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In a few days I am taking one of my rats to the vet for respiratory issues. This is my first Time ever taking a rat to the vet and I am so nervous. Also because of Covid I won’t be with him in the vets at all I’m just gonna drop him off and wait for him and I’m so nervous because he’s my baby and also hes really unconfident so I’m scared he might jump out of the vets hands or something so can someone plz make me feel better if they have experience with taking rats to the vet.
 

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I've been to vets with my rats plenty of times but I also have my first post-COVID social distancing appointment on Friday and I don't exactly know what to expect. I plan to write a note to attach to the carrier with the basic information (symptoms and concerns). I'm guessing that a phone conversation with treatment recommendations will occur after my rat has been examined.

The biggest suggestion I have if you're new to vet appointments is to get as much information about treatment and medication as possible. For respiratory issues, vets usually say "here's an antibiotic, give your rat X ml twice a day" but they don't give your specifics. Always ask for the following information;

1) Your rat's exact weight in grams.

2) Name of medication(s). Ask them to spell it. Write it down.

3) The dose amount (how many milligrams of medicine per kilogram of your rat's weight). This should be a number followed by "mg/kg." For example, your vet might prescribe 10 mg/kg of enrofloxacin for your rat who weighs 324 grams. If you don't understand what your vet is telling you, just ask them "How many milligrams per kilogram?" and they should be able to give you a simple number. Write it down.

4) How much medicine to give your rats. Antibiotics are usually given in a liquid form and your vet should give you a little plastic syringe and tell you exactly how much liquid to give your rats. It's usually a very small amount like 0.3 ml or whatever.

If you have any questions about how to give your rat prescribed medicine, don't feel embarrassed asking questions. Have a notebook to write things down. Don't feel bad for asking the vet to repeat themselves. I guarantee that your vet wants to make sure that you're able to take care of your pets in the best possible manner and they will be happy to explain anything that you need them to.

I know I've probably made this sound more complicated and scary than it is. If you don't get the above information from your vet, it's really not the end of the world. Just make sure you understand what you're supposed to do. If you forget, you can always call the vet's office later to have anything re-explained.
 
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