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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know rats can't catch colds, but can they catch the sniffles? My fat boy, Cork had the sniffles and sneezes for 3 days, and is doing fine now but my little boy, Dublin now has them. He's also the one who had the upper respiratory infection that one time so I'm hoping he's okay. He's eating, but won't leave his igloo, when I first saw him I thought he was scared but now I can see he's sniffly. Anything I can do to help him? I'll run a hot shower for steam in the morning.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
He's also making a high pitched squeaking sound every little while, kind of like the fire alarm when the batteries are low, but not as loud and as often. Weird. Is he seems sicker I'm going to call the vet (who said last time that if it happens again just to give him the meds left over from his first URI. Who knows, hopefully he's fine. Xx
 

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The squeaky breathing is a bad sign, you should really get him to a vet.Also, don't listen to the advice to use leftover antibiotics unless you have enough for a full round of them. Even if they get rid of the symptoms, unless you do it long enough the sickness will still be there and they will be ill again soon. I don't remember exactly how long a rat should be on medication for a myco flare up, but I am sure it won't be hard to find out via google. I would check for you, but I am on an ancient iPod touch so it is a bit hard to do.
 

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Rats can get nasal infections as such which are minor and pass quickly without antibiotics, useually these are pasturella type issues and the rat never gets really ill from them. They can also get minor irritations say from dusty bedding, work around the house or even hayfever type symptoms. I even had one guy once who had a lazy larynx, which is a looseness in his throat which vibrated regularly and made him sound a bit like a duck. We tend to lump everything together as rat owners and say its a UTI or pneumonia, even though rats are affected by pretty much as many respiratory problems as us humans are. Probably far more than we realise of "myco" cases that dont get better are infact lung abcesses or tumours for instance, if you routinely PM you see a fair bit of this.

However as much as i'm saying that rats also cant tell us when they really feel ill, and illnesses can hit or get worse very quickly, far faster than on a human due to there fast metabolisms. If you really know your rats and have good experience of spotting symptoms early you can often leave them a little longer before the vets is needed, or start them on antibiotics yourself prior to taking them to the vets. However if your not sure, the rat looks miserable, your not sure on dosing or you dont have meds in then the vet should be the first port of call. As it is i tend to have enough in that i start my rats on the right medication whilst waiting for the vets appointment (my vet gives me a bit extra to do this and knows i know the doseing pretty well), but that is after owning rats for most of my life.
 
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