Rat Forum banner
1 - 20 of 29 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

One of my baby girls (about 3 months old), Dangerous Beans, started having some trouble yesterday. In the morning I noticed she was waving her head around a lot, but I didn't get too concerned, as all six of my girls are albino, and many of them have sight problems.

Later in the day I noticed her movements were rather jerky and spastic. I cage them in a modified flight cage, about 3x2 feet square on the bottom, and 5 feet tall. I've made shelves that hang tautly between two full length perches. There are currently two in the cage. She made it half way to the first shelf, turned around, and went up the other end of the cage. She had troubles climbing strait, moving in very jerky movements and in multiple directions.

I pulled her out of the cage, and immediately knew something was very wrong. She nearly feel out of my hands, even with my attempt to hold her securely. I quickly lowed her to only a couple inches above the ground (so if she did fall it wouldn't hurt). She was having a lot of trouble standing up strait and any movement caused her to fall over. She seems to have a lot of trouble knowing which way is up, and consequently takes a lot of time to become upright after tumbling.

I put a towel in the bottom of a larger cat carrier and suspended a water bottle in it. I also put in a small box with some bedding from her old cage, so she has something familiar. I'm extremely worried about her falling at this point.

Dangerous Beans has improved overnight. I have given her a couple ml of Ensure every hour or two while I've been awake, she is absolutely adorable eating out of the syringe. She does appear to still be drinking and eating, I just want to be absolutely certain that dehydration or anything doesn't complicate her getting better.

I cannot find any information about what could be happening to her, it doesn't seem to have the same symptoms as a stroke. She seems distressed, but not freaking out spastic distressed. Its more of just she isn't fully sure how to control her body, so she needs a bit more reassurance. Like, when I feed her Ensure she needs me to place a hand over her back so she feels more stable. The lady at the pet store (who owned several rats until she got so allergic she could no longer handle them, along with several other dedicated rat owners who work there) seems to think seizures.

She is the smallest of the four sisters. They come from a liter of 21 (yes, 21!) bred by a one time breeder who didn't know a lot. Up here, she was the best I could find. We're not nice to our rats in Alaska. They were removed from mama at about 4.5 week, I know it was too early, but I couldn't really do much about it. Since then they are all scardy rats, who will not come out of the cage volunteer (the two adults usually spend 4-8 hours out a day, and get angry that they don't get more). The biggest one has started exploring a little, but is still very nervous. Dangerous Beans is still the smallest (hence the name) and I am worried that keeping her outside the cage away from her sisters is scary for her, but I don't want any accidents to happen. I'm currently seeing if I can find a better used cage, I don't have the money to ship a Martin up here.

Does anyone have a clue what I can do?

Thanks
Pink
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,641 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

AT her age its most likely an inner ear infection, she needs to go to the vet and get abs in the least and hopefully steroids on top of it.

These are the same treatments we use for strokes as well so one treatment covers both(as well as PT but thats insanely young for that).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
261 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

lilspaz68 said:
At her age its most likely an inner ear infection
true. but it could also be a slightly parrelized broken neck, or a brain tumer. keep tactful watch over your little one and keep us updated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,641 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

rattusnorvegicus said:
lilspaz68 said:
At her age its most likely an inner ear infection
true. but it could also be a slightly parrelized broken neck, or a brain tumer. keep tactful watch over your little one and keep us updated.
Rattus N., rats don't get slightly paralyzed broken necks, yes they do get brain tumours but they are more prevalent in older rats (15 months plus)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
261 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

lilspaz68 said:
rattusnorvegicus said:
lilspaz68 said:
At her age its most likely an inner ear infection
true. but it could also be a slightly parrelized broken neck, or a brain tumer. keep tactful watch over your little one and keep us updated.
Rattus N., rats don't get slightly paralyzed broken necks, yes they do get brain tumours but they are more prevalent in older rats (15 months plus)
ya but stil, its probably a brain tumor and it just might be a slightly paralized broken neck. whatever it is besides a cold, its a head injury. take care and good luck. i hope your little one feels better soon. don't forget to wish your darling all my love.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,641 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

rattusnorvegicus said:
lilspaz68 said:
rattusnorvegicus said:
lilspaz68 said:
At her age its most likely an inner ear infection
true. but it could also be a slightly parrelized broken neck, or a brain tumer. keep tactful watch over your little one and keep us updated.
Rattus N., rats don't get slightly paralyzed broken necks, yes they do get brain tumours but they are more prevalent in older rats (15 months plus)
ya but stil, its probably a brain tumor and it just might be a slightly paralized broken neck. whatever it is besides a cold, its a head injury. take care and good luck. i hope your little one feels better soon. don't forget to wish your darling all my love.
And where is your info backing up this supposition?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,509 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Chances are, as Lilspaz has said, it probably is an inner ear infection.

Rats are VERY prone to these - so the chance of it being a broken/paralised neck is MINIMAL.

I could be a stoke or PT, but considering her age, it's not very likely.

Pink, is there any updates about Dangerous Beans?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
626 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Oh, poor thing! I don't know much about these things so I 'm not really of any help but I just wanted to say good luck and I hope she feels better soon. Also you said you were afraid she would be scared in a cage of her own, mabye you could just put the two cages next to each other so they can see one another through the bars/openings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Dangerous Beans is doing significantly better, so I am assuming she simply had an inner ear infection. She spent two days fairly bad, but now is most of the way back to normal. Her head still tilts a bit funny, but she doesn't have any troubles staying on what shes attempting to stand on, so I put her back into the main cage.

I completely changed their cage around, so it should be a lot cleaner now, and their upper respiratory shouldn't bother them again. I replaced the cloth shelves with plexi glass shelves, and made it so it is not possible for the rats to fall more than a foot or two anywhere, instead of the several possible feet (the cage is a 5 foot tall flight cage that came with no shelving). I still plan to do a lot of work with it, and then post some pictures. I can now completely clean it out in about 5 minuets, so i plan to clean it every other day until the sneezing disappears. The four babies developed a mild upper respiratory this last week, but are doing a lot better with the new shelving.

And for everyone who missed the reference in Dangerous Bean's name desperately needs to read Terry Pratchett's The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents. Its a great book with a lot of adorable little rats. My other three babies are Peaches, Sardines, and Nourishing.

Pink
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,641 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Were you able to get meds for her inner ear infection? Untreated it could come back, they are very dangerous.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,509 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

I second Lilspaz. Untreated it can also leave perminant damage and definately could leave you open to second, third etc attacks of it.

Keep an eye on the URI's too - are you treating these? Or is it just the odd sneeze?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,002 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Pink said:
She is the smallest of the four sisters. They come from a liter of 21 (yes, 21!) bred by a one time breeder who didn't know a lot. Up here, she was the best I could find. We're not nice to our rats in Alaska. They were removed from mama at about 4.5 week, I know it was too early, but I couldn't really do much about it. Since then they are all scardy rats, who will not come out of the cage volunteer (the two adults usually spend 4-8 hours out a day, and get angry that they don't get more). The biggest one has started exploring a little, but is still very nervous. Dangerous Beans is still the smallest (hence the name) and I am worried that keeping her outside the cage away from her sisters is scary for her, but I don't want any accidents to happen. I'm currently seeing if I can find a better used cage, I don't have the money to ship a Martin up here.

Does anyone have a clue what I can do?

Thanks
Pink
good luck with finding a vet anywhere in alaska who will deal with rats!! i lived there for four years, and i know how much alaskans hate rats, and how narrow-minded they can be, especially rick sinnot. i get the anchorage daily news online, and see many articles about his crusade to rid alaska of all rats, not just wild ones...

as for dangerous beans headtilt... one of my girls has headtilt. meds didnt do anything for her (partly my fault, i couldnt find a vet who would even look at her at the time), but she is fine and manages very well with her tilt. the only thing she really has any problems with is getting out of hammocks or baskets, but she has worked it out so she can get out of them on her own.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Yes, Alaska is VERY harsh to our rats. The city I live in at least reluctantly allows us to have albinos (I would LOVE to have some of the gorgeous rats that you all have, but they are extremely illegal and difficult to find up here, all there is up here are the albino feeders).

I don't know if I can take dangerous beans and her sisters to the vet. It's about $75 to just walk through the door at the only vet I think would consider rats. My boyfriend and I are in the process of paying our way through school, so spending several hundred dollars just to get the four babies looked at is pretty difficult. And I don't have a whole lot of faith in that one vet clinic, they have tried pretty hard to convince my that I'm killing my cats by feeding them homemade food (even though the home made food saved two of their lives).

Dangerous Beans barely even has a head tilt, and her three sisters just have the sniffles. My two adults have had multiple URI (all when they were younger, have not been infected since they were adults) and have come out fine. Their feeder rats, their not healthy, and I truly cannot do anything about that. Breeders aren't an option for me (unless I go through the girl that breeds purely for color, and the feeds them all to snakes anyway, and I would have to order more than 20 if I did that).

I'll call up vets this afternoon and see if I can get a better quote from anyone, but I really cannot afford over $100.

