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lilspaz68

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I wasn't sure if I should put this in Health or General Rat Chat, but decided that even though there's many medical cases, hopefully there is a lot of happy endings so more suitable here :)

It all starts off with a friend, who was looking for 1-2 older friendly females for her very elderly girl. She ends up connecting with a woman whose Kijiji ad says different ages and not a lot else besides some cramped pics. She was told that she had older females and I told her to pick me up a pair of 1 year olds or thereabout for my Montreal lass Marie who was alone. She returns with 6 rats, none old, mostly 3-4 months old with 2 that were 5-6 months of age, if that. Then the story gets more convoluted and over time it finally comes out. The woman's daughter moved out and left her rats behind. Mom went and bought new cages (with sadly wide bar spacing) and everyone got out and the oops litters started. Unfortunately we don't know how many generations were born but the mistakes kept happening. So much that once we got truly involved, there was 3 litters born within a space of 2 weeks. After the initial pull of 6 of which I took in 3 baby girls, the first rescue friend took in the mom with a combined litter (a weekish apart in age, the youngest being almost newborns), and their mom, 5 "older" females, and a bunch of young girls. One of the girls had a lump on her hip and didn't move right. She seemed a bit uncomfortable and my friend sent me pics and video. The next day she told me this little girl was in real pain, so I called my vet, got a 3 pm appontment fit-in, and rushed to my friends to pick her up and a friend. I named the 2 girls Maisie (leg lump) and Gilly

The lump felt smaller than it appeared like it was above some other malformation in the leg and after my vet examined her, he agreed. We decided to x-ray to figure out what was going on, but suspecting a fracture or a dislocation. We discovered osteosarcoma (bone cancer) instead which was absolutely shocking in such a young rat. The lump was where the cancer had spread to the tissue which was a terrible sign. We decided an emergency amputation was the only way to save this young girls life.

Pics of the x-rays



It was going to be a chancy surgery and we decided that if my vet opened her up and found her riddled with cancer above where the leg was going to be removed that we would let her go on the table, and not wake her up. The next day was horrible, waiting to hear the outcome, expecting the worst but my vet is fantastic and has pulled some crazy surgeries out of his hat. I got a text that the surgery was going very well, but sadly just as he was dong the last sutures her heart stopped. :( The surgery would've been a complete success but she just didn't make it. :'( RIP Maisie. :'(

I went over again to check Mom as my friend told me her mouth was a mess, at this time I also did a quick triage of the newbies and found one of the older girls was sick, and had a cataract in her left eye. This was a genetic condition sadly and she was very frightened. I checked mom's teeth and found a horror show...terrible malocclusion or teeth growing crooked. I had to do an emergency clipping as she was suffering, and we couldn't get her to a vet without her babies potentially dying.
Mom before the trim...



after her emergency trim

Post to be continued...
 

lilspaz68

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We discovered a mass on a very young girls rear, in between her hind leg and her butt. We were hoping it was an abscess but no, she is booked for surgery on the 18th. :/

Another pull was accomplished and these rats were sent to different rescue agencies so more were safe. The final pull was a bunch of baby boys, a bunch of young girls, yet another mom with a newborn litter, a 3 older boys who were completely unsocialized.
At this point we realized they had been malnourished and were being fed whatever was on hand...for eg. noodles and apples. ALL of the rats had these crazy white teeth, except the malocclusion mom now named Fridgey, she had a bit of yellow but not orange. These teeth have led to further issues. My rescue friend Sarah met up with another rescue friend who took in the girls to foster and the mom and babies. One of the girls had very hard lump on the side of her jaw and an abscess on the bottom of it. This poor girl's face blew up very quickly and she was taken to her vet and it was lanced, drained and she's now on Clavamox. Hopefully it was an external abscess not a tooth root abscess as these are a lot more serious/dangerous.
Before the vet appointment


Next issue was Posey my tiny baby girl, but she luckily had 9 healthy little babies and is a fantastic mother :)



Then I took home the sick girl with cataract in her left eye, but after checking her I found she now had a cataract in her right eye as well and was almost completely blind and very sick. Wyla is improving slowly but her lungs are seriously damaged and she's learning to live being blind with her new companions and me.


and now lastly, I took in 2 more baby boys. One slightly older than the other. The older boy has a respiratory infection, and I named him Findlay, the younger boy Fergus (6-7 weeks if that?) has an abscess or hole into the bottom of his jaw...but even worse than that is above the hole the jaw itself is hard, lumpy and protrudes. He is now booked in at my vets for an exam and x-rays as we need to know what we are dealing with. Keep your fingers tightly crossed this sweet little guy does not have bone cancer...my heart would break :( I've only got the one pic of him for now, but will get a cute body pic later before the vet appointment.


And now you are all caught up on the happenings of just 2 weeks in rescue...
 
