Author Topic: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please  (Read 268 times)

Offline sujamma

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Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« on: October 07, 2017, 08:05:25 AM »
Hey, guys. For the past few days, I've been noticing a recurring dark ring around my little boy Wesker's right eye, but tonight it was extremely apparent. I know this is usually a sign of infection, but what kind? If it was stress or irritation from the air, or, say, an upper respiratory infection, wouldn't be on both sides? He has no other symptoms, and his lungs sound clear.
I included some pictures to give you all an idea.

The (right) eye in question:





You can see how pronounced the dark ring of dried poryphrin is in this shot particularly (above).



For comparison, this is his healthy (left) eye:



As you can see, no red stains whatsoever.

What should I do? Is there anything I can do at home, or does this require urgent vet care?
Let me know if you've experienced this. He's my little sweetheart.

Offline mamarat2

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2017, 12:18:21 PM »
Doesn't really look like anything is physically wrong with his eye itself, just the porphyrin.  I've has rats in the past that have had the same thing and it's been suggested by the vet that it is a blocked tear duct, nothing to be done about it.  I normally used to take a warm wet washcloth an gently wipe/rinse the porphyrin off.  If you notice the eye itself having any changes or issues, time for a vet appointment.
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Offline MinervaThonosi

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2017, 02:07:14 PM »
My rat, Tobi, has the exact same thing. It's mostly there when he wakes up, but then he'll clean his face and it'll go away. I don't think it's anything to worry about.

Offline gramma2jaakk

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2017, 03:33:46 PM »
Wesker's is gorgeous!

Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2017, 07:39:43 PM »
Thank you so much for the helpful replies, and gramma2jaakk for the compliment! That puts my mind at ease for now. I'll do as you said, mamarat2. Wesker is my shoulder rat, the closest to me out of my remaining 2 boys, so it really worried me that something might be wrong with his eye. I know how some rats lose eyes from certain things, and I didn't want that happening in case it was an infection from a cut or something.

I'll keep watching him and keeping it clean then. :BlueDumboSmile:

PS: What kind physical changes should I look out for, by the way, just in case?
« Last Edit: October 07, 2017, 07:41:52 PM by sujamma »

Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2017, 08:42:11 PM »
Thinking back, I just realized this may started when I accidentally poked him in the eye while he was climbing on me and I went to catch him. I remember he reacted to it by squeaking and squinting and I felt bad. Could that be the cause of a blocked duct, or could I have hurt him long term? Now I'm a little worried again. :(

I've been washing his eye with the warm washcloth, by the way, but it starts weeping again with poryphrin soon after. Is this normal?
« Last Edit: October 07, 2017, 08:45:23 PM by sujamma »

Offline mamarat2

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2017, 02:29:41 PM »
Yeah that's normal as you wipe it away more will show up.  I wouldn't worry that you hurt him, it's common that they can have one eye be more porphy than the other eye.  As for changes. I mean with the skin around the eye or his actual eye; if the skin starts looking swollen or the eye itself starts looking larger than it should be.  He is a very handsome manrat!   :heart:
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Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from one eye only? Advice please *Update*
« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2017, 05:22:15 PM »
Well, his eye seems to be better, but now I notice an odd noise when he's on my shoulder that seems to be coming from inside, either his lungs or elsewhere. It's not quite a clicking noise, but it's similar. I have listened to respiratory infection videos where you can clearly hear a noise consistently from their nose, but this noise isn't accompanied by that - it seems deeper in. I listen to his lungs and I can't tell what I'm listening to, since his heart beats so fast, but there is something else there, and honestly I did think it was his heartbeat at first, and before that I thought it was coming from his belly, like digestion noises or gas. A bit like a soft blurp or blip noise (though it could be a muffled, internal clicking sound) with every breath would be one way I'd describe it, but not especially pronounced except for when he's by my ear or facing downward. His head and body bob forward a lot lately, but I've grown accustomed to ignoring that in my previous rats since it was usually hiccups, but I also know that can also be a sign of a respiratory issue.

