Rats getting sick or just grieving?

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Renee

New Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2019
Messages
2
Location
Texas
I recently lost a rat, Janny, to some sort of respiratory issue. From my own research, I think it was pneumonia, but I'm not a vet. She has struggled with respiratory issues ever since I got her. They'd go away but normally came back.

Anyways, I showed my other 5 girls her body so they could know. (they hadn't seen her in days because I was keeping her in a separate room). My two older girls Daya and Marlene definitely realized she was gone, and my younger 3 didn't really understand / notice?
This was on March 24th.

Recently, I think one of my younger girls, Mabel, picked up whatever illness Janny had because I was starting to see symptoms.
Symptoms weren't getting better or worse so I decided to put her on antibiotics just in case.

The other 2 young girls seem perfectly okay, but Marlene and Daya have porphyrin. Marlene is sneezing it out, and Daya has it around her eyes and isn't sneezing.
I can't tell if they're just sad and stressed and miss Janny, or if they're getting sick. It was really sad to watch Daya and Marlene sniff around the last thing that smelled like Janny, my sweatshirt.

Thanks for any help! I know I post a lot, lol
 

Renee

New Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2019
Messages
2
Location
Texas
Also, Marlene normally is a heavy sleeper and doesn't get up if I come to the cage in the middle of the day (she hates being woken up!) but after Janny passed, Marlene would jump up and come to me. I think she was looking to see if I still had Janny. Daya on the other hand has been acting pretty normal aside from the porphyrin.
 

SQ

Senior Member - Vegan for the animals
Joined
Jul 21, 2007
Messages
17,037
Location
central New Brunswick Canada
I am very sorry that Janny died.
You knew that you loved her and you did your best to give her the medical care she needed.
I am very sorry for your loss.

How old is Mabel? Is this the first time she has been ill?
What symptoms does Mabel have?
Is she still eating and dinking and maintaining her weight?
What does she sound like when you hold her up to your ear and listen to both sides of her chest?
Is she working hard to breath?
When did she become ill and how fast has she gotten ill?
What antibiotics is she taking, the dose + frequency of each, the strength of each medication (mg/ml) and how much does Mabel weigh?
How long has Mabel been on the antibiotics?
Can you post a video?

Keep a close eye on Marlene and Daya.
The porphyrin could be from stress, something in the environment irritating them, or they could be ill.
Are there any other symptoms or changes in behaviour?

Please post on the facebook group, Real Rat Lovers Want to Know.
Lilspaz68 (Shelagh ) is a medical contributor on there too.
btw ratguide.com is a vet approved medical site for rat owners where you can look up info and also share it with your vet
 

Renee

New Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2019
Messages
2
Location
Texas
I am very sorry that Janny died.
You knew that you loved her and you did your best to give her the medical care she needed.
I am very sorry for your loss.

How old is Mabel? Is this the first time she has been ill?
What symptoms does Mabel have?
Is she still eating and dinking and maintaining her weight?
What does she sound like when you hold her up to your ear and listen to both sides of her chest?
Is she working hard to breath?
When did she become ill and how fast has she gotten ill?
What antibiotics is she taking, the dose + frequency of each, the strength of each medication (mg/ml) and how much does Mabel weigh?
How long has Mabel been on the antibiotics?
Can you post a video?

Keep a close eye on Marlene and Daya.
The porphyrin could be from stress, something in the environment irritating them, or they could be ill.
Are there any other symptoms or changes in behaviour?

Please post on the facebook group, Real Rat Lovers Want to Know.
Lilspaz68 (Shelagh ) is a medical contributor on there too.
btw ratguide.com is a vet approved medical site for rat owners where you can look up info and also share it with your vet
Thank you,
Mabel hasn't gotten better or worse. I had lilspaz help me with dosing her properly :)
The only symptom that Mabel has is grunting noises coming from her sides.
She's really young (maybe 1 year) and this is the first time she's ever had issues. She hasn't had any change in weight that I've noticed, however sometimes when I give everyone snacks, she hides hers and comes back for more, but never eats the snack I give her. I was thinking this may be something with her teeth? Her bottom two seem to fork slightly. But this isn't always the case, sometimes if I give her another snack she will eat it. Maybe she just isn't hungry? This doesn't seem to be a dangerous issue yet anyways, because in general she is still eating and drinking and is at a healthy weight. I think she just doesn't like the snacks I give (pretzels and uncooked pasta), because she will happily take veggies.

Anyways, she weighs 320 grams and aside from the grunting there aren't many other symptoms. I have, however, noticed her scratching her sides slowly sometimes? It not frequently but at least once or twice a day. I checked the area for scabs or cuts, and all I saw was a little bump but I think it was just a nipple (lol). Pressure didn't bother her and I didn't feel any lumps or anything abnormal.

Daya and Marlene aren't showing any symptoms or changes in behavior, just the porphyrin. I didn't see any porphyrin on them yesterday or today. Texas is having insane weather shifts so one day I have my AC on because its 32°C outside, and the next day we put our heater on because its 0°C outside, maybe it's the temperature shift.

I think that Mabel's illness came out of nowhere, as it started as grunting noises and that's all it's been since. I was planning on waiting for more symptoms to show up before I put her on antibiotics, but no new symptoms showed up and I didn't like those grunting noises. She doesn't seem like she's having any trouble breathing.

I was recording Marlene eating a snack when I first noticed she had porphyrin: 20200331_192838.mp4
You can see the porphyrin at the end.
Btw, I moved their cage so I could vacuum. They aren't normally kept in front of the big window with the sun.

I don't have any videos of when Daya had porphyrin and it seems to be gone now. Daya's weight is a little on the heavier side though and maybe that is affecting her. I also noticed that her fur isn't shiny, it looks a little rough, but it has been this way ever since she got her URI months ago (which has since been treated and is now gone)

Mabels sounds aren't loud enough to catch on camera but here is a video of her, you can see her general health looks really good: 20200404_023747.mp4

Ps. I put Mabel on antibiotics March 27th,
The bottle says "Baytril 10mg/ml, doxycycline 5mg/ml. 6- la bayril with 3- 100mg minocycline plus 54 strawberry"
Then, at the bottom, it says "Baytril Injectable: 100mg/ml"
And lilspaz told me .34ml twice a day.

I would also like to say that I do keep my cage clean, I don't use harsh chemicals (or any chemicals), and I don't spray perfumes or anything around them. I believe that my rats frequently get respiratory issues because they all came from a petstore (ugh, I know), aside from Marlene, who came from the DFW Rat Rescue. Petstores are not my first choice, ever. I hate buying from there, but sometimes I show up for supplies and fall in love with one. My guess is that one or all of them had mycoplasma and now it's just been circulating.
 

Renee

New Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2019
Messages
2
Location
Texas
I have an idea, might be dumb, but I'll throw it out there.
I got a hold of a nebulizer for Janny, but she was only able to use it twice before she passed.
Would it be of any benefit to group nebulize?
My vet gave me Baytril for Janny and I have plenty left.
 

lilspaz68

Administrator
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Messages
23,086
Location
Toronto, Canada, Earth
When Mabel scratches her sides is it really high up? This actually can be a sign of dominance. Since you list your other rat the pecking order has been disrupted and she might be claiming the top spot.
The grunting, do you hear it near her or only when she's on you?
 

Renee

New Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2019
Messages
2
Location
Texas
Janny wasn't the top spot, if anything she was the most submissive of all of my girls. :(
The scratching seems to be on the middle of her side.
I can only hear the grunting when I put her sides up to my ear, it isn't load enough otherwise.
 

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