On Sunday morning this week, I noticed Blaster wasn't eating his veggies... or his pellets... or his hay. He was hunched up in a corner of his cage, crying. I took him straight to an animal hospital, who brought in an on-call exotics doctor to look at him, who told me his situation was indeed severe, and had him moved to intensive care immediately.
At 10:30 that night I received the call that Blaster had departed for the Rainbow Bridge. Necropsy results indicate that it was a heart attack. I have no way of knowing if this is a new development or if he was a heart pig all along. He's to be cremated and added to the hospital's butterfly garden, since I'm living in an apartment and have no place to bury him.
Blaster was an Abby pig, possibly a mix, possibly a heart pig. He ate everything in front of his nose, he liked to sit around and watch the world go by, he hated being petted, and he almost never complained, even when Squeakers bit him.
Tonight, I took down his cage and cleaned/rearranged Squeakers's cage to take advantage of the old space. He's a bit confused by the whole thing, and while he hated his neighbor/"brother", I like to think he's sort of sad that Blaster isn't there any more to pick on. Still, I hope he likes the pampering this brought on-- brand new wood hut, new plastic pigloo, new fleece, new towels, all so fresh I was pulling shrinkwrap off the fleece and labels off the huts.
Squeakers is a Silkie, probably a mix. I adopted him as an adult at the same time as Blaster, but he's about half a year younger. He had a hyperthyroid problem this fall/winter which contributed to his erratic weight and finicky eating. He's a hyperactive and sociable little nutcase, and likes to climb the sides of the cage when he sees/hears me approaching.
It's always tough to lose a loved one, but I'm thankful for the year and a quarter that Blaster spent with me! We'll see you at the Rainbow Bridge, Blaster!
Special shout-out to Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists in Houston, both in general and for having exotics-savvy vets on call for holidays and weekends! Both of my boys have had medical emergencies on days their regular vet was closed, and GCVS has helped me in situations their regular vet just didn't have the means to handle.