Question on Doxy Medication (My rats hate the taste) - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-03-2010, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
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Question on Doxy Medication (My rats hate the taste)

Hello to all you experienced rat meds people out there (that includes you, Breyer!)

I have a question. Both my boys went to the vet today as Klausse was starting to make noises that I didn't like and Wolfie was sneezing, and lo and behold, they both have bronchial/respitory issues, as we suspected. Here is my question? One of the meds the doctor put them on is Doxycycline (sp?) and I noticed that they are not too thrilled with it when I mix it with their favorite baby food, sweet potatoes.

They were fine with the other meds, but the doctor warned me that doxy is kind of bitter and it can be tough to get some rats to take it. Anyone have any surefire tricks on how to disguise the taste with something? I thought their baby food would work, but they sort of tasted it and then went, "Ick, no more, thanks". Any advice?

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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-03-2010, 09:20 PM
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I am not sure if this is the same with rats but when I was medicating foster kittens with doxy I found the only way to get it in them was by sticking a syringe in their mouth and getting the medication in before they could get the syringe out of their mouth. Of course you have to be careful not to choke them with the medication.





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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-03-2010, 11:39 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, the syringe in the mouth is always an option but I am one of those soft-bellied wussy rat moms who hates having to force anything into my babies' mouths, ha ha. You know the type!

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-03-2010, 11:52 PM
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Hmm, they didn't do a suspension? My vets always make a suspension of the baytril and the doxy with flavored syrup, so it's usually not too hard to get them to eat it. That being said, Russ still was fussy with his doxy suspension, and I found that I could get him to eat it if I mixed it with foods like mashed sweet potatoes (and a tiny bit of butter!), yogurt, and baby food squash. I also tried mixing it in some mashed bananas (his suspension was banana-flavored) and that worked for a few times in a row, but then I think he caught on... I ended up switching what I mixed it in about every two or three doses.

Good luck!!! I hope they'll feel better soon!!!!!

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-03-2010, 11:59 PM
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Oh, just thought of a few more things I've done with Russell to trick him into taking the doxy:

I also soaked a bit of bread in the dose of medicine and then spread random things on the bread. Sometimes yogurt, sometimes peanut butter (he LOVED that, though be careful not to put too much on because it can be hard for them to lick it!), I think I might have even tried a bit of honey at one point, but he wasn't incredibly wild about that. Hopefully one of these will do the trick for Klausse and Wolfgang!!


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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 09:11 AM
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you are not supposed to put doxy in yogurt... yogurt contains bacteria, and doxy is an anti-bacteria.
You have to give milk products 2h before or after giving doxy. i'm not sure if it lessens the effect of the doxy or not, but i have been told by my vet it shouldn't be done.
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You can try mixing with a bit of maple syrup. The bread thing doesn't work for louna because she licks off the topping and doesn't eat the bread... haha
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oh i just found this on ratguide.com:
"absorption of doxycycline is impaired by calcium, magnesium, and iron containing preparations. It is recommended they be given two hours before or after giving doxycyline."
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 01:50 PM
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Thanks for the bit about the yogurt--I've seen people on other sites using yogurt with doxy/baytril, so I tried it once or twice with Russell, but the same thing happened that you said happens with Louna--he licked the yogurt and didn't eat the bread with the meds. He seems to prefer peanut butter. The maple syrup sounds like a good idea... I might have to try that!!!


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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-04-2010, 03:36 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for the great suggestions! The maple syrup idea sounds like it might work. I even have sugar free maple syrup in the fridge. Our small animal vet is awesome and she spent a lot of time examining the boys. She finally told us that she wanted to give them three different meds: Doxycyline, metacam (for discomfort, and to reduce inflammation in their lungs) and also a bronchiodialator (sp?) that helps to clear out their lungs and assists with easing the respiratory problem. She did not give Baytril, but when I asked if they had standard URI, she said no, it is something different and she told me the medical term but I can't remember what it was! But, not life threatening and she was confident about the med combos working well, so there ya go. I will call her back and ask again what the official medical term was for what she said they have.