Needless to say, I have booked a vet appointment, but it isn't until next Monday, a week from now, though I did ask to be put on a list in case there are any cancellations. But until then, what do you guys think? He's acting totally normal, from what I can tell, though he's been really mellow and behaved lately, which isn't unusual for him but it also makes it hard to tell if anything's slowing him down or if he's just relaxed. He still climbs right up my shoulder and gets around totally fine. I just want to know if this should be treated as an emergency, or if there is anything I can do to prevent this from getting any worse before he can get to the vet until then. I love him to pieces... Anything I absolutely must look out for?

Here's a short video of the bobbing (though mild here) I described, but I couldn't pick up any noises:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I19nGd-wx3w
« Last Edit: October 23, 2017, 05:25:46 PM by sujamma »

Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #8 on: October 23, 2017, 11:40:16 PM »
Update #2: Okay it definitely sounds like a muffled clicking noise when I listen to him through the ribs. Very concerned... He acts fine now, but I know some things can progress fast... I gave him some dark chocolate to see if it might help, in case it is his lungs, but I don't know how else to keep the symptoms at bay, or if I should be concerned for his brother getting it.

Offline mamarat2

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #9 on: October 24, 2017, 11:24:08 AM »
Take them in for a vet appointment, his brother has already been exposed to it so no need to separate them.  Rats in general are prone to respiratory infections and commonly carry myco which can cause respiratory flare ups.  Let a knowledgeable rat vet have a listen and see what they think.  If anything a round of antibiotics should knock it down.
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Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #10 on: October 24, 2017, 11:12:40 PM »
I rescheduled the vet appointment for Friday, which is the soonest they can get me in sans cancellation. I really hope it can wait until then. I don't know if this is unusual for him since I don't often feel down my rats' spines, but his back feels slightly bonier than his brother's, so I gave him a bit of baby food and he enjoyed that. His brother is as healthy as ever, thank goodness.

Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #11 on: October 28, 2017, 12:33:57 AM »
I took him to the vet today and they gave me a big lecture about giving him dark chocolate, saying how they never heard about giving it to rats, equated it to giving it to a dog and how the natural caffeine in it could give him a heart attack, and also said I shouldn't have given him an apple due to the sugar content even though I explained that's all he wanted to eat. They gave me two antibiotics to give him, and said her prognosis for him is "guarded" because he's in such bad shape. So is dark chocolate bad for rats or not? I feel conflicted, like I've been hurting him instead of helping him.

I have him home now, but he's not wanting to take his medication even mixed in baby food, unless it's very little at a time. He willingly eats things like spinach, but when I smear medicine-baby food mix on it thinly, he rejects it. He isn't drinking from his water bottle unless I push on it so he can lick it off my finger, but even that seems to be draining for him. He refuses the syringe and starts acting stressed when I try to force it on him in any way. I never had this much trouble even when I had a rat with PT that couldn't eat on his own at all... I'm hoping what little antibiotic I could get in him today will help him perk up more by tomorrow so he's more receptive...

She also said he's constipated and I don't think he's getting enough fluids to pass healthy poos. They gave him fluids, but couldn't they have given him an initial shot before sending him home with meds, or is that not protocol for rats? I'm worried sick now. I don't want him to die if I can't give him his medicine.

Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2017, 01:34:23 AM »
I have him separated so I can keep track of his bowel movements and how much he's eating. I put water in that bowl with the lettuce, so hopefully he'll get hydrated through that, and a bit of baby food in the glass beside it and 3 lab blocks in the corner in case his appetite picks up for real food.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oJ0cTuJd3a4

I've put him on a towel instead of bedding, because he kept jumping on any surface to get away from it, which makes me think the dust content, however low they advertise (all lies if you ask me), is aggravating his already compromised lungs. I can't wait until I figure out an effective way to swap to fleece in the main cage without it being destroyed in less than 2 weeks like my last attempt, because I'm tired of seeing my rats sneezing on it... it gets all over my room, too. I use Nat Geo recycled paper bedding, for reference. It's great for odor control, I'll give it that.