Pink
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
483 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

It might be an inner ear infection my male had one of these and was very dizzy-- and we didn't catch it in time--- now he has nerve damage in his one ear, but he isn't dizzy anymore--- he is not compelety back to the way he was --- he sometimes walks around in circles, and his personality has changed he gets very hyper now--- but he also gets very lovable and loves to cuddle too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
393 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

I don't know where you are in Alaska Pinky but I did some looking into recommended rat vets in Alaska and found the following:

Dr. Alison Rominger
VCA Eagle River Animal Hospital
12320 Old Glenn Hwy.
Eagle River, Alaska 99577
907-694-3800
[email protected]



Then I looked into exotic vets in general in Alaska:

Dr. Vicki Craig
Facility: Homer Veterinary Clinic
Address: 326 Woodside Ave. Homer AK 99603
Phone: 907-235-8960

Exotic Pets Seen:
Rabbits Ferrets Chinchillas Sugar Gliders Prairie Dogs Hedgehogs Pocket Pets (gerbils, hamsters, etc.) Miscellaneous Exotic Pets




Dr. Lorelei Cuthbert
Facility: All Creatures Veterinary Clinic
Address: 4360 Snider Drive Wasilla AK 99654
Phone: 907-376-7930

Exotic Pets Seen:
Not Specified





Dr. Jackie Frederickson
Facility: VCA Alaska Pet Care
Address: 3900 Lake Otis Parkway Anchorage AK 99508
Phone: 907-562-7387

Exotic Pets Seen:
Rabbits Ferrets Chinchillas Sugar Gliders Hedgehogs Pocket Pets (gerbils, hamsters, etc.) Miscellaneous Exotic Pets





Dr. Shaina Pruden
Facility: Hopi Animal Hospital
Address: 5533 E. Bell Road Scottsdale AK 85254
Phone: 602-494-4674
Website: www.hopianimalhosipital.com

Exotic Pets Seen:
Not Specified



Then I took a look at general vet clinics in Alaska: http://healthypet.aahanet.org/eweb/...LocResults&org=&city=&state=AK&zip=&Type=name


I really hope something here can help you :(.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
261 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

did a little research on this topic for the last couple days and yes, it is most likely to be an inner ear-infection. check with your vet just to make sure and maybe he or she will be happy to give you a persciption. i hope you will get help soon. :sad: please tell her i wish her (and you) all my luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Thanks, but all of those vets are at least a six hour drive, I live in Fairbanks, in the interior. I'm calling local vets to get estimates now.

Pink
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

I called up the vets in town, and found two that could treat them for under a hundred (and a couple quotes in the couple hundreds range). Unfortunately, they are all booked for the next week or two.

All four girls are breathing clearly now, even though they do have regular sneezing still. Dangerous Beans still has a bit of a head tilt, but nothing that prevents her from doing normal ratty things. Unfortunately, she may just always have it, but I am designing the interior of the cage so that she doesn't have too far to fall anywhere, so she should be ok. She's still eating a lot.

Thanks
Pink
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,002 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Darksong17 said:
I don't know where you are in Alaska Pinky but I did some looking into recommended rat vets in Alaska and found the following:

Dr. Shaina Pruden
Facility: Hopi Animal Hospital
Address: 5533 E. Bell Road Scottsdale AK 85254
Phone: 602-494-4674
Website: www.hopianimalhosipital.com

Exotic Pets Seen:
Not Specified



Then I took a look at general vet clinics in Alaska: http://healthypet.aahanet.org/eweb/...LocResults&org=&city=&state=AK&zip=&Type=name


I really hope something here can help you :(.
scottsdale is in arizona, not alaska.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,002 Posts
Re: Young rat girl having troubles with stability / head til

Pink said:
I called up the vets in town, and found two that could treat them for under a hundred (and a couple quotes in the couple hundreds range). Unfortunately, they are all booked for the next week or two.

All four girls are breathing clearly now, even though they do have regular sneezing still. Dangerous Beans still has a bit of a head tilt, but nothing that prevents her from doing normal ratty things. Unfortunately, she may just always have it, but I am designing the interior of the cage so that she doesn't have too far to fall anywhere, so she should be ok. She's still eating a lot.

Thanks
Pink
seeing as you've found a couple of vets who will look at your ratties, i suggest that you take dangerous beans to one of them and get her checked out. if it is an inner ear infection, the tilt can be treated.

when you said the nearest city was 350 miles away from you, i figured it had to be fairbanks where you live. unfortunately, i didnt get to go there, but i would have loved to.
 
1 - 20 of 29 Posts
Top