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My daughter has a rat that is now very listless and is having a hard time breathing. Is there any over the counter meds or natural stuff that we could give her? I can't afford the vet.


Asked by mom2twingirl797 at 11:01 AM on Aug. 3, 2010 in Pets

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Answers (6)
  • Go to the vet and see if they will let you buy Baytril directly from them. Many vets will let you do this but will require a follow up if she does not get better after the initial dosage. Baytril is very cheap, about $8. You'll want to make sure they give you the 5% and she'll need at least 1ML a day (assuming she's an adult). They usually tell you to split it to two feedings a day but it doesn't really matter.

    Misting will help her feel better. Take her cage in to the bathroom with you when you take a shower. You can also give her small bits of milk chocolate every once in awhile. This will not fix the issue but it will make her feel better temporarily.

    If she does not get better, loses weight, and her chest concaves when she breathes, you'll need to put her to sleep.

    Next time you get a rat buy two from a breeder. Rats with friends that come from reputable breeders can live up to 5 years.

    Answer by Nzumbe at 11:35 AM on Aug. 3, 2010

  • Rats have a lifespan of about 2 or 3 years, maybe she is just old!


    Answer by older at 11:02 AM on Aug. 3, 2010

  • It’s important to keep the cage clean since the ammonia formed from urine aggravates respiratory disease, the leading cause of death in rats. Avoid pine and cedar shavings as they contain acids that damage the respiratory tract and toxins that damage the liver. There are many good alternatives including aspen shavings, recycled newspaper pellets, and even rabbit food (alfalfa pellets) can be used as bedding. from here:


    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 11:05 AM on Aug. 3, 2010

  • Either A) it is at then end of its lifespan, which is about 2 years. Or B) You need to keep its cage clean (at a MINIMUM of 2x a week, it MUST be completely cleaned) Or C) You're using the wrong kind of bedding, pine/cedar are a BIG No No! D) You are keeping it in a glass enclosed fish tank- which is for fish, not rats. They need an open air cage.

    Any, or all of the above listed things will contribute to respiratory distress, which is common in rats... BTW, they are social creatures, and should ALWAYS be kept in pairs or small family groups. They need company, and not just of the human variety.

    Answer by ObbyDobbie at 11:11 AM on Aug. 3, 2010

  • Rats only live about 2 years, max. How old is it? I'm thinking you need to get your DD prepared for the worst. Sorry.simple frown


    Answer by Cindy18 at 11:03 AM on Aug. 3, 2010

  • they tend to get respiratory problems...not sure what you can do are you using good bedding?

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 11:03 AM on Aug. 3, 2010

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