Blood in cage - no wounds found?

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Blood in cage - no wounds found?

Post by PP1331 » Mon Nov 25, 2019 6:43 pm

Hi everyone,

I have had my two male rats for about 2 months, they are 6 months old and my first rats. Yesterday evening I encountered something quite strange and alarming. I don't know if this is relevant or not, but earlier when I let them out for their exercise, they mostly stayed under the settee, which is unusual, but I thought maybe are tired or something spooked them, maybe a noise outside or something. Then a few hours later, I noticed quite a lot of blood splattered about the cage - I had heard them scuffling, but nothing out of the ordinary, they play fight from time to time and no harm is caused. I checked them both, one appeared to have no blood or wounds on him, the other had a bit of blood around his face, I thought it was a scratch across his eye. I quickly took him to the out of hours vets, and they said they'd clean and look at his wounds....then they came out a few minutes later and said 'good news, there's nothing wrong with him, I can't find any wounds at all'. I thought, well good but also, what? I worried I had brought the wrong one and the other was actually injured and I missed it. The vet advised check both, if there are no obvious big wounds leave it until tomorrow and see how they are. I got home, I thoroughly checked both boys, both seemed fine, no wounds to be found at all, and both acting normally. So where did all the blood come from? I'm sure it wasn't just porphyrin I was seeing and mistaking it for blood - the hammock and base of cage were splattered with it, there was quite a lot, probably a few tea spoons worth. I asked the vet if they had any ideas and they suggested maybe diarrhoea but it wasn't that, it looked just like pure blood. This was yesterday, they still seem fine, no evidence of further bleeding, no change in behaviour.

Does anyone know where the blood could have come from? Could it be the urine?

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Re: Blood in cage - no wounds found?

Post by [cub] » Mon Nov 25, 2019 9:30 pm

Urine was my first thought, yes. If it happens again, try to get a sample if you can (syringes are very useful for this), or at least get a photo and save some of it soaked onto a piece of kitchen roll or something. That would give the vet more information to work with. In the meanwhile, if you can get a urine sample out of both rats, that would also be useful diagnostically. Put the rat in a clean, empty carrier or small cage and wait; this usually works best if you grab them while they're in the middle of a big sleep since they'll usually need a pee on waking. Syringe up the urine and if your vet appointment isn't very soon after, put the sample in the fridge. You can also check the sample yourself to some extent with urine test strips aimed at humans; the test for blood is one of the more reliable ones.
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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