Rat Forum banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,
I'm getting a bit nervous about the introduction I'm doing. I have a group of 3 female rats (als spayed) which have been together for more then a year. My alpha girl Tofu is the oldest of 2 years and 3 months. I'm now trying to introduce two 9 month old females that are still intact. I am doing the carrier method but Tofu has been quite aggressive from the start. In the beginning it didn't seem too bad, some puffed up fur but no scuffles. Until one night I woke up to screaming and my new girl Harissa was bitten so bad and was almost ripped open vagina to asshole. I immediate took her to emergency service of course and separated Tofu.

After that drama, with some advice of my vet, Tofu is now on her own in the big cage and I'm continuing introduction with the 4 girls. This is going splendidly and the 2 new ones are getting on great with the 2 old ones. I'm feeling extremely guilty towards Tofu though.. she is already so old and is now forced to live by herself in her own space. I can see how badly she wants to get out and that she misses her old friends. I tried today very carefully to put her in again with the 4 girls (that have been together now for 4 days) but she immediately bit the other new girl (Tara) which resulted in a very big gash on her nose. Again separated Tofu but I'm super nervous what to do.. I don't want Tofu to live on her own. I also don't want to separate my two old girls now that they have been successfully introduced to the new 2 girls. I can try again in a couple of days but I don't want to new girls to again get bitten. (Obviously I am staying with them this whole process and intervening as soon as a scuffle happens, but usually the bites happen within a second). Even though Tofu has been by herself, I've been switching blankets for her to get used to the smell. I'm just afraid that leaving her alone for too long will make things worse.. any help is appreciated thanks!

Ps: the vet advised the following: separate Tofu for 2 weeks. No interaction, no play time, just her in the cage. Most rats come around after some time in solitary. Switch the rats from cages after 1 week, so they need to live in each others smells. And then after those 2 weeks total, start again with the 4 girls and Tofu. I just feel too bad leaving her all alone and not giving her any attention.. it breaks my heart.. she sits in front of the door of the cage and just looks so depressed.
 

·
Registered
Rats
Joined
·
57 Posts
Aww hope it works out for you, I’d be upset too, I’ve a Guinea pig on medication at moment and feel sad cuz she can’t tell me what’s wrong I just know when something isn’t right, I’m sure your girl will be ok, you can still talk to her though?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah and I have taken her out a little, because she just looks like she has given up on life :-( has anybody got positive feedback from such rough introductions? Or would the answer just be to give up and separste them?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,637 Posts
I am in the same position with my 2 and a half year old Ilse.At the beginning of July I got 2 six week olds.The intros went swimmingly with all except Ilse.She was hyperterratorial and super aggressive to the noobs,Bhindi and Bhaji,all they wanted to do was befriend her but she kept trying to stab them up through the bars,so I couldnt risk face to face intros.Two and a half months on ,same position.Because of my Ilses and your Tofus great age .I think it highly unlikely they will come round.Grumpy old Granny Does can be incredibly stubborn in these situations!
So,now I have Bhindi and Bhaji still living in the introduction cage( which luckily is big enough for 2 rats) and Ilse in the main cage with her companion Mango.Mango loves the younger girls so,she gets to play with them at freerange time,whilst I play with Ilse,though I do feel sorry with her being a nomates in the playground,I tell her she has brought it on herself🙂
So,is there a rat that Tofu was fond of that you could move in with her ? Luckily Ilse doesnt seem the slightest bit comcerned about the scent of the other rats on me ,and Mango,but that is something you would have to watch out for if you tried it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Heey, thank you for your reply! Unfortunately that sounds very disencouraging (if you can say it like that). I am trying neutral ground intros now, which didnt go as bad as I thought they would go. I love the name of your ratty Ilse btw (my best friend is called ilse haha). I have two rats that Tofu can go back to living with. And I have a separate cage for the two new ones so that is all a possibility if things don't work out :) I just feel bad for the new ones, as they've just made these new friends and gone through this stressperiod just to be separated again pfff.. but we'll see how it goes. I was really hoping someone would come in and reply with "no just have patience it will all work out!" Kind of reply 🤔🤣
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hahaha! Yes fiercesome eyes, with a passion for blood ;) I love that you know your ratty's personality that well! I'm afraid tofu might be the same, but we will see! I'll keep you posted! Are you Dutch by the way? Ilse is such a Dutch name haha
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
63 Posts
I used to have a rat named pepper who was a little bit grumpy. She HATED new babies and would always be super aggressive towards them (biting, puffing, chasing). The thing that I always used is the neutral space method and then also pushing the cages against eachother. This would only even take like a week for me, I have no idea why she would change her mind so quickly but she did always decide she would put up with them eventually!

