear and tear on muscles and bones due to old age
  • Fractures or dislocations
  • Toxicity that causes serious health problems

This problem occurs as guinea pigs get older. It is common in older guinea pigs.

Throughout their lives, guinea pigs experience a lot of wear and tear, and their muscles begin to weaken. At some point, it begins to give up.

Fractures or some other disease may also be the cause of such problems.

Owners should make sure their guinea pigs do not have broken bones or dislocations.

Taking your guinea pig to the vet will help you determine the cause by performing an x-ray of your guinea pig.

A blood test on your guinea pig will also let you know if there is any toxic disease.

What causes paralysis in a guinea pig’s back legs?

Physical injury may be a cause of back leg paralysis in guinea pigs. Some other causes of back leg paralysis are

Stroke: Stroke can cause muscle paralysis in guinea pigs. Stroke is a possible cause of localized paralysis in guinea pigs.

Cancer: When cancer metastasizes to the spine, it compresses the spinal cord. In this case, paralysis may occur.

Intervertebral disc disease (IVD): This disease prevents your guinea pig from using its hind legs. It separates one or more intervertebral discs from the spine. The guinea pig’s discs may swell. It can cause pain in the back or neck.

Ingestion of toxins: Guinea pigs will not vomit after inhaling any toxic substance. Lack of energy and enthusiasm, shortness of breath, and paralysis are symptoms of poisoning.

Spondylosis: In this case, your guinea pig may face spinal problems. In this case, bone spurs restrict the movement of the spine.

If your guinea pig is paralyzed, it will need the help of a professional veterinarian for better treatment.

In addition, an expert is needed to understand the exact cause of the paralysis.

You cannot solve these problems at home, as they are examined with the help of various machines that you cannot arrange at home.

How to treat hind leg paralysis in guinea pigs?

Such problems can be treated with anti-inflammatory and antibiotic drugs for swelling and redness and painkillers for pain relief.

Proper rest and patience are crucial in allowing adequate healing. Over time, your guinea pig will recover as the swelling decreases.

Toxins can cause problems. Guinea pigs cannot excrete toxins by vomiting because their stomach muscles are not strong enough. Therefore, a professional veterinarian may need to use intravenous fluids to remove the toxins.

There is no specific treatment for strokes. Depending on the severity of your guinea pig affected and what quality of life is affected, euthanasia may be considered.

Things to note:

  • Cancer will be resolved by removing the tumor. 
  • Chemotherapy or radiation therapy is necessary as a follow-up to bend the spread. 
  • Amputation may be required if there is the potential for disease transmission.

Why is my guinea pig is limping?

A guinea pig’s limp shows you the symptoms of a fracture in a guinea pig. When they are unable to bear their weight, they usually limp.

In this case, first look at the fly joint of your guinea pig. The fly joint is the part of the hind leg that rests on the ground. If the guinea pig’s fly joint becomes red, inflamed, or full of sores, the guinea pig has a bacterial infection.

Limping in guinea pigs is called plantar pediculosis or bumblefoot; it’s caused by staphylococcal bacteria infection. 

It can be found on the toes and hock joints of guinea pigs.

  • Level 1: Grade 1 is a light condition. The affected guinea pig will experience Some inconspicuous hair loss.
  • Level 2: Level 2 will have noticeable changes such as hair loss and red and swollen feet.
  • Level 3: This level will cause distress. Your guinea pig will suffer at grade 3. There is also a risk of an infection when the skin on your guinea pig’s feet begins to crack.
  • Level 4: At this stage, the infection will spread rapidly as ulcers form. This level requires immediate treatment.
  • Level 5: This grade will be very painful for your guinea pig. Your guinea pig will not walk at all. In addition, the swelling will become troublesome.

If your guinea pig has bumble feet, there are several factors you should be aware of.

Make sure their cage is clean.

Provide a soft floor for your guinea pig. Scrunchy bedding can help with this.

Use antibacterial soap to wash their feet.

It is best to wrap your guinea pig’s feet with a bandage or cloth.

If bumble feet continue, take your guinea pig to the veterinarian. 

Can arthritis affect a guinea pig’s hind legs?

Arthritis is common in the lives of guinea pigs. It is prevalent in older guinea pigs. Two types of arthritis can affect the hind legs of guinea pigs.

Osteoarthritis:  This disease is caused by two main factors, old age, and obesity

Septic arthritis: When a guinea pig is injured, the infection can enter the wound site, leading to arthritis.

Either of these conditions will make it difficult for your guinea pig to use its hind legs. Your guinea pig will have difficulty standing, walking, and exercising.

Owners must make sure their guinea pigs do not become sluggish. Becoming sluggish can aggravate arthritis.

Arthritis cannot be cured and can only be relieved by massage and supplements.

You can prevent the condition from getting worse. Provide your guinea pigs with a healthy, low-fat diet, so they don’t get fat. In this case, the weight class can be painful.

Will massage help my guinea pig’s hind legs?

Massage can benefit your guinea pig’s back legs; you can help them by giving them a massage.

In addition to being healing and relaxing, your guinea pig will find it enjoyable. This will also help you create a closer connection with your guinea pig.

My guinea pig can’t stand up.

The most common reason for a guinea pig’s inability to stand may be obesity.

Disease or other injuries may also be why they are overweight, as their hind legs cannot support their weight. As a result, your guinea pig will have difficulty standing up.

Before making any decisions and feeling panicked, first, make sure your guinea pig is not overweight.

Since each breed weighs almost the same (between 1000-1200 grams), you can determine if your guinea pig is overweight.

If you can feel their ribs, the bottom is flat, and their pelvis is round rather than sharp. Then your guinea pig’s weight is healthy; if not, being overweight may cause this problem. You can also weigh your guinea pig.

Offer your guinea pig a nutritional, healthy, low-fat diet. Avoid offering snacks to your guinea pigs. Feed them high-quality hay. These steps will help your guinea pig not to become overweight.

It may take time to get back to its everyday guinea pig life, but slowly, your guinea pig will get up, overcome lethargy and feel better. Proper exercise should also be an issue.

Does my guinea pig need an amputation?

Sometimes, after examining a paralyzed guinea pig, amputation is the only option for the guinea pig. This decision should not be taken lightly. The most common reason for amputation is a broken leg.

Leg fractures do not require amputation and are only for those guinea pigs that do not heal independently.

If the bone does not heal on its own, the owner needs to take some steps. Otherwise, if owners ignore this, it can cause them serious problems.

If the disease spreads, the limb may need to be amputated. It should be amputated so that the infection does not spread throughout the body. The most likely examples are cancer and tumors.

Most guinea pigs allow amputation. Most guinea pigs recover quickly and never need an amputation.

Life after amputation?

Many guinea pigs don’t have any legs. But they have a hard time keeping their balance at first. However, they will eventually master their balance.

It is also essential to help your guinea pig clean itself, as guinea pigs may have difficulty grooming. Ears and bottoms can be a significant problem for three-legged guinea pigs.

Guinea pig owners need to make sure their guinea pigs are always healthy. Heavyweight can add to the load on their three legs and make them challenging to handle.

A guinea pig can live happily and contentedly on its three legs.

It will take some time to deal with this problem. Guinea pigs can play, run and stand on their lost legs.

Guinea pigs have a serious but common problem with three legs. They can cope well, but owners need to ensure they don’t get infected or sore; you need to be vigilant about their stumps.

Conclusion – Guinea pig dragging back legs

With proper care, a guinea pig owner can keep your pets healthy. Guinea pig dragging back legs can be scary but can be avoided.