Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Discuss what your rats eat. From general diet, food brands, eating problems and treat foods.
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PurplePenguin
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Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by PurplePenguin » Tue Jun 28, 2011 2:43 pm

My rats have mycoplasma . My vet told me to keep them on antibiotics (so that it dont spread to their chest) until they are a year old. He said when they are a year old, their immune systems are strong enough to handle it. Harley, he is a year old. He now doesn't have any problems and no longer needs antibiotics but Meeko, my 6 month old rat, still needs antibiotics.

So I was wondering if there is any specific foods that would help relieve/prevent the symptoms for them?
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by KateR » Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:35 pm

All rats have myco. They pick it up from their mum. Longterm antibiotics are not going to do anything and sadly will probably have caused them to become immune to whatever youve been using.

So really they just need a good healthy diet.
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by PurplePenguin » Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:48 pm

well since they've been on antibiotics, they dont sneeze or sniffle at all and the red mucus has completely gone away. I trust my vet more then a forum. I just wanted answers about food
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by KateR » Tue Jun 28, 2011 5:01 pm

Mummy to the Rattray rats.
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by indigoj » Tue Jun 28, 2011 5:12 pm

Firstly, I know this is not what you want to hear but food alone is not the answer. As has been said myco is present in all rats, porphyrin is a bit like rat snot - remember even healthy animals need nasal mucus to protect from some germs and a rat with a healthy diet who is not 'ill' should definitely not need medicating.

It is well known that in all animals over use/ long term use of antibiotics is only going to cause that antibiotic no longer work and worse can lead to strains of antibiotic resistant diseases (as has been well documented in humans - most doctors in my experience are reluctant to prescribe antibiotics more frequently than twice a year and try to use different ones if possible when they do). Keeping rats on antibiotics for a year is effectively destroying their immune system and lining your vets pocket :(

Longer term - worst case - if you did this repeatedly with rat after rat and so did others if following this vets advice it could cause long term problems for fancy rats as a species entirely as immuno-suppressed rats developed and antibiotic resistant diseases grew.

As for food, a good balanced diet with plenty of variety and fresh foods should be enough to keep any rat healthy. Many people supplement with Dr Squiggles, calcivet and garlic - personally I use Dr Squiggles as a treat and garlic powder in porridge now and then.

Please do read the health and feeding sections. Do your own research on Myco and the effects of antibiotic use. Your rats will thank you :)
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by Neotoma » Thu Jun 30, 2011 9:21 pm

Long-term anti-biotics are not a clear cut good or bad. Some rats do need them - if they have a recurring infection that no AB quite knocks on the head, but which long-term or pulsed ABs keep under control, then they are appropriate, as they can keep that rat in a healthy state for an extended life-span. They aren't appropriate as a blanket treatment, due to the problems of resistant bacterial strains developing. Each case (as in each individual rat) needs to be judged individually.

I have to admit that in 12 years of rat keeping, and with an extremely experienced zoo / exotics certified specialist vet, I've never heard of keeping them on ABs until they are 1 as an arbitrary limit. The question is does the course (which would normally be a 3 weeks to a month) of antibiotics clear the symptoms up, and if so, do they stay cleared up when the course is stopped. If the answer is yes, then further treatment is unnecessary, and due to resistence issues, a bad idea. If the initial drug doesn't work, then a course of a different AB is indicated. If it does work, but symptoms recur, then it's worth trying either a different drug, or a longer course of the original.

Long-story short - there aren't hard and fast rules either way. It needs application of common sense to each rat.

As far as trusting vets vs forums goes, I would normally support taking advice from a professional. However, vets get very very little training in rats, and some of them do have some odd ideas. The rat world on the other hand has decades of accumulated knowledge about what works and what doesn't. The best thing is to combine the two - the vet has the advantage of having examined the actual rat concerned, the rat world has the advantage of having seen any problem multiple times before. I'd take advice from both, read up, and also try a different vet if necessary - even within one practice they can have very different ideas. A good vet who is expereinced with rats is worth their weight in gold, especially once you get to surgery, or wanting to try unusual drugs.

As far as the original question goes, I'm afraid no food will actually fix myco, but a generally good healthy diet will help general health, so you want a good quality base food, and lots of variety of fresh veg and fruit, a little fresh protien etc. If they are on ABs longterm then probiotics are a good idea.

Hope they get better either way :wink:
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by NickyE » Fri Jul 01, 2011 6:43 am

PurplePenguin wrote:well since they've been on antibiotics, they dont sneeze or sniffle at all and the red mucus has completely gone away. I trust my vet more then a forum. I just wanted answers about food
With respect there are a great many people on here who know more about a number of rat conditions than their vets. 2 of the very knowledgeable, very experienced vets at my practice have recently said that there are lots of times that they can learn from rat owners and what we find out via forums. They have been prepared to try new medications because of information I have brought them information on. They have information I sent them last week on ZGT pinned up on the wall out back because they'd never come across one.

As people have said above, rats do not need to be on antibiotics if they have got over signs of illness. Being on antibiotics long term can cause problems. Also, not sure what antibiotics your rats have been on, how long or from what age, but Baytril should not have been given to rats under 6 months as it can cause growth and cartilage problem.
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by beckie2040 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:34 pm

PurplePenguin wrote:well since they've been on antibiotics, they dont sneeze or sniffle at all and the red mucus has completely gone away. I trust my vet more then a forum. I just wanted answers about food
I have two 4/5 month old girls that don't sneeze or sniffle and I've not seen any porph on them, and they aren't on any antiobiotics, nor have they ever been.

Yours honestly do not need to be on continuous antibiotics for the first half of their lives - regardless of the fact that you may very well be making the antibiotics less effective when really needed.

