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Falstaff
Apr 27, 2008

I have a kind of alacrity in sinking.



Yeah, some rats take to wheels, some don't. Really comes down to the individual rat and their personality.

If you do get a wheel though, make sure it's rat-sized (12"), and try to avoid the style with cross-bars. You want solid surfaces to avoid the possibility of sprained feet.

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sleppy
Dec 25, 2008



I got a wheel from the start, but looking back I would have been able to guess correctly which ones would/wouldn't use it. Only one of my three did at all, but boy did Basketballz love that wheel. It was 100% the most annoying thing any of my rats did, but only because of sound. She went through some random upright one that was loud and rickety, a flying saucer that seemed to work well enough but then came apart in an unfixable way, and then I finally settled on the silent runner. If any of your rats seem to have that extra energy, I would recommend it.

gyrf
Aug 14, 2010


I have a 20+ year old 12" Wodent Wheel that I bought with my first Martinsís Cage thatís seen about 50 rats in its life. Itís a little chewed up in spots but still silent. Maybe 1 in 3 of my rats have used it, but the ones who did used it a lot. Usually enough to get wheelie tail.

Apparently they still make them here.

Also, Martinís Cages are great and will last forever. I have a Cabin and a Skyscraper. Line the shelves and bottom with fleece, clip it in with small binder clips.

(There should be photo tax here of the current wheel-user but sheís in Chicago and Iím currently on vacation in Honolulu. This will have to do for now, sheís the one on the right.)

Mushika
Dec 22, 2010



Grimey Drawer

What is "wheelie tail" if you don't mind me asking?

Jack Trades
Nov 30, 2010







I love these two.

Mushika posted:

What is "wheelie tail" if you don't mind me asking?

Rats get a "curled" tail if they run in a small wheel for too long. Something like this:

Jack Trades fucked around with this message at 15:24 on Mar 16, 2020

Mushika
Dec 22, 2010



Grimey Drawer

Jack Trades posted:





I love these two.


Rats get a "curled" tail if they run in a small wheel for too long. Something like this:


Ah, I see. That makes sense. I never tried a wheel with any of mine.

Also, ERMAGERD adorable!

snoo
Jul 5, 2007









-Zydeco-
Nov 12, 2007




I got two rats last Thursday and I'm terrified I'm doing things wrong. I just cleaned their cage top to bottom and changed all the cloth on the cage surfaces and hides. Now one of the two is making like a soft warbling kind of squeak fairly continuously. I understand rats are supposed to be silent. Is this a normal thing?

Falstaff
Apr 27, 2008

I have a kind of alacrity in sinking.



A healthy rat shouldn't make any sounds when breathing, but you almost certainly didn't do anything wrong. Rats have very fragile respiratory systems, and changes to the environment (kicking up dust, fumes from cleaning agents, whatever), especially when they're young, can provoke sneezing fits or breathing sounds. Most of the time it's not going to be anything worth worrying about unless it persists.

That said, be aware that sounds during breathing are a sign of mycoplasmosis, which is probably the only rat illness more common that tumours. It can be treated with antibiotics, but not cured, and often contributes to the deaths of elderly rats. Keep your eye (ears) on your ratties' breathing problems and note if it persists more than a couple days or if it's a recurrent problem. For now though, don't stress out - it's probably normal.

Jack Trades
Nov 30, 2010



Please enjoy this big rat.

Falstaff
Apr 27, 2008

I have a kind of alacrity in sinking.



That is a rat that needs more exercise.

redcheval
Dec 26, 2009

That's a little better.



I need a gut check on what to do about one of my rats

I noticed Chanterelle had rapid weight loss a couple weeks ago, which was odd because she was always the chunkier one. She wasn't having any visible signs of respiratory stress, but Portobello was starting to breathe really noisily, so the vet put both of them on antibiotics to treat a respiratory infection. Bello is now back to her old self, energetic and healthy, but Chanterelle has just gotten worse and worse over time. Some days she will have a bit of a bounce back and come out of the cage on her own, or appear to be eating somewhat normally, but she's super lethargic and sometimes appears like she really WANTS to eat, but just isn't for some reason (grabbing food excitedly/licking, but only eating a few bites). But she also refuses to take most food and treats she used to be excited about.

