My rat keeps scratching, what should I do?
Your pet may have a number of conditions including mite infestation. If you have any concerns about your rat, contact your vet for advice.
How can I tell if my rat has worms?
It can be difficult to tell if a rat has worms as often there aren’t any outward signs. However, if you suspect that your pet has worms it’s important that you take it to your vet as the most common worm to affect rats, the dwarf tapeworm, can be caught by humans. For further information, contact your vet.
My rat is constantly wheezing – what could it be?
Rats are susceptible to pneumonia caused by a respiratory infection Mycoplasma pulmonis. It can be caught from infected rats and mice and no symptoms are evident until the infection has become well established and changes to the tissue have occurred. Symptoms at this stage include rattling or noisy breathing, nasal discharge and sneezing. Antibiotics can temporarily help alleviate the infection, but rats will always be left with what is commonly known as ‘the snuffles’. The cages of rats with respiratory infections should be cleaned out more regularly as high levels of ammonia can make the condition worse.
How often should I carry out a healthcheck on my pet?
You should check your pet on a daily basis to make sure there are no signs of disease or injury. Simple changes in behaviour in relation to feeding, activity and toilet habits often give a clue that all is not normal. If in doubt or you find anything abnormal contact your vet for advice.
How often should I feed my rat?
Rats are omnivores and require some animal protein in their diet. The easiest way to do this is to feed your pet daily with a complete food specifically for rats, which provides all the nutrients in the correct amounts and proportions. Water must be accessible at all times and bottles are often easier to keep clean, however rats to appreciate being given a bowl of water occasionally so they can splash about and wash.
How often should I play with my rat?
Regular daily exercise is essential for your rat’s health and you should play with your rat on a daily basis to help prevent boredom and conditions like obesity.
Image by John G Meadows on Flickr