Poorly 14 week old rat

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Poorly 14 week old rat

Post by Bubbs_1987 » Sun Apr 14, 2019 12:53 am

Hi, I have a poorly 14 week old rat. I noticed a couple of weeks ago that his breathing was laboured and he was making a clicking noise. He was also off his food and hunched up in the corner of the cage. I immediately took him to the vet who said that he possibly has the early stages of bronchitis. He prescribed antibiotics and metacam.

Needless to say that trying to get my little soldier to take the medication has been nothing short of impossible. I have tried to mix it with his favourite food but no luck. I have tried to syringe it into his mouth but I can't get him to stay still and it often just ends up on his fur. In the last couple of days I've started syringing it onto my finger and wiping it on his mouth in the hope that some of it goes in. I am now running out of the medication and there is no improvement....possibly because he has barely taken it. But there has also been no deterioration. Although I am concerned that he has lost a little weight.

I don't want to take him back to the vet to get more medication that he won't take. But equally I don't want him to have nothing. I read somewhere about 'fish mox' often being used to treat respiratory illnesses in rats. Has anyone ever used this & if so did it work and where can I get it from?

Many thanks.

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Re: Poorly 14 week old rat

Post by ScissorCrow » Sun Apr 14, 2019 10:12 pm

Can you copy from the prescription label what he is taking at what dose? Ie "baytril 2.5% 0.2ml twice a day". Would be helpful if you knew his weight too, just to check the dosage.

I used to struggle to get mine to take meds then I found this method that hasn't let me down yet :luck: Break a small piece of plain biscuit, I use Rich Tea, about finger nail size and add a few drops of water to make it a little soggy then add the medicine and give to your rat - they will either eat it off the plate or pick it up and eat it.

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Re: Poorly 14 week old rat

Post by cyber ratty » Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:37 pm

There is a chance it could be parasitic bronchitis, so it's worth applying some ivermectin.

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Re: Poorly 14 week old rat

Post by Ciara-Jay-ratmum » Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:43 pm

Hi Everyone!

Sorry to intrude on your thread but I have a similar problem.
My partner and I have just purchased two lovely boys-Henry & Lou.

I'm a first time rat owner and so far I'm loving it. My partner owned some in his childhood years so have a little bit of knowledge about how to care/bond/train the boys properly.
Since bringing Henry home he seems to be making a weird breathing noise, almost as if he has fluid on his chest, very hoarse and wet squeaky noise.
Me and my partner took him straight the vets and they gave us antibiotics and anti inflammatory, he has had three doses so far out of a 7 day course, or so we think, it can be hard to tell, we have been mixing the medicine up in baby food so he will take it from us without us having to traumatise him as they are both still fairly new and seem to be settling in nicely and love exploring out of their cage.
I'm just wondering if anyone has any experience in this themselves with their pet rats? Henry is such a happy boy already and is starting to become so confident so soon, he loves his food and climbing the cage. I don't know whether I should be concerned about his breathing though? Do antibiotics usually work for these types of things? The vet seems to think it's a respiratory infection which is most common with rats I believe.

Any tips, advice & help would be really appreciated guys.


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Re: Poorly 14 week old rat

Post by [cub] » Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:23 pm

Yes, respiratory problems in rats are extremely common, and yes, they are generally bacterial in origin so they do generally respond to antibiotics provided that it's the correct antibiotic for the bacterial species in question (taking into account any resistances that may have developed) and at the correct dosage. However, in young rats, as Mary said, respiratory symptoms are also frequently caused by parasitic infection, for which antibiotics will have no effect. If nothing has changed after you finish your current course of medication, try a one-off application of ivermectin instead.

Rats also frequently have flare-ups of respiratory issues when stressed, e.g. when moving to a new house. If the symptoms are mild and the rat is well in themselves, it's a perfectly sensible decision to just wait and see if they'll get better on their own.
Poo-shoveller to: Calyn (NLA28).
Fondly remembering: Zephyr Mick Jagger (Edgeworth) the big lump, Din (NLA28), Zephyr Donovan (Phoenix), Xeltan, Lita (NLA32), Lia (NLA28), Zephyr Delanynder (NLA28), Falere (NLA36), Mirala (NLA36), Zephyr Opold, and Rila.

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