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Old 12-06-2019, 03:06 PM   #1
gamegrl
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Exclamation Dried thyme for emergency allergies?

hello! this is my first time here so please excuse me, im not quite sure how to work this site.

i have a syrian female, 1.6 years old, and within the last 4 days, she seems to have been having some respiratory issues. she has always been a very healthy hamster and the first time i saw her this way, i panicked. i had a vet confirm she does not have a respiratory infection or pneumonia or anything, nor does she show ANY symptoms for any of them aside from breathing quickly and acting very tired (though not tired enough to not eat/drink) her fur gets cold as per usual w respiratory issues, however her fur remains clean and soft as it always is.

i believe she has allergies, the house we currently live in has a mold problem due to the landlord being abusive and refusing to do anything for it, i have severe mold allergies myself so i suppose its possible for hamsters to have them too?

i read that a good emergency antibiotic for hamsters is thyme/thyme tea, i am unable to get fresh thyme atm BUT i have dried thyme, i dont think itd be as potent but could i use the dried thyme for her as opposed to fresh thyme? its all i have

please respond in any way thats helpful! thank you.
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Old 12-07-2019, 04:08 AM   #2
GhostsInSnow
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Default Re: Dried thyme for emergency allergies?

Hi there, if it is an allergy then any antibiotic (even a natural holistic antibiotic) shouldn't be used. If your vet has said that there is no infection respiratory or otherwise then antibiotic most definitely isn't needed. Much like with us, overuse of such remedies in animals can cause them to be ineffective at a time when they actually are needed.
If it is an allergy then perhaps an antihistamine but again you should discuss this with your vet. Unfortunately mould is toxic so, where possible it would be best to move your hammy to a room that is least affected. If she's showing signs of lethargy (being overly tired and not very active) then I would suggest a recheck with your vet
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Old 12-07-2019, 05:03 AM   #3
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: Dried thyme for emergency allergies?

How old is she? Respiratory problems can be caused by a number of things, not just infection or allergy. However you say there is a mould problem so it could be this is significant - however not necessarily. I know a bit about this subject - am asthmatic myself and with a diagnosed allergy to "moulds". But people who aren't allergic to moulds can be completely unaffected by it sometimes because there are many different types of "mould". In my case it is the fungus that causes dry rot - which puts out millions of mould spores in the air. Whereas green mould growing on food is not a problem (although probably wouldn't do any good to eat it).

So there are two issues with moulds. The first is - if there is an allergy to it then it will affect you. The second is - it may not affect you if you are not actually allergic to it - but that some moulds could lead to fungal infections.

Just because a human has an allergy to mould doesn't mean a hamster does. But it is possible she has a fungal infection. Or if she is older it could even be kidney or heart problems causing the breathlessness.

Most houses have some mould somewhere. Not all of them are a problem. I find it's the ones you can't see that affect breathing - where the whole place has a strong fusty smell when the heating is on, and goes away when the heating is off.

You can have mould growing round metal window frames and it looks awful but does no harm. You can have mould growing on wallpaper and it looks horrible but does no harm - unless it is a particular kind of nasty black mould. But not all black moulds are toxic like that one. Most people have black type moulds in bathrooms - looks unsightly but doesn't bother you and washes off easily.

It is not nice for you if you have severe mould allergies and there is a problem in the house. I assume this is affecting you. The only immediate solution is a very expensive hepa filter - the large ones that remove particles as small as mould spores. Or to move house. I had to move house once due to a severe problem, but years later found there was a much simpler solution which was opening up chimneys to ventilate the house properly and lighting a real fire for a couple of weeks. The whole problem was solived in two weeks. But if it's not your own house you can't do things like that and not every house has chimneys that have been blocked off.

Try not to panic - it makes everything worse. Can you give a bit more information. What sort of mould problem is it in the house? Is it visible or does it just smell. Visible mould can be killed off with cleaning solution. How old is your hamster? (You say she only had problems in the last four days which suggests she was fine before).

Thyme won't do any good - it's an antiseptic and mildly antibiotic - won't make any difference at all when there is no infection.

I would suggest getting some Benebac probiotic - your vet may sell it and Amazon does I think. The dosage is on the pack - it's just a tiny amount for a hamster - about a pinch but it goes by weight of the hamster. Just sprinkle it on or mix it into her food. It is a natural way of boosting her immune system and rebalancing any fungal situation. Fungus can't grow in the wrong internal environment.

If it isn't her age then another thing would be to try taking her to stay somewhere else - with a friend or relative - for a week or two and see if she improves. This things can quickly improve once you're out of the environment - if it is actually a problem with the air quality.

