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Discussion Starter #1
I had two rats to begin, Pizza and Bacon. Bacon died of unexplained causes very suddenly. I got a new one from the same place I got Bacon, her name is Fancy.
I've had her for about 2 weeks and she ate some bar hand soap the other day but from what I read it shouldn't have hurt her. She was fine yesterday but I come home this morning and she is lethargic and she moves but it's very slow and with a lot of effort.
Is she poisoned? I'm not sure what else she has got into other than that soap, toilet paper, and some fabrics.
Or is this just a problem with the store I got her and Bacon from?

Pizza is from a different store and she isn't as adventurous as Bacon or Fancy has been. She has been and is a fine healthy and growing rattie.

I don't understand and I don't know what to do.
 

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I've lost one of my first rats almost right away. I guess the move was too much for her, and she died of an URI 3 days after I bought her. Fortunately, the store has a 7-day guarantee, so I got a new rat to replace her.

But she was lethargic when the URI was affecting her. It was my first time with rats, so I didn't know to be alarmed. When she laid there and shifted her weight to the edge of the table (good thing I was there to catch her), I knew that she was bad off. I watched her walk to the edge of the table and wisely turn back. To have such little regard for her safety alerted me to her trouble.

So, this lethargy might be troubling. But she might just be passing the soap, and it may be playing havoc on her system. It's hard to say. I wouldn't say for certain that your rat is going through something terminal. Maybe she'll get better. It might be worth taking her to the vet. It's hard to say with only knowing her for 2 weeks. It's only been one day. If she still has the energy to eat, then I think you can hold off on the vet visit (caveat: I am not an animal expert!). If she's not eating and has no regard for her safety (aforementioned table drop), then she may be on her last legs and needs help.
 

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If she ate the soap more than 24 hours ago, this is likely to be something else and a vet visit is in order. If she ate the soap less than 24 hours ago, but acts lethargic for more than 24 hours in my opinion a vet visit is in order.
 

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Everyone my little Fancy is dead. It took 10 hours, she died in my arms gasping for breath. I'm heart broken yet again.

Guys this is really hard why do they keep dying? I'm torn to bits I can't handle another death :(
 

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I do know how hard it is. It isn't likely it's your fault. Especially since the rat that you are having the best luck with came from a different source.

Maybe it would be helpful to tell us more about your rats' lives. What toys do they have? What food do you feed them? What cage do you use? What bedding/litter/substrate do you use?

Do you have access to a breeder or rescue? If not you might try to get another rat from the same place you found Pizza.
 

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It sounds like there is something wrong with the rats at the place you got them...I would let them know and not buy anymore from there. I know there have been SDA outbreaks around the US, not sure if that's the case here but worth looking into to see if any symptoms are similar..Keep a close eye on Pizza to make sure they don't start coming down with something. Sorry this has happened to you :(
 

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As your first rat died from a URI and your second was gasping for air, which is a late symptom of URI because the lungs gets filled with fluid. It's quite clearly not the soap that killed her or anything you had done. It may be a genetic low resistance from that breeders line or a particularity powerful infection. I would clean up the cage and wait a couple of weeks before you get another rat to see if your last rat comes down with anything. If the third rat passes away which I think is unlikely then I would wait a while before buying any new rats to be sure any cross infection isn't possible.

Such a sad way to start out... sorry for your loss but don't give up because the good stuff always outweighs the bad. :)
 

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If you got them from the same place you may have an issue similar to one I'm having, poor breeding. My darling Eclaire is cursed with a compromised immune system for all her days because the breeders intended her to be a "feeder". Now, I have no issue with feeder rats, snakes need to eat too, it's sad but it's no different to us having cows. The issue is some breeders feel that feeder rats don't need any kind of health in order to do their job (which is dumb, healthy rat, healthy snake...) so both rats I got from her, Eclaire and the late Meringue, were ill from the moment I got them and while I could treat and keep it at bay, both were very VERY prone to illness. Meringue died only weeks after I got her, having been simply to weak and ill to eat or properly care for herself and me and my vet could only do so much, we gave her the best few weeks possible. Eclaire is handling better but seems to have constant issues with sneezing, and occasional wheezing, (plus bouts of lethargy and lack of appetite which I am getting better at handling thankfully) as a result she's almost always on Baytril and Meloxicam to keep her symptoms at bay.

Your case might not be the same as mine, but the fact that they came from the same place is a bit suspicious. Just know that you aren't to blame, I have no doubt you gave Bacon and Fancy the best possible time with you.
 

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When we got our first two, Splinter and Tempy, they were both really sick but because we were new to Rat ownership we didn't realize it. Splinter died less then a week after we got him. Looking back now I recognize the symptoms and had I known then what I know now I probably could have save him. But sadly he passed before we realized what was wrong. However his death ended up being a blessing in disguise for us. After we got Tempy well we decided he needed a playmate so we went to a different store and that's where we found Buddy. Buddy is the greatest! He's the pinnacle of what you want in a pet. He's playful, and curious, and cuddly and loving. Without him I think our experience with these guys would have been very, very, different.
 
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