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Thread: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

  1. #21

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    My thought on checking with the county and whatnot is more double checking that no one can come in later and say, "you needed to do this," or, "you are only allowed X amount of animals in a residence," or anything of the sort. I just, personally, think it's best to check, rather than ending up later in a bad situation (many animals, no legal ground to have them sort of thing). That's, of course, up to you.

    Here's PDF files of our 3 main forms, if it helps:

    Adoption Application
    Adoption Contract
    Surrender Form
    Rattie Love Rescue
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  3. #22

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    I used to run a rescue in the uk, not just for rats but we had degus, chinnies, mice, hammys and gerbils. I can't do it nowadays as it all got too much and we had to stop taking in and eventually ran down to no animals at all (although I do have 2 pet ratties again now that we are settled in a new flat).

    Rescue does have it's rewarding moments, it really does, but you have to be prepared for very very hard work, long hours cleaning and treating and socialising the animals.

    The bad points on running a rescue imo are that you HAVE to be hard hearted at points. I have seen too many times people who meant well, but couldn't say no and ended up overrun, unable to cope, and ending up being more cruel to the animals through lack of time for them all than the situations a lot came from. If you do not say no when you reach your limit, and run a waiting list and prioritise, then you could be in for a whole lot of trouble.

    Rescue is not for the faint hearted!!!

    Another thing I discovered through the rescue network was that so many rescuers built up 'collections'. They collected rats they liked the colour of and fancy varieties. If a 'normally marked' rat came in they would be shunted out via adoption but these people often had cages full of their own rats.... nicely or unusually coloured ones that came in on rescue. Of course the next step was that some of these rescuers then bred their rescued fancy varieties.... and one golden rule is NEVER EVER BREED a rescued rat. You don't know the history, or even anything about them. But the temptation seemed regularly too much for a lot of rescuers out there. I personally thought this was totally against the whole ethos of a rat rescue in the first place!

    Just think things through carefully, and possibly fostering for a local rescue might be a good taster for what you are going to let yourself in for.

  4. #23

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    Good advice, Junior!

    Another thing I discovered through the rescue network was that so many rescuers built up 'collections'. They collected rats they liked the colour of and fancy varieties. If a 'normally marked' rat came in they would be shunted out via adoption but these people often had cages full of their own rats.... nicely or unusually coloured ones that came in on rescue. Of course the next step was that some of these rescuers then bred their rescued fancy varieties.... and one golden rule is NEVER EVER BREED a rescued rat. You don't know the history, or even anything about them. But the temptation seemed regularly too much for a lot of rescuers out there. I personally thought this was totally against the whole ethos of a rat rescue in the first place!
    8O Of course, I know there are some "rescues" that breed their rescues (which is HORRID :x ), but collecting "pretty" rats? :evil: Our own rats are mostly black & white hoods & berks, a PEW and not much "pretty", as they say (whatever THAT means!). I can't imagine a rescue (or is that "rescue") doing that! Almost sounds border-line hoarding, perhaps? :?
    Rattie Love Rescue
    <br />Website - Petfinder - Gift Shop

  5. #24

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    [quote="Kimmiekins"]Good advice, Junior!


    8O Of course, I know there are some "rescues" that breed their rescues (which is HORRID :x ), but collecting "pretty" rats? :evil: Our own rats are mostly black & white hoods & berks, a PEW and not much "pretty", as they say (whatever THAT means!). I can't imagine a rescue (or is that "rescue") doing that! Almost sounds border-line hoarding, perhaps? :?
    Yes well you'd be surprised how many people suffer from hoarding syndrome and doing a rescue is a perfect way to feed that whilst masquerading behind a 'decent rescue person' fasade. On the flip side are the people who begin a rescue and then get the GMR (get more rats) bug and can't help themselves. But yes, one rescue place I used to visit started to alarm me when she started to parade 'blue roans' 'badgers' 'minks' 'doves' 'huskies' and so on. I soon realised she was purchasing from breeders and mixing breeding with some of her rescues to get more and fobbing the unwanted in the litters off as rescues to unsuspecting adopters. I severed contact and focussed on my own little mob but it did seem to be an unfortunate trend amongst rescuers I came across. Not all, but rather a few did it. Plus the genuine rescues often got calls from other overwhelmed rescues.... you'd get the 'uninteresting' rats whilst they had rows upon rows of allsort of fancy colours and so on. I said to one rescue woman I didn't have room for a cage of hooded agouti boys but how about I take the cage of female huskies she had.... just to see... and she said no we don't need your help after all. Terrible really.

    Now when I select my ratties I get the first one I see in the place I choose to go regardless of colour size or whatever. Hence I have Junior, my hooded agouti boy with a wonky stripe and Frankie, a patchy looking white dumbo with wonky ears! I love em both though!

  6. #25

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    Just surfing the web and came across this

    http://www.cavyrescue.co.uk/run-a-rat-rescue.shtml

    Thought I'd add it here, as brutal as it is, for anyone thinking of starting a rescue

  7. #26

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    I do some rescuing here and there for rats and ferrets mostly, but I can't open a full fledged rescue EVER! It's just too expensive and too much work. I got 4 rats from a member of this board. 1 of them is so agressive I'm not sure that after neutering he will ever be ok. He's started to get agresive towards people too and may need put down, but I can't bear the thought of doing that until I try neutering first (which is $240) plus the cost of the vet bills because of the injuries he's inflicted on the other rats (add $300) plus new cages for them (because the cage they came in is so rusted it hurt their little feet) add $200 more, antibiotics because they all but 1 have URI's $50 and my lovely addition of 4 new rats has now cost close to $800 and I'm super lucky because I can make most of their toys and all of their bedding. If 4 rats can cost this much I don't want to think about having 30 or 40 come in.

    Then there is always finding them homes. I would love to keep them, however the agressive one I can't because I don't have the time to free range him seperatly and give him the time he really needs outside the cage. I have no idea how or if I can ever adopt him out. I may end up keeping the other 3, but that really depends on if more need homes because I can't clean 100 cages a day.

    My 2 new ferrets are every bit as expensive, I've spent almost $600 on them, plus their new cage (you don't even want to know what they were living in), toys (because ferrets don't play with rat toys), and again time to free range them away from my rats and in a safe place. Well that is a bit hard because it seems there is a rat everywhere or it's where the rats play and I can't have them playing there and then have my rats there, my rats would freak out!!

    It's all very expensive, very hard work, and very heartbreaking!! People who do this all the time should get some kind of metal, or at least a respite weekend or two every month to re-group!
    ~~Steph~~
    <br />
    <br />Proud Ratty momma to
    <br />-Mr. Frumples
    <br />-Eva
    <br />-Goo
    <br />-Captian Morgan

  8. #27

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    Quote Originally Posted by lovinmyworm
    It's all very expensive, very hard work, and very heartbreaking!! People who do this all the time should get some kind of metal, or at least a respite weekend or two every month to re-group!
    How many rats and ferrets do you have? I hope the agressive rattie calms down and the other ones heal well.
    http://www.fusionhosts.co.uk<br />http://www.a4hosts.com<br />http://www.killerpokeronline.com

  9. #28

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    I currently have my 4 rats, these new 4 rats, 4 ferrets, my dog and 3 puppies from an accidental litter and the people were moving out of town they left them with me and took mama dog with them after they spayed her (because I refused to help with the puppies until they did).

    The rats, the single one who attacks may have to go to a home alone if after his neuter he's still agressive (which my vet thinks is likely with him) and after I try to introduce him to my spayed female (who is cage agressive so I doubt it will work). Finding him an appropritate home is going to be a major issue!!

    2 of the ferrets are fine, they are a bonded pair, but are up there in age so that's proving difficult to find them a new home just because no one seems to want a pair of 9 year old ferrets. Their owners had a house fire and surrendered. 2 of them were skin and bones, lots of $ spent on them and I'm terrified and having a hard time finding them a home because I don't want them to meet the same fate again. Their owners husband died unexpectedly (at 31 years old) and she was trying her best but between her greif and lack of money it all wasn't well. She was feeding them dog food, they were skin and bones, bad cage because she had to sell their old cage for $, ect.

    Their were 6 puppies, 3 are gone, the others are getting really big really quickly (St. Bernard). I may have 1 person willing to take 2 of these puppies, but he is waiting on his fencing in his backyard to be put in so at least till next week.

    It's just soooo hard to find homes!!! Tons of people are interested, but I refuse to allow my animals to go somewhere they might not be cared for correctly!! No vet references scares me but I have adopted to someone without them once because she established with my vet. I ask not for an adoption fee, but to pre-pay your vet instead. Then I know your going to use the money on the animal. I want to know the cage they are going into, this is a HUGE issue because then I run into people getting too small of cages and me having to say "that isn't big enough" and them getting upset with me.

    No way could I do it with more animals!! I don't have alot, I keep things super small, I don't go seeking new rescues they all just kind of find me. The Humane society calls me if any rats get surendered, the ferret rescue calls me if they are too full and can't keep them, ect. Like I said they just kind of find me....
    ~~Steph~~
    <br />
    <br />Proud Ratty momma to
    <br />-Mr. Frumples
    <br />-Eva
    <br />-Goo
    <br />-Captian Morgan

  10. #29

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    I know that this is an old thread, but I just wanted to comment on it.

    Running a rescue is both emotionally and financially straining. I've been doing it full time (I'm a stay at home mom) for about 7 months now. We currently house 26 rescue rats, 6 hamsters, and one rabbit.

    We strive to spay / neuter all of our rats. This is quite costly and we are currently spending $420 / week on the procedures alone! This is because we took in 26 rats from a guinea pig rescue on the west side of the state. I go to the vet's office no fewer than 3 times per week.

    I adopt out a rat about once every two weeks. Yes, one every two weeks. It's hard. You know how wonderful your animals are, but getting the word out about your rescue efforts is the hardest thing to do.

    Networking is definitely key. Find other rescuers in your area and get to know them. I work closely with a guinea pig rescue, a dog rescue, and a rabbit rescue all in my area. When they have cages that they do not need or other supplies, they bring them to me. And I do the same. This helps SO MUCH with the cost of the supplies. In the rescue community, it's really necessary to have other friends who are in the same boat as you. You can share stories, vent, and lean on eachother when times are tough... and they are quite often.
    Think adoption!<br /><br />http://www.petfinder.com/shelters/MI726.html

  11. #30

    Default Re: So you wanna run a rat rescue...

    if i ever won the lottery or some big amount of money was at my doorstep, i'd do this in a heartbeat. for any animal. kudos to all you nice people who do this

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