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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
http://www.ratforum.com/showthread.php?235986-Pneumonia-Help

Two months ago, Remus had severe pneumonia. It was a fight, but he mostly recovered. In the last week, he began showing some of the signs he had before. I took him to the vet, who diagnosed Remus with pneumonia again. I had all the meds previously, so the vet re-prescribed him with what we knew was working last time (azithromycin and support meds). By Monday, I hope for improvement. The vet (previously a professor at my vet tech program) showed me how to listen to his lungs, what to listen for and such with a stethoscope (have one) and told me that if he doesn't improve, it is likely that the damage done last time (significant) will make this a hard battle and he would recommend euthanasia. I agree, given the amount of medicine and feedings and water I was pushing on Remus. I especially don't want the weeks of trying this or that and anything else we can get into him, especially given that he only improved on Zithromax.

Does anyone have any tips or ideas for this? I'm scared that even if he pulls through this, the abscesses/scar tissue in his lungs is going to continue to worsen exponentially and I don't want him to pass from breathing problems at home -- suffocating just seems awful.
 

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Remus' lungs seem clear by stethoscope, minimal nasal congestion. He is still flank breathing, inactive, reluctant to eat or drink. He is starting to sort of hate me. He hates medicine and poofs up worse when made to take it. He hates being wiped down. Last night, he screamed when I went to grab him (to show him where the applesauce in the cage was) which was a first.
 

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I'm now considering the possibility of euthanasia. I would love opinions. He is on his fifth day of medication currently. Using a stethoscope, his lungs do not sound as crackly, but he still whistle-breathes. He is continuously puffed up and does not move much and rarely grooms himself. He is also not eating anything hard -- oatmeal, applesauce, Emerald Critical-Care soaked bread. He is drinking on his own, approximately the appropriate amount. Over the last two weeks, he has lost approximately 20% of his body weight.I cannot tell, given his puffed upness and skinniness, if he is squeezing his sides but he does "twitch" when I touch his sides in a certain way. He has always been a gentle loving rat, but in prolonged contact he will look like he is about to bite and he squeaks badly when I pick him up. I know he hates his medicine and no matter how I split it it is such a large dose. Last time he had pneumonia, it got this bad but then improved almost overnight, but I don't know if that'll happen again.



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