I think it sounds like quite a problem for you too. Do give us a bit more information. If you have visible mould growing somewhere that is not the bathroom, then you can get it sampled and tested and that should give reassurance. There is only one type that is toxic and it is not that common. The rest is just unsightly.

If it is affecting you (asthma?) then it does sound like you may need to think about moving or investing in a very good hepa filter (the ones that are effective cost about 300 I think - like a large box you plug in). Sadly many people like landlords don't understand when a person is allergic and affected when other people aren't affected.
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Old 12-07-2019, 10:40 PM   #4
gamegrl
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Default Re: Dried thyme for emergency allergies?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Serendipity7000 View Post
How old is she? Respiratory problems can be caused by a number of things, not just infection or allergy. However you say there is a mould problem so it could be this is significant - however not necessarily. I know a bit about this subject - am asthmatic myself and with a diagnosed allergy to "moulds". But people who aren't allergic to moulds can be completely unaffected by it sometimes because there are many different types of "mould". In my case it is the fungus that causes dry rot - which puts out millions of mould spores in the air. Whereas green mould growing on food is not a problem (although probably wouldn't do any good to eat it).

So there are two issues with moulds. The first is - if there is an allergy to it then it will affect you. The second is - it may not affect you if you are not actually allergic to it - but that some moulds could lead to fungal infections.

Just because a human has an allergy to mould doesn't mean a hamster does. But it is possible she has a fungal infection. Or if she is older it could even be kidney or heart problems causing the breathlessness.

Most houses have some mould somewhere. Not all of them are a problem. I find it's the ones you can't see that affect breathing - where the whole place has a strong fusty smell when the heating is on, and goes away when the heating is off.

You can have mould growing round metal window frames and it looks awful but does no harm. You can have mould growing on wallpaper and it looks horrible but does no harm - unless it is a particular kind of nasty black mould. But not all black moulds are toxic like that one. Most people have black type moulds in bathrooms - looks unsightly but doesn't bother you and washes off easily.

It is not nice for you if you have severe mould allergies and there is a problem in the house. I assume this is affecting you. The only immediate solution is a very expensive hepa filter - the large ones that remove particles as small as mould spores. Or to move house. I had to move house once due to a severe problem, but years later found there was a much simpler solution which was opening up chimneys to ventilate the house properly and lighting a real fire for a couple of weeks. The whole problem was solived in two weeks. But if it's not your own house you can't do things like that and not every house has chimneys that have been blocked off.

Try not to panic - it makes everything worse. Can you give a bit more information. What sort of mould problem is it in the house? Is it visible or does it just smell. Visible mould can be killed off with cleaning solution. How old is your hamster? (You say she only had problems in the last four days which suggests she was fine before).

Thyme won't do any good - it's an antiseptic and mildly antibiotic - won't make any difference at all when there is no infection.

I would suggest getting some Benebac probiotic - your vet may sell it and Amazon does I think. The dosage is on the pack - it's just a tiny amount for a hamster - about a pinch but it goes by weight of the hamster. Just sprinkle it on or mix it into her food. It is a natural way of boosting her immune system and rebalancing any fungal situation. Fungus can't grow in the wrong internal environment.

If it isn't her age then another thing would be to try taking her to stay somewhere else - with a friend or relative - for a week or two and see if she improves. This things can quickly improve once you're out of the environment - if it is actually a problem with the air quality.

I think it sounds like quite a problem for you too. Do give us a bit more information. If you have visible mould growing somewhere that is not the bathroom, then you can get it sampled and tested and that should give reassurance. There is only one type that is toxic and it is not that common. The rest is just unsightly.

If it is affecting you (asthma?) then it does sound like you may need to think about moving or investing in a very good hepa filter (the ones that are effective cost about 300 I think - like a large box you plug in). Sadly many people like landlords don't understand when a person is allergic and affected when other people aren't affected.
hello! thank you for responding. she is 1.6 years old. i am very allergic to mold and im not sure the type of mold we have but it is visible, its on the ceilings so its very hard to get to.

i remembered we have mold killer, which i had not used in a very long time, so i have applied that to the visible mold

my mother has a hepa air purifier upstairs, however, the issue is downstairs and i am unable to move her upstairs due to there being no room up there, and her tank being too heavy for me to lift. im not sure if we have any other air purifiers, i will check with my mother. is there a possibility a dehumidier might do some good??? just to take moisture out of the air

i will also get some Benebac, however, i want to be sure im getting the correct thing, i found this https://www.petco.com/shop/en/petcos...-animal-powder at petco, is this what i should be getting? thank you!
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Old 12-08-2019, 05:27 PM   #5
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: Dried thyme for emergency allergies?

