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Have a hampster that is 18 months old. Noticed last night…

Have a hampster that...

Have a hampster that is 18 months old. Noticed last night that it was sleeping a lot more than usual and breathing rapidly. Took it out of the cage today and it appears to be much larger than normal (bloated abdomen?). Also, noted quite a bit of dried stool it fur when it usually has itself well groomed. I just washed him off I'm some warm water and offered him a grape to eat. He was not interested. Seems to be working so hard to breathe :(

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The Expert will know how to help the hamster. What is the hamster's name?

Hammy :)

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Answered in 43 minutes by:
12/6/2017
Joan
Joan, Vet Technician
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 19,735
Experience: Vet Tech for 35+yrs. Small Animals and Fish
Verified

Hello,

My name is ***** ***** I have been a Vet tech for 35+ years and have a special interest in small animals and exotics.

Let me preface this by saying your Hamster is considered a senior citizen. When we hear about bloating in a hamster is send up red flags. A hamster that is bloated with breathing problems can be a sign of a Heart problem and there is fluid in the abdomen causing the breathing issue. The next possibility is a tumor in the abdomen, which in most cases the tumors are malignant. The last possibility is a liver issue.

The best solution would be to have Hamster examined by the Vet to determine if anything can be done.

If this was just constipation, it would not cause the breathing issues you are seeing.

Please hit reply to discuss this information.

Joan

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
are we probably referring to an end of life illness then that can not really be treated? Like CHF or liver failure? Because as much as we love the little guy I don't want to put him or us through a lot of tests if it is simply his time and he just needs peace and quiet.
We recently had a cat pass away from renal failure after many tests were completed. I don't want to put another pet through that unless it is a treatable illness.

I do suspect end of life illness. Hamster life span at 1 1/2 -2 years. If it is the heart, they can treat with a Diurectic to pull some water away and ease the breathing. In hamsters there is not a lot that can be done if cancer, Liver or heart. It is a matter of making them comfortable and letting them pass quietly or euthanizing them if very bad. I hate to deliver news like this, but I have to be honest, about what I suspect.

Please let me know if you have further questions. If I have addressed all your concerns, please take a moment to rate my service 5 stars. I am not paid by the site until I get a positive rate.

Condolences on the passing of your cat.

Joan

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
This too is what I was thinking. Thank you very much for your help and for your honesty, it is greatly appreciated. I would much rather make him comfortable in the end, keep him here with his family, and not subject him to any uneccessary tests that are unable to cure or extend his life.
Your services are more reassuring than you realize :)

I wish I could give better news. but I know when I see 18 months and the symptoms I have to be honest about what is happening. I do not feel it is fair to a family to make them think all will be fine and loose their Pet.

If I have addressed your concerns, please take a moment to rate my serbice 5 stars. I am not paid by the site until I get a Positive rating.

Joan

Joan
Joan, Vet Technician
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 19,735
Experience: Vet Tech for 35+yrs. Small Animals and Fish
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