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:( Small animals never live long enough.

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  • :( Small animals never live long enough.

    I have two rats, one is almost 2 (Bentley) and the other is 3 (Remy).

    Remy has cancer and has been slowly getting worse. The past few days have been awful. He's skin and bones even though he is eating. I notice a weight difference even in the last few days. I got home from class this afternoon and he's in bad shape. He is having a hard time walking straight. Bless him, he's trying to explore and run around still, but it's so sad to see.

    The closest vet that will actually treat rats is almost 1.5 hours away. At this point I know the right thing to do is euthanize him. I called the vet I use for my dog and they said they can euthanize him for me.

    I feel bad for his cagemate who will be by himself unless I can find / decide to get him a friend.

    It's so sad. He's the coolest rat ever. But I know it's the right thing to do.
    "People ask me 'will I remember them if I make it'. I ask them 'will you remember me if I don't?'"

  • #2
    The reason I never got a ratty. They seem like really neat animals, but such a short lifespan. I'm sorry about yours.
    I have a chinchilla that is almost 20 years old. They seem like an outlier in the small animal category.
    You are what you dare.


    • #3
      I'm so sorry. I've had multiple hamsters, guinea pigs, and bunnies, and it is so sad they have such short lifespans. We get so attached to the little furry beasties.
      I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry


      • #4
        don't know that i personally could have a rat for a pet,but i can completely empathize with your lovng feelings for your dear pets............even those of us with 20-30 year old horses, and dogs/cats living to late teens all feel the same...NOT LONG ENOUGH..........so sorry for your heatbreak and his suffering.....


        • #5
          Oh, no I'm so sorry. No, they really don't live long enough, do they? I've had mice for several years and it's the same story.

          For what it's worth, I had quite a bit of cancer and tumors in my mice (it's terribly common...they're little tumor factories) but I drastically decreased how often they were popping up by changing the food. If you're curious, I can go into more detail.


          • Original Poster

            Originally posted by Simkie View Post
            Oh, no I'm so sorry. No, they really don't live long enough, do they? I've had mice for several years and it's the same story.

            For what it's worth, I had quite a bit of cancer and tumors in my mice (it's terribly common...they're little tumor factories) but I drastically decreased how often they were popping up by changing the food. If you're curious, I can go into more detail.
            Can you send me more info? I still have one rattie here and if I can do something to reduce his risk, I'm all ears.

            I love my vet. They are great with my dog. But they were so kind to my little rattie, talking to him the whole way. They got some little paw prints for me. On top of seeing me at the last minute to do this, the vet didn't even charge me. It was incredibly generous of her.

            It sucks, but I know it was time. I wouldn't be able to sleep tonight if I knew he was laying in his cage struggling.

            I think his cagemate knew he was sick, as the two of them are usually in separate parts of the cage and for the past couple days both of them have been snuggled up togethe. I let his cagemate see him after we got back... he tried to groom him a bit but I think he knew he was gone. I just hope he is ok with it.
            "People ask me 'will I remember them if I make it'. I ask them 'will you remember me if I don't?'"


            • #7
              Little ones just life faster.

              And 3-year-old ratling getting cancer is SOP.

              Many kids in my neighborhood had pet rats and it was usual for us to get 3 years from 'em. Also, we had the Go To vet who was great at removing tumors. If you were lucky, you might do that once or twice and get a little more time.

              Best of luck with your rat.
              The armchair saddler
              Politically Pro-Cat


              • #8
                Originally posted by Milocalwinnings View Post
                Can you send me more info? I still have one rattie here and if I can do something to reduce his risk, I'm all ears.
                It's pretty simple: I feed half oats, half Triple Crown Senior. I used to feed a high quality mouse mix and just had a ton of tumors...I felt like I was at the vet once or twice a month to put down mice because of tumors. It sucked.

                When I went totally over to the TC/oats mix, I think I had ONE more mouse pop with tumors. And when they stopped getting tumors, my mice started living much longer--I had several get to three plus, which is just ancient for them.

                For young, healthy mice, I use crimped oats. For the older ones, I use Quaker. For sick or REALLY old ones (I've had several outlive their teeth!) I mix Quaker with KMR and water, plus a drop of oil if they need weight.

                I only have one lone mouse left, but I had a LOT for a few years--pedigreed, tracked lines, cool colors and coat types--because I thought the genetics were interesting and they're such neat little pets. So the switch from tumors to no tumors was really striking. Nothing else was changed, so I'm quite certain it was the food...and some of my mice that went to another breeder that were put back on a commercial mouse mix popped tumors while the siblings that I kept did not.


                • #9
                  Milo I'm sorry about your little guy and sorry for his buddy. The little fuzz are so smart but so short-lived...
                  “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Stephen R. Covey


                  • #10
                    OP, sorry about your wee fellow. I'm a g. pig person myself and feel your sadness. I've heard that rats are very cancer-prone. :-(

                    Simkie, that is just plain SCARY! I'm glad you were able to figure out a better diet for your mice, but man, sure makes me wonder about OUR food!
                    "Horses lend us the wings we lack." ~ Pam Brown


                    • #11
                      MiLocal -

                      I am so sorry about your little rattie. they do make great pets!

                      I had a singleton for my son, but adopted her and loved her to pieces!
                      then my daughter and I each got 1 then I got 3 more!

                      Mine only lived to around 2 and some died and some I put to sleep.

                      I would love to have them again at some point because they are such great pets, but I hated the cage cleaning! I'd have to find better cages.


                      • #12
                        So sorry about little rattie. I had gerbils when I was a kid, a couple of them (Herbie a nd Ethel) lived a fairly long time. Herbie was smart. I trained him to run mazes made out of building blocks, would put a piece of lettuce at the end as a reward. One day my cat got out while Herbie was running his maze . . . . . that was awful.
                        What's wrong with you?? Your cheese done slid off its cracker?!?!