I find it pretty odd that any vet would recommend a years worth of antibiotics for ANY animal :-?

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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by MarieM » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:43 pm

I second a good healthy diet, toxin free envionment, no chemicals, dust etc. The herbs Thyme and basil are helpful.
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by Cyber Ratty » Mon Jul 04, 2011 8:43 am

NickyE wrote:As people have said above, rats do not need to be on antibiotics if they have got over signs of illness.
... Baytril should not have been given to rats under 6 months as it can cause growth and cartilage problem.
Just to be pedantic :wink:
- to clarify, as a general rule continue antibiotics for 7 days after symptoms have cleared
- I think baytril is fine for rats over 2 or 3 months, it's just the initial phase of growth to be concerned about (and there are alternative abs to use under that age)
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by NickyE » Mon Jul 04, 2011 8:55 am

Cyber Ratty wrote:
NickyE wrote:As people have said above, rats do not need to be on antibiotics if they have got over signs of illness.
... Baytril should not have been given to rats under 6 months as it can cause growth and cartilage problem.
Just to be pedantic :wink:
- to clarify, as a general rule continue antibiotics for 7 days after symptoms have cleared
- I think baytril is fine for rats over 2 or 3 months, it's just the initial phase of growth to be concerned about (and there are alternative abs to use under that age)
that was what I meant really, but didn't word it well! And the whole baytril thing....I've read 2, 3, 4 and 6 months as the youngest - confusing!
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by PurplePenguin » Sat Jul 23, 2011 11:55 pm

Neotoma wrote:Long-term anti-biotics are not a clear cut good or bad. Some rats do need them - if they have a recurring infection that no AB quite knocks on the head, but which long-term or pulsed ABs keep under control, then they are appropriate, as they can keep that rat in a healthy state for an extended life-span. They aren't appropriate as a blanket treatment, due to the problems of resistant bacterial strains developing. Each case (as in each individual rat) needs to be judged individually.

I have to admit that in 12 years of rat keeping, and with an extremely experienced zoo / exotics certified specialist vet, I've never heard of keeping them on ABs until they are 1 as an arbitrary limit. The question is does the course (which would normally be a 3 weeks to a month) of antibiotics clear the symptoms up, and if so, do they stay cleared up when the course is stopped. If the answer is yes, then further treatment is unnecessary, and due to resistence issues, a bad idea. If the initial drug doesn't work, then a course of a different AB is indicated. If it does work, but symptoms recur, then it's worth trying either a different drug, or a longer course of the original.

Long-story short - there aren't hard and fast rules either way. It needs application of common sense to each rat.

As far as trusting vets vs forums goes, I would normally support taking advice from a professional. However, vets get very very little training in rats, and some of them do have some odd ideas. The rat world on the other hand has decades of accumulated knowledge about what works and what doesn't. The best thing is to combine the two - the vet has the advantage of having examined the actual rat concerned, the rat world has the advantage of having seen any problem multiple times before. I'd take advice from both, read up, and also try a different vet if necessary - even within one practice they can have very different ideas. A good vet who is experienced with rats is worth their weight in gold, especially once you get to surgery, or wanting to try unusual drugs.

As far as the original question goes, I'm afraid no food will actually fix myco, but a generally good healthy diet will help general health, so you want a good quality base food, and lots of variety of fresh veg and fruit, a little fresh protein etc. If they are on ABs longterm then probiotics are a good idea.

Hope they get better either way :wink:
so what would you suggest? Harley is a year old now, his symptoms have gone away completely. so he is no longer on antibiotics but Meeko is only about 7 months old and he still has a lot mucus on his chest and makes a rattling sound so he is still on it. like in the past I gave Meeko a course of antibiotics and it went away so i decided to stop giving him his course after it finished, but then the rattling noises and mucus sound came back. every time i stop the antibiotics, it comes back.

im assuming it will stop reacquiring when he is a year old just like it did with Harley. I'm told its bad to keep them on it for a long time but what am i supposed to do if it keeps coming back when i stop the AB's.
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by MarieM » Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:01 pm

In the long term, ABs only serve to manage symptoms whilst at the same time, they further weaken the rats immunity against disease. The best course of action is to build up the rats immune system so that it becomes more resistant to myco flare-ups.
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Re: Are there any foods that can relieve mycoplasma symptons

Post by Neotoma » Fri Jul 29, 2011 11:38 am

If he still has mucus on his chest, then he needs continuing treatment. The fact it improves on ABs and then returns when you stop indicates that it is a persistent active infection (rather than scar tissue, where ABs wouldn't affect it).

I would say you have two choices, and which to go for depends on what has been tried already. You can carry on treating long-term with what he is on - I've done this with one or two oldies, where nothing has completely cleared it, but long-term doxy has kept the symptoms under control.

Or you can change antibiotic. If you've only tried baytril, so far then I would very seriously suggest trying doxycycline as well / instead of. If you've tried doxy already, then either of zithromax or draaxin would be worth a shot. Some people have also had good results with septrin or synulox, although I don't tend to use them in resp situations. I'd go for this option unless you've already been there - not least because one of his problems might be incipient resistance to whatever he's currently on.

There is nothing magic about being 1 yr old though. Rats can and do get resp flare-ups at any age, and treatment needs to be based on what the individual has, and how they respond, not on some external arbitrary measure.

As far as foods go - feeding them well and keeping them as healthy as possible is always a good idea, so I'd be looking at feeding lots of good quality fresh food - additionally with a rat with long term resp probs I'd especially look at ensuring his weight is kept stable, and also giving a pro-biotic to counter any side effects of the ABs. However, if he has a reccurrent active infection, then food won't substitute for a careful AB regime.
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