Squamous Cell Carcinoma Figure 1

Figure 1: Squamous cell carcinoma of the jaw in male rat (Bob).
Case history and photos


The following photos of “Bob” show quick growth progression of the actual tumor. Despite the graphic nature of these photos it is important to note that “Bob” was not in pain, and was well cared for by his owners.

Clinical Signs

Bob was first noted to have a small lump in April 2002, and was taken to the vet.


Possible abscess or tumor formation.


At this time the Vet excised and drained the growth, believing it to be an abscess produced by Actinobacillis, since on excision white powdery to white fibrous appearing strands were noted. The wound, though, healing slowly, still drained a small amount of serous exudate.
Growth continued and a second trip was made to the vet where another partial excision and suturing was done.


A month later in May, a foul putrid odor was noted from the wound. The site was cleaned and the following day the lump that was present appeared to have collapsed and was bleeding. A trip was made to the vet, where tissue for histology was sent. The results returned showing the lump to be positive for squamous cell ca, seen in the photos: 3 and 4 below.

Prognosis given by the vet based on the results and the aggressive growth of the tumor was that “Bob” might only survive for another two weeks. Progression of this type of tumor took only one month.


Photos: 1 and 2 show a large growth on the jaw.

Photo: 3  Frontal view

Photo: 4   Viewed from below

Photo: 5  Swelling can be observed on side of face.

Photo: 6 A full face view

*note: Bob went to the Rainbow Bridge the second week of June, 2002. Rest sweetly Bob, and thank-you to Ann and Emma for so kindly sharing these photos. Bob was dearly loved by Ann and Emma.

Photos courtesy of Ann Morgan, of Rock-a-Bye Ratties Rockhampton, Australia; http://rockabyeratties.com/
AusRFS reg breeder 017/001


Linked from


The Rat Guide and its affiliates accept no responsibility for misuse or misunderstanding of its information. This guide in whole or part, exists solely for the purpose of recognizing and understanding the care and illnesses in the pet rat. Please seek advice and treatment from a qualified Veterinarian if your rat is ill.

2000 - 2024 by Karen Grant RN. All rights reserved.
All other written and visual materials used by permission of specific authors for the sole use of the Rat Guide. Please visit our Privacy Policy for details.
Brought to you by KuddlyKorner4u
See Logos page for linking to the Rat Guide.
Contact us here: Rat Guide Team
Please note: Rat Guide email is not checked daily. Send e-mail to if you have an urgent medical problem with your pet rat. When possible, it is always best to take your rat to a qualified rat veterinarian.