Poof guinea pig cavy ovarian cyst info: symptoms, treatment and care

Hair loss is evident, especially in patch of white fur on her rear

Here is more information about Poof's ovarian cyst symptoms, diagnosis and vet recommended treatment. Of course no two guinea pigs are exactly alike, so one case may be different from another. We have also included what was used for her surgery, detailed what was prescribed to her and listed the steps we have personally taken for her post operative care.*

Poof is an otherwise healthy and active cavy who turned two years old in February 2012.
Symptom onset: Jan 26
Operation date: Feb 16

Thinning fur along sides and underside, nip ples are not particularly abnormal


  • Rumblestrutting and purring around cage, sometimes while waving her rear in the air and displaying herself
  • Made repeated attempts to mount her cagemates, also female, on and off daily for 21 consecutive days (from Jan 26 to Feb 16 operation date). Typically cavies are in season for no more than two days.
  • Nip ples were not swollen, distended or crusty - but did have small amounts of a white flaky substance on the left one
  • Slight thinning of fur on her left side. Difficult to tell because of Abbyssinian rosettes
  • Gradual increased hair loss. Fur became thinner, more skin became visible where her rosettes naturally part
  • Scratched and nipped at herself frequently, which could have contributed to hair loss
  • Maintained a healthy appetite and steady weight from symptom onset to operation
  • Otherwise normal activity level

Vet Diagnosis & Recommended Treatment

  • Palpitated her abdomen and did not feel anything initially, but said a small cyst was possible
  • Upon further investigation an ultrasound probe exam revealed a small cyst on one side
  • Recommended treatment for Poof: ovariohysterectomy (spay)

Poof's Ovariohysterectomy Procedure Surgery Info

  • No fasting whatsoever beforehand, should eat normally
  • Vet gave injections of Buprenex (analgesic opiate for pain) and Midazolam (for relaxation) beforehand
  • Applied lubricant in her eyes (isoflurane gas can irritate cavies eyes)
  • Placed Poof in chamber, gave oxygen for 5 minutes, then isoflurane gas (anesthetic)
  • Performed ovariohysterectomy procedure, removing the ovaries and uterus
  • Found small cyst on left ovary, right ovary was normal
  • Dissolvable sutures were used to close the muscle layer, staples were used on tissue layer

Poof's Post-operative Medication*

  • Prescribed TMS (antibiotic) post surgery to prevent infection.
  • Poof's dosage: 0.35 mL orally twice a day for 7 days
  • Provided Metacam (pain relief medication) to be used when needed, usually for the first day or two after surgery.
  • Poof's dosage: 0.07 mL / 7 units orally twice a day for 5 days

Post-operative Care

  • Set up separate small enclosure near but not with cagemates, restricting activity for at least the first 7 days
  • Used white fleece bedding and towels, changed twice daily and inspected for any blood or fluids (7-10 days)
  • Check incision at least daily and report any abnormalities to the vet. There should not be any blood, pus, or fluid leaking. Watch out for swelling, inflammation (hot to the touch), odor or redness.
  • Provide in her cage a hot water bottle wrapped in fleece to keep her body temperature warm for the first day or two, also keep the room warm
  • Give probiotic two or more hours after administering antibiotic.
  • Poof's dosage: 1 mL Lifetime soy based Liquid Acidophilus, natural strawberry/vanilla flavoring (as recommended by our rescue)
  • Provide hay, water bottle and pellets as usual
  • Offer wide variety of favorite foods to encourage Poof to eat on her own, including hand picked grass from lawn
  • Force feed 1/2-1 tube (Monoject 12 mL syringe) of Oxbow Critical Care four times daily until Poof is eating normally on her own again as a precaution against bloat and GI stasis
  • Ensure that she is pooping. If she is not pooping by the next morning after operation then a motility medication is needed to get the digestive system moving again
  • Staples are to be removed after 10-14 days

*Disclaimer: we are not veterinarians and this information is not meant to be used in lieu of proper veterinary care. We have provided this in hopes that this info may help someone in the future. Dosages vary by concentration and cavys weight. If you are concerned for your guinea pig's health, please seek out a cavy savvy vet! GuineaLynx has helpful tips about finding a good guinea pig vet.


  1. Well she got the very best of care :) So pleased she is doing well!

  2. Can this happen on male guinea pigs too?

  3. Judy, nothing but the best for little Poofy! Now if only she would leave those staples alone...

    Lillove, male guinea pigs cannot get ovarian cysts because they do not have female reproductive parts! So no worries about this particular problem at least :) However, they do have their own specific male related potential health problems, such as boar impaction. GuineaLynx has some great info on it: