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I rescued a rat a few days ago and I've noticed something odd about him. He curls his tail a lot. Even when I had him outside of his cage, free to roam the bathroom. I dont have any pictures of him, so yay paint program.



I've never seen a rat do this before, so I thought it was maybe he grew up in a small cage? I don't know what kind of cage he lived in originally.
 

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Your fellow is a wheelrunner. He has what we call a wheelie tail. Obsessive wheelrunners carry their tail like this when they run on the wheel. You should probably get him one (make sure its big enough) since it obviously makes him very happy. :)

 

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AH! Thank you! That makes a lot of sense, the breeder who he was given to before I got him said that he loved to run on a wheel. I don't have a wheel anymore because every rat I've exposed to a wheel didn't like it, and the last one to see it knocked it over and built a nest inside of it. But I will definably get him one, thank you.
 

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thegrotto said:
AH! Thank you! That makes a lot of sense, the breeder who he was given to before I got him said that he loved to run on a wheel. I don't have a wheel anymore because every rat I've exposed to a wheel didn't like it, and the last one to see it knocked it over and built a nest inside of it. But I will definably get him one, thank you.
Neither of our rats would run in a wheel until I got them a solid plastic 12" wheel. They just used to sit on top of the other one.
 

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My rat doesn't like wheels but loves the roll around ball he has. He goes from room to room checking things out.
I love my little guy.
 

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Ugh...lets not start the roll-around ball debate again. :(

I say nay, bad for spine/health, not particularly made for rats and most absolutely hate them. Done.
 

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You can easily purchase roll-around balls that are big enough. Finding a rat that likes one, though, is definitely a rarity.

Anyways, yes, your rat has wheelie tail. I recommend sitting back and enjoying how cute it is, especially when your rattie does the "I found something to hoard!" prance-run, and that tail bobbles all over the place.

I like putting ribbons on my girl's wheelie tail. They're cute, she doesn't mind, and they fall off pretty quickly (but not before I'm entertained).
 

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My roll around ball is very large....I got either the largest or close to the largest one they had. He fits really well in it and has a lot of space...He can walk around a bit in it and it won't roll because it's very large.

I'm actually pretty new to rats and I am definately not an expert so anything you guys can tell me really helps. My rat might be too big for it when he is older , but right now I think it works for him.
 

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I have a compulsive wheel runner that has curly tail too. :) I also have two rats that just hold their tail up. Maybe as a fashion statement? lol Who knows.

When getting a wheel, definately go for the solid ones. White ones can pinch or trap tails and toes. My lot recommend Wodent Wheels. Seniors for the ladies and Wobust size for the boys. :D
 

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thegrotto, that is a fabulous drawing of your rattie!!! i cant even draw a stickfigure and make it look like its supposed to...
 

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kkdepp said:
My roll around ball is very large....I got either the largest or close to the largest one they had. He fits really well in it and has a lot of space...He can walk around a bit in it and it won't roll because it's very large.

I'm actually pretty new to rats and I am definately not an expert so anything you guys can tell me really helps. My rat might be too big for it when he is older , but right now I think it works for him.
Heh. All my boys absolutely HATE those things. They're terrified of them.

So I took the one we have and put washclothes in it and hung it in the cage... It's now a hidey bed. :)
 

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Ahh, I was wondering myself why my older girl Jellybean's tail curled all the time! I never would have associated it with wheel running, even though I didn't think I had seen it curl at all when I first got her, but she didn't start in on the wheel until a week later. Curly wheel-tail is very cute ^_^
 

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Hi all, I dont like the sound of wheels or balls. I worry what it will do to their backs. But I've been thinking about one of them roll around balls. I think they would sleep in it more than play with it. I think my baby rats would enjoy running in and out of the holes. Do any of you lot use them for your rats and are they any good. Lina.
 

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The roll around balls? They make a good bed.
 

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My rat is not a wheel runner, she hates her wheel, it is big enough, but she also curls her tail. She usually does it when she is lying down. I think it just makes her comfortable.
 

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lina said:
Hi all, I dont like the sound of wheels or balls. I worry what it will do to their backs.
The key with wheels is making sure that it is big enough. If it is too small then it would be bad for their backs.

I have never bothered with balls because they are too smart to waste on a ball. :)
 
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