She also has now twice had little episodes of a thick mucus-like substance coming from her mouth, and gagging/choking, which I have never seen before in almost a decade of rat ownership. They passed after a while but were super scary to see and I booked it to the vet the first time I noticed it. In the past couple days she's been fairly limp, like all her energy is just gone.

She's about 1.5 and I'm a little devastated and the coronavirus situation is making everything harder to process. The vet told me essentially there's not much more she can do, unless I want to get her x-rayed to see if tumors are responsible. She's suffering enough that I really feel like I need to do something, but I'm afraid of jumping the gun on euthanizing her, but it feels like it's at that point... has anyone experienced any of these symptoms before?

Jaded Burnout
Jul 10, 2004




ThreeStep posted:

Any recommendations for a carrier for 2 rats? I have this and when I wasn't looking they chewed a decent-sized hole in the mesh. I was thinking the Living World Hagen carrier, but even the large seems a little small?

I had plenty of luck with buying a small hamster cage and a velcro strap

Jaded Burnout
Jul 10, 2004




redcheval posted:

I need a gut check on what to do about one of my rats

I noticed Chanterelle had rapid weight loss a couple weeks ago, which was odd because she was always the chunkier one. She wasn't having any visible signs of respiratory stress, but Portobello was starting to breathe really noisily, so the vet put both of them on antibiotics to treat a respiratory infection. Bello is now back to her old self, energetic and healthy, but Chanterelle has just gotten worse and worse over time. Some days she will have a bit of a bounce back and come out of the cage on her own, or appear to be eating somewhat normally, but she's super lethargic and sometimes appears like she really WANTS to eat, but just isn't for some reason (grabbing food excitedly/licking, but only eating a few bites). But she also refuses to take most food and treats she used to be excited about.

She also has now twice had little episodes of a thick mucus-like substance coming from her mouth, and gagging/choking, which I have never seen before in almost a decade of rat ownership. They passed after a while but were super scary to see and I booked it to the vet the first time I noticed it. In the past couple days she's been fairly limp, like all her energy is just gone.

She's about 1.5 and I'm a little devastated and the coronavirus situation is making everything harder to process. The vet told me essentially there's not much more she can do, unless I want to get her x-rayed to see if tumors are responsible. She's suffering enough that I really feel like I need to do something, but I'm afraid of jumping the gun on euthanizing her, but it feels like it's at that point... has anyone experienced any of these symptoms before?

The mucus / gagging is how they vomit. They can't vomit like we do, so if they can't swallow something they do that. It's very distressing for them and us but all you can really do is wait.

Given she won't eat much, is getting stuff stuck, and is losing weight, sure sounds like some kind of issue with swallowing or similar, but that's about as far as I'd be willing to speculate.

-Zydeco-
Nov 12, 2007




Falstaff posted:

A healthy rat shouldn't make any sounds when breathing, but you almost certainly didn't do anything wrong. Rats have very fragile respiratory systems, and changes to the environment (kicking up dust, fumes from cleaning agents, whatever), especially when they're young, can provoke sneezing fits or breathing sounds. Most of the time it's not going to be anything worth worrying about unless it persists.

That said, be aware that sounds during breathing are a sign of mycoplasmosis, which is probably the only rat illness more common that tumours. It can be treated with antibiotics, but not cured, and often contributes to the deaths of elderly rats. Keep your eye (ears) on your ratties' breathing problems and note if it persists more than a couple days or if it's a recurrent problem. For now though, don't stress out - it's probably normal.

It didn't sound like a breathing noise. It had more of a vocal sound to it if that makes any sense. She stopped after a bit and did it again yesterday when I swapped out one of the towels in the cage and a couple of the things in it.

One of my rats is silent and pretty brave while the one that was making the noise hates and fears everything. I think she may have just been reacting to the changes? Both times have been when I changed the cage around so it seems related.

gyrf
Aug 14, 2010


what are you cleaning the cage with? anything with fumes that could be causing respiratory issues? maybe new litter is a little dusty?

some rats can be more sensitive, especially if they have an underlying myco infection. (and they pretty much always have myco.)

Scholtz
Aug 24, 2007

Zorchin' some Flemoids




My state is shut down, including my vet, and one of my rats has a tumor on her neck.

