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Hi guys. Im getting 2 female rats soon from my friend. Theyre only a few weeks old right now so im not taking them till they can be seperated from their mom. Ive never had rats before but ive been doing my best to research them. I do have a few questions so far!

What baby rat food should they be on?
When do i switch them to adult food?
Can babies have lots of climbing ropes? Or should i wait till they are bigger?
Will they need a wheel?

The cage i have is the All Living Things Multilevel Pet Condo from petsmart. Its roughly 24x24x60 inches. I have 2 hammocks, a food dish, watter bottle and some chew toys
 

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Hi guys. Im getting 2 female rats soon from my friend. Theyre only a few weeks old right now so im not taking them till they can be seperated from their mom. Ive never had rats before but ive been doing my best to research them. I do have a few questions so far!

What baby rat food should they be on?
When do i switch them to adult food?
Can babies have lots of climbing ropes? Or should i wait till they are bigger?
Will they need a wheel?

The cage i have is the All Living Things Multilevel Pet Condo from petsmart. Its roughly 24x24x60 inches. I have 2 hammocks, a food dish, watter bottle and some chew toys

Be prepared ... they're addictive! ;)
I've used Oxbow Adult Rat Food for mine since they were around a month old, but I also supplement it with lots of veggies - they think they're treats! They also go nuts over the core from Romaine lettuce .... good thing I like Caesar salads. And peanuts.

One of the toys I've noticed mine tend to like are "tunnels" - I got some PVC elbow joints from the local hardware store and just increased the size as the rats grew. Some sort of "house" for hiding works well, too. This can be as simple as a small-ish box or some of the other more intricate items on sites like Amazon. What I've learned is - whatever it is, make sure you can pick it up and check on them, in case they start "nesting" inside them. If you're using a homemade one - be prepared to replace them (they love to chew on cardboard). Also, a few things that are "chewable" in the cage is a good idea. They do have some hiding tunnels made out of edible grasses and such.
You an get pretty creative with things - just check the material before putting it in the cage. A simple Google of "can my pet rat have ........." will usually bring up tons or resources. I suggest always using the "pet rat" qualifier or you get results aimed at extermination.

There is also a lot of good info on the RatGuru site .... and here .... especially about training and bonding. Speaking of which, decide if you want to "litter train" them or not.
 

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Be prepared ... they're addictive! ;)
I've used Oxbow Adult Rat Food for mine since they were around a month old, but I also supplement it with lots of veggies - they think they're treats! They also go nuts over the core from Romaine lettuce .... good thing I like Caesar salads. And peanuts.

One of the toys I've noticed mine tend to like are "tunnels" - I got some PVC elbow joints from the local hardware store and just increased the size as the rats grew. Some sort of "house" for hiding works well, too. This can be as simple as a small-ish box or some of the other more intricate items on sites like Amazon. What I've learned is - whatever it is, make sure you can pick it up and check on them, in case they start "nesting" inside them. If you're using a homemade one - be prepared to replace them (they love to chew on cardboard). Also, a few things that are "chewable" in the cage is a good idea. They do have some hiding tunnels made out of edible grasses and such.
You an get pretty creative with things - just check the material before putting it in the cage. A simple Google of "can my pet rat have ........." will usually bring up tons or resources. I suggest always using the "pet rat" qualifier or you get results aimed at extermination.

There is also a lot of good info on the RatGuru site .... and here .... especially about training and bonding. Speaking of which, decide if you want to "litter train" them or not.
Thank you so much! Ill look into some pvc pipes for them. I have lots and lots of cardboard from the box their cage in, i may make some toys and huts with it.
 

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Can babies have lots of climbing ropes? Or should i wait till they are bigger?
Even as babies rats climb a lot so it would be good to get them now.
Will they need a wheel?
Most rats I've heard of and my rats have never used their wheel, most of their exercise comes from free roaming. If you would like to try giving them a wheel make sure it is the right size for a rat which is I think 12'' and don't get one with metal bars since that can hurt their feet.
 
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If you have any other questions about them before or after you get them feel free to post them, we are here for you!
 

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Even as babies rats climb a lot so it would be good to get them now.

Most rats I've heard of and my rats have never used their wheel, most of their exercise comes from free roaming. If you would like to try giving them a wheel make sure it is the right size for a rat which is I think 12'' and don't get one with metal bars since that can hurt their feet.

I would further that with suggesting that rather than a wheel .... they'd probably get more use out of a "dig box".
I currently have two, a bigger one (made from a shoebox with a "mouse-hole" cut out in the top so they can "climb" into the box) that I use for free roam time and a smaller one that I use in the cage, from time to time. The smaller one is simply a large(er) metal dog food bowl that I will fill with pressed paper cage bedding. Until they get bigger, it's deep enough for them to "dig" and burrow into.
 

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Also, they have these braided rope toys for dogs to play tug-of-war with. I've grabbed some that fit the width of my cage and used them as a "pathway" across the cage (typically just under the hammocks). The rats will run across them and use them to jump up into the hammocks or even up to the top of the cage (when the door is open) to play.

I use binder clips to attach them. Simply pull the hanging "fringe" of the rope toy through the bars of the cage and clamp them with the binder clips. The clips are outside the cage so you don't have to worry about the rats getting at them and they're easy to move to change the elevation or even location in the cage.
 
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