Medicating VERY small rats?
So I dont know if my two new boys have 'new homes sniffles' or what but I'm taking them into the vet now just in case. I've just got no idea how I'm going to get them to take the meds, I'm worried if i restrain them they could get hurt. But they're so small mixing it with something wont work well because they wont finish the whole portion. They're around 4 weeks old is my guess from their size. Has anyone ever had to medicate babies so small? I've never owned rats this young.
I would recommend joining this facebook group as it has medical experts who can help.
Just make sure to follow their rules exactly.
Many meds HAVE to be mixed with something. If going to the vet they will give you the precise amount to give, it is all given by weight.
I've given meds by just mixing it up and putting the tiniest bit on a plate for them to lick up. if mixing it with something yummy they should easily do just that. The key is to have just the amount they will eat up right then. You would need to do each separate.
How long ago did you get them? Is it just sniffles or any clicking, coughing, type noises?
I dont have facebook for many personal reasons.. Despite the benefit it would add I simply cant make one. :\ I can explain further in PM if you're curious as to why. I promise I'm not being stubborn about it but have legit reasons behind why.
But my vet ended up giving me chicken flavored meds for their water that i have to mix per ML. I told him I wasn't sure if they'd be put off by it or not cause I've always been iffy on medicating water. But I smelled the meds and it reminded me of chicken soup or chicken baby food so maybe this will work.
I've only had these babies four days now and it's just sniffles/sneezing pretty much constantly. He also told me another reason he picked this medication is because the newer antibiotics like baytril will damage their growing joints...
I've had to medicate babies at about 2 weeks old, so I might be able to offer some input.
Ice cream is your best friend when it comes to getting trouble children to take their medicine. You say youre not having much success mixing the medicine with food, but you have to make sure the portion is small enough for them to easily finish in a minute or so. Just make sure beforehand that it's okay for your ratties to have dairy while on the medication. If not, banana baby food also works great. But still, I have yet to see a rat turn down a dollop of vanilla ice cream.
Often you're giving doses in 0.1mls for babies that small, and fitting even the tiniest syringe into a babys mouth can be a struggle.
I find that most of the time, my rats hate the flavoring the vets put in the medicine. Just mix the drop of medicine with something delicious in a jar or Tupperware lid, or small dish if you have one. Just make sure they eat it all.
If they're really not responding to the most decadent of ice cream, then what I'd do is wrap them in a towel or face cloth like a burrito. Holding them in a towel with their limbs restrained right in front of the shoulders works best for me when it comes to flailing babies.
If you're having problems with the size of the syringe, ask your vet for a couple of insulin needles with the tips broken off. He or she will tell you how to get the correct dosage from there.
Don't know what antibiotics you're using, but just a reminder that anything in the tetracycline family (ie. doxycycline) should not be given with dairy.
Rest well Matilda, Rufus, Oliver, Sebastian, Miles, Leno, Gabby, Ona, Cami, Luna, Blue boy, Fuzzy boy, Benjamin, and Bernard.
Baby food is usually easy to mix medicine into. My boys really love sweet potato, there's also chicken and various other flavors. Just make sure to check the ingredients beforehand. At one point I was mixing medicine with baby food and a high calorie puppy supplement to help one of my guys gain weight.
I've been putting the meds in their water as my vet instructed me, they're almost out and they're not better. I'm likely taking them back in monday. They sound better but they are still obviously sick. I'm going to ask him for something else that I can mix like you guys advised.