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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My poor Russ always has issues. This time he's managed to get what seems to be an abscess on his right hind foot. It is round, with a scab on the top, and it has started to get a bit red and puffy. I've been keeping an eye on it since the scab first appeared two days ago, and last night I rinsed it with gentle soap and warm water, but today it seems a bit worse. I've read on several different threads here and on another forum that I should attempt to open it and drain it several days in a row until it disappears. Since he is already on ABs for his URI, I am assuming there is not much more that can be done at the vet's. Does this seem right?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well, I'm resurrecting this, since no one replied the first time... Russell still has issues with that foot--it's basically a never-ending scab now. This morning it was looking a little worse again, so I cleaned him up and got some stuff out of it. The thing that makes me sad is that I don't think he even likes me to hold him anymore, because with all of his little issues, it seems like every time I pick him up, I have to do something to him! (Bathe him, clean his foot, give him medicine, etc.) He doesn't like to come and play that much anymore. :( Today is his 22-month birthday and I'm not sure how much longer he'll be with me, but I hope that he won't hate me for all of the things I put him through!
 

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Poor baby! I'm so sorry you're having problems with this. Have you taken him to the vet over it since you first posted? It may be that they can drain better there? The vet I took the nakeds to see gave them some mild gas to calm them down and drained and cleaned the abscesses in their bums. It was much less stressful to them than if I had tried to do the same.

And I can only imagine how you are feeling right now. It's so hard to be a good animal parent some times. My two dogs had extremely antagonistic relationships with each other, with me being the catalyst since I was the one they were fighting over. I had to quit petting them and loving on them and basically spend the next 10 years of their life being the remote and in control alpha instead of their mommy. I tried to find a balance but since they were sisters--a relationship that is most likely in a wild pack to result in death of one of the two as they fight for breeding rights--The best it ever got was a barely tolerant truce between them. I can only console myself in the fact that I did what was best for them over my own needs, but it was never easy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That's so sad about your dogs!! :( It is hard to do what's right, sometimes, but ultimately it's in their best interest.

I decided against taking him to the vet because he is to a point now where his breathing gets pretty bad when he is stressed out. I figured it's better for me to clean him at home than to even further stress him by taking him in, especially since it's not an incredibly urgent situation. Hotter weather isn't helping his breathing, either, so today he had his pool and chin-chillers. I always make sure to give him treats after I have to do something that he doesn't like, though, which seems to cheer him up a bit.
 

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Breyer,
I am SO sorry I missed your original post about this on the 1st of May! Marc and I went on our yearly anniversary trip out of town and we just got back last week, so I guess I missed the first post about Russell's foot problem. I am so sorry about his foot, the poor baby. :(
You are such an awesome rat mommy to your boys so I know that going with your instincts about the best thing to do for him will be the right choice. I totally agree with you about hating to take him to the vet and stressing him out so much with that. I always hated taking my boys to the vet too, as it really upset and scared them.
Please keep us updated on his foot and maybe you can talk to your vet on the phone and get some tips? I know the best you can do for him right now is to keep him as comfortable and happy as possible. You always make excellent decisions with your boys and I know you make choices that will be the least upsetting for them. Hang in there and as always, give Russell special kisses and cuddles from us, okay? Thinking of you both.
 

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P.S. Are you able to drain it okay at home or does it not look like it is improving at this point? Maybe the vet might need to drain it professionally, as Storyseeker suggested, if it is not healing up properly. Do vets prescribe pain meds for that kind of thing too, or no?
 

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I just read this, and I hope poor Russell is doing ok! I know how you feel with the thing about having to do something he doesn't like. I feel that way with Juno right now with the way I sometimes have to force-feed her the electrolytes for her dehydration (can't soak a piece of bread with them like I can with the antibiotics, she won't eat it). She isn't giving me kisses like she used to when I pick her up. :( But rats are smart, and sometimes I think that even if they don't like what we're doing when we're taking care of them, they know it's doing them good in the long run.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Happy belated anniversary, Vlad, to you and Marc! :D

It isn't really much of an abscess at this point--nothing draining from it now, it's just a never-ending scab. I have removed all litter from their litter box, and I wipe down all the floors of their cage and playpen daily to keep it as sanitary as possible for him. Since he's already on antibiotics, I don't think there's much more the vet could do for him. I have to call tomorrow to see what the vet wants to do about his respiratory situation (continue or discontinue the treatment), so we'll see.
 

