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Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Focus On Dumbo The Rat

By Shellyane Bryan
A rat owner from England shares tales of living with her first rat, Queen Dumbo Duncanson-Bryan, and a rat named Mouse.

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Dumbo the rat
Photo Courtesy Shellyane Bryan

It seems that age is catching up with Dumbo the rat, and her time could be growing short.

Although my rat Dumbo has still been quite bright and confident in herself, I think she is now on her way out. I did some research into the degeneration of rats as they get old, and it turns out that Dumbo has quite a few of the symptoms.

What I’ve noticed most of all is that she has lost a lot of weight. I was concerned at first because it was so sudden, but this is apparently normal. It’s normally male rats that suffer from muscle wastage in their back legs, but it happens to females, too, and I think this is happening. She can walk around if she takes it easy, but she struggles to put a lot of weight on her legs — saying that, she still manages to jump up onto the cardboard box in the cage!

I’m taking her to the veterinarian this week just for a general checkup. I think she has a bit of a cold, and I don’t want her to be suffering any more than she needs to. I also would just like to get an opinion from a professional about Dumbo’s deterioration, because I would hate to think I just let something happen to my rat without doing anything about it. I doubt the vet will have anything to say I don’t already know, but it’s mostly for peace of mind.

She is still eating and drinking, and she still hops up to the open cage door, so I’m pretty much certain it really is just old age. I’m not convinced she’s going to last until the end of the month.

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:( Poor girl. I hope she's OK and just has a bit of a cold.
K, ?, NJ
Posted: 2/5/2010 2:25:13 PM
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