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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-02-2013, 04:07 PM Thread Starter
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Rats bought with mites/lice help please?

Hi everyone,
I'm new here and looking for some advice regarding four male rats I bought on Friday. I bought them from a 'reputable' breeder in the area, however I found when the breeder arrived the way he treated the rats didn't sit right with me (picking them up by their tails etc) and the day later in proper daylight I noticed they were all covered with lice/mite eggs! Obviously because I've bought 4 this will be super expensive to get treated at the vets and for now I've ordered a couple of different well recommended products to hopefully rid them but I'm really pretty frustrated with the dealer and worried about my boys. I've emailed them letting them know to check their rats and they say they have no problems with them and never have but I'm not sure I believe them. Does anyone know how long it would take mites to lay fresh eggs if they had caught it from their substrate or something? Just so worried about the boys as they seem to be ok but it can't be comfy, am going to get rid of the Hemcore I bought just in case I think which is a shame but ho hum. Thanks for any advice in advance!

Ellie
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-04-2013, 10:46 PM
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I am not sure, but I would definitely turn them in if you feel they are mishandling their animals.I know that you can use Revolution on rats in very small doses, but that is also a pperscription, I got it for my cat, and my vet told me I could use it on my ferrets and rats in small doses. It may help if you are able to get you hands on some. I would recommend a good deep clean bath for all four, and completely clean and sanitize their cage, toys, and hammocks if you have any. Also if you are using any bedding in their cage, that could also be carrying msites. I have turned to scrap cloths, or cheap fleece blankets. That way I can just wash them regularly and when need be (after they have ripped too many holes in the blankets) I just toss them out.I know that i probablywasn't much help, but I hope I gave you some good ideas

My animals are my babies:
Cats: Abegale, Figaro, Chud and Adalynn
Ferrets: Panda & Fox
Mice: Nakotah, Raina and Esme (all white)
Rats: Ava (white&gray) and Isabel *new addition* Opal and Zuri (part siamese)
My Parents Cats (I love them like they are my own): Cutie, Grey, Precious, Milo, Belindo (aka Billy), Oreo, Pepper, Koda and Fluffers

Rest in Peace all my babies I miss you dearly:
Mice: Sable (March 2013), Piper (March 2012), Kayleigh (Dec 31, 2011), Eleanor, Analeghsia, Chloe and Zoey.
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I miss you all, you will forever hold a place in my Heart <3
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-05-2013, 07:08 PM
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So frustrating. I'm so sorry you're dealing with this out of the gate.

Any 'reputable breeder' worth their salt would never treat their rats this way. This is JABB "Just another backyard breeder". I just want to smack this person for what they've done to you and their rats.

A reputable breeder will never hold a rat by the tail.
A reputable breeder would be honest with any problems with their rats, thank you for pointing a concern out to them and show initiative to check their own rats.
A reputable breeder would be generous and always available with advice on how to treat your new babies when problems arise.


If you noticed a problem a day after getting them, the problem exists in the breeder's colony. Given the way he/she is presenting themselves in just this letter, I'd go ahead and jump to the assumption that they don't follow basic sanitation common sense (common sense to a long term rat owner/breeder). IE: All newly purchased bedding should be frozen for two days prior to exposure to the rats.
While lice and mites can show up in any colony, aside from specific situations, it's usually so easy to prevent. The breeder could have prevented this but didn't care enough to do so.

I'm a bit concerned about the general health of your babies too, because sometimes infestations will explode when a rat's immune symptom was compromised. Keep an eye on them.


Informational Articles on Lice and Mites in rats:
http://lilspazrats.wikispaces.com/He...toparasites%29
http://www.rmca.org/Articles/bugs.htm
http://ratguide.com/health/integumen...oparasites.php


Best of luck with this.


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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 02:51 AM Thread Starter
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Where can I actually report them to if they aren't NFRS approved? I got so frustrated myself as I'd done loads of research and thought I was doing the right thing by going to a breeder with good reviews etc.. The boys are doing much better though Thanks for the advice and the links. Still working our way through treatment but there are so many less of the eggs etc visible and the boys seem to be much happier, though they are really not fond of baths!
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 12:19 PM
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Unfortunately, rats get the brunt end of the stick with animal abuse situations-Both because of their social reputation and the fact that they are so often bred as feeder animals. Unless the situation that you observed is an out of control cruelty case/health hazard/hoarding cruelty case, and unless the animal services in your area actually have the funding and initiative, there's very little you can do with reporting them to official channels. On a personal level, the best things to do are to never support them again financially, give them the opportunity to learn and improve by tactfully presenting your concerns to them, and to equally tactfully spread word of your concerns in your community and the online rat community.

For future rats, if you'd still like to go through a breeder, the best thing to do is become active on rat sites and continue to educate yourself on what makes a good breeder, what area common red flags, and who truly has a good reputation in the breeding community, not just what they say when tooting their own horn.

The former Blackwolf Rattery has written an outstanding article on recognizing red flags when searching for a breeder. This has saved me in two situations, and served as a learning tool for two others: http://bwr-rats.blogspot.com/2011/10/red-flags.html


A lot of rat lovers will encourage you to adopt a needy rat as well(some will get more strident than just encouraging and may get rude). That's an excellent route as well. It hasn't taken me long to figure out who does good work in my area of the country for both breeders and rescues.

www.goosemoose.com is the biggest and most active rat-centric community in North America and a good place to start. However, go into it with a thick skin and a willingness to learn, as while they give great advice and info, sometimes they are a bit too overzealous and critical in what they consider good rat ownership. I really like the community and respect the heck out of them, but that would be my only wish for improvement.

They can give you a wealth of tips on how to continue to treat your babies, and if anyone can hook you up with future adoptions or reputable breeders in your area they can. And of course though we are currently a tiny site, we'll be happy to help out as we can too.


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