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Discussion Starter #1
I got my first two rats from Petsmart about two months ago. I know now, bad mistake. After the first week of having them I noticed alot of sneezing and I considered returning them within the 2 week return-allowance but I had already grown very attatched. Anyway, they don't sneeze very much. I'm still trying to bond with them, but they sleep alot. And I notice after waking up in the afternoon they have porphoryn (spelling?) and they usually sneeze right after waking up. At night they are so active. I'm still working on bonding after two months! I spend hours with my arm by the cage door with the cage on the love seat just waiting for them to come by me. Only one will sit on my shoulder. The other is very skittish and lazy. And I noticed the the one that likes to come by me won't allow the other to come out of the cage and bites her ears until she squeaks. Should I seperate them? They're females, from the same litter (supposedly) and about 3 months old. I looked into the Vet RX small animal remedy. Is it worth it? What's the best way to use it? And IS the occasional red nose and sneeze ok? I use Carefresh bedding, so I know it's not that. I do know that I have a rather old, dusty house. I've cleaned the room they are in as best as possible but this house is inevitably dusty. It's become warm outside so I usually keep the window cracked open a bit during the day and I noticed that it's helped reduce sneezing.

Am I just over reacting? Oh and another question, how can I socialize them better? I don't want to just reach in and grab them. I bribe them to come by me with treats, haha. Is this a good route?

Thanks for reading my insanely long post.

Sorry for all of the questions.
 

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For the last one, yes, it's a very good route. It's worked with all of my rats, hold the ones I bred (male + female = accidental rat colony), who knew me from the start and didn't need any bribing. The Carefresh bedding is also good, keep that up.

As for the lethargy and everything, I don't think it's because you got them from Petsmart. I got Yuki from Petsmart almost a year ago and he's been very cool, and really good around people; and Choco's a hyperactive little beastie with a heart of gold and the delusion that everyone who puts their fingers in the cage are chew toys. There's nothing wrong with getting rats from Petsmart.

I don't know what to tell you other than that. You seem to be doing the right thing, and the fact that you actually took time to join a forum dedicated to your pets indicates that you really care about them, so it's not you and it's not your bedding. Rats are naturally prone to respritory diseases, so the dust in your house isn't good for them, but you're working on that. That should clear up A LOT of health issues.

The behavioral issues? Rats sleep a lot during the day and they're active at night. I used to have a wheel that squeeked like **** and I had bad insomnia problems because of it (I developed an immunity eventually). Sometimes it takes a long time to bond with rats, especially if they haven't had much interaction with people. You've made good progress with the one rat that sits on your shoulder, and I'd bet money that the reason why the other is so skittish is because her sister is more aggresive. Does the more aggressive one bully the skittish one often? If so, you should REALLY sepparate them.

Also, whenever they come out of the cage, give them a treat so they know it's the right thing to do. Yuki knows that when he comes out, he'll get a treat as soon as he goes back in the cage, so he typically enjoys being out and on my shoulder (although he doesn't like the actual being picked up part). I'm still bonding with Choco, but I anticipate a healthy relationship between us.

You're on the right track, you aren't doing anything wrong. Some rats are lazier than others (coughYUKIcough), but that's ok--as long as you two have fun together, enjoy each other's company and trust one another, then all will be well. I think it's more something to do with dominance inside the cage.
 

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I agree with Scarekrow your doing the right thing, As for the skittish one. What me and mom did when we kept two rats together (and one would attack the other while being held or trying to be held) we would put one in a large rat ball while he handeld the other, then took the rattie ball one out and play with them. Soon we didn't need the ball anymore but mom still has a few we have to do that with. Just an idea :)

Also when my boyfriend comes over on weekends he always complains about all the noise at night and i'm always surprised at how i never seem to notice it. I've never hurd them make noise while i'm trying to sleep or sleeping lol. Crazy huh?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
yuki sounds like a cool rat, i like the name.

the skittish one is dre and the other is ronny the rizzatt, i love malibu's most wanted. but that's just so i dont have to confuse myself with explaining them.

ronny isn't too aggressive with her. they wrestle alot and usually ronny only wins have of the time. she's never broken skin on her. after my first post i went over to change their bedding and dre came out onto the table where their cage is so. after i was done spot cleaning i sat there at the table for awhile and she actually ate a few sunflower seeds out of my hands without running away so that's good. ronny was in the cage most of the time rearranging all of the bedding the way she wanted.

do you guys have experience with those wodent wheels? at the pet store they have the wire wheels in with the rats so they have no idea what to do with this one. i made sure i picked the two that played on their wheel the most. how can i get them to use this one?

i could talk about them all day. my boyfriends pretty fed up with hearing about them right now. lol.
 

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lol, did you get the Fruits Basket allusion?

Yea, it got to the point where I only noticed the squeaking if anyone said something. When Tabris died (she ABUSED that damned wheel) my room was suddenly quiet and I just couldn't sleep in it that night BECAUSE it was so quiet.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
ok ronny keeps pulling on her ear everytime she comes near me. i'm worried. i have a 40 gallon tank. i think ill sanitize it and put dre in there for now. do you think they will ever be able to live together again? is this normal for young girls? ronny like grooms the back of dres neck by biting the hair and pulling at it. is that normal? her hair looks thin there and on her face but that's how she's been since i got her. is dominance normal in female rats?

i'm just so worried. i got them hoping they could live peacefully together but i guess not. ronny rarely ever flips dre over on her back but dre gets fed up with pushing ronny away when she's biting her that she'll flip ronny over on her back and hold her there for close to 5 minutes at a time and ronny lays there paralyzed.

i really don't want to separate them but if i have to i will. you guys are experts it seems with rat behavior.

and thank you all so much for helping me out!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
oh and by the way i have two houses in their cage for them, an igloo and a shoebox. if ronny picks the shoebox dre will follow her to go sleep there, and vice versa. they cuddle alot and enjoy nesting together. just thought i should bring that up.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
i really need help. i'm considering getting rid of ronny. i'm really getting sick of the fighting, i dont like hearing dre cry. i don't want to see her die one day from nothing but depression or anything. all she does is lay in the house, scared. when she does stick up to her ronny just keeps going back for more. tomorrow i'll be looking for a new home for her. i will not tolerate this.
 

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lizzydeztic said:
i really need help. i'm considering getting rid of ronny. i'm really getting sick of the fighting, i dont like hearing dre cry. i don't want to see her die one day from nothing but depression or anything. all she does is lay in the house, scared. when she does stick up to her ronny just keeps going back for more. tomorrow i'll be looking for a new home for her. i will not tolerate this.
Have you tried giving Ronny something extra to chew on, or play wrestling with her yourself? Perhaps it's just pent up frustration?

Sometimes rats do have personality clashes, though, and just won't get along. If you've tried all you can and you can't separate Ronny from the others, then I think you may be doing the right thing.
 
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