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My rat sleeps a lot and I don't know if it's a sign of sickness!

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Ravien715

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Sep 30, 2020
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8
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London
My older rat who I just recently introduced to his much younger fellows has been acting strange lately. He lost his cagemate over a week ago, but hasn't been with another rat for nearly three weeks as of today, until I started gradually leave him out with new boys.

He's sleeping a lot, he didn't stop eating or drinking but I have noticed that he doesn't get up as often to do it. I am worried that the fact he was alone for so long (his cagemate was hospitalised for four days before we were faced with hard decision to let him go, and I purchased two new rats over eleven days ago) has left him feeling under the weather and he might be ill. Is it worth getting a vet appointment to have him checked? Or should I let him spend some time with his new cagemates and see if he gets better?
 

Big Schpog

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British Columbia
Check his breathing sounds to make sure there's no respiratory things going on. If you have a scale, weigh him every day and keep track. Don't get too anxious unless you see absolute signs of sickness. Puffed fur, no appetite, no drinking water, etc. If you have the money to give him a check up then go for it. It's always best to go to the vet if you can.

How old is he?

Rats get depressed. My female rat who lost her sister at 9 months old, got VERY depressed and slept a lot and I could swear I could feel her crying and you could clearly see she was depressed. I got babies for her and she perked up, mainly by being territorial and huffing and puffing at the babies, who were in their cage, while she was free roam. It took SIX weeks to integrate them successfully.

How is he with the babies?

Give him lots of special attention and get him integrated with the babies. Can you show us some videos or images?
 

Ravien715

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Sep 30, 2020
Messages
8
Location
London
He is 15months old, whereas the boys are nine weeks. He's an absolute angel with them, of course there was a lot of sniffing at the start, and forced grooming, today was the first time I let them together in the same cage and they have been sleeping bundled up together the entire afternoon, I even managed to introduce some stuff into the smaller cage where they are now and none of the got territorial. There are no signs of respiratory tract infection, he was checked by a vet last week and everything was fine. He lost a little weight but that's because he actually has to by vets advice (not overfed, just quite lazy by nature). I do give him a lot of attention, and I mean A LOT - he sometimes sits half of the day with me in bed with the occasional break for potty and drink which he actually asks me for! I will try to take some videos tomorrow. I do have some pictures with little babies, I am sorry for the godawful quality but my phone camera can't catch focus when I try to take picture through the bars.
 

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Big Schpog

Well-Known Member
Joined
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Messages
255
Location
British Columbia
He is 15months old, whereas the boys are nine weeks. He's an absolute angel with them, of course there was a lot of sniffing at the start, and forced grooming, today was the first time I let them together in the same cage and they have been sleeping bundled up together the entire afternoon, I even managed to introduce some stuff into the smaller cage where they are now and none of the got territorial. There are no signs of respiratory tract infection, he was checked by a vet last week and everything was fine. He lost a little weight but that's because he actually has to by vets advice (not overfed, just quite lazy by nature). I do give him a lot of attention, and I mean A LOT - he sometimes sits half of the day with me in bed with the occasional break for potty and drink which he actually asks me for! I will try to take some videos tomorrow. I do have some pictures with little babies, I am sorry for the godawful quality but my phone camera can't catch focus when I try to take picture through the bars.
Awwww. Look at them. I'm so glad they're integrated. But you are still worried about his health?
 

Ravien715

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Joined
Sep 30, 2020
Messages
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Location
London
Yeah, I booked an appointment with my usual vet for tomorrow morning. As cruel as it sounds I hope the sleepiness comes from the fact that up until yesterday he had been alone in the cage since his cagemate was hospitalised. Of course he has been sitting in bed with me large portions of the day whenever he could, but I haven't started properly letting little ones out with him until end of previous week. Perhaps loneliness and the fact that his cagemate is never coming back has hit him and he just doesn't want to do much. He's still eating and drinking as normal, just sleeping so much.
 

Big Schpog

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Joined
Jul 8, 2020
Messages
255
Location
British Columbia
Yeah, I booked an appointment with my usual vet for tomorrow morning. As cruel as it sounds I hope the sleepiness comes from the fact that up until yesterday he had been alone in the cage since his cagemate was hospitalised. Of course he has been sitting in bed with me large portions of the day whenever he could, but I haven't started properly letting little ones out with him until end of previous week. Perhaps loneliness and the fact that his cagemate is never coming back has hit him and he just doesn't want to do much. He's still eating and drinking as normal, just sleeping so much.
That sounds like depression to me but if you have the cash to see the vet, it's always best to have him checked out.
 

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