It has now been two weeks since I found the little guy, and time has flown by. His eyes are fully open and, though he hasn‘t gotten more active (still sleeping and eating and sleeping and eating) he has grown and his appearance has changed quite a bit.
For quite a while, I was questioning as to whether Mr. Ratski is truly a rat. He hovered at the 14 g mark for over a week, and is still relatively tiny. His ears have detached from his head and are getting bigger, and as of this morning I am seeing how his snout is starting to get a truly „ratty“ look to it.
Here are some more pictures.
I even went to the pet store and bought him a small rat hammock. He doesn‘t like it yet though, even though I‘ve read that they usually love them.
He‘s at 18 g as of today. And cute. Regrettably, yesterday evening I approached his cage too quickly, startling him, and he‘s been afraid of me all day and keeps fleeing into his little house (a white box).
A week ago yesterday, I was walking through the yard when I spotted movement in the grass near my feet. I saw a teetering, struggling, teensy tiny little mouse-like thing and went into the house to grab some gloves to pick up this creature and further examine it.
I first thought it was a mouse that had been injured by a cat.
It wasn‘t. Its eyes were still closed, so it was clear to me that whatever it was, it was very young. I grabbed some milk in a syringe and got a bit into him, and then put him in a box, cushioned with tissues.
Closer internet research revealed that I had found a very young baby rat (I later learned from a friend that mother rats will sometimes move their entire nest of offspring, and that perhaps this little one got lost in that process) and that he was going to need additional heat and small animal formula as well as very frequent feedings to survive.
Armed with the appropriate supplies, I set out to help the little guy. That was eight days ago. Here are some pictures.
The above photo was taken just minutes ago. I‘ve read everywhere that baby rats open their eyes (at first only to mere slits) on day 14.
I thought a few days ago that he had opened them, but he hadn‘t. He did today though, so happy 14th day, little guy.
14 days of age and 13 gramms (that‘s just under half an ounce).
We went to the vets yesterday, just to have a professional look at him, and the vet was happy with his progress and state of being, and gave me some liquid vitamins to boost him up a bit.
I know that some people would think, well, jeez, it‘s „just“ a rat, why bother or „they‘re vermin“ or such, but I firmly believe that it is not up to us humans to decide that the lives of some animals are worth less than the lives of other animals. That‘s not our call to make.
All of God‘s creatures, great and small, are welcome at this house.
Ravings of a Sane Lunatic
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