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Old 09-21-2022, 06:19 AM   #1
RolyRocks
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Default Thick Dark Brown Urine

In the past my dwarf Loki has had discoloured urine which has either been resolved with ab's or gone back to normal on it's own (probably because it was down to something he had eaten). The last couple of days it was orangey again but last night and this morning it was thick dark brown. It is definitely not diarrhea and doesn't smell strong. My vet is away on holiday this week but I have got some antibiotics to try him on again. He is currently on Metacam and this past week I have started giving it to him twice daily as he has lot some weight again. He is now 2 years and 7 months old which I think is amazing! He has obviously slowed down a little and is eating less but in every other way he still appears a very happy little hamster!
I just wondered if anyone has any experience of dark brown urine? Also, have people safely given their hamster Bayril and Metacam at the same time? Can they be mixed together to disguise the taste?
My sister recommended giving him some fluids by syringe in case it is his kidneys but I'm not sure I will be able to get it into him without stressing him out because he's a wriggly little guy.
Thanks in advance for any help and advice you can offer me.
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Old 09-21-2022, 06:56 AM   #2
Ria P
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

That is an amazing age for a dwarfie!

I have given baytril and metacam together before but never at the same time so don't know the answer to your question.
I've never given metacam twice a day, only baytril.
What dosage is the total dosage of metacam when you give it twice daily? Is it the dog or cat one?
I have always administered ab via the syringe and draw up the baytril first followed by a tiny bit of undiluted Ribena to disguise the taste.
I've never administered water via the syringe myself because i'd be worried about a reluctant hamster asphyxiating but i know that many people do. I have held the bottle to a hamster's mouth before but never forced them to drink. I honestly don't know what is the right or wrong thing to do here.
I'd give him cucumber or a bit of water melon for extra moisture if he's not drinking.
I've come across blood in urine before due to a suspected bladder stone but not brown urine so can't comment on that but hopefully someone else will.
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Old 09-21-2022, 06:59 AM   #3
Pebbles82
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

I think you need to be careful with the Metacam dosage as it does affect the kidneys and he’s lost weight so the dose might need to be less. If they have too much it can seriously affect the kidneys. Which could be the dark brown urine rather than infection. Is there another vet you can see and ask them to work out the correct dose - if you weight your hamster they can work it out. Although sometimes even vets get it wrong as it’s quite complicated. It doesn’t just go by weight - they have another calculation to do to factor in metabolism.

So wheh you say he’s having Metacam twice a day do you mean a split dose or a double dose?

I wouldn’t mix Metacam and baytril - interesting idea! But I’m fairly sure they are meant to be given separately. Can you get a urine sample and send it to the vet? Also get some keto diastux so you can test the urine for diabetes.

If it doesn’t smell foul it might not be infection - but it could be blood in the urine. The keto diastix should show if there’s blood in the urine as well as sugar.

I would hold off on antibiotics just now personally, without seeing a vet. It can make them quite unwell during the course as well. But if you can speak to another vet they may advise giving them.

I know my vet wouldn’t without seeing the hamster and woukd also want to check the dose of Metacam after weight loss. Too much can be very toxic to the kidneys.
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Old 09-21-2022, 07:04 AM   #4
Pebbles82
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

Also wanted to add what a great age your hamster is! And it’s great that he is doing so well. At this age there’s a balance to be struck between keeping them comfortable and avoiding suffering from ill health. Unless there was a raging infection I’m not sure antibiotics would be keeping them comfortable personally. But every case varies. And sometimes it can avoid suffering. The chances are, organs will be starting to fail. And if Metacam is keeping him pain free that’s important- but do get the dose checked as kidney failure can be painful too.
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Old 09-21-2022, 08:08 AM   #5
RolyRocks
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

