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Pet Rats/S. Moniliformis


I recently adopted a friends female rat and she scratched me while she was crawling around. I asked my friend if the rat had ever drawn blood before and my friend said yes. So my question, if my rat is positive for s. Moniliformis is it possible that my friend wasn't infected but I still could be? She's had her for 2 years.. Since she was a baby.. But never been to a vet.

Thank you!

Hi Valesca,
There is a very very low chance that you could be infected and develop the disease. However, rat-bite fever is very rare, and most people who are exposed to the bacteria never get the disease. It is a good idea to know the symptoms and get medical help if you start showing the symptoms.

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Debbie Ducommun


I can answer any questions about pet rats, but you will probably be able find answers to simple questions more quickly on my website at If you have a life-threatening emergency you can try calling me at 530-899-0605. I am not usually on the computer on the weekend.


I have been "The Rat Lady" since 1985 and am recognized as one of the world's experts on pet rats. I have 3 published books and already answer lots of questions about rats daily.

President of Rat Assistance & Teaching Society

I am a monthly columnist for Pet Business magazine, and my writing has appeared in other magazines. I have 3 published books.

BA in Animal Behavior

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