Bumblefoot is usually caused by prolonged exposure and pressure from walking on a wire cage floor and can be very painful for your pet rat. You can tell if your pet rat has Bumblefoot by looking at the bottom of their feet. If you see small bumps, sores or what look like calluses on the bottom of their feet, they most likely have bumblefoot. These bumps can get large and can bleed, leaving the door open for infection.
How To Prevent Bumblefoot in Pet Rats
The easiest thing you can do to prevent bumblefoot from ever happening is when you go to buy the cage. Buying a cage without a wire bottom will help keep bumblefoot away from your pet rats. The best cages are large ferret cages or large cages made specifically for rats where they have plenty of room to walk, hide, sleep, eat, and play.
How to Treat Bumblefoot in Pet Rats
If you have nothing but a wire bottom cage and cannot remove the wire bottom. Don't worry, you can make it more comfortable for your pet rat to walk on by using baby blankets, fleece blankets that cover the entire wire bottom or by adding a shallow plastic tray that fits the entire bottom.
Using a large piece of fleece or a fleece blanket that is at least an inch thick will work best because it can be folded and secured to the bottom of the cage and taken out to be washed every few days. Getting several fleece blankets and having them in hand will help keep the laundry down to once a week.
If your pet rat already had bumblefoot, the best thing you can do is take them to a veterinarian's office right away. The area can easily get infected and your vet may need to give you antibiotics to treat your rat with. If the bumblefoot is very big the vet may have to cut a small portion of it out before sending your pet at home to heal.