Thank you so much for your advice.
I give 0.03mls and that was the correct amount when he was 49 grams. He is now 45 grams so maybe the dose needs to be lessoned. When I spoke to my vet a while ago she said I could give that same dose twice daily if I feel he needs it. Due to the weight loss and noticing he is not eating so much I thought I would start giving it twice a day, but now wonder if like you said, this may be causing the problem. I started giving it to him back in January when he lost a lot of weight and as he was nearly 2 years old was advised to keep him on it due to his old age. So he had actually been on the 1 dose daily for 8-9 months but I have been reluctant to stop it because he has been doing so well. The metacam I give is the 1.5mg/ml oral suspension for dogs.
My exotic vet that is away on holiday this week actually got the metacam dosage wrong originally and I have been advised that there aren't any other vets at the practice that are knowledgeable on hamsters. Another vet at a different practice actually said to me "why would you want a hamster"! It is sad that I am yet to find a vet that I trust to treat Loki.
I know he is very old, but at the moment I really don't feel he is suffering. He still happily chomps away on his veg every morning and I see him out during the day nibbling on his favourite wooden sticks.
I know it is hard for you guys to say, but would you recommend stopping the metacam in the evening? I also don't know whether it is best to have just the one dose in the morning or split the dose so he gets a small amount twice a day. I was just worried because of their fast metabolism that the dose will have worn off by the evening.
I do give him cucumber everyday because he isn't a big drinker but I will go and get him some watermelon now. I just want want to do everything I can for him. He's extremely special to me.

Last edited by RolyRocks; 09-21-2022 at 08:18 AM.
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Old 09-21-2022, 08:42 AM   #6
RolyRocks
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

Sorry, one last question... if the dark brown urine is a result of too much Metacam will the kidneys be permanently damaged? I can't bare to think I may have caused all this.
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Old 09-21-2022, 08:49 AM   #7
Ria P
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

O.03ml dose of dog metacam sounds right for a 45g hamster but doubling it would take it up to 0.06ml.

I'm not a vet and can only go by the dosages my own dwarfs were on. They were all on a once daily dose and did well on it. If i remember right Edwina was on 0.04ml, Ozzy on 0.05ml and Gertie on 0.06ml but she was 99g.

In comparison, a total daily dose of 0.06ml seems a lot for a 45g dwarf. I'm reluctant to advise you on what to do because i don't feel it's my place to do so. Do what you think is best for Loki but i appreciate only too well how difficult that can be. I'm there myself at the moment with Rodney.
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Old 09-21-2022, 08:52 AM   #8
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

Quote:
Originally Posted by RolyRocks View Post
Sorry, one last question... if the dark brown urine is a result of too much Metacam will the kidneys be permanently damaged? I can't bare to think I may have caused all this.
Don't even go there. You are doing your very best to look after your very old little man. At his age organs fail, with or without metacam. I doubt that even a vet could answer this question.
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Old 09-21-2022, 09:38 AM   #9
Pebbles82
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

Exactly - don’t even go there. Sadly kidneys may be failing anyway- it’s one of the first things that does tend to start going in old hamsters. It’s just old age. I would rather have them pain free and on Metacam than try and save their kidneys.

I also think 0.03 mls of dog Metacam a day sounds right. I was only once told to give Metacam twice a day and that was a split dose. So it would be half of 0.03 mls twice a day.

When our Syrian had surgery I gauged whether Metacam was lasting 24 hours by seeing how he was. He definitely was in need of it after 24 hours and I could see it was wearing off by next day - but it dies last 24 hours. I would go back to giving 0.03mls once a day and see how he is - if he’s looking a bit fragile when the dose is due then think about doing a split dose. A split dose is a pain as it’s such a tiny amount to measure out and they might not always want it at the right time.

I tend to give it in baby food - just dropped on top of a teaspoon of baby food and leave it out at feeding time early evening. Sometimes they eat it straight away but usually they’ll have a bit then finish it off some time during the night. So the dose gets spread out a bit anyway but still keeps them pain free.

Good he is doing fine.
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Old 09-21-2022, 09:40 AM   #10
Pebbles82
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Default Re: Thick Dark Brown Urine

There’s also a fair bit of leeway in the dosage per weight so as he hasn’t lost that much weight I’m sure that dose will still be fine for now (ie 0.03 ml per day)

Is he drinking ok? More? Less? Or usual?

It’s a really tough time as we know at that age that they are in their twilight time. And having a good life each day is nice for them - treats and so on. I know one member said she even gave hers a bit of cake now and then when they’re older! I get less cautious about treats in their old age too but for a dwarf hamster I still wouldn’t give anything sugary due to diabetes being unpleasant for them. Nor spices like cinnamon either (can make them feel not right). But a bit of plain cooked chicken or a favourite nut can go down well!
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