I decided to use this therapy after reading in a magazine about it’s use for stroke victims in human medicine. I now use it as part of the recovery programme for other conditions which leave the animals with weak of stiff joints.
It can be used for either heart attack or stroke victims when the usual one side paralysis takes longer than four or five days to clear.
Initially it should be done in a large sink filled with warm water. With the guinea pig firmly held on the palm on the hand and resting along the arm, gently lower it into the water at a slight angle with the head and upper torso resting on the arm. Lower the palm and watch the guinea pig’s reaction. Most get a little alarmed at the first lowering of the palm but persevere for they usually get used to it and begin to relax. Only once have I had to abandon the therapy because I was concerned about the stress it was causing the animal.
Just a couple of minutes is enough. Dry the guinea pig thoroughly in a towel but don’t use a hair dryer to dry it completely. The grooming activity which always takes place after a guinea pig has been bathed is all part of the therapy for it makes the animal more active for this activity is usually very vigorous.
Once the guinea pig is fit and confident enough to swim a little give it a bit more room by using a bath. Remember that this must be a gradual process and always be ready to scoop the animal up if it shows undue stress.