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Discussion Starter #1
I had no idea where to post this at (since there isn't a "Ratties Question" board, so if it's in the wrong place I appoligize...

* = New questions


My Questions:
  • 1. Is it true that Ratties need to be fed meat? If so, which kinds and is it to be cooked first?
    2. Is it best to give Ratties bottled water?
    3. Are wooden and rawhide bird toys safe for Ratties? If so, is the rope safe as well?
    4. What is the best/recommended room temp for a Rattie?
    5. Can mesh wire be used to make a floor level in a cage? If so, which kind is best and what is best to use to attach it to the cage?
    6. What is best to use for cleaning plastic items in a cage, especially if urine smells become a problem?
    *7. How often should Yogies be given to my ratties? Do they have to be a certain age before I give them to them?
    *8. Has anyone gave this (http://www.craftyrat.com/Merchant2/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=FS-002&Category_Code=FS) to their Ratties? Is it safe for them?
    *9. Is it ok/safe to trim Ratties nails?

ok thats it for now, when I think of more questions I will update this post. And thank you all for any help
 

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Re: Bren's List of rattie questions...

I'm not sure if this area is for questions or just general rat chat actually but I'll answer your questions regardless XD

1. Rats are omnivores like us which means that they should indeed occasionally have meats in their diet. Cooked would probably be best (things like chicken). It depends also on what staple diet you're feeding as some include meats in them.

2. I feel it is but you have to watch what company you go with as some is just filtered tap water. I prefer spring water. Tap water can contain a lot of impurities like fluoride and chlorine. A water filter will remove a lot of them, but it won't remove fluoride.

3. Bird toys and the ropes on them should be just fine :3

4. This I am not sure of but I do know that they tolerate cooler temperatures better than overly warm ones (more prone to heat stroke). Chances are what's comfortable to you should be okay for them too.

5. I'm sure it can but I'm unsure on the rest of that, sorry! Zip ties might work well for keeping it in place?

6. I've heard great things about using a white vinegar and hydrogen peroxide combination. Both should be in separate bottles and I think the bottles need to be opaque (not clear). Basically you spray on the vinegar and then spray on the hydrogen peroxide, let sit for about 30 seconds or a little longer, then rinse and dry.
 

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Re: Bren's List of rattie questions...

1. If you're speaking about a treat, in addition to a balanced diet, chicken seems to go over the best. It does need to be pre-cooked, yes.
2. Darksong answered this much the same I would. :)
3. Again, with Darksong. :) I go through a lot of wood toys... They love 'em.
4. They can tolerate between 65 - 80 degrees (F) and kept as consistent as possible. Humidity between 35% and 70%, if you were curious. :)
5. Yep, I had a foster do just that. I'll be honest, *I* didn't like it much, but the rats were fine on it. I recommend buying a roll of the green (covered) hardware wire at a hardware store for this.
6. I think you're referring to things like igloo and whatnot? You can toss 'em in the dishwasher, mostly. You can soak in hot water and soap and vinegar, or bleach. If you use bleach, rinse, rinse and rinse some more. If you're thinking of shelves, or plastic cage bottoms, the same still applies. Or you do what Darksong suggested.
 

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Re: Bren's List of rattie questions...

Not sure on most of those questions, I suppose rats come from a colder climate so just ensure they arent exposed to sweltering heat? To my knowledge they absorb temperature through their foot pads and tails...? Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

And as for the wire mesh cage levels...if I understand the question correctly...you should never use a cage base level that has holes in it, because for one they could get their feet stuck and go into a bit of a bitey panic...or they can get bumblefoot which I think is pressure sores on the pads of their feet which can get pretty nasty and painful for the ratty.
 

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Re: Bren's List of rattie questions...

^^ once again, bumblefoot is NOT caused by mesh floors in cages. rats are more likely to be prone to bumblefoot if they have solid levels. the main contributing factor (apart from genetics) to bumblefoot is an unclean cage... as in, urine on the floors and the rat walking through it.

i have cages with both solid and mesh levels, and i spend far more time mopping up the pee on the solid levels than i ever have on the mesh levels. touch wood, none of my ratties have never had bumblefoot.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Re: Bren's List of rattie questions...

Thanks everyone for the info, it helps a lot and I wanna get as much rattie info learned as possible before my girls get here and believe me, by being in a few different rattie forums and researching all over the internet I have learned lots

Yes I remember reading about bumblefoot and how they get it and all, and I actually plan on covering my cage floors with double fleece and always making sure that their cage is clean, so I too touch wood that my babies will never get bumblefoot :D
 

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Re: Bren's rattie questions...*More Q's added 1/14

7. You really should only give them like.. 1-2 when you take them out. This was playtime = treat time, and they're always begging to come out. They're not age, really. Old enough to take solids, old enough to nibble a Yogie.

8. It's more of a treat than a food, but they'd probably enjoy it. There doesn't seem to be anything bad in it, so.

9. Yes. You can find a lot of guides to it, but general basics are here: http://www.rmca.org/Articles/qna2_99.htm
 

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Re: Bren's rattie questions...*More Q's added 1/14

In reference to #9, I just trim my rats' nails with a set of human clippers that I keep aside just for them. It's very similar to dog nails, in that you cannot cut the "quick", or the pink part of the nail - only the white tip. I wouldn't do it until the rat is used to being handled, and even then, I have my b/f hold the rat and pet him/her, so that they aren't squirming. Much easier with two people if you can get someone to help you. :) Otherwise you run the risk of hurting them. Also, since they have such teeny little feet, while you would cause a dog to bleed from a fouled nail clipping, the tip of a rat's toe is delicate enough to actually be snipped off with most clippers, so again...make sure they aren't squirming! Also, we give them a treat and let them free-range afterwards, so they associate nail clippings with fun times. :wink: Not sure if I already said it in the "meet my rat" section, but your rats-to-be are beautiful!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Re: Bren's rattie questions...*More Q's added 1/14

calories- Thank you for the info I really appreciate it

ledzepgirl - Thanks for the nail trimming info, so yeah it is a lot like when doing my dogs...two people, treats and playtime afterwards :D and thanks for the compliment on my soon to be Ratties
 

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Re: Bren's rattie questions...*More Q's added 1/14*

I'm new to this forum and stumbled upon your question and thought I would add to #1. My rats are vegetarian. It's mostly because I have been for my entire life and felt that it was the best way for them to avoid the high fat/protein levels that are simply unsafe for rats. A lot of people are uncomfortable with feeding a vegetarian diet, but I have found incredible results with this diet.

A study done on rats to analyze vegetarian diets reported these results:

"The growth of rats on the best (economical) purely vegetarian diet that Wu and his associates devised was inferior to growth on their omnivorous diets but the vegetarians were found to live as long or longer than the omnivorous rats. That is, the male vegetarians did not live significantly longer (540.1 days) than the omnivorous males (526.7 days) but the vegetarian females lived significantly longer (611.1 days) than the omnivorous females (526.9 days)."

You can look at the article at: http://jn.nutrition.org/cgi/reprint/34/1/81.pdf

Of course, when feeding this type of diet, you do need to be aware of what vitamins the rats will need. The study mentioned growth, and I won't lie, you see a difference in size between my rats and my roommate's rats (she feeds her rats a diet with Nutro and gives them "fresh" meats regularly). There is also an interesting health difference. Her rats are sick more often, and also aren't quite as soft or energetic as mine.

Just making the case for you. I imagine that nothing is terribly wrong with feeding meats in the diet as long as it is in moderation. Just like everything, haha.
 
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