Old rat with dry skin can't groom himself?

Discussion in 'Health & General Care' started by glitchiq, Dec 27, 2017.

Help Support Rat Shack Forum by donating:

  1. Dec 27, 2017 #1

    glitchiq

    glitchiq

    glitchiq

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2016
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    68
    Location:
    Boston
    My old PEW, Mario, isn't getting around as well as he used to. Because of this, he can't reach all the way back to get at his upper back, around his shoulder blades. He also has a problem with dry skin. I was informed of this by the place I adopted him from a couple years ago. Usually, this would be easily remedied with a little bit of coconut oil. I smear it on him, it moisturizes his skin, and he or his brother grooms it out. However, because he can't reach back there, and his brother passed away a few months ago, the coconut oil, while it seems to have done its job, has built up. He can't groom it out.

    So, I went in there with a warm, damp washcloth to press against him and an infant hairbrush to try and help him with his grooming difficulties. He worms away as quickly as he can at his age, I think because I'm hurting him no matter how gentle I am. Because of his dryness, his skin back there will get irritated and even bleed a little bit. I don't know how to help him, but I want to make him comfortable. Any suggestions?
     
  2. Jan 18, 2018 #2

    glitchiq

    glitchiq

    glitchiq

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2016
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    68
    Location:
    Boston
    I thought I would update this in case anyone has a similar problem in the future.

    I let him and his skin alone for a few days, and it healed and started scabbing off. Most of his fur in that spot came off too, but it was probably fur that he would have groomed out anyways if he could have. It's coming back in short and fuzzy, and a teeny bit of coconut oil every so often seems to be helping. I would make sure to use raw coconut oil (comes in a jar as a solid that quickly melts when rubbed between you fingers) as opposed to refined oil (already liquid in the bottle). I don't know what it is, but the raw is just fine on him while the refined seems to irritate him further? Just what I've noticed.
     
  3. Jan 18, 2018 #3

    jorats

    jorats

    jorats

    Not So Much Staff Member Admin

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2007
    Messages:
    45,173
    Likes Received:
    2,129
    Location:
    Northeastern Ontario
    How did I miss this post? Sorry about that!
    This is actually common in older males especially. Have you tried making him lick the coconut oil? Ingesting it? Coconut oil is very good for skin. There are refined coconut oil in solid state but it's true that raw coconut oil is the best...or even coconut manna. (butter)

    View attachment CubClub.zip
     
  4. Jan 19, 2018 #4

    glitchiq

    glitchiq

    glitchiq

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2016
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    68
    Location:
    Boston
    No problem! I know everyone is busy. It's comforting to know that it's normal though, and not just a product of his dermatitis. I'm away at college, but I'll see if someone would get him to try it. He loves treats, so I'm sure he'd go for it!

    bc3a3be0-9130-43fb-a548-9de3ad32c74d.jpeg
     
    jorats and SQ like this.

Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page

Group Builder