Agri Vehicles Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Elderly boar not eating  (Read 3130 times)

GribinIsaf

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Montgomeryshire
    • Gribin Isaf
Elderly boar not eating
« on: April 10, 2021, 11:23:03 am »
I do believe seeking ideas on this forum is not a substitute for consulting a vet when it comes to animal health but as a believer in belt and braces I am doing one now and the other on Monday...

We have an elderly (11 years old) Saddleback boar that we decided to keep on when he stopped working.  We realised that would have implications later about decisions relating to his health and the end of his life.

Up until the last week he has been very content, physically active, sociable, and eating two good meals a day without hesitation.

Since a week ago he has been very reluctant to touch much food.  He has occasionally been tempted to eat small amounts but has lost all interest in eating.

He is less ready to get up and move out of his house although when he does so there are no signs of lameness and he stands square talking his weight on all four legs.  His breathing seems normal.  He is obviously passing far less faeces as not much is going in and what has come out has been sloppy and not well formed.

He is not giving any clear signs of being in distress or pain and is happy to by scratched, rubbed behind his ear etc.

I would be interested if anyone had any thoughts on what might be happening here and what actions could be taken.

Many thanks.

harmony

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2021, 12:07:43 pm »
Can you take his temperature? What is his water intake like?


If he is walking fine, no lameness or reluctance then the obvious old age aches and pains wouldn't seem to be the problem.


I would expect his droppings to be small and hard if he isn't eating so it rather points to a digestion problem. Either old age catching up or infection.


The other issue could be tooth related.


I would certainly ring the vet and I'm not sure I'd wait until Monday but that's your call.

GribinIsaf

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Montgomeryshire
    • Gribin Isaf
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2021, 12:19:36 pm »
Can you take his temperature? What is his water intake like?


If he is walking fine, no lameness or reluctance then the obvious old age aches and pains wouldn't seem to be the problem.


I would expect his droppings to be small and hard if he isn't eating so it rather points to a digestion problem. Either old age catching up or infection.


The other issue could be tooth related.


I would certainly ring the vet and I'm not sure I'd wait until Monday but that's your call.

Thanks Harmony

I wasn't rushing to call the vet over the weekend as his condition has been stable for a week and he is not in distress... but I may think again


Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2021, 02:00:44 pm »
If he's drinking but not eating then I would suspect a molar problem.  If it's infected then he might be feeling down.  Just drinking could make his droppings sloppy. No-one is going to want to stick their finger in his mouth to test, but you can palpate his jaws from the outside gently and see if he reacts to pressure.  Temp too as suggested.


Has he had access to something new a week ago that could have disagreed with him, or even be poisonous?


Of course it could simply be that he's coming to the end of his happy life.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

GribinIsaf

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Montgomeryshire
    • Gribin Isaf
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2021, 09:17:50 pm »
The vet supplied steroid and antibiotic injections as a catch-all measure saying the cause could be all manner of things - this was on the telephone, not an examination.

The boar has been on his feet during today and did a littler wallowing and lying out in the sun.  He has also eaten small quantities of prepared food laced with banana and other tasties.

Thanks for your input Fleecewife:

but you can palpate his jaws from the outside gently and see if he reacts to pressure.

I did do that and he did not react.

The wider issue here is how best to manage the end of his life.  When he stopped working we decided to keep him into retirement - yes I will admit it - for sentimental reasons.  We always said that while he had a life where we could do all his natural behaviours we would look after him but we would know when time was up.  This little episode is making us address more clearly exactly what indicates that time...

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2021, 11:02:39 pm »
It's good that you are making sure you have explored all other possibilities before deciding it's the end, but as his 'human' you'll know when the time has come.  If it's now then when he's enjoying a quiet wallow in the sunshine would be the best of times to do it.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

GribinIsaf

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Montgomeryshire
    • Gribin Isaf
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2021, 06:34:12 pm »
If it's now then when he's enjoying a quiet wallow in the sunshine would be the best of times to do it.

We made that decision and he had a stress free end to a good life.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2021, 11:45:57 pm »
Well done for giving him a good life and a good death  :hug:
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

GribinIsaf

  • Joined Aug 2015
  • Montgomeryshire
    • Gribin Isaf
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2021, 08:04:59 pm »
Well done for giving him a good life and a good death  :hug:

Biography here:

https://gribinisaf.wordpress.com/2021/05/01/bert/

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Elderly boar not eating
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2021, 12:44:03 am »
Well done for giving him a good life and a good death  :hug:

Biography here:

https://gribinisaf.wordpress.com/2021/05/01/bert/

That's lovely to see him as he was in life.  I especially love the little xbred piglet with a ring of spots next to its saddle.  Bert really did have a good life - not every pig even has a wallow  :pig:
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

 

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Ark Farm Livestock Movement Service

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2024. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS