An eight-year-old girl is being treated at Rady Children’s Hospital for rat bite fever.
The girl, whose name is Cali, called her two pet rats friends, but her mom said the family had no idea that they could get her daughter so sick that she would end up hospitalized.
Last Friday, Cali’s mom - who asked to only be identified as Sabrina - said her daughter came down with high fever and a horrible painful rash all over her body. By Sunday, she could barely use her arms and legs.
"It was really scary - really hard to watch. As we would touch her and try to move her a little bit, she would scream in pain," said Sabrina.
Doctors were not sure what it was at first until the family was in the hospital and started talking about their two pet rats and doctors connected the dots.
Cali was diagnosed with rat bite fever.
Rat Bite fever is rare but can be fatal if not treated right away.
A video shows her walking with her doctor – something she could not do just days ago.
It’s important to note that Cali was never bitten by the rats. The bacterial infection can enter the body through cuts or sores if you have contact with the rat's saliva or urine.
Doctors said you can still have rats as pets, but if you handle them to always wash your hands after doing so.
Cali was treated with antibiotics and is expected to make a full recovery. Her family, they said while it makes them sad, they will be getting rid of their rats now that they know they are infected.