|Burt (right) after his Staple Removal and Ruby (left)|
A week ago Tuesday, Burt saw the vet. Turns out, the wounds on his back were very deep and pockets of infection had developed deep under the skin. The wounds on his thigh and at the base of his tail were healing fine, though. They looked nasty, but they were mainly scabs on the surface of the skin that were healing up.
The vet shaved his fur on his back near the wounds and drained the infected pockets, then closed his wounds with staples. We were given trimethoprim sulfa, an antibiotic that is very effective for infections of the skin, and some chlorhexidine antiseptic solution with which to clean his wounds. His weight had dropped considerably. Pre-neuter, he had been 720 grams. At his post-neuter appointment, he weighed 690 grams. At this appointment, he weighed 609 grams. The vet believed it was because of the infection that he was losing weight.
During the course of the week, while cleaning the scab on his back, the scab came loose revealing more pus underneath. I cleaned out the pus as well as I could and the wound scabbed back over again.
Yesterday, Burt went back to the vet for a follow-up and to get his staples removed. This time, he weighed 640 grams, so he was putting back on some of that lost weight. The vet said he was looking much better. The wound on his thigh was kind of swollen, but she aspirated it and didn't find any pus, so it may just be that it is near a lymph node and the node is swollen. We are keeping an eye on that. It should shrink with time. All of the other wounds look pretty well healed.
I am looking forward to the opportunity to restart introductions. Introductions with Ruby to the three new boys have gone really well during the time that Burt has been recooperating. The two intact boys, however, just can't seem to figure out why she never goes into heat and that seems to either fascinate or frustrate them. They constantly want to get a whiff of her lady parts and she doesn't want any part of that. But aside from such annoyances, they have all gotten along just fine.
Now that it is almost a month after the neuters, I think things will go much better for Burt and Hammie. Both rats seem to have calmed down considerably since the altercation that caused Burt's problems. It would be nice to have all five rats living together.