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Discussion Starter #1
Not sure where this post would go, So I'll post it here. Admins please move this to the proper board if need be.

I went to bed one night not knowing that one of the doors on my cage wasn't closed properly, and of course found out that all three of my babies got loose. I managed to catch one. Of course, he likes being held and such so it wasn't too hard. It's the other two who are being little buttheads.

I have tried every live trap you can make with the contents of a 20 year old's apartment. I've done the can suspended over a bucket trick (they just lick the peanut butter off without ever falling in). I've tried the net-like trap where you suspend them in a net of some sort (they manage to wiggle out before I can get to them) and the old stick and box trap (this one almost worked but needed a little tweaking, or just a new box, which I don't have.). I even tried the one where you cut up a 2 liter bottle and make a one way funnel into one side of it, but I guess they're too smart for it because they haven't even tried. I'm out of ideas. They're safe, and I've made the place irresistible to stay. I've set up my spare water bottle and food dish so that they have no real reason to leave the comforts of my place. But I want them back in that damned cage!!! Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. I'm currently between jobs so I can't go out and buy a live trap.

I don't know what to do at this point. I can't catch them bare handed like I did with Snow, they've gotten too smart and stay in places where I can't easily catch them or see them. I'm afraid of them getting hurt at some point...... Any and all ideas whether stupid or not is so greatly appreciated.

Just so you all know the kinds of things I have to make something with, I've got cans, water bottles, yarn, duct tape, and scrap cloth.

Thank you guys for any help you can give me.
 

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Haha. I live with perpetual escaper. In the beginning before he was socialized it was horrible. I usually just leave the cage door wiiiide open and he eventually returns seeing as it contains their main food source. (my other rat is usually with me somewhere else - like on a desk or table where they can't escape in the interim). However now when my little escape artist plans executes an escape during free time I don't even bat an eye. After about 3 or 4 times of him escaping and me not actively pursuing him he stopped running and would eventually come back to me - I would just keep an watchful distance. Now he doesn't struggle or run when I go to collect him, though I usually let him run around for 10-15 minutes before scooping him.

I don't know how willing they are to take take treats from you but you could try putting peanut butter or yogurt on your finger, and sitting somewhere until they notice then when they come to collect snatching them.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I don't know about yogurt but I know they don't like peanut butter. It could work though... I noticed that they have been climbing on the cage under the sheet I have over it to keep them warm so that I can't see them when the go to get food from the dish. So I opened that top door and put the food in the cage and the sheet over the opening. I'm keeping a close eye on Snow so that he doesn't get out again too, I hope this works........ Thank you for the suggestions though dlonkasper!!!!

I have to say.... Leonidus and Heracles does NOT fit these two anymore... XD
 

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Tie a string to a snickers bar and reel in your rats like a large mouth bass... It might be right out of a bugs bunny or a roadrunner cartoon, but I'll bet it will work... I know my rats will do anything for a snickers bar or french apple pie, even come out and go into their cage....

Just beware once your rats realize that you will bribe them to come back, you won't ever get them into the cage without a treat.

Best luck.
 

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I would try to seclude them to a room. Like dionkasper said, if you can leave the cage door open and just get them in the room you have the cage in, I'm sure you can round them up that way. Put Snow in a temporary cage or carrier for now, or just hang out with her and wait until the others go in the cage. Make it tempting. Scatter treats around, give them little slivers of meat. Just make it irresistible so they have higher chances of coming back to it. Also, peanut butter isn't good for any rat because it is a choking hazard with how thick it is. Opt for yogurt. Hope that helps and keep us updated!
 

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Not too long ago, my newest member escaped and found a hole/tunnel in the bathroom cabinet area. Anyway, it was his second day with me, so he wanted nothing to do with me. I sat in the bathroom for more than 5 hours. Nothing. I didn't want to starve him out. So, I started leaving him food in the evening, hoping I would gain his trust. Nope. Finally, my vet suggested a humane trap place near his hiding spot with food inside. Within 20 minutes, he was out. I rented the trap from a local animal feed center. You could also ask your vet.
 

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Some animal shelters will loan live traps as well. You would have to leave a deposit. If you use a live trap be aware that when first caught your rat will freak out. Wait a few minutes for him to calm down and remove him from the trap in a place that is escape proof, like a bathroom or bathtub.
 

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Welp. I have had luck catching Heracles! I waited for Snow to go to the bottom of the cage and opened the top door on the roof of the cage and stretched the bed sheet I use for insulation across the opening and waited for Heracles to venture up, trapped him with my hands and basically pushed him into the opening so he fell onto the bed below (not too far below thankfully!). I was pretty happy about that! Thank you everyone for your suggestions! I will see if I can use that Snickers one once I am home, as I haven't tried that one yet! lol Unfortunately, I currently reside in an RV so secluding them to a "room" isn't possible. But all three of them love running around the driver area, and I have it "sealed" off with a blanket to keep the rest of the place warmer. That's about as sealed as I can get. I just might have to splurge and get a small hamster cage or something just so that I can get Snow and Heracles into something to change their bedding this week as my usual container (my empty trash can) is full atm. Maybe at that time I'll attempt to lure Leo into the larger cage. I'm hoping that the new treats and toys I have recently bought them will also be enough of a lure for Leo to stop playing around and get in the cage. Again, thank you everyone so much for your suggestions! I will absolutely post a comment once the little trouble maker Leo is caught!
 

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I've never had a rat that wouldn't come out of hiding for a snickers bar or some french apple pie. Sweets are like crack to a rat.

But I can feel you about the RV thing... Our girl Max loved to ride and hang out inside the dash of my car... and sometimes she would just hunker down and go to sleep there even when we got home... Now everyone knows you can't leave a rat in the car in winter or summer when it gets too hot or cold for them... I think Max actually took pleasure in waiting for me to completely lose my cool and scream at her before she would come out.... I could tell she was snickering to herself that she made me look like a maniac in front of the neighbors.... "There's the crazy guy shouting at the dashboard of his car again..." I'm not sure what I ever did to Max... but she loved to put me into bazaar situations in public... which once lead to the infamous quote by a little boy.... "Mommy... Why is the man throwing pine-cones at the little animal in the tree?"
 

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My boys come back to the cage now, but that's a relatively new development. At the start when my little buggers would get out and play 'keep away' I would put some chocolate cereal (their favourite treat) in a tissue box and leave it on the floor. I'd come back a little later and they would always be in the box. Cover the opening with my hand (mine have thankfully never been biters) and deposit the entire thing in the cage.

The box trick still works to keep them from chewing nests into my bed, though I've lost many a sock to them.
 
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