Also, sorry for double posting, but for some reason I can't edit my posts after a certain amount of time has passed like I used to, unless I'm just being dumb.

Offline gramma2jaakk

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #13 on: October 28, 2017, 04:53:59 PM »
I've informed my vet on many things, because even a doctor doesn't know EVERYTHING there is to know about stuff. My vet is also very receptive of my telling them things we can try, even though they are an exotics vet. So, giving him a little bit of dark chocolate is ok. Rats and dogs (and cats) are not related, so it won't harm your little furry friend like it would a dog or a cat.

For constipation, you can try giving him some canned pumpkin. Make sure it is pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling. That has stuff in it other than pumpkin. There is enough water content in the pumpkin to help him pass his stools.

What kind of antibiotics did they give you for him? Make sure you don't give him any milk products (yogurt, etc) during the time he is on the meds, as some antibiotics will not work if he gets any milk (ice cream, yogurt, stuff like that) within 2 hours of him getting the meds. You can also try mixing a little of his meds into some Cool Whip, or soy ice cream. My critters have always loved that. They will gobble it right down!

I've been keeping an eye on this thread, but this is only the second time I've posted on it. I'm pulling for you and Sujamma! I hope he will be fine. I looked through the post but don't see where you mention his age.

Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2017, 07:24:49 PM »
He is 1, or about 14 months old. His antibiotics are Minocycline 50mg / 0.15cc twice a day and Cipro Susp. 50mg / 0.34 cc twice a day. So far he has only received 3 doses of each over the past 2 days, and his next dose is soon. I hear sometimes it can take up to 48 hours to see results... I just hope he's strong enough to make it that long.

He is in a lot of respiratory distress today. I can hear his lungs palpitating with every breath, he is struggling and losing energy rapidly.  I don't know what else to do for him, but I may give him more chocolate if he remains this bad, if he'll eat it. His mouth is open as he breathes, but his gums are still pink. I'm hoping for a miracle. Thank you for your kind words.

Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2017, 09:20:10 PM »
I read somewhere on here that giving them the syringe from the side of the mouth, facing the cheek, not toward the throat, helped, and I decided to forgo the apple sauce and cookie dough and just do it that way, and though he resisted and I had to back off a couple times to let him calm down, I got him to take it all within 20 minutes. I hope it works better this way. Unfortunately, he's extremely distressed now, though I didn't manhandle him at all, I just wrapped him in a towel gently and poked the syringe in the side of his mouth to administer quick micro doses every few moments.

He keeps trying to leave his cage, or standing in the corner, even in his water dish, staring out, but I don't know where he wants to go. I braced him in my hands gently over my pillow and he kept kicking his back leg, which I know sometimes can indicate stress. When I let him down, he meanders around the bed and lies down then keeps moving, restless. I feel awful. I wish this didn't have to happen on the weekend. I hope he settles down... I hope the antibiotics work soon. I hate that the first dose i gave him yesterday was messy and I only got one antibiotic in him, because I feel like time is of the essence now.

Offline sujamma

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #16 on: October 29, 2017, 02:37:42 AM »
Nevermind... He died.

Offline Been to the Mountaintop

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #17 on: October 29, 2017, 02:48:03 PM »
I am so very sorry for you. [HUGS] You did your very very best. Some of these guys have had a very rough start and rotten genetics. The staring, aimless wandering may mean he had an underlying pituitary tumor or some other neurological problem as well. Play hard at The Bridge, young one.
--Best, Mountaintop--

Offline gramma2jaakk

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Re: Poryphrin from only one eye? Advice please
« Reply #18 on: October 29, 2017, 04:49:22 PM »
I'm so sorry to hear he passed. It is heartbreaking, but you did try. Please don't fret though, he knew you were trying to help him.