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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Artemis has a tumor right by her anus. This is a bad spot and can interfere with her ability to eliminate. She's only a year and a half. To remove, including pre-surgery, surgery, and post-op, will be close to $200. On top of this, two others have tumors which I would prefer to remove in a perfect world.

Now, I would love to remove the tumors, or at least poor Artemis' tumor, but this year has been hard. I lost my job. My bird was injured and I spent close to $700 saving her (only to lose her to an infection). Then another $200 diagnosing and then putting Caius to sleep. Then another $200 on Remus' pneumonia. If I had a job, I would use any disposable income (not paying for school or my credit card...) to get it removed. But I am worried that by the time I get a job and paycheck it'll be too big. I'm also worried that, like Iris', the money to remove it will just allow another to pop in it's place.

I understand this is what comes with owning females, but I just wish tumor removals were cheaper. Its hard to even explain why I would spend $200 to give a rat a few more months...if it was actively killing her like Iris' tumor bleeding her out, I could justify it, or if she was younger. It's also so hard to make the decision that inevitably leads to their death (withholding from tumor removal). I know a lot of people don't remove tumors, and I hate to even say it comes down to money for me. I'd also like to think that she'll make it to 2 years old and that sort of justifies it as well because thats like living a full life. And I have to say that there is no way she would do well post-op based on her personality and it's location.

I will be purchasing stuff to make antilump mix to slow the growth but still :(
 

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I know of a vet who removes tumors for $77, but he's in Texas, so that doesn't help you much...

My girl Eevee has tumors as well and I have decided not to get them removed for several reasons:
1. She's two years old and showing her age.
2. She gets stressed out easily, even by me picking her up for a millisecond.
3. She is under a lot of respiratory distress right now and I fear the surgery would kill her.
All of those facts made me choose to let it take its course. I just feel that removing to tumors either won't improve her quality of life, lessen her quality of life, or kill her off. None of those are good results in my book.

When my girl Cream was barely a year and a half, she had a tumor that was lessening her quality of life, but she was in great health otherwise, so I chose to remove it and she lived six month after that (maybe more), until more tumors came. That was the only tumor I've had removed from my rats and I only did it because Cream was in good enough health that I knew a good outcome was likely. Eevee, though... Poor Eevee. I stinkin' love this girl and I'll have had her for two years as of next month. She's the last of my "original four." I don't want to lose her, but I know removing the tumors won't change that. Right now, she is enjoying life so I plan to let her until such a time when she feels she is not happy anymore.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Artemis' tumor has grown badly, and I'm just gonna add this rant on. I know I can 100% not afford to remove this without putting my animals at-risk in case of emergencies. I just wanted an idea of prognosis, length and quality of life, etc and everyone just keeps telling me what I know...it's in a bad spot and needs to be removed or she will pass...I don't even know how to politely tell these bloody idiots that that ISN"T helpful and isn't what I asked for. I don't think it is NEGLECT not to remove this tumor, but it just keeps making me cry to know she'll pass because I can't remove this. It's not like this is something treatable and easily resolved. Surgery is a serious thing.
 

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I would say just keep her in clean surroundings, make her comfortable, and if it becomes so bad that you can tell she is suffering, have her PTS. Surgery carries a great risk as well and could very well result in her dying. It is a hard choice too, when dealing with animals that might only live 1.5 - 2 years. Is it worth putting them through the pain and suffering of surgery / the healing process to give them 1-5 more months, if that?

I am sorry you are having a hard time with this.. Making hard choices comes with being a pet owner. If you can't afford the surgery and you feel it is too risky, then I would just do as I posted above. That is what I would do. I haven't had to deal with tumors yet (all mine are a little over a year and no signs so far), but vets in our area are loath to operate on small animals for any reason and charge hefty fees (about the figures you gave). Even if I wanted to have a surgery done, I'm not sure my husband would see eye-to-eye with me on spending that much money when the prognosis was dicey at best.

Good luck with her and I hope the tumor doesn't hurt her quality of life too much.
 

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Thanks for the rant, Nanashi. Sometimes it's just good to know there are others going through this.

I recently had a tumor removed from my 2 y/o rat. It was the size of an egg and right at the point where if it got any larger it would have been impossible to remove. The surgery cost roughly $150, and she recovered from it very well. However, it's been 3 months and she already has 2 new tumors popping up and growing fast. I'm definitely not going to put her through surgery again, considering her age and propensity for tumors.

This is always a difficult decision. I wouldn't say that deciding not to remove a tumor is making a decision to shorten the life of your rat. There's nothing wrong with letting nature take it's course (in my opinion) as long as you're keeping the rat comfortable. I will say that I'm in favor of euthanasia before the animal becomes deathly ill. . . but that's another topic.
 

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The cost of tumor removal is closer to $600.00 soup to nuts in my area, and a few vets told me that the average life span of rats they operated on was three weeks after surgery. Even the no frills route, as basic as it gets runs $300.00 assuming nothing goes wrong... And some female rats grow mammary tumors like weeds. You might try sodium dichloroacitate. I didn't have much luck with the mushroom mix with Amelia so I tried the DCA with Max, but it took me too long to get the medication and Max was too far gone for it to have a chance to work...

Pretty much, we've lost all our girls, that didn't get otherwise killed, to mammary tumors... like you said, it's part of owning girls.

Sorry to hear about your situation... best luck.
 
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