Old rat with open cyst/abscess?...Need Advice

Discussion in 'Health & General Care' started by Rattimus, May 17, 2018.

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  1. May 17, 2018 #1

    Rattimus

    Rattimus

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    So my rat is getting old, maybe has a week left to live. I took him to the vet a few days ago, he got antibiotics and pain meds, as well as wound care for a cyst he has on his belly. The problem with the cyst is that the original scab has fallen off and now it is wide open showing his abdominal wall. There is no bleeding but I still think it needs to be closed. I know it needs to be partially open to drain, but I dont think this one will close on its own. I was wondering if it would be a good idea to maybe get some skin glue and try to close it at least half-way to just encourage the skin to heal closed? I will be calling my vet later but I would really appreciate anyone advice on here! thank you!
     
  2. May 17, 2018 #2

    Luna&Ralph

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    It sounds like you’re dealing with an abscess, which has its own little pouch so don’t worry about it closing, it will close on it’s own very soon. If the abscess still has puss in it, be sure to clean it out by spraying some saline into the area with a syringe, or you could use 1 part iodine to 5 parts water, or 1 part hydrogen peroxide to 10 parts water. You can put antibiotic ointment in the area to help it heal, but don’t put it on or close to the skin. You want it to heal from the inside out rather than the skin closing over the hole.
    Why do you think he only has another week to live? Is he showing signs of his organs shutting down?
     
  3. May 17, 2018 #3

    Rattimus

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    Thanks for the reply thats very helpful! I have been cleaning it 3x a day like the vet instructed.
    I believe he doesnt have much time left, he can barely walk, i think it could be hind leg degeneration or a tumor but he isnt walking much with the back legs. His personality is still there, hes still eating and drinking which im happy about. But hes very lethargic, breathing heavy, and can barely walk. I am considering putting him down to end his misery. I just want to finish the antibiotics first to see if he will get any better. It all came on very suddenly,a little limp turned into completely loss of his hind legs within just a matter of days. The vet says he doesnt have a great quality of life and he doesnt see it getting much better.
     
  4. May 18, 2018 #4

    Luna&Ralph

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    Poor little guy. I don’t know a ton about hind leg degeneration except I think that one of my rats got it not long before her pituitary tumor. Hopefully someone with more knowledge about your guy’s symptoms will be able to offer you some advice on that. In terms of quality of life, I suppose it’s better to put an animal to sleep before they decline further, but I always hold out hope that they’ll get better until I’m positive it’s no longer possible. I hope that your little one starts to improve very soon! How old is he? Is he taking anything for pain?
     
  5. May 18, 2018 #5

    lilspaz68

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    HED or hind end degeneration is not usually painful and some elderly rats will get it but its not a death sentence. How old is your boy? do you want to post a pic of his abscess? I'm wondering if its a preputial gland abscess which aren't uncommon with boys.
     
  6. May 18, 2018 #6

    Fidget

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    I've had a few old boys with hind end degeneration. It's progressive but it's certainly not a death sentence, it will come down to quality of life, depending on how much you can help him.
    I was lucky in that I'm home all the time, so even when it was so advanced they couldn't even move out of wet bedding I was able to keep them dry. You can help him by making all his needs ground-floor accessible, maybe hanging a hammock very low to the ground if he likes them and is still able to get in (or help him get in if you can watch and help him when he wants down), and having him out often for a change of scenery & interaction..
    I had great success with glucosamine/chondroitin for 1 boy, it turned back time for him for a while, but didn't really help the others. It's an expense if it doesn't help him, but f you take it give it a try, or if you know someone who takes it then ask for a couple pills to try it, there's a lot of doses in 1 pill..
     
  7. May 18, 2018 #7

    Rattimus

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    This is his belly right now. In real life it doesnt look dirty like in this picture, I saw it and double checked him then cleaned him again just in case. Kinda hard to keep it perfectly clean when its right next to where he pee's but im trying my best.
     

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  8. May 19, 2018 #8

    Rattimus

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    Update : his cyst heals better and better each day. Its now starting to close and looks a lot better. Thank you all for the help! The antibiotics seem to be helping too, he looks like hes getting a little better.
     
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  9. May 19, 2018 #9

    Luna&Ralph

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    Great to hear!
     

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