Yes that's the stuff. I had to work out the dosage for a small robo and the amount was about what I could "pinch" between thumb and finger. It's quite easy to work out - if you have a set of measuring spoons that go down to a quarter of a teaspoon! I think I had to measure an eighth of a quarter of a teaspoon or something. I wouldn't put it in with the hamster mix or it may not all get eaten/dispersed. You could sprinkle it on top of some soft food, like a bit of porridge or baby food or scrambled egg eg maybe.

Is she any better or just the same? Even the small hepa air purifiers can make the air smell/feel cleaner and remove dust - but they won't remove mould spores as they are too small for anything other than the big hepa air cleaners. I'm not sure if a dehumidifier would help or not.

To be honest I don't worry too much about a bit of visible mould - it can be cleaned off as you say, although might keep coming back. It's the stuff you can't see that makes the air smell fusty that bothers me (dry rot is like big fungus under the floorboards!) If it doesn't smell fusty I wouldn't worry about the mould too much. But the probiotic will be good for her regardless.
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Old 12-14-2019, 06:24 PM   #6
gamegrl
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Default Re: Dried thyme for emergency allergies?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Serendipity7000 View Post
Yes that's the stuff. I had to work out the dosage for a small robo and the amount was about what I could "pinch" between thumb and finger. It's quite easy to work out - if you have a set of measuring spoons that go down to a quarter of a teaspoon! I think I had to measure an eighth of a quarter of a teaspoon or something. I wouldn't put it in with the hamster mix or it may not all get eaten/dispersed. You could sprinkle it on top of some soft food, like a bit of porridge or baby food or scrambled egg eg maybe.

Is she any better or just the same? Even the small hepa air purifiers can make the air smell/feel cleaner and remove dust - but they won't remove mould spores as they are too small for anything other than the big hepa air cleaners. I'm not sure if a dehumidifier would help or not.

To be honest I don't worry too much about a bit of visible mould - it can be cleaned off as you say, although might keep coming back. It's the stuff you can't see that makes the air smell fusty that bothers me (dry rot is like big fungus under the floorboards!) If it doesn't smell fusty I wouldn't worry about the mould too much. But the probiotic will be good for her regardless.
hello! i apologize for not getting back sooner, i thought she was getting better, which she is doing much better, however, she has started sneezing occasionally and her breathing still has not improved, i believe she has a cold. the only symptom she has is sneezing and breathing heavier than usual

i do not have an exotic vet near me anymore, if i did i would take her to one but it is impossible for me to do so considering the one near mean stopped seeing rodents and now only treats rabbits

is there ANYTHING i can give her that a vet may prescribe? i have been giving her the bene bac and that seems to help, however, i feel she needs antibiotics.

please respond as soon as possible, im very scared for her. thank you

EDIT 12/14/2019 : 8:38 PM CST: after doing some research, her symptoms of a cold cold, i spoke to vets over the phone, and a vet who i know online, and they agree with me that this seems like a cold. she is doing MUCH better since the first day i found her, however, she is still a bit lethargic and her breathing is still off, she continues to eat and drink normally and she has started running in her wheel, though only for a few minutes, she is still sleeping frequently, though the first winter i had her she slept more often than she would in warmer months.

since she has a cold, i know antibiotics would not do anything since colds are viral, i am going to continue to give her the probiotics (bene bac) over plain yogurt, as well as thyme for her congestion. i am keeping her nose dry and spot cleaning the cage every couple of hours, as well as changing her food and water out daily.
i was suggested to give her a warm mix of milk and honey, would that be helpful?

i am keeping her warm and keeping her environment clean, as well keeping a close eye on her. is there anything else i should do? thank you

Last edited by gamegrl; 12-14-2019 at 07:45 PM. Reason: new information
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Old 12-15-2019, 03:57 AM   #7
Serendipity7000
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Default Re: Dried thyme for emergency allergies?

I think you are doing all you can. I am sure she would appreciate licking a bit of honey off a teaspoon but personally I wouldn’t give milk. They don’t digest lactose well and milk is usually seen as worse for congestion- water flushed out the system. Manuka (honey) arguably is good for various immune boosting things but ordinary honey is probably fine too. For immune boosting you could give a pinch of hemp seeds daily (I get the shelled ones as they’re fluffy and easily licked up). I just put them on a separate dish and hamsters seem to like them. Also half a Brazil nut (out of the shell) every two or three days. They contain something that boosts immune system.

As you say, a cold is viral so maybe leave off the thyme as that is more for bacteria.
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