Falstaff
Apr 27, 2008

I have a kind of alacrity in sinking.



redcheval posted:

I need a gut check on what to do about one of my rats

I noticed Chanterelle had rapid weight loss a couple weeks ago, which was odd because she was always the chunkier one. She wasn't having any visible signs of respiratory stress, but Portobello was starting to breathe really noisily, so the vet put both of them on antibiotics to treat a respiratory infection. Bello is now back to her old self, energetic and healthy, but Chanterelle has just gotten worse and worse over time. Some days she will have a bit of a bounce back and come out of the cage on her own, or appear to be eating somewhat normally, but she's super lethargic and sometimes appears like she really WANTS to eat, but just isn't for some reason (grabbing food excitedly/licking, but only eating a few bites). But she also refuses to take most food and treats she used to be excited about.

She also has now twice had little episodes of a thick mucus-like substance coming from her mouth, and gagging/choking, which I have never seen before in almost a decade of rat ownership. They passed after a while but were super scary to see and I booked it to the vet the first time I noticed it. In the past couple days she's been fairly limp, like all her energy is just gone.

She's about 1.5 and I'm a little devastated and the coronavirus situation is making everything harder to process. The vet told me essentially there's not much more she can do, unless I want to get her x-rayed to see if tumors are responsible. She's suffering enough that I really feel like I need to do something, but I'm afraid of jumping the gun on euthanizing her, but it feels like it's at that point... has anyone experienced any of these symptoms before?

This is awful and I'm sorry. I've never encountered the mucus/vomit thing - I did have a rat who mysteriously lost weight once, had to have him put down and the post-euthenasia necropsy pointed to likely organ failure but there was no mucus or vomit, just lethargy, weight loss, and lack of eating.

All I can really offer is my sympathy.

redcheval
Dec 26, 2009

That's a little better.



Thanks so much yíall. I consulted the breeder I got her from and she suggested looking into CHF as some of the symptoms overlap with the previously suspected respiratory condition, and I did get some meds for that from the vet, but it doesnít seem like itís helping. And the mucus/vomiting thing does seem to be a total mystery. I suspect for some reason sheís not able to keep solid food down well. Iíve been syringe feeding her baby food for a while and sheíll eat quite a bit of it, but I tried giving her a banana chip last night and she did finally take it, but started gagging pretty hard a few minutes later.

Keeping an eye on her and hoping/wishing I donít have to take her in to be euthanized right now, when I wonít be able to stay with her at the vetís office since the lobbies are closed ó I paid for the new meds over the phone from my car and they handed me the bottle through my car window. But I donít want to keep her in pain. Poor little egg.

E: she passed today in my hands. She started gasping for air uncontrollably and went before I could bring her to the vet. Iím actually scheduled to pick up a pair of new babies from a breeder tomorrow, so I am relieved that Bello wonít be alone for long, but today was so hard

redcheval fucked around with this message at 18:44 on Mar 28, 2020

Prism Mirror Lens
Oct 9, 2012

~*"The most intelligent and meaning-rich film he could think of was Shaun of the Dead, I don't think either brain is going to absorb anything you post."*~






Been giving one of my girls antibiotics for a lump, probable abscess, on her face. Vet told me to just wait until it burst on its own. I was prepared for some gross goo to come out of it. I was NOT expecting the entire hairy lump to just FALL OFF onto me when I picked her up

thehoodie
Feb 8, 2011


We got these two babies because we had to put down one of our other rats and the remaining one needed company.

These two have come up with an, uh, interesting way to drink:


That's Ratilda on top and Canoodle on bottom.

Also totally adorable how Ratilda looks like she is nursing a mean hangover.

Jaded Burnout
Jul 10, 2004




thehoodie posted:

We got these two babies because we had to put down one of our other rats and the remaining one needed company.

These two have come up with an, uh, interesting way to drink:


That's Ratilda on top and Canoodle on bottom.

Also totally adorable how Ratilda looks like she is nursing a mean hangover.

Adorbs.

God I miss my rats.

Jack Trades
Nov 30, 2010



I love these two idiots.

