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Help! Is this PT? 1 year old female rat - St Paul MN USA

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MN Rat Pack

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Mar 22, 2020
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Minnesota
Hello all! I consider myself an experienced rat owner and have had five boys over the last 20 years. I am encountering an issue that I haven’t seen before in young rats. I currently have a pair of 1 year old of biological sisters. We recently moved in February. About a month ago, I noticed that one of the sisters, the larger one, was a bit lazier than usual and less apt to jump up to my hand for a treat. I also noticed sometimes one eye would stay shut, but I thought it was just her quirk. Both girls have had the red eye discharge at various times.

I didn’t think much of it till two days ago when Daisy was noticeably fluffier than her sister (uncleaned), had lots of the red gunk around her eyes, one eye is partially closed all the time, almost fell off my shoulder twice, and was generally lethargic and more snuggly than... ever. She’s even happy to be carried whereas before they scramble right up to ride on my shoulder. During playtime I was alarmed to see her choking while eating a peanut. I’ve never seen a rat choke and since they have no gag reflex I was scared. Luckily, she worked it out.

Today I noticed her balance is worse. I saw her slide fall off a ledge while trying to hold on with the front paws. She’s having a hard time eating while holding treats in hands. She’s avoiding climbing up to the hammocks. And could not scramble up on top of the igloo for treats. If she were three I would think that she was at the end of life.

At one year old, could this be a pituitary tumor? Or perhaps she had a stroke? Are there other neuro issues common in rats? any insight you can share is greatly appreciated! I read through the threads on treatment options but am more looking for others experience on the diagnosis.

I plan to go in to the vet on Monday. I reached out to the breeder for recs. If you have suggestions on rat savvy vets near St Paul MN please share! Thank you!!!❤❤❤
 

SQ

Senior Member - Vegan for the animals
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central New Brunswick Canada
How is she doing? What did the vet say?

It sounds like it might be an inner ear infection (an anti inflammatory + antibiotics), or a stroke if one side of her body is affected or another neurological issue …. and the treatments for neurological issues are all the same … a steroid such as pred or dex plus an antibiotic such as baytril.
In addition, cabergoline and bromocriptine will help with the most common type of pt

Here is info on pt, including the symptoms …. give her a small piece of food and see if she can hold it in both hands and eat it, also try the wheelbarrow test in the link Health Guide: Pituitary Tumor

 

MN Rat Pack

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Mar 22, 2020
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Minnesota
How is she doing? What did the vet say?

It sounds like it might be an inner ear infection (an anti inflammatory + antibiotics), or a stroke if one side of her body is affected or another neurological issue …. and the treatments for neurological issues are all the same … a steroid such as pred or dex plus an antibiotic such as baytril.
In addition, cabergoline and bromocriptine will help with the most common type of pt

Here is info on pt, including the symptoms …. give her a small piece of food and see if she can hold it in both hands and eat it, also try the wheelbarrow test in the link Health Guide: Pituitary Tumor

Thanks for checking! We're starting with Doxycycline and prednisone. And after that we'll add in cabergoline if no improvements. The vet thinks it is likely PT or neurological. we're going to take the take the conservative route first in case it is an infection!
 

MN Rat Pack

New Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2020
Messages
1
Location
Minnesota
How is she doing? What did the vet say?

It sounds like it might be an inner ear infection (an anti inflammatory + antibiotics), or a stroke if one side of her body is affected or another neurological issue …. and the treatments for neurological issues are all the same … a steroid such as pred or dex plus an antibiotic such as baytril.
In addition, cabergoline and bromocriptine will help with the most common type of pt

Here is info on pt, including the symptoms …. give her a small piece of food and see if she can hold it in both hands and eat it, also try the wheelbarrow test in the link Health Guide: Pituitary Tumor

How many days or doses should I wait to see if the cabergoline is going to work? I'm currently doing the half a pill every 3 days as recommended on the rat guide site.
 

lilspaz68

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Toronto, Canada, Earth
At a year old it's very unlikely to be PT. Stroke is a slight possibility but inner ear infection is most likely and the first thing I would treat. The prednisone is good for short term with this infection but if given more than a week you will need to carefully taper off the dose to take her off it. Doxycycline alone is unlikely to cure an inner ear infection though. You'll need baytril or azithromycin to add to the doxy for that. Inner ear infection causes pain, dizziness, sickness all symptoms you are seeing. It's often related to mycoplasmosis so is relatively common to see in younger rats. Watch for a slight head tilt a d you may want to carefully sniff over the ears (,go from one ear to the other trying to smell infection).
 

Jacksapp

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Oct 20, 2019
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0
Location
Indiana
How many days or doses should I wait to see if the cabergoline is going to work? I'm currently doing the half a pill every 3 days as recommended on the rat guide site.
I just recently gave my tokyo that and it was within the first couple days I cld see her be more responsive. It made her not wanna eat tho so i wld be getting some ensure or something
 

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