Valo

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A proper farewell

Published May 2, 2013 by Kokomo

It seems like ages ago already, but it has been 3,5 weeks now, since I had to let go of my sweet Valo.

On Sunday, after I posted, the attacks got worse, with, late that evening the worst bloody nose ever. The poor thing was covered in blood, her snout, her face, her belly, her paws, everything was bloody and the poor thing cleaned it all up after the attack had passed. I felt so bad for the poor thing, I gave her some painkillers and left her in the Duna, and put Maarit with her so she wouldn’t be alone. I knew that there was very little left to be done for her, but I didn’t want to go to the emergency animal hospital again, as they are extremely expensive and really not that able with rats. So, I managed to contact a co-worker to ask her to work for me the next day and tried to get some sleep with the ladies right next to my pillow.

They had a quiet and peacefulnight, but around 7am another heavy breathing attack woke me up. I couldn’t do anything to help the poor thing. I had to wait until 8am (which turned out to be 9am) before I could call the vet and luckily they could see me as the first patient. But that did still mean waiting untill 10.30 am. By the time I arrived at the vet’s, Valo was barely breathing anymore. The vet listened to hear and could hear her lungs had filled up with moisture and her breathing was very shallow. There was nothing left to do but to let the poor baby go.

For me, this was the first time in 10 years that I had to have a pet put to sleep, and the first time I had to do it all on my own. It’s not an easy decision I can tell you. Not so much choosing what is best for your animal, but realizing you have their life in your hands, and the emotional impact that has. I found it hard and I cried her a river or two. Luckily I have a great vet, who’s an expert in rats and she handled her very respectfully. I trust her with my pet’s lives ;).

I left Valo at the vet’s because 1. I don’t have a garden and 2. I don’t think my dad would feel up to burying her in his garden. I decided to donate her body to science, in the hope the vets working at the emergency animal hospital would learn something from her.

When I got home I cried and cried and cried and wrote her a goodbye on the forum where I first found the lady who runs the shelter I got her from. After a while I decided to get Ruma out of her cage, and she licked the tears right off my cheeks. Those were the last tears I cried that day. It’s amazing how much comfort a still living pet can give. I cuddled the crap out of my three remaining ladies, and kept on doing so for the next days, until it was time to come back to reality and start looking for a new friend for Maarit. More on that in my next post.

For now; goodbye dear Valo. You weren’t with me long, but you were special and dear to me and Maarit. I have learned so much from you in the 2,5 months that you were here and I will never forget. Have fun on the bridge!

 

In the Sputnik together

In the Sputnik together

 

Valo posing (or better said, pooping)

Valo posing (or better said, pooping)

Valo being a little acrobate as che found the goodies!

Valo being a little acrobate as she found the goodies!

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Sigh…

Published April 14, 2013 by Kokomo

Ok, I am not allowed to post good news anymore…

Just a while after my post yesterday, Valo had another attack. For some reason she cannot breathe through her nose anymore and she ends up gasping for air through her mouth. It’s a very disturbing sound and sight. I’ve been to the vet for this, more than once, and she has gotten 2 cures of antibiotics for it. While she’s on the cure, things are usually fine, but once she gets off it, the attacks just come back. The cause isn’t exactly clear, the vet thinks she has a small tumor in her nose, and it can congest the whole airflow. They cannot actually look for it as her tiny nose is too small to look into or even take x-rays of. If she’s really lucky, she also gets a heavy nosebleed.

Yesterday I was walking to the bathroom when I heard a snort that didn’t sound like Maarit’s snorts. I looked at the cage and saw it was Valo. When she has these attacks, I usually take her out of the cage, try to give her nosedrops and keep her calm. Yesterday, after the nosedrops, her nose quite quickly opened up, but then the bleeding began. Even still, the bleeding wasn’t too heavy, so after she had started breathing normally again, I put her back in the cage with Maarit. I did find some bloody splatters all over the cage later, but it wasn’t a heavy nosebleed.

This is a video I shot when she first started having these attacks. The vet asked me to film it so I could always show them.

When I checked on the ladies later that night, I again noticed some blood coming out of her nose. It was just a few drops again, but I couldn’t imagine her feeling good, so I gave her some painmeds and put her in the miniduna for the night. When I woke up this morning, she seemed ok again. She had completely messed up her cage, and was hiding under the fleece on the bottom, but she had eaten, pooped and drank, so I figured she felt good enough to go back to Maarit. Her furr had come back down, which is also a sign of them feeling better.

She wasn’t in the cage for more than 30 minutes when I heard her again… The poor thing had another attack. I didn’t think twice, I picked her up, gave her nosedrops and put her back in the Duna. I feel bad for robbing her of her little playmate, companion and her own safe space. But about 10 minutes after I put her in, she started breathing normally again. So I guess I am keeping her in there for another day, just to make sure she recovers from all this. And tomorrow I shall stop by the vet to get some new meds.

Here we go again….:(

Another new addition!!

Published February 5, 2013 by Kokomo

Wow. So suddenly the rat population in my house has doubled! Four rats are now happily residing here. I am not entirely sure how happy I am about it, takes some getting used to (more little ones means more attention and more worries when they make weird noises or have diarrhea), on the other hand I am so happy that I can give these two ladies a good old day.

 

So without further ado, let me (officially)introduce you to Maarit en Valo. The topfloor inhabitants of my Royal Suite:

Little Maarit nomming away

Little Maarit nomming away

Maarit; born November 2010
Black japanese hooded. She has had a little tumor behind her left front paw and a chronic sneeze, but besides that she is active, lively, still a little shy but NUTS about snacks and treats! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Valo; aprrox. 2 years old. Not sure when she was born but she has been in the shelter for over a year. Valo is also a hooded Japanese, but I haven’t defined her color yet. I am guessing it is a mink/pearl combo. Valo’s behavior is still quite unpredictable. She can be playful one moment and scared the next. She is a little more active then Maarit but also a lot more shy, although she has less trouble with being picked up then Maarit has.

Valo posing (or better said, pooping)

Valo posing (or better said, pooping)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Most important though, is that Maarit and Valo get along. No terrorising, no stealing from one another, no pushing the other in a corner, no dominant behavior what so ever. They might not always sleep together, but mostly they do and I have caught both of them bruxing and boggling, so I am a happy camper!

 

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