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Rats, is this fighting wounds or mites?

(10 Posts)
BeYourselfUnlessUCanBeAUnicorn Wed 29-Jun-16 11:58:06

One photo isn't great. I cannot get a decent one of her face but that is where most of the scratches are. Couple on her back. Vet said they are fighting, I haven't been able to verify this at all.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Wed 29-Jun-16 14:02:59

Poor love .
Has she been scratching herself at all?

I don't have rat experience but I know GuineaPig mites tend to show the signs on the rump, but the hairs look 'snapped' off. (And open raw skin if they scratch)
On the face I'd be more worried about fungal infection.

Is it just her that's got the wounds or anything on her cagemate?

Did you vet suggest a skin scraping to check or look at a hair/skin sample under the microscope ?

RattieOfCatan Wed 29-Jun-16 17:06:46

As I said before, I think it's worth treating for mites regardless, mites make rats tetchy and sometimes you just won't see them.

The back looks like a fight wound but the face I'm confused by. Did you manage to join one of those forums or the FB group? It really is worth asking on them as a lot of breeders and very experienced people use those forums. Vets are hit and miss, unless you have a rodentologist or small ani all specialist you may be getting just not standard answers, you need to ask a very experienced owner for advice. Another thing worth doing is emailing Debbie Ducommun, the Rat Lady. She's pretty much a rat guru.

RattieOfCatan Wed 29-Jun-16 17:26:54

Looking at the face again I'm wondering if it's a skin infection or barbering. If it were scratches or bites it wouldnt look like that bit on the nose does. Your dominant rat could be barbering her face, our Howls arms and neck looked like that before he really went at it, now his whole neck area is bald and sore. He does it to himself but some do do it to other rats.

Is the back injury a typical injury or is it a one off?

BeYourselfUnlessUCanBeAUnicorn Wed 29-Jun-16 22:02:25

Just given them the mite treatment. I don't know how well it will spread, I put it on the back of the neck and tried spreading it around but it hasn't spread far. They are 300g so at the right weight (just) for the one I got, the one you recommended rattie.

Yes I joined that haven't had many replies. Only 1 to the photos. He did say the face picture looked like mites and the back one looked like she had scratched herself.

She does scratch, not sure if I'd say it was all the time or excessive. I didn't think so tbh.

70 her cage mate doesn't have anything like this and the vet didn't say anything about skin scrapings. She said it was from fighting and when I said do I need to separate she said yes, then when I said I was reluctant to as I know rats are supposed to live together, she said not to and keep an eye. I wasn't sure if she really knew. Last time I saw a different vet who seemed to know rats better. I did choose this vet based on online reviews of them knowing about rats but maybe it's only certain vets there.

Would barbering be red and look like scratches? It's hard to see from the photo, and in RL actually, she won't keep still, I looked at some photos of it online and they all looked like bald patches, these do look a bit bald but red as well. The back wound is ongoing. It doesn't seem to heal, I have seen blood smeared in her fur from that wound. She now has another one a little way away from it, smaller.

I will look up that lady, thanks.

RattieOfCatan Fri 01-Jul-16 16:34:06

Just getting it on the neck is enough, from what I understand it absorbs through the skin and into the blood stream so kills whatever may be biting them.

The back wound being ongoing is concerning, is it the same wound reopening or is it just staying open? It's just that rats heal ridiculously fast usually. We've had a few full on muscle-viewing wounds before which have been stuck back together by themselves overnight and healed properly within a week at most, if that particular wound is reopening something else must be going on, rats are notorious for how well they heal. You can buy wound ointment which may help that heal up, though it may need antibiotics.

That face really isn't normal scratching, it can't be, scratches wouldn't be that agitated. I've been talking to DH about everything you've said both on this thread, the previous and our messages and his first comment was that the vet doesn't know what they are talking about. I think that you said previously that the vet came with good reviews, it may be a particular vet in your practice who is good for rats. We had a rodentologist in ours and then a small animal specialist after that, we've recently been seeing more of the others and, frankly, they're rubbish with small animals. We walk in, tell them what meds we need and walk out with those meds, they're probably great cat and dog vets but they just don't have the knowledge of small animals. Has your practice got a website? They usually go into a bit of detail about each vet on the practice websites and you can see who to ask for if you need to go again in future. We've used our practices website to ensure that we don't see certain vets, including one of the practice owners blush

BeYourselfUnlessUCanBeAUnicorn Fri 01-Jul-16 23:18:06

Yes it seems to be the same wound. Very odd if they heal quickly. It's been there a while. The vet said it wasn't infected, but that was at that time. There seems to be another one nearby which is new. It's awkward as she seems quite hyper at the moment and won't stay still for 2 seconds for me to ha e a look. Every time I try to take photos, she come over trying to bite the phone grin. Will have a look at the vets website. Thank you for discussing it with your DH as well. I feel so sorry for my poor little Anna. She's so gentle and lovely. Always come over and give a little lick. I hate the thought of her being hurt.

RattieOfCatan Sat 02-Jul-16 17:24:07

It doesn't look infected to me either but the length of time it's been there is concerning, I'd expect a wound like that to be completely closed overnight and fully healed within a few days. She could be scratching it which would irritate it, they can reach places you'd never expect them to!

Poor thing though, it could be a skin problem too but I'm hoping that the mite treatment has worked and that you see improvement soon. If it is a skin condition you'd probably need to see a vet again and get something to treat it with.

If you have any fucidin cream in the house that's great for sores and can be used safely on rats, you just rub it into the affected skin. We used to use it on our special needs boy's feet as due to a combination of lack of movement, peeing where he slept and preferring to sleep on the bare cage floor hmm he had bumblefoot, fucidin healed it quite quickly even when it was really sore and open.

Our rats enjoy biting phones too. And peeing on them hmm grin We have a nice camera that we use for photos of them these days!

BeYourselfUnlessUCanBeAUnicorn Sat 02-Jul-16 21:52:59

Her face scratches looked a bit better last night so hoping they are healing after the mite treatment.

I do have fucidin. Me or DS often get impetigo. DH thinks the back one didn't look as bad yesterday but you ha e to move the fur to see and she is a fidget so it's hard, it's definitely still there so will try a bit of fucidin.

RattieOfCatan Sun 03-Jul-16 13:51:59

Glad to hear that smile

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