Sneezing problem - worried new rat mummy

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Sneezing problem - worried new rat mummy

Post by Pygmypuff93 » Mon May 07, 2018 3:24 am

Hey everyone! I am the proud new rat mummy to three beautiful girls - Ru who is 6 months and her babies Trixie and Katya who are 8 weeks old.

Ru is a rescue who was rescued whilst pregnant but was healthy and well before we got her. The moment we brought her home (which was exactly a week today) she started sneezing and has been sneezing ever since. Her breathing is normal, she’s eating, drinking, sleeping and going to the toilet. We first got rid of the carefresh that was originally in her cage (as we discovered the stuff was not dust free at all like it claimed) and replaced it with the sawdust she had been living perfectly fine in before we got her but there was still no change so after that we rid the room they’re in of any and all dust (after already having done this before they arrived) twice and she’s still sneezing. She’s been itching quite a lot too but she has no signs of fleas or mites at all.

I’m going to be calling the vet later today to get all three of them checked out but I am awfully worried about her. This is the first time I’ve had rats since I was a child and I have read up on what to do and how to care for them for months before getting them and have heard about things such as URI’s and possible allergies but I’m just wondering if anyone else has experienced anything like this with their rats before? I’m a very paranoid person in general but being a new rat mum and wanting the best for them so badly obviously doesn’t help that xD

I would be really grateful for any and all advice anyone has to offer! Thank you xoxo

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cyber ratty
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Re: Sneezing problem - worried new rat mummy

Post by cyber ratty » Mon May 07, 2018 11:19 am

Welcome to the forum, and to rat keeping. :D

Rats can sneeze due to stress, and 'new home' sneezes are common, but should clear up within a week or two. If she seems completely well in herself, then don't jump in with antibiotics (which most vets would probably opt for), give her more time to settle.

The itchiness could easily be mites (all rats have them) which are invisible to the naked eye, and can also become more of a problem in times of stress - so I'd recommend giving them all an antiparasitic treatment containing ivermectin, as it will do no harm anyway.

When you say sawdust, I hope you mean shavings? Actual sawdust would be completely unsuitable for any animal, not to mention very dusty. ;) The shavings should be kiln dried and dust extracted for safety, of the type usually sold just for horses.

Dust isn't the only irritant for rats though, anything perfumed can cause problems (carefresh is perfumed), so make sure you aren't using any air fresheners, or perfumed cleaning products.

I hope she improves quickly. :luck:

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