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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-09-2009, 11:47 PM Thread Starter
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advice please - rats ate rubber!

hello everyone. I have made a terrible (and embarrassing) mistake. I left a box of three condoms on the same table as my rat cage...well, in the hour I was away they somehow managed to grab the box, and they gnawed through it. they removed two of them, chewed through the packaging, and ate them. I found two of the thicker ring parts from the bottoms, so I know that they ate the rest between the two of them. it does not appear that they ate any of the other packaging, and they did not have any lubrication or chemicals. they are both acting completely normal, but I am very worried. I can't believe I let this happen. there is no vet I could take them to at this hour, does anyone have any experience with their rats eating rubber accidentally? I am planning to stay up tonight to keep an eye on them, should I take them to the vet in the morning? thank you so much for your help.

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2009, 12:33 AM
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It's pretty amazing what rats can/will eat. I think the main thing you need to worry about is a blockage. It may not manifest symptoms right away. The vet will tell you what to watch for and when to start looking. But since they are probably in (ratty) bite size pieces, the materiel won't expand and isn't stringy, I think the chances of a blockage are relatively small.

Condoms are designed to handle some rough treatment and bodily fluids, so my guess is that they are pretty inert in the digestive system, so I wouldn't worry about poison. If they are good enough for drug smugglers to risk their valuable cargo, I'd think your ratties are safe.


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2009, 09:05 AM
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I have one rat who will eat anything rubbery that he can get his little hands on. He has eaten or tried to eat bits of shoe soles, wires, buttons off my remote control (GRR! Now I don't know what half the buttons are!), buttons on my phone, the rubbery covering on the handle on his Martin's Cage. When he gets into something I always just make sure he's eating, drinking, peeing, and pooping for the next two days. Keep an eye on them, and good luck. I hope they'll be fine.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2009, 10:48 AM Thread Starter
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thank you both so much! I got up every two hours last night to check on them, and they still seem all right this morning. fortunately it's the weekend, so I can watch them carefully the next couple of days. I talked to the vet this morning, too, and she did tell me some things to watch for...hopefully it will all be ok
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2009, 01:01 PM
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just so people know in case this happens, what did the vet say?

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2009, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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the vet said to make sure they continue to eat and drink, and to monitor their poop to see when the rubber starts coming out. she said that rats are designed to eat almost anything, so I just have to make sure it comes out. I already have seen some bits today.

if they are not eating/drinking normally, or if they seem to be having trouble going to the bathroom, then she said to bring them in right away, but so far it looks like they are going to be fine.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-12-2009, 12:22 PM
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yeeaaah! good luck! one crazy endeavor down, many more to go!
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 11:18 PM
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thats a sad situation, but you have to admit, kinda funny. rats are silly. =)
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ate, rats, sick

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