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New Member
Nov 10, 2019
My neutered boy, Digger, has developed an increasing number of small scabs around his neck, face, and parts of his back. While Smee, my other neutered male, gets them occasionally, his case is not as severe as Digger. I also have three unaltered females, with one being a young hairless, who do not showcase any of the same symptoms. I first noticed the scabs directly after the boys’ neuter, while I was at the vet for their post checkup. They acquired an infection from a botched, shoddy surgery, and the reason for my visit was to pickup a prescription. I quickly questioned the vet about the scabs, but he simply brushed it off and said it was normal, with no further reasoning beyond that.

It has been a few months since then, and the scabs that keep appearing are anything but ’normal’. I will not be returning to the same vet after what I believe is poor practice, and now I am cautious about any other self-proclaimed exotic animal savvy vets where I live.

My question is: Does this look like a case of mites to you? I just gave everyone a bath in dawn soap earlier, as I have heard it helps to kill parasites. I’ve used it to treat flea-infested foster kittens with much success in the past. If it is mites, is Ivermectin an appropriate solution? I would really like to avoid the vet on this one due to reasons mentioned above, but if the matter continues to worsen I will, of course, hold his health priority. Thank you for the help!



Well-Known Member
Nov 13, 2018
I'd contact the vet, and insist on a prescription for kitten revolution. You should have enough to dose each rat at the same time. It only takes a tiny drop, and works super fast. But you'll need to treat each one, and freeze, or wash their bedding in super hot water. Also I'd freeze any wooden toys for a few days, and wash all plastic with hot, soapy water. If you are using bedding, you can freeze it in gallon ziploc bags for a few days when you get it. 😁


Staff member
Jul 21, 2007
Toronto, Canada, Earth
I'll expand on what Dena has said. As long as these are scabs and not lesions that are growing you probably have a simple case of mites going on.
I have linked an article I have created with pics of mites so you can compare...

Mites are naturally on a rat but can flareup when the immune system is stressed (sickness, surgery, exposure to an infested rat or bedding). If you use paper or wood based beddings you can freeze them for 48 hours to kill off stowaways before using.

As for treatment, Ivermectin is not ideal as it has to be dosed very carefully, once a week for 3 weeks with intensive cleaning after each dose.
Revolution (selamectin) is safer, faster, and easier all around for treating for ectoparasites. If you cannot get a leftover tube from a friend with cats or dogs, or your vet won't sell it to you, you can order online from Australia, which is how they get around the no-prescription rule. I use Pets Megastore to get mine, and it arrives within 10-14 days usually.
Depending on how many rats you have Puppy/Kitten will probably do just fine.

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