I'm not sure if it would be the same with your girls, but it is just a little hope for you that even mean girls can come around!
Pink Finger Fawn Pet supply Toy

Rodent Pink Fawn Whiskers Snout

Pepper cuddling with two different lots of babies :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I used to have a rat named pepper who was a little bit grumpy. She HATED new babies and would always be super aggressive towards them (biting, puffing, chasing). The thing that I always used is the neutral space method and then also pushing the cages against eachother. This would only even take like a week for me, I have no idea why she would change her mind so quickly but she did always decide she would put up with them eventually!

I'm not sure if it would be the same with your girls, but it is just a little hope for you that even mean girls can come around!
View attachment 309476
View attachment 309475
Pepper cuddling with two different lots of babies :)
Thank you so much! I little hope (and patience) might be all I need! My rattery told me she can take the new ones back, but I cannot do that now that I have gotten to know their personalities. I am going to keep hope and try!!! 😁
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
63 Posts
Thank you so much! I little hope (and patience) might be all I need! My rattery told me she can take the new ones back, but I cannot do that now that I have gotten to know their personalities. I am going to keep hope and try!!! 😁
have you tried the neutral space method with her? I have read some people say it's not as good as the carrier method but I think I actually had more success with it. Make sure you lay down a towel or blanket if it's in the bath and sprinkle some food to distract them. I usually put the babies in first then go in order of least dominant to most dominant. some rats seem particularly defensive of their cage but fine in a neutral space away from any scent!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thank you for the suggestion! Im trying a sort of neutral method at the moment. With tiny introductions each day. Usually twice a day to introduce her to the babies. So far quite good, with no fights but a bit of fluffing up. I would like to move on to the carrier method after this. I am not sure that is the right move. At least im noticing that Tofu is getting lonely which can bode well for the future.. I hope
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Fawn Terrestrial animal Snout Comfort Fur

I really hope this is a good sign.. it is in our bathtub.. but I'm still a bit scared after the whole, "Tofu wanted to rip Harissa another asshole bite" fiasco, to put them in a carrier.. I don't want to wake up again to major screams and a baby with guts spilling :-(
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
63 Posts
View attachment 309483
I really hope this is a good sign.. it is in our bathtub.. but I'm still a bit scared after the whole, "Tofu wanted to rip Harissa another asshole bite" fiasco, to put them in a carrier.. I don't want to wake up again to major screams and a baby with guts spilling :-(
wow that is majorly amazing signs!! like really really good. If she's cuddling like that already, this won't even take that long I don't think. keep up what you're doing, twice a day is good, after that you can try free roaming them together in a less neutral space.

I'm almost certain now you'll be able to keep your whole mischief together ❤ that photo is extremely cute as well, I'm proud of tofu for sucking it up and dealing with having to have new babies xD
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I really hope so! She is the big balding girl on the side, so she is not completely incorporated with the pack like baby Harissa (the one on top, the one she bit). I am thinking of continuing with rhe carrier method again to see how that is going but Im terrified of waking up to screaming tonight again. Let's hope for the best! Thank you for all the encouragement!!!!🥰🥰
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top