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Hi guys, some of you know that i had a rat suspected of megacolon, Nina, who i took to the vet. I was told she seemed healthy and that her abdomen felt normal and so i thought the problem had ended there. Anyway...

Today during free range time i noticed that Nina's stomach look rather round, having being told she didn't have megacolon i though that maybe she wa pregnant and picked her up take a closer look, instead i saw what looked like testicles you;d find on a male rat only small and covered in fur. Upon closer examination i realised it was actually faeces stuck inside of her. I had to put her sister back in their cage and took Nina to my bed where i literally had to feel the poop from outside and gently guide the pieces out one by one. SIX pieces all stuck up there. They seemed normal sized but they were rock hard. The second they were all out Nina seemed to relax, i can't imagine how uncomfortable it was having all that rammed up there! Her stomach seems to have shrunk though it's not completely the same as her sisters and the 'testicle-like' lump is gone now that i've evacuated that area. i

I'm so stressed, i was overjoyed when the vet cleared her and now this! I'm just terrified i'll do something wrong and hurt her. I feel like i need to take her back to the vet (although as a full time student my rat fund seems to be withering away to nothing!) but they got it wrong last time and said if i get another problem they'll charge me £100 to send of samples and to take an x-ray just to tell me what i already know!

I've been speaking with my parents and researching online and natural laxatives, soft foods, watermelon and daily massages seems to be the key here. On my last thread a couple of experienced people gave me a few tips on this problem but i'd so so appreciate a full run down of where to go from here!

Thanks so much for taking the time to read this, i'm freaking out over here!
 

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Oh my god... The EXACT same thing is happening to me over here!!! My Nori has those things that look like testicles, and there is poop in there... she kinda freaks when I try to massage out the poop... :( I don't know what to do either............................. I'm so scared... and broke... :(
 

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Describe all the symptoms you can and I'll try to help. Eventually she'll get used to it and relax. You can try changing her food for now and see if that helps somewhat. Also, get Miralax (NOT another stool softener, as miralax works differently and is not a bulking agent). You can put a pinch or two of the miralax in some slightly watered down baby food and give that to her once a day. It will keep her poops softer and easier to move, and keep the colon a bit more hydrated. Baby food should be her staple food, which is not too cheap.. but be sure to water it down. It will give her extra hydration which is very important, and also stretch the use out a little longer. Depending on how serious her case is, you can also blend your oxbow (or other lab block you may be using) in the blender into dust. Take the kibble powder and soak it in boiling water and let it soak up the water. Then add more water and baby food, and you can stretch it out even further that way. But be sure to change the food at least 3 times a day so it doesn't go bad. If she's really sensitive, you may not be able to use kibble powder, but instead use baby cereal made with rice. My rats like the apple banana flavored one, but plain is just fine too, especially if you're going to mix it with water and baby food.

Cisapride is also a medication you will NEED for her, and it really helps a lot. But it is a little expensive.. you will need a prescription from a vet to get this if you live in the US. Rats are not cheap pets to keep by any means. Especially a special needs rat. :(

That is of course just a very abbreviated few suggestions for now.. You will need to buy supplies for giving enemas as well since she likely will need them in the future. My Charlie and Mouse both have megacolon. Charlie needs an enema almost every 2 days now, but Mouse hasn't needed one for a few months. I hope Nori ends up being like Mouse and her case isn't too bad! Just the Cisapride, some special baby food, miralax, and squeezing poop out that's stuck just barely inside (like how it sounds Nori has) is enough for her 90% of the time. I hope Nori will do well!

I've been meaning to type up a final version of my "megacolon care" that I use for Charlie and Mouse, but I've been so super busy lately... I hope I'll have time to get it finished up soon. Please message me if you have more questions and I'll try to help. Definitely for now, change her food, and get that prescription. Most vets have never even heard of megacolon in rats, mainly because most vets know hardly anything about rats and because most rats die after a couple weeks old who have megacolon, so you may need to do some convincing and show him/her some articles about it online. That was enough for the Vet I'm using now who supplies me with the prescription.

ratguide.com/health/digestive/megacolon.php
 

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Thank you!! Yes, even though I am broke, I love these babies and so I will sacrifice for them... the baby food and medicine I should be able to afford, but the problem is that there are pretty much NO vets in the area that know about anything about rats..... They aren't even qualified/knowledgeable enough to do spays usually... :S There is one vet that MiGHT be willing to listen about nori, and MIGHT be willing to prescribe it... but it will take a lot of me showing her data and convincing, sigh... transportation is also an issue, so I'd have to taxi there, will is another 50$ on top of the 40$ visit.... GUHHH THESE ADORABLE BABIES ARE BREAKING THE BANK! lol

Miralax and baby food I can start right away. I hope it's not megacolon, but the poop being all stuck inside her colon like that isn't really normal, is it....? maybe shes severely constipated or something.... the pinch of miralax and the baby food will help with constipation anyways...

What about tummy massages? Can I do tummy massages daily to let her poop- once I got used to doing it, she calmed down and let me... she kinda seemed relieved and happy after she pooped.
 
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