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lilspaz68

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Today's vet visit confirmed my fears. Fergus also has osteosarcoma. His is of the lower jaw. My wee bairn is going to have a short life. My vet and I have come up with a treatment plan, watching for signs of infection and/or pain as his jaw disintegrates. Once he reaches that point, I'll take him in to be put to sleep.

I am waiting for the x-rays to be emailed to me. Poor Fergus :'(
 

Dena

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Poor babies! You have such a good heart for helping so many and so much!
 

Big Schpog

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Today's vet visit confirmed my fears. Fergus also has osteosarcoma. His is of the lower jaw. My wee bairn is going to have a short life. My vet and I have come up with a treatment plan, watching for signs of infection and/or pain as his jaw disintegrates. Once he reaches that point, I'll take him in to be put to sleep.

I am waiting for the x-rays to be emailed to me. Poor Fergus :'(
I'm sorry to hear this Lil Spaz. I bet he's so sweet too. At least he's with you and going to have the best care for as long as he has.
 

lilspaz68

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lilspaz68

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I also just found a small mass in poor blind, sick Wyla's throat...with these rats it being cancerous is a possibility. Poor girly...5 months and having so many old rat issues. :(
 

Big Schpog

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Jeez, you're just not getting any luck with these poor ratties. Do you think they were all exposed to something that initiated this cancer?
 

Dena

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Do you think it could possibly be due to inbreeding? Or just poor genetics? Poor thing! Hopefully you get some good news soon!
 

lilspaz68

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My guess is they are inbred to hell and back, which with a careful ethical breeder who "linebreeds" cements in the good qualities and bad qualities, so you are careful when you do this. Its been going on for a year so I have NO clue how many generations inbred they are. I think it started with just a few rats and exploded. We got word that another girl gave birth at the shelter we sent her to. She's going home with a worker to be fostered. So that's an additional 40 plus babies in 3 weeks total.
 

lilspaz68

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Got some happy pics for us :) Posey the wee brave confident mom and her 9 babies who are fat and healthy. They are 2 weeks today :D We have some "eepers with peepers" right now, as their eyes are starting to open up :D





and the pretty tiny momma

 

lilspaz68

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So Posey has a new foster baby. Yesterday I was informed of a woman posting on a different local FB page about a ratgirl with 2 week old babies. The owner (her daughter) had gone into hospital and supposedly mom was upset and hurting her babies. I messaged her, and she sent me pics of the injured bub. I recognized a bite wound probably from between the bars like my Pele had received at 17 days old. The woman told me she'd seen a wild rat in her place so we figured out what had happened. Sadly the wildie got into the cage and killed another baby. :( They went and got the mom and her surviving babies to move her to a safe place and dropped off the injured baby to me. I gave him a titch of Metacam to reduce the swelling and control the pain then warmed him up. He was gasping for air off and on because of the swollen nose.

He slept on my neck most of the afternoon. I was able to introduce him to Posey and her babies and now he's been accepted. He's now part of a warm pile of babies and is nursing well. Unfortunately he's developed a respiratory infection this morning so I've started him on zithromax as well. Pray to the rat gods for little Tavish.

 

Big Schpog

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So Posey has a new foster baby. Yesterday I was informed of a woman posting on a different local FB page about a ratgirl with 2 week old babies. The owner (her daughter) had gone into hospital and supposedly mom was upset and hurting her babies. I messaged her, and she sent me pics of the injured bub. I recognized a bite wound probably from between the bars like my Pele had received at 17 days old. The woman told me she'd seen a wild rat in her place so we figured out what had happened. Sadly the wildie got into the cage and killed another baby. :( They went and got the mom and her surviving babies to move her to a safe place and dropped off the injured baby to me. I gave him a titch of Metacam to reduce the swelling and control the pain then warmed him up. He was gasping for air off and on because of the swollen nose.

He slept on my neck most of the afternoon. I was able to introduce him to Posey and her babies and now he's been accepted. He's now part of a warm pile of babies and is nursing well. Unfortunately he's developed a respiratory infection this morning so I've started him on zithromax as well. Pray to the rat gods for little Tavish.

How did a wildie get to the domesticated baby? This was in a home with wild rats being kept as pets or there were wild rats hiding out in the home? I mean, it's not often people have wild rats running around inside a home. The only time I've ever had encounters with wild rats up close was when a bunch of wild rats were eating our tomatoes off our plants out in the garden. The only other time I had a close experience was when there was a hole behind my sink in my heritage building and there were wild rats nesting under my cupboard due to the opening. Once the hole was sealed up, there were none.

I suppose I just wonder how you live with a wild rat in your home and not notice they're in there.

I'm glad the little one is with you and doing well. The poor little thing. I'm glad she's in a pile. I have no experience with rat babies and momma's. The momma accepts other babies easily eh?
 

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