Jaded Burnout
Jul 10, 2004




I think if I got new ones I'd need to

1. Rethink their housing so it's easier to clean, more modular, and more portable
2. Work from the start to make them more travel friendly, at least around the house, while still keeping their attachment to a home base so escape isn't a concern
3. Stagger their purchase so they don't all reach end of life at the same time, and basically assume I'll be taking on new ones forever
4. Put aside ~£1000/rat for end of life heathcare
5. Find a couple of reliable pet sitters who can stop by when I'm away, and/or some solution for automatic food/water/toilet refills

Jack Trades
Nov 30, 2010



One of my boys' fur is rusting for some reason, he used to be pure black and now his whole rear end is rusty brown and he's only like, 6 months old.
Both of my boys are total weirdo rats.

thehoodie
Feb 8, 2011


Jack Trades posted:

One of my boys' fur is rusting for some reason, he used to be pure black and now his whole rear end is rusty brown and he's only like, 6 months old.
Both of my boys are total weirdo rats.

He should try wiping

Falstaff
Apr 27, 2008

I have a kind of alacrity in sinking.



It's world rat day today! And I am still, sadly, ratless... I miss my little goofballs a lot in these days of self-isolation.

As a World Rat Day thing, could those of you privileged enough to have rats share some pics with those of us who are ratless, like me? From each, according to ability, etc...

Jaded Burnout
Jul 10, 2004




Falstaff posted:

It's world rat day today! And I am still, sadly, ratless... I miss my little goofballs a lot in these days of self-isolation.

Yeah. I'm strongly considering putting some plans in place for new critters.

snoo
Jul 5, 2007








Falstaff posted:

It's world rat day today! And I am still, sadly, ratless... I miss my little goofballs a lot in these days of self-isolation.

As a World Rat Day thing, could those of you privileged enough to have rats share some pics with those of us who are ratless, like me? From each, according to ability, etc...







and god I miss our first pair so much

ThreeStep
Nov 5, 2009


Falstaff posted:

It's world rat day today! And I am still, sadly, ratless... I miss my little goofballs a lot in these days of self-isolation.

As a World Rat Day thing, could those of you privileged enough to have rats share some pics with those of us who are ratless, like me? From each, according to ability, etc...


This is Truffle. She loves climbing up my sleeve and getting fed. Looks grumpy most the time.


And this is Snorkel. She's a sneaky jerk who likes stealing treats when I'm not looking. Does not like being photographed.

Falstaff
Apr 27, 2008

I have a kind of alacrity in sinking.



Thanks, folks. Your pictures brought smiles to my face.

Animal-Mother
Feb 14, 2012

RABBIT RABBIT
RABBIT RABBIT

snoo
Jul 5, 2007








👀

Jack Trades
Nov 30, 2010










Boys doing an explore for the first time.



Having a monch on the grass, twigs and a shoe.

EDIT: Also in the last picture you can see my weirdo rat with his weirdo fur. He was completely coal black when he was a baby, and now he's not only silvered but some of his fur is starting to rust even though he's not even a year old, I don't know what's up with that. Weirdo rats.

Jack Trades fucked around with this message at 14:33 on Apr 7, 2020

Chin Strap
Nov 24, 2002

I failed my TFLC Toxx, but I no longer need a double chin strap

Pillbug

God I couldn't trust my girls like that. I feel like they'd just bolt. And we've socialized them pretty well.

Jaded Burnout
Jul 10, 2004




Chin Strap posted:

God I couldn't trust my girls like that. I feel like they'd just bolt. And we've socialized them pretty well.

Part of my thinking for any future rats is to have part of their home portable, so when they're taken to a new environment they still have their safe place to run to, rather than running randomly.

I left the cage doors open for mine for a year and never had a problem, because why would they leave their home?

snoo
Jul 5, 2007








we have a small dog kennel that we use for transporting them to rat floor time (from the bedroom to the living room) and they get excited and jump into it when we make the squeaky door noise

we also use it for vet trips

so they're used to it and consider it as comfortable as the cage in terms of safety

Scholtz
Aug 24, 2007

Zorchin' some Flemoids




a month late to Tiger King memes, but,


When your rats start nearing 2 years old:

Falstaff
Apr 27, 2008

I have a kind of alacrity in sinking.



Scholtz posted:

When your rats start nearing 2 years old:


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Jack Trades
Nov 30, 2010





Never forget.

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