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Thanks Breyer! It was our 11th wedding anniversary. :)

Well that sounds good that Russell's abcsess (sp?) has gotten a scab now, yes? I think you are right...if it has scabbed up and there does not seem to be anything else left to drain, and he is on antibiotics, the vet probably would not be able to do much else. Sounds like you are doing a great job, like usual, at being a rat mommy nurse for Russell. :)
Let me know what the vet says about his respiratory situation. Kisses to my nephews. :wave:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
11 years! That's so awesome, Vlad! Congrats again, and I think it's such a cool idea that you guys always go on a trip around that time each year. That makes it even more special! :D

Russell was mad because I had to clean their cage today, but I made up for it because he got a nice dinner and a few treats. :) Now he's playing in his playpen and Stanley is burrowing in their digging box.
 

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Aww, thanks Breyer! :)
It also helps that besides being the best husband in the world, Marc is also the best rat daddy ever. We still "talk" to Wolfie and Klausse every day. Their pictures are all over the house. We miss them so much. Marc and I have several out of town travel plans this year and it is not a good year to have new babies, as I would want to be home with them 100 percent, but we may get new babies next year when the time is right. :dream:

I was SO happy to hear the update on Russell. Playing in his playpen and getting grumpy at Mom for cleaning out their house. Sounds like the normal Russ to me! Feel free to post new pics whenever you want. We can never get enough of Russ and Stan. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
You guys are so awesome! :D I know you're probably anxious to meet some new furry children, but you'll definitely know when the time is right--and I can't wait! :)

The vet called me back a little bit ago and he said he wants to take Russ off the meds for a bit to see how he does. He said he wants to do this to try to avoid AB resistance, which is a good idea. But, if Russ starts to have major breathing issues again, we're going to put him back on. I just have to monitor him closely.
 

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You are so on top of it Breyer! I know Russ will do as well as possible under your close eye and care. Keep us posted!:)

Yep, until we are ready to get new babies, it is such a comfort to come to the forum and keep up on all of Wolfie and Klausse's cousins and friends to see how they are doing. It is like having many rat children from afar. :dream:
 

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So sorry to here that about your rat. I might be able to give some info I went to see a rat breeder about 2 weeks ago and her rat had the same thing but it was on the belly she told me that she has to get all the fluid out of the abscess and after that she puts some sort of cream on it and she does it everyday. I think you should try it Im not asking you to trust me, its just she's been a rat breeder for 20years and she knew alot. I hope I helped in some sort of way :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks for the info! It does seem to be healing better now--he's finally got a nice, stable scab where the wound was, and it seems to be hardening well to the point where it will be able to fall off on its own. I do check it every day to make sure... so hopefully no more draining will be necessary! :)
 

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That is great news to hear Breyer, I am so glad! Sounds like he is on the mend for sure. Hooray! Thanks for the update!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well, it's been a month now, and I actually managed to get some photos of his foot. It looks a lot better than it did, though it hasn't fully healed yet, and I'm wondering if it ever will? The hard scab has pretty much disappeared, and in its place is this circular indentation in his foot. The skin is raised around the edge, and then it dips in the middle of the wound. Any thoughts?



 

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Wow, the pad of his foot reminds me of what bumblefoot sometimes looks like, could it be that? I have no idea but I remember some of the photos in my rat care books that showed what bumblefoot looks like it Russell's foot reminds me of those pictures. Anyone else have any thoughts? Can you tell if he has any pain from this or no?
 

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It actually does look like bumblefoot. Does russel seem in pain or anything i would say if he isn't it should be fine but keep an eye on it so it doesn't get affected.
 
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