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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I would really like this to be a support-only thread. Please keep any hurtful comments to yourself as I am already heartbroken about this.

My girl, Carl developed a mammary tumor when she was 18 months old. When I first got my girls I made the decision right then that I wouldn't pay hundreds of dollars for surgeries to remove tumors should they get them. I am a college student and its just not financially conceivable for me to do that. My previous rats both grew multiple tumors before their deaths and I just couldn't justify a $600 surgery when a new tumor could easily pop up just weeks later. I've already spent hundreds of dollars on Carl's sisters vet visits for persistent URIs and mites. Everyone not on this forum thinks I'm nuts ;)

I wasn't expecting Carl to get one so soon though. Its now grown quite huge. Larger than a golfball but smaller than a tennis ball. She still seems so happy, she runs and jumps and is quite active considering this tumor on her chest drags on the ground when she walks.

I know that pretty she won't be able to live with this condition anymore, and I've promised myself and her that as soon as I see her quality of life going away I will have her put to sleep. I've shed so many tears over this situation.

I just was hoping there were others out there who have gone through the same process that I have and could share some of their experiences.
 

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Each person who goes through this has to make their own decision on it. Whatever you decide with love in your heart and the happiness of your rat in mind is the right decision for you and your situation. At her age I probably wouldn't put her through all the stress of a surgery either.
 

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I completely understand. My current oldest rat has a rather large tumor that started when she was 2 yrs old. She is now almost 3 and while the tumor is large, she gets around just fine. When she can't, I will take her to the vet to be PTS.

To me, the stress on my girl wasn't worth it. The money spent for her to maybe make it out of surgery and to maybe live another few months without a tumor wasnt worth it. To each their own. Our rats are happy right in this moment.
 

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We've lost 3 rats to mammary tumors, including the one and only Fuzzy Rat... She had at least 11 tumors when she passed away. They were literally growing on each other.... no surgery would have helped, Max went the same way. Amelia only grew one huge tumor and surgery "might have" helped, but how do you know in advance?

It's a tough call, but sometimes it's the right one. Rats live fast and die young, in the end it's a fact we can't change.

I'm sorry to hear about Carl.

Best luck.
 

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One of my girls is going through something similar right now. I had the really big one removed but I'm not going to do surgery again because it put so much stress on her and I don't know if she could survive another one. I hope that you and your girl enjoy many more months together before she starts to get uncomfortable.
 

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I never gone though this with rats so far...... but i have lost my cat due to kidney faliure so i no its not easy. I really feel for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hey guys,
thanks for all the support. For the last few days Carl's tumor has been big enough to drag on the ground when she walks. Today I noticed that all her hair has rubbed off on the bottom. I'm sure she will develop a sore there in the next few days. She still seems happy and mobile but I'm really afraid of what is going to happen in the next week or so. Part of me wants to have her PTS before anything gorey or awful happens but I'm also afraid if I do that I will always wonder how much time she "could" have had. Ugh. I didn't realize this would be so hard, or happen so fast.
 

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You have to follow your heart on this one. Nobody is going to think you are a bad person. On another note... I am floored by the price of the surgery. Mine only charges $150.
 
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