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(I'm not sure if this should go in the rattie health section, or general, so I'm putting it in general.)

I'm taking my three girls--Whimsy, Pixel, and FizGig--to get spayed in a couple days, and I keep getting worried about having to leave them. Does anyone know if vets usually take all of them at the same time, and then just work on one at a time? Or is it more likely that I'll be sitting in the waiting room with the two that aren't getting operated on yet until the vet is ready for them? I'm a new-ish ratty mum, and I'm worried about the girls getting stressed out without someone familiar around them.

Also, does anyone know--if the vet does take them, will they be kept in their carrier? or put into another cage?

I feel kinda stupid asking these questions, but I'm concerned for my girls. I don't want them to get all traumatized. :?
 

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normally the vet will ask you to drop the animal off in the morning then you can come pick them up in the late afternoon (times depending on when the spueters are normally done in the day). for as far as i know they will do one animal at a time but the techs will watch the recovering animals like hawks so everyone is monitored properly. depending on the carrier and the animal's recovery they will either leave the animal to recover in the carrier, change them to a larger cage (think cats and dogs) or keep them out with them, holding them or letting them run on the desk. these are all questions that you will want to ask you vet before leaving them there as some vets do these things differently then others.

as for them being traumatized by the experience? i don't think that's going to be that big a concern. for the time they are awake they will be together. then they will be put under for the operation and be pretty dopy that it unlikely they will remember much. even when there is only the one girl waiting for her operation i'm sure the techs will be there sooking over her anyway (this is pretty much what happened for all of my animal neuters with my vet-a cat, a bunny, and 2 rats--bribery even conned one tech out of a smartie during his stay).

but you don't need to feel stupid about asking these questions. we're all concerned ratty moms and dads here, we can certainly relate. they are our babies, of course we'll worry when they have a surgery, just like we would for our human children. when i had a routine gall bladder removal when i was teenager my stoic dad had more problems sleeping the night before then i did and you could really tell the worry that weighted on him when i saw him off before surgery and the relief afterwards. and that was just a routine surgery, one they did not expect any complications from. rats are so much smaller and more delicate then a hardy human teenager. but they will be fine. there are riks to any surgery but more times then not they come through just fine. i've had a 25 month old rat undergo surgery, and though dopy for the rest of the day, she was perfectly fine.

best wishes and warm soothing thoughts for you and your fur-babies. please keep us updated
 

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i haven't had *tons* of experience with *all* the clinics out there, but usually the techs will take all your pets to the back, and depending on the animal, they will put the pet into one of the clinic's own heated cages, or place the whole carrier in the cage. carriers usually go whole into cages for those animals that are very nervous and would prefer a place that smelled like home (cats, bunnies, rats, etc.) they would probably try to put them into separate cages if their facilities can accommodate it so that IV lines and such don't get tangled, but for ratties this often isn't a problem so they may stick them in one cage together. they will most likely not get time to run around as there are all sorts of other animals running in and out and it wouldn't be safe/practical for your tiny ratties to be free.

at caring hands, we would usually try to do all the neuters and spays early on in the day (starting before 9AM) so that we could monitor them the rest of the day. we did a combination anesthesia with IM injections to initially dope all or most of the patients at once, and then we would pick from whoever we could IV safely first/whoever the surgery doctor for the day wanted to do first for the second round of serious knockout anesthesia in combination with gas. with smaller animals though, oftentimes all the patient would get would be gas as their veins are too small/flimsy for IV.

for spays vets usually prefer to keep them overnight for monitoring and neuters can usually go home same day, as spays are a much more invasive procedure.

caring hands was a very small, nice vet clinic (5 doctors total when i left, usually 2/3 per day, 3 year old facilities), i will admit this, so i can't say that all clinics use the extensive anesthesia procedures we used, or the "overkill" 3 EKG monitors each patient was hooked up to, etc, but if they are willing to operate on a rat at all, i would say that you are probably in pretty good hands. :)
 

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Well, you've asked a question that is my specialty :D. I'm a vet tech stuent who also worked full time in clinic.

Your rats will be taken to the back, and depending on the sizes of the clinic cages left in the carrier you brought them in. Most clinics don't have cages with the proper bar spacing for rats, so it might be a good idea to bring two seperate carriers just in case. They'll want them to recover alone from the others. They do the surgeries one at a time, and they'll only take about 30 minutes per rat (if that).

Every clinic I've worked at knocks them out with gas, and they are kept masked down for the procedure. Afterwards they'll be given pain meds eith SQ or IM, and placed back in their carrier up against a hot water bottle. They will be given food and water as soon as they're alert.

It depends on the clinic you're going to, but most will send them home the day of the surgery. It is invasive, but rats are tough and heal quickly, and are happier at home with mom hanging around.

As for being traumatized, I had Willow's tumor removed over the holidays and she had to sit around in her carrier for a good hour while we finished up other surgeries. The silly girl was bruxing away, as happy as a clam! All the other girls working were taking turns to come over and rub her, so I wouldn't worry too much.

They won't be putting IV's in your girls, as there are no catherers small enough, and the only viable vein would be the jugular. If your girls need any fluids at all the be given SQ.
 
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