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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have already posted this at goosemoose, but I'm going to post it here as well as I'm not getting much response. I have cleared up the issue with Pig, and now it is just Peep and Parsnip that I am curious about.

I recently got two new girlies, and introductions have gone very well so far, though we do have concerns with all of the girls now. The new girls names are Parsnip and Peep, the girl I already have is Pig. They all get along great except for a few scuffles here and there, and some ninja face-pushing, but each girl has her own little issue at the moment.

We got the girls from an ad on a local website, and they were advertised as simply two female rats needing a home. Well, we like to give homes to rats, and so we said we would take them.

The girl showed up with them and they were darlings, both well socialized and very sweet. However, she informed us upon bringing them that Parsnip could very well be pregnant. She said we wouldn't have to deal with them if she was pregnant - and she would take care of rehoming the babies. Yeah, of course we won't have to deal with them, the pregnancy, birth and weaning is the easy part, right?

Anyway, we have her now and we are determined to take care of her to the best of our ability. My only question at this point, is whether or not it's possible to tell if she is actually pregnant. She is much bigger than Peep, but Peep also seems to be very underweight. When we first fed her she wouldn't even chew her food, she just shoved it in her mouth and made unpleasant retching sounds as she swallowed it whole.

And that brings us to our issues with Peep. She eats her food normally now, but she does not seem to be...right. When we got the new girls we were told they were a little over a year old (they're not, they're a maximum of six months unless they are dwarves, which they do not seem to be), and she is just not active enough for her age. She does not run around like a mad thing, though she does seem comfortable. She sleeps a great deal of the time, and her eyes are always half closed. If you pick her up and hold her gently, and rub her head, she will slowly fall asleep in your hands. Maybe she is just chilled out, she doesn't seem to be in ill health - there are no noticeable respiratory problems. My initial thought was that she was recovering from starvation, or that she has been recently pregnant and has not had time to recover from it. Both Peep and Parsnip have genitals that seem more "open" than Pig's, which makes me think they have both given birth.

Peep also has a few areas of fur that seem to be the colour of buck grease. It does not rub off, but it does seem to be the same yellowy colour. When I first saw it I thought she must have been an underdeveloped boy because of her chilled nature - but she definitely has female genitalia.

I have contacted the previous owner about Peep's state, but she has been ignoring me.

My final issue is with Pig, and it's not really an issue so much as it is a behavioral curiosity. Whenever Peep and Pig have their little fights, Pig will do something really weird. She will move away from Peep, vibrate violently, and then run away. Her whole head vibrates for about two seconds, then she darts.
 

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check her for sings of bugs, they can do that, or call your vet, because the vet can say if the one is pregger and whats wrong with the other, good luck : )
 

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It sounds like Peeps is not well and may have an underlying infection. Being chilled out is one thing but the half-closed eyes and lethargy aren't good signs.
The yellowish skin reminiscent of buck grease makes it sound like she's not grooming herself very well, another sign of being unwell. :(

I would get her into a vet, she may have been starved but she still sounds sick.

Pig sounds like she is in heat with the vibration (its actually their ears if you look carefully) and the dart forward...hehe.

If you are able, start weighing Parsnip. Get a postal scale or food scale that does grams and weigh her the same time every day. You will see a very significant gain if she is pregnant. I have a chart with Bronwen's gain in her last 10 days or so if you are curious.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the advice guys.

I would love to see that chart, by the way.

I will hopefully be taking all four of my girls to get checked up on Friday or Monday, as I get paid on Thursday. We might get a chance to take Peep to the vet tomorrow, I am pretty worried about her.
 

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Wench said:
Thanks for the advice guys.

I would love to see that chart, by the way.

I will hopefully be taking all four of my girls to get checked up on Friday or Monday, as I get paid on Thursday. We might get a chance to take Peep to the vet tomorrow, I am pretty worried about her.
Good to hear, let us know how it goes for Peep. :)

Bronwen’s Weight Gain (4 months old)
Aug. 11 – 267 g
Aug. 14 – 279 g
Aug. 15 – 289 g
Aug. 16 – 302 g
Aug. 17 – 319 g
Aug. 18 – 329 g
Aug. 19 – 346 g
Aug. 20 – 354 g
Aug. 21 – 364 g (birth)
Sept. 14 – 278 g
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Wow, that's quite the weight gain. I don't know if I can get my hands on a scale, even at a good price we're close to broke and I have a feeling that the trips to the vet are not going to be cheap.

I will keep an eye on her and try to watch her weight the best way that I can.

In the meanwhile, are there some actions I can take with her pregnancy? Right now she seems very comfortable sharing a cage with Pig and Peep, but I have a feeling that later on in her pregnancy she may want to be alone. We are hopefully getting our travel cage and another cage back tomorrow so we can put her by herself pretty soon. I'm just afraid that moving her to another cage so soon after being moved into this one might stress her out.

What are some good things to feed her in anticipation of a birth? If I need to get an aquarium for her, is it best to do it before she gives birth?
 

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Preggy moms are usually moved into their new cage a week to a few days away from the birth so they can get used to it. IF you use a wire cage, make sure it has a deep plastic base so that babies cannot get stuck between the bars, and try to make it one level so mom doesn't accidentally jump up a level and a baby falls off her teat.

Do not use toilet paper as it sticks to newly born babies, you can use ripped up good quality paper towel. She will most likely make a nice nest out of it. Make sure you give her a house to give birth in if necessary, not too heavy since a baby could get trapped underneath it if mom gives it a shove. Also make sure that she has enough room to stretch out and nurse.

I would start supplementing her now, along with Pip and Peep, it won't hurt them in the least and she will need it.

Here's my pre-Oops litter birth thread
http://www.goosemoose.com/component/option,com_smf/Itemid,118/forum,rat/topic,4009992.0
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all of the advice. :) I'm going to try to get my hands on an aquarium very soon.

I couldn't take Peep to the vet today because I didn't get the money I was expecting, but it's going to have to happen soon. She had some porypherin (sp) around her right eye today and it looked a little bulgy. I am afraid it will start to really bulge.

My Beatrix (passed away) had an enormous bulging eye that just came out of nowhere one day and it didn't look comfortable at all.
 
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