Author Topic: How far along...?  (Read 8531 times)

Offline Sailorgrrl

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How far along...?
« on: September 26, 2011, 09:34:22 PM »
OK, it happened. I rescued two girls last week, a 4mo and her 7week old daughter. Although they are very thin (and they were on pine, in tupperware boxes with lids, with holes drilled in the top -  :eek:), I noticed that Mamma-rat had a little pudge. I've been feeding them high-protein diets because they are growing babies, and of course they are putting weight on at my house (see today's earlier thread! LOL), so weighing her isn't going to help me figure out if she's preggo. So anyway. Today, while gently palpating her tummy, I felt a lump about the size of a marble on her left side, and I was able to move it. I do think that's a ritten. There may be a lump on the right side as well. I could only find two lumps, because Mamma-rat was NOT thrilled with the idea of my poking her tummy. If I can feel what I think might be babies, how far along might she be gestation-wise? Should I expect ratlets any day now? I haven't noticed any extreme nesting activity.

I didn't say a word to anyone at home because I was considering an e-spay, but my daughter came in to me this afternoon and told me that she thinks Darwin (what she calls Mamma-rat) might be pregnant, because of her tummy. I don't think I'll be able to do an e-spay now without serious emotional repercussions.

Offline jonahsmom

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2011, 09:57:15 PM »
Oh. My. Goodness.  How old is your daughter?  Would she buy it if you said she went to the vet and it was just a lump or something that had to be removed?

Offline Sailorgrrl

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2011, 10:04:07 PM »
I thought the same thing! She's 16, and pretty darn savvy. If a "lump" were removed, she would immediately know.
 ::)

Offline RattusNorvegicus

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2011, 10:11:09 PM »
If she is 16, she is old enough to understand why you would need to do an e-spay.

Offline Sailorgrrl

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2011, 10:23:00 PM »
I don't disagree with you on principle, but it's more complicated than that for her. We've been going through some serious health issues with her, and she would not be able to handle that right now, at least not immediately. So if I have an idea about how much time I might have at this point, then it might give me some time to figure out what to do.

Offline smilez_n_hugs

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2011, 11:04:25 PM »
If you can actually feel babies then it's too late for an espay since she should be ready to pop any day now. Can you take a few pics of her belly and a shot from above as well?

Offline erbusbee

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2011, 11:45:45 PM »
Kudos for being thoughtful of both your rattie and your teenager.  I'm a fan of e-spays as a rule, but I respect that this might be more complicated.  Sending good vibes and hoping for a small litter!

Offline jonahsmom

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2011, 11:48:08 PM »
Well, if there's anything I can help with since I'm sort of in your neck of the woods be sure to holler!  Even if it's just getting the word out to find homes for the potential babes!  Maybe Ling will need a little brother that is probably related....or maybe daddy?  ;)

Offline Siana

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2011, 07:14:40 AM »
Usually you can only feel babies in the last week of pregnancy, so it sounds like if she is pregnant, she'll give birth soon.  I also wouldn't spay in the last week of pregnancy unless the mother's life was at risk with the pregnancy.

Offline mariskamoon

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #9 on: September 27, 2011, 07:32:47 AM »
Gestation for rats is 21 to 23 days. I would expect your girl to have her babies any day now

Offline Sailorgrrl

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2011, 09:41:34 AM »
Thanks, everyone, for your advice and kind thoughts. Having never had a litter (of rats) before, and having just picked up this little girl, I wasn't sure. Since gestation is only about three weeks (that much I did know from researching), it was hard for me to tell anything for sure until the last couple of days, when I grew very suspicious and posted.

My heart is breaking for her, tho, because this will be her second litter already in her short little life. That will wreak such havoc on her body. It sounds like all I can do is feed her well to get her as healthy as possible and hope for the best.

Jonahsmom, thanks again for your support! I was wondering about the cagemate situation for Ling... if she is only planning on one rattie, then I won't surrender him to her. Now, though, if Mamma-rat/Darwin has a little brother for Ling, I will be happy to send them both along! I was waiting to see for sure before I said anything to anyone.

Offline jonahsmom

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #11 on: September 27, 2011, 09:52:35 AM »
I'm pretty sure she was wanting a cagemate for Ling, otherwise I don't think it would be ideal for Ling either and would suggest another home.  We’ll have to see what happens with the babies.  It would be awesome if she would take one of them to be a cagemate!  :)

Offline Sailorgrrl

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #12 on: September 27, 2011, 09:54:26 AM »
If you can actually feel babies then it's too late for an espay since she should be ready to pop any day now. Can you take a few pics of her belly and a shot from above as well?
Here's some pics on my shutterfly acct (I still haven't figured out how to upload pics to GM):
http://wendyhousewhimsies.shutterfly.com/pictures/16

Sorry about the blurriness... she was very active this morning, and curious about everything. I wonder if this means she's getting ready to deliver? Anyhoo, it was nice to see her so friendly and curious - they're both settling in veeerrry slowly.

Offline Ratacate

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #13 on: September 27, 2011, 10:03:20 AM »
where abouts are you located?
Current Ratties:
Pandora
Gypsy

Bridge:
Ratacate (<3 rat)
Rainbow
Ratatta
Rat 1 (who never had a name :/ )
Oreo
Ruby
Martha
Razzle
Mary

Offline Sailorgrrl

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #14 on: September 27, 2011, 10:08:59 AM »
I'm in Cedar Falls, IA. There are not a lot of rattie people around - Jonahsmom and two others are all that I know of.

