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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a female rat that developed an abscess under her mouth. She Is very shy and I am ashamed to say I didn't catch it till it became very large. I got my husband to hold her so I could soak and drain it. While attempting to drain it I noticed puss coming out of her mouth. I gentle opened her mouth to find that the absses was draining from inside her mouth. Her bottom tooth was pushed to the side from the swelling.

I was so worried that I called the only exotic vet me have. The vet checked her over and said she would need surgery. I was in tears because I know that my baby may not servive that but I wanted to give her a fighting chance. Pammy (thats my rats name) came threw the surgery fine. The vet had to cut under her chin and her left cheek. The vet gave us some strong antibiotics and to days worth of painkillers. She told me to keep her away from her sisters, soak the absess (she wanted it to drain so she left the cuts open), and administer her antibiotics twice a day. When I asked what I should feed her because she couldn't eat her regular food she had no answers for me. When my husband asked if she clipped her teeth she said no.

This made me very uneasy. I'm scared that I took my ratty girl to a vet that didn't know what she was doing. Shouldn't the vet be able to answer such simple questions? Have I put my baby in jeopardy because I trusted the wrong person with her care?

I had to feed her something so I picked up some organic multi-grain baby cereal and some different baby foods. I also have been hot compressing her woulds twice a day when I give her her antibiotic. I was scared to put saline in her chin because it opens in her mouth.
I also placed her in a hospital cage (a crittertrail fresh air one level cage) with soft fabric blanket cut to size. She has a water bottle filled with fresh water and since she refuses to eat unless mommy or daddy feed her from a spoon we've been feeding her a little at a time every 2 hours. We also clean the cage ever 4 or 5 hours with Lysol wipes and change the blankets.

Am I doing the right things? Is their more I should be doing? How many times should I be hot compressing her wounds? Should I put saline in the wound or not? Is what I'm feeding her ok ? I am sorry that this is so much but I am very concerned for her. Please help me.
 

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I think you're doing ok. You can feed baby food or baby formula whilst she can't eat. Anything that can be lapped is perfect. Do you know exactly what the vet did? I would keep compressing it to encourage it to stay open and make sure all the pus comes out at least for a few days.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
@RedFraggle She said she went in and cut out part of the abscess. She also got out all of the infection she could see. She used a gas anesthesia when she went in and gave me a strong antibiotic and 2 days worth of pain meds by mouth in these little syringes.
 

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Baby food is great. I like to mix powdered Ensure in for rats that need mushy food. Baby formula powder works as well.

I'd still flush with saline and just try to get help to hold her so that it doesn't run back her throat. It's fine if she swallows some, but you just don't want to choke her.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Just had to pull dead tissue from Pammy's chin... theirs a huge white hard ball in hr chin that I couldn't get out. Do I need to take her back to the vet?
 

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If you can't get it out, the vet will need to. The wound needs to be kept clean of all loose tissue and debris so that it can heal. If it heals while there's still tissue in there, the abscess will return.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm taking Pammy to the vet today (its the earliest he could see us). Ya'll wish us luck and I'll let you'll know what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have just come home and I am devastated! The vet found a tumor behind the abscess and it spread rapidly. It deteriorated most of her jaw bone and even her bottom teeth.I had to make the hard decision to put her down. I feel horrible but she couldn't have survived without her jaw. I cried and told her how much I loved her, how special and smart she was. I told her of my other rats that where beyond the rainbow bridge and how they would care for her when she got their. I asked for her forgiveness and cradled her till her heart gave out. My husband cried with me the whole way home. We buried her her beside my other rats and made alittle grave stone for her. My sweet fluffy daughter died at only 6 months old! I am going to be absent from the forum while grieve.
 
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