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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, it is really sad for me to write this, but my little Russ is just not doing well, and I think he might not be with us much longer. For the past two days he has been having difficulty breathing, but it is lasting longer than normal. Yesterday he ate a bit of food, but today he is refusing everything. He wants to eat, but because of his breathing he just can't.

It breaks my heart because I have to fly out of town for the next four days due to a really important job interview, so my husband will be at home with him. Russell does not seem to be in any pain, just uncomfortable, but he has been cuddling with Stanley as much as possible and enjoying being petted. We have decided to try to let him stay here at home, where he is happy and calm, as opposed to taking him in to the vet. I told my husband to keep a close eye on him for signs of pain, because at that point he should make the decision to have him put to sleep. But, both of us would prefer to have him go peacefully at home, because we know that is what he would prefer, too.

Does anyone have advice on what to do to make him comfortable? We have been keeping him warm with lots of blankets, and trying to give him food/water as much as possible, though he's starting to refuse it now.

Please keep us all in your thoughts. I will have to say goodbye to him today, knowing that he might not be here when I get back. :(:(
 

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Rat Rescuer and Hospice
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Well, it is really sad for me to write this, but my little Russ is just not doing well, and I think he might not be with us much longer. For the past two days he has been having difficulty breathing, but it is lasting longer than normal. Yesterday he ate a bit of food, but today he is refusing everything. He wants to eat, but because of his breathing he just can't.

It breaks my heart because I have to fly out of town for the next four days due to a really important job interview, so my husband will be at home with him. Russell does not seem to be in any pain, just uncomfortable, but he has been cuddling with Stanley as much as possible and enjoying being petted. We have decided to try to let him stay here at home, where he is happy and calm, as opposed to taking him in to the vet. I told my husband to keep a close eye on him for signs of pain, because at that point he should make the decision to have him put to sleep. But, both of us would prefer to have him go peacefully at home, because we know that is what he would prefer, too.

Does anyone have advice on what to do to make him comfortable? We have been keeping him warm with lots of blankets, and trying to give him food/water as much as possible, though he's starting to refuse it now.

Please keep us all in your thoughts. I will have to say goodbye to him today, knowing that he might not be here when I get back. :(:(
Are you giving him soft liquidy food he can lick up between breaths?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes, we've tried giving him baby porridge (which he normally loves), baby food squash and sweet potatoes, but this morning he didn't touch any of it.
 

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Yes, we've tried giving him baby porridge (which he normally loves), baby food squash and sweet potatoes, but this morning he didn't touch any of it.
Try ensure (strawberry is best), you may need to offer it from the syringe. He may take it just to please you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I got some strawberry ensure and just tried to give it to him, but he pushed it away with his hand. I even wiped some on his mouth, but he refuses to eat or drink anything. :( Is it safe for me to force feed him? (I'm worried about it choking him, since he's having trouble breathing...)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I am very sad to say that Russell's condition deteriorated quite rapidly over the past two hours, and we had to take him to the emergency vet to be put to sleep. :(:(:(:(:(:( I am devastated, but trying to remember what a great life he had. I will write a proper memorial thread at the end of the week, when I've had time to reflect. :hugg2:
 

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Oh Breyer. I am just at a loss for words. I just now read all the posts and it struck me like a brick. I can't even begin to say how sorry I am. You know how much we all loved Russ and I am trying to comprehend that he has left us. I will send you a private post later when you get back from your trip. You are in our thoughts and I at least know Russ is a happy boy right now, breathing easy, with all of his forum ratty cousins, Klausse and Wolfie included. We will talk again soon. All our love. :sneakyhug:
 

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One more thing to say, before you leave for your trip...I just called Marc on his cell phone (he is out doing an errand) to let him know about Russ, as I knew he would want to know. He was just devastated and said to please tell you and your husband how very sorry he is about Russ. Marc always had that soft spot for Russell, as we all did and he is very sad to hear about it. But he also wanted me to tell you that he knows Russell is hanging out with so many ratty friends right now, including our boys. A good thing to think about. We both know all too well what you and your husband are going through. Take care and we will talk with you soon on the forum when you get back from your trip. All our love to you.

Vlad and Marc
 

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I am so very sorry. As soon as they refuse food, they soon will leave us. (((hugs))) He was a wonderful, storied rat, and none of us will forget him anytime soon.
 

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You guys have said it better than I could, so I'll just say here, here. We all loved Russell, and will miss him horribly.

Hugs to you all.
 

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Oh No!!! I have been away from paw talk for a couple of weeks and return to find out little Russel has moved on! My life is in shambles and my little rats bring me the little joy I have. I am so incrediblly sorry he is gone. But on the bright side.. He was an amazing rat. He had an amazing life. Many.. many rats do not get that chance. We love you guys..

Jimmie
Tonya
Hector
Robin
Whiskers
Nadia
Greyson
Nymeria (Ni-Ni)
Jackie &Chan
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks, everyone, for your love and support. I am back from my trip, and we just picked up his ashes tonight to bring him home for good. I will try to put together an appropriate memorial thread for him this weekend. I miss him a lot.
 

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Welcome home Breyer, and please take your time with your thoughts. We all know this is very difficult. James, your post was a great reminder that so many rats do not have the chance to lead fulfilling and amazing lives. Well said. Russell had the best of everything, and a full life, full of love. We are all thinking of you and Russ, Breyer.
 
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