Is my girl underweight?

Discussions relating to weight, fitness, hygiene needs and such like.
User avatar
Squirrel
Posts: 2708
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:03 am
Location: London

Is my girl underweight?

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:52 am

We adopted a couple of rats from a rescue and one of them, Marshmallow, weights only 228g. She's 8 months old! I'm thinking the previous home didn't give them much other than rat pellets which probably didn't interest them enough to eat. I don't think the rescue had them long enough to build them up. I'm trying to get Marshmallow to eat by offering whipped cream etc. Ideally I'd give her Complan but she isn't keen on licking from my finger like rats usually are, and I can't put it in a bowl in the cage because our oldie Gwen weighs 700g so she's got the opposite problem.

Marshmallow also has a runny eye and is respy and both new girls had lice. They really are tiny and Marshie's fur is very soft and kitten-like.

User avatar
acapae_wolf
Posts: 13916
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 5:00 pm
Location: North Yorks
Contact:

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by acapae_wolf » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:00 am

If she's an adult (8 months is), and has a low weight, she is probably just a doe of small build. A healthy weight for her size :) It's not that low a weight for a rescue doe. Many rescue rats are small, especially compared to breeder rats who have often been selectively bred for a larger more robust size. If you're concerned about their body condition being low (as opposed to weight), just a healthy rat diet and plenty of climbing to build muscles should sort that out fine on it's own. If you intentionally feed her up with super high calorie fatty foods it's likely you'll end up with an obese-but-physically-small doe.
Beri with all at Dandelion Soup
1 cat, 50-70 mice, 2x guinea pigs, 2x gerbils, 2x Syrian hamsters, 2x Russian hybrids looking for new homes ;)

User avatar
Squirrel
Posts: 2708
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:03 am
Location: London

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:04 am

Thanks Beri! She certainly loves to climb!

User avatar
acapae_wolf
Posts: 13916
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 5:00 pm
Location: North Yorks
Contact:

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by acapae_wolf » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:05 am

I would just feed her a normal healthy rat diet then, without any pro-weight-gain extras :) As to the coat condition, that should improve once they've been ivermecced.
Last edited by acapae_wolf on Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
Beri with all at Dandelion Soup
1 cat, 50-70 mice, 2x guinea pigs, 2x gerbils, 2x Syrian hamsters, 2x Russian hybrids looking for new homes ;)

User avatar
Squirrel
Posts: 2708
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:03 am
Location: London

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:06 am

Will do. It's cute that she's so tiny anyway. Perhaps just being happier will enable her appetite to increase as well.

User avatar
acapae_wolf
Posts: 13916
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 5:00 pm
Location: North Yorks
Contact:

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by acapae_wolf » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:08 am

Squirrel wrote:Perhaps just being happier will enable her appetite to increase as well.
Why do you say that? I wouldn't particularly say that she needs to eat more either. If you're worried post a photo though - those say more than numbers ever do.
Beri with all at Dandelion Soup
1 cat, 50-70 mice, 2x guinea pigs, 2x gerbils, 2x Syrian hamsters, 2x Russian hybrids looking for new homes ;)

User avatar
Squirrel
Posts: 2708
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:03 am
Location: London

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:12 am

I thought she may just not have been happy in her previous home if she was being largely ignored as I suspect she was owned by children who 'got bored' with her and her sister hence handing them over to rescue. She may not have had free range time or cuddles and may have had just lab blocks and no supplementary food such as fruit and vegetables. And having lice can't have been nice.

Oh well from her behaviour so far I suspect she's a 'stasher and hoarder' who would rather save food for later. I'm sure you're right that there's nothing wrong with her apetite.

User avatar
acapae_wolf
Posts: 13916
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 5:00 pm
Location: North Yorks
Contact:

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by acapae_wolf » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:14 am

Those things about her history may all be true, but rats tend to only have appetite problems if they're actively seriously ill, which she doesn't sound like.
Have the lice been treated? That's the only health thing mentioned, but even lice shouldn't severely impact appetite.
Beri with all at Dandelion Soup
1 cat, 50-70 mice, 2x guinea pigs, 2x gerbils, 2x Syrian hamsters, 2x Russian hybrids looking for new homes ;)

User avatar
Squirrel
Posts: 2708
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:03 am
Location: London

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:15 am

Here she is. Our first ever dumbo!

Image

User avatar
Mayamy
Admin Aide
Posts: 1303
Joined: Fri Aug 12, 2011 4:20 pm

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Mayamy » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:16 am

I was worried about Ember and Inkling when they arrived as they were 210g-220g but whilst Ink had a clear growth spurt going through a long, thin scraggly phase (and is now happily floating in the 250-270g), Ember is around 225g and looks nicely proportioned at that, she's just a tiny ninja of a rat! My rehomed girls with likely pet store origins have so far been 220-280g for adult weight.

It might be useful to get the new girls used to having extras either in a separate cage or the main cage while Gwen is out to help boost them if you have sharing/hoarding issues.

(ETA by extras I'm meaning extra usual dry mix or balanced wet)
Last edited by Mayamy on Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
Amy - with Pixel, Dora, Ren, Vex, Nova & Tali

User avatar
Squirrel
Posts: 2708
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:03 am
Location: London

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:18 am

Yes we treated the lice. She's respy and I've got them on ABs but I mix them with food and not sure how much she eats of that. And her eye is runny. We'll be taking them all to the vet for a health check soon anyway and I'll mention her eye. They may not be able to do anything about the eye though. My rabbit had a runny eye which was flushed out twice but it didn't help.

User avatar
acapae_wolf
Posts: 13916
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 5:00 pm
Location: North Yorks
Contact:

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by acapae_wolf » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:19 am

That's not the greatest photo angle in terms of telling details about physique, but from what I can tell she looks absolutely fine. i would just feed her as a normal healthy rat :D And take her current weight as her own healthy adult weight - so in future when you weigh her, compare those weights to her weight now, rather than comparing to the weights of others. If you are worried about her stasthing and someone else eating the food, the easy option is to take the fat rat out of the cage at mealtime and give her forced exercise instead. There will still be enough for her, but others will get first dibs.
Beri with all at Dandelion Soup
1 cat, 50-70 mice, 2x guinea pigs, 2x gerbils, 2x Syrian hamsters, 2x Russian hybrids looking for new homes ;)

User avatar
Squirrel
Posts: 2708
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:03 am
Location: London

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:20 am

Thanks guys, you've reassured me about her. Elsa is 330g and 11 months. I think you're right and she's just a petite girlie.

User avatar
Squirrel
Posts: 2708
Joined: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:03 am
Location: London

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 10, 2015 11:21 am

Haha lucky to get photos at all, the little whirlwind :lol:

User avatar
Rhian33
Fancy Rats Team
Posts: 3155
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 5:22 pm
Location: Bedfordshire

Re: Is my girl underweight?

Post by Rhian33 » Wed Jun 10, 2015 1:07 pm

Aaaaw, very pretty. She doesn't look at all underweight in that pic but obviously might just be the angle. She just looks like a normal dainty rescue to me :)
Angharad, Barb, Bella, Carys, Demerara, Ida, Nancy, Sasha, Sinead, Siobhan, Spice, Sugar, Veronica :smileyrat:
53 gone but not forgotten :rainbow:

Locked

Return to “Physique”