Offline Ratacate

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #15 on: September 27, 2011, 10:40:48 AM »
I was hoping you were closer, i'd love to help (not that i can take anymore ratties, but i could help with other stuff) /:
Current Ratties:
Pandora
Gypsy

Bridge:
Ratacate (<3 rat)
Rainbow
Ratatta
Rat 1 (who never had a name :/ )
Oreo
Ruby
Martha
Razzle
Mary

Offline Sailorgrrl

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #16 on: September 27, 2011, 11:14:58 AM »
LOL I wish you were closer, too! I could use the advice. Although I imagine that old Mother Nature will be on hand to help!   :BlueDumboSmile:

Offline Ratacate

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #17 on: September 27, 2011, 11:25:20 AM »
Hahaha yeah
Current Ratties:
Pandora
Gypsy

Bridge:
Ratacate (<3 rat)
Rainbow
Ratatta
Rat 1 (who never had a name :/ )
Oreo
Ruby
Martha
Razzle
Mary

Offline smilez_n_hugs

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #18 on: September 27, 2011, 11:34:11 AM »
If you can actually feel babies then it's too late for an espay since she should be ready to pop any day now. Can you take a few pics of her belly and a shot from above as well?
Here's some pics on my shutterfly acct (I still haven't figured out how to upload pics to GM):
http://wendyhousewhimsies.shutterfly.com/pictures/16

Sorry about the blurriness... she was very active this morning, and curious about everything. I wonder if this means she's getting ready to deliver? Anyhoo, it was nice to see her so friendly and curious - they're both settling in veeerrry slowly.

She looks preggo to me :( hopefully she pops soon before that belly gets any bigger.

Offline mariskamoon

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #19 on: September 28, 2011, 08:49:39 AM »
I would just make sure she has a safe secluded place in her cage to build her nest and have the babies. I know paper towels are controversial for nest building, but I have not had an issue with any litters that were born on them. I am sending good thoughts for a safe delivery. SHe should do just fine.

Offline lilspaz68

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #20 on: September 28, 2011, 09:08:42 AM »
I use paper towels for my rescue mom's all the time...I thought it was toilet paper that was the one not to use?  it sticks to the newborns and dries on them...hard to remove.

I would say she's pregnant but I would still weigh her anyways.  You can often figure out a pregnancy weight gain from other things (like a growing girl, or a neglected rescue rat)...so start weighing her daily and we shall see if we can interpret the weights for you.

Add protein to her diet etc.  Is she eating a ton more?

Offline Sailorgrrl

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #21 on: September 28, 2011, 09:38:52 AM »
I'm so psyched to be able to use my beautiful new digital kitchen scale! She weighs about 256g. She definitely eats well, but then again, so does her 8wk old daughter. I don't know how much she used to eat, or what she was fed, before she came to me a week ago, so it's hard to say if she's eating more now than last week. She has definitely put on weight in the last week since she got here. I've posted today's pics on shutterfly, as well as included two pics from the 17th for comparison:
http://wendyhousewhimsies.shutterfly.com/pictures/26

I'd say there's no doubt now that she's preggers. And I have been able to consistently feel the ritten on the left side. I changed out all the bedding yesterday, lined the bottom of the tank with plain white newsprint, and put in shredded paper and white paper towels as well as a couple of old kitchen towels (although someone in another thread said not to use fleece, because the rittens might get lost in the folds? can they also get lost in the paper towels? I ripped them in half). I have been giving both her and her daughter some oatmeal with yogurt in it, chicken, veggies, brown rice, and a little bit of fruit, every night.

One more thing: she's been living with her daughter since coming to me, and now the daughter is 8wks and old enough to start introductions. I'm not sure I feel comfortable putting her in a cage with big kids, though, and I don't want to make her live alone (her brother is already alone because I can't put him in with anyone at the moment, and it's sad - altho he will go to his forever home soon). So anyway, can I leave the daughter with her? Everyone says separate them, but I was wondering if, in this case, it would be OK to leave the older baby with her.


Offline Sailorgrrl

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #22 on: September 28, 2011, 02:37:48 PM »
Building a nest?
http://wendyhousewhimsies.shutterfly.com/pictures/31

If so, she's quite neat!

Any thoughts about daughter Eclair staying with her or not? If not, suggestions about what to do with her? Thanks!

EDIT: I should also mention that Mamma-rat pulled up all the paper bedding materials and towels into the center of the tank, leaving a little indentation in the middle. She's never done this before. That's what makes me wonder if it's a nest, although I should also mention that I've never seen a pregnant rat nest before and don't really know what to look for!   ::)
« Last Edit: September 28, 2011, 02:41:33 PM by Sailorgrrl »

Offline eyohkay

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #23 on: September 28, 2011, 03:36:00 PM »
I use paper towels for my rescue mom's all the time...I thought it was toilet paper that was the one not to use?  it sticks to the newborns and dries on them...hard to remove.

Momma Rubie gave birth a lot earlier than I was expecting, and at that point, all I had given her for nesting material was a few cheap-o napkins.  They stuck all over the bubs, but I left them alone and she took care of it with no issues.  I think some good paper towels would be fine.

Offline Bananana

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Re: How far along...?
« Reply #24 on: September 28, 2011, 03:39:18 PM »
I see what you mean about us being in a similar situation! Our rats even look similar! 

About Eclair being able to stay with mama rat - I asked about the same thing in my thread since Cooper is super bonded to her sister Millie, and the advice I was given was to let them be together while I was able to supervise, but to remove Millie when/if bubs arrive.  I've also heard of people allowing mama rat to take a short break from nursing to have playtime with her friends (I think 10 or 15 minutes, tops).