Beginning 6pm this evening, I received and am now taking care of my neighbor's rats for about 10 days.
They are girls, and boy does Timmy know it! They definitely smell each other even though they are across the room and out of eyesight of each other. lol! The girls are a mother and daughter, 3 and 2 years old I believe. Both are white with white bodies and black earmuffs, and a white blaze on their noses.
To get to the point....I haven't seen the rats in about 3 or 4 months. So when I saw them today, we'll I'm in shock. The daughter is fine. But the mother has a HUGE growth between her back legs, just to the right side a bit. It's under her skin, and there are two separate dime sized spots of fur missing. She doesn't seem to acknowledge it. There is also either pus from a wound (I checked and couldn't find any), or a very yellowy diarrhea stuck to her fur between the anus and growth. I then gave her a small piece of dried bread as a treat because I got her worked up while checking her over. Then 15 minutes later I checked her again (for a better look) and she had the yellowy brownish stuff (I assume poo) coming out her bum. She seems to have clear eyes. She is VERY curious, friendly, and degu-ish. She has hoarse but clear sneezies. She has porphorin (sp DOH!) OH! This is wierd....when she drinks from the water bottle (still talking about growth rat) she sits up, a lot like a penguin, and she tries to grab the bottle nozzle to hold it, but her arms seriously flap like wings really fast, then she does another hoarse-but-clear sneezie, then goes back to drinking...without using her arms. But she can walk and climb fine. Has a great appetite. And right now she's lying on a shelf, bruxing at us.
Now, THIS I haven't seen before. As my title says. This growth, underskin, with missing fur....is HUUUGE!! Like, a large sized chicken egg, AND in between the hind legs of this female rat. (I really don't remember their names
). Seriously it's got to be 30% of the rat sans growth.
They're housed on pine, in a small starter bunny/gp cage.
I know. They're not mine. The "owner" is an 11 year old, but her parents are my friends. I can't afford to take her in, and I'm pretty sure they can't either. Has anyone seen this before, and how do you recommend I handle this -- with as much self control as possible? Because I blush....a lot.