Thanks again for the suggestions and I will keep trying to cover up that icky doxy taste! Glad you like my new signature Breyer, and thanks for the well wishes!

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-05-2010, 07:34 AM
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Did your vet say mycoplasmosis?

Doxy is always more bitter than most other antibiotics, taste it if you want to. Blech. You need something very strong or sweet to mask the flavour. You could try baby cereal with strawberry Nesquik syrup to see if that covers it enough.

My rats rarely refuse it but I also know how to sryinge meds into rats as well if necessary.

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-05-2010, 02:07 PM Thread Starter
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Hi Lilspaz,

Yeah, she was explaining in medical terms exactly what the boys have and she mentioned mycoplasmosis and sendai and I FREAKED and got scared, like "oh my god, my boys are finished!" and she said, "no, no, this is common and it is a combo of several different things and they are not in trouble. They need to go through meds for a couple of weeks and it can flare up again down the road but this is very common with rats and they just will need to be medicated occassionally every so often if they get a flare up" etc.

This vet, Dr. Delaney, specializes in rodents and small animals only, so she does not even treat dogs or cats, and she has won about a jillion veterinary awards in the state of Washington so she is very knowledgeable about rats in my opinion and I trust her completely, but when I heard myco and sendai I automatically freaked out. I will need to call her and get the official term she gave me for this combo diagnosis thing she said they had. I need to brush up on my rat book sections on this stuff!

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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-06-2010, 05:50 AM
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Quote:
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Hi Lilspaz,

Yeah, she was explaining in medical terms exactly what the boys have and she mentioned mycoplasmosis and sendai and I FREAKED and got scared, like "oh my god, my boys are finished!" and she said, "no, no, this is common and it is a combo of several different things and they are not in trouble. They need to go through meds for a couple of weeks and it can flare up again down the road but this is very common with rats and they just will need to be medicated occassionally every so often if they get a flare up" etc.

This vet, Dr. Delaney, specializes in rodents and small animals only, so she does not even treat dogs or cats, and she has won about a jillion veterinary awards in the state of Washington so she is very knowledgeable about rats in my opinion and I trust her completely, but when I heard myco and sendai I automatically freaked out. I will need to call her and get the official term she gave me for this combo diagnosis thing she said they had. I need to brush up on my rat book sections on this stuff!
If she said Myco, that's fine and normal in fact. Myco attacks the immune system constantly and when there's a dip in the rat's health then it allows a secondary infection to flare up. These are myco flareups...the myco itself is untreatable, but the URI or other issue IS. That is what she is talking about. Most URI's are from myco flareups. I find the weaker a rat's natural immune system the more likely to have flareups over their lifetime. A rat with a strong immune system will have myco but won't have any/many flareups.

If she mentions Sendai Virus then you do worry! SV kills and quickly. I highly doubt its SV as I have been through it and even though I was prepared and started medicating everyone heavily I still lost some rats. ALL my rats were sick within 2 weeks or so. Its highly contagious but its also unmistakeable. I think your vet was trying to tell you of respiratory issues that can occur but not that is was Sendai, or she would've been sending you home with multiple meds, and lots of warnings, and talk of being under quarantine for at least 6 weeks, etc. You are probably just dealing with a run of the mill URI.

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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-06-2010, 08:26 AM
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Yeah, I'm sure it's just a myco flareup, which is what my Russell currently has as well. Especially since this vet is a rodent specialist, she would definitely have told you about Sendai if that's what they had. Don't worry--hopefully with one round of treatment this time around they'll be feeling better.


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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-06-2010, 02:45 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for the posts Breyer and Lilspaz! Yes, you are both correct, I know for sure that even though she mentioned several different things in her rapid fire doctor talk, including Sendai, that it was not specifically what she said they have. She was mentioning "umbrella terms" that can cover a wide variety of medical issues and I probably heard Sendai and went, "WOAH, wait a minute!" but yes, she said they have the same thing that most all rats get and said it was run of the mill, etc. So you are right, I just heard several terms in her diagnosis and her doctor talk and got a little muddled!

Thanks for your good wishes and I have already noticed that Klausse, the one who was worse, sounds better already.

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