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Discussion Starter #1
I always hear about people letting their rats run around their house. How do you get them to come back to you and not hide or try to escape? My male rats might be okay with it (I don't want to risk it, though), but I know my females would probably hide or something. When we get ours out, we have to block off a space and sit with them, but I'd love to let them just run around.

Any ideas on how I could do that?
 

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I wouldn't give them free roam of the house, as there are an amazing number of places they could hide, get hurt, or cause damage. Many people will "rat-proof" a room (like a bathroom) to let them run loose in... but even then it is recommended that their run-a-round time be fully supervised. There is nowhere a rat can't go if it sets it's mind to it and nothing it won't chew on just for the fun of it.

We wish we could let our girls run around the house, too... but we have other pets and it is simply not an option. Instead, we cover the couch with a sheet to protect it from pee and so the girls can't go between the cushions. Then we let them have run of the couch and, of course, us. It's a lot of fun for us and for them and we've gotten quite close to them because of it. They've quickly grown to love us, because all of their "out time" is spent with (and on) us. That's what I would recommend.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
We usually just put an old blanket on our bed and let them play on it. But I always hear people talking about how their rats run around their living rooms and stuff, and I just didn't see how it was possible.
 

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Neither can I. Heheh. People talk about "rat-proofing", but as I look around my living room, I can't imagine pulling that off.
 

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My rats run around our living room but we hardly have any furniture ;)

We shut off all the electric appliances at the mains, put cardboard by the desk so they can't get behind it, and let them run about!

Of course I'm crawling after them like a wild woman the whole time.
 

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I let my rats have free roam time in my bedroom. There are lots of places for them to hide but I do put away anything that could hurt them like cords. I usually sit and watching tv and just let them do their thing. I normally have no trouble finding them. Mine are a bunch of big fatty boys though. :)

My girls are far too tiny though, I'd be super worried about never finding them.
 

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I use a play pen outside in the grass. I don't give them free roam of my house...

I am anal about cleanliness and I cannot possibly mantain it.
 

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My rats have free range over my bedroom and closet (keep in mind that my closet is almost the same size as my bedroom- I've got a spare bed set up in there!) I definitely had to build up trust for each of them before allowing them free range over an area with so many hiding places... which took me a month at the longest. I leave a tiny cage out with some bedding in it during free range, that way they can go in there if they've got any business to do. When it's time to go back in the big cage, I call their names... and if that doesn't work, I shake the yogie bag :wink:
 

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Usually i let them run in my room only. They indeed can hide but they cant exit th room. Normally they are afraid onf me being lost so they check if im still there after each 5-10 minutes.

Sometimes let them also run in the whole house. They wont go downstairs, because they know that that is forbidden. Even if they would go, they cant go outside anyway, so i dont worry.

It has happened that they are roaming about the house all day.
 

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During the day I keep them in the cage, one that I put cardboard on all sides and top, and a towel I clip on and hang down, they love it and feel secure in their dark burrow.
At night before I crawl in bed I open the cage, grab both and stick em under the covers, its a game we play they run up and down the bed rubbing against my legs and I endlessly pet and scratch them.
When I'm just about ready to drop off, I lower em to the floor and they're off for a night of adventure.
These particular Rats have shown no desire to chew anything other than paper or cardboard, and my shoes. I have litter boxes everywhere and they have a ladder up to they're cage where there is plenty grub.
They fool around till about 3 or 4 AM then I feel things moving around in bed, either I let em stay or lock em in the cage and finish sleeping.
I realize this isn't for everyone, as I gotta wash bedding forever and bathe more than I like. But hey, I'm an old batchelor who lives in a 1 room flat, who's a slob anyways and hates the way they look at me when I lock their cage.
Spider

I really think Rats who chew alot on unnatural stuff have some kind of deficiency they crave like zinc or iron etc.
 

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when i was living with just my bf we used to shut all the doors and let the rattie have free roam of the house. it was basically rat proof. but the rat loved to try and pull up the carpet and try to get under the doors of the rooms. we would just have to keep an eye on her and make sure we knew where she was..we even made a lil rattie club house that she spent most of her time in.....she wasn't alloud in the kitchen and wehn she wnt in there we would stick her under the water, she learned pretty fast to stay out and when she did sneak in to the kitchen we'd yell and she'd come out, and if thshe was not listening to us we'd turn on the water and she'd run out....i miss my fattie rattie(rip)
 

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i used to let my girls have free range time in my living room... until one or more chewed through a couple of phone cables. now they are let out on my bed for an hour or so every day. i remove my quilt and put an old sheet on the bed, with tunnels under it and different things for them to play with. of course, there is always one or two who wants to explore further, but i dont let them... too many electrical cords around.
 

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mine get free roam in the sofa and they come back if i call them or scratch the sofa and always come back every few minutes to check im still here and generally stay c lose to me :)
 

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My girls have free range of my bedroom for a few hours everyday. I put up cardboard strips so they couldn't get behind the furniture (where most of the wires are.)

They all come when called, and go back in their cage to use the litter box when they have to 'go,' so I've never had any problems. (Plus I always supervise them when they're out.)
 

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I used to be a very strict 'you stay on this **** sofa and DON'T MOVE' kinda lass...

Then, one lovely day, one of them found the floor.

And the habit spread like wildfire.

Now all the darling little fuballs disappear the moment they're out of the cage and run around my living room until their time is up (as they all get the same amount of playtime, they're very good about resurfacing just when it's time to go home). They're all very good about chewing (although we've sacrificed sofa cushions because of Lou) and wires are generally left alone - I happened to say something similar about a month ago by the way, and since then I've been through 2 phone wires (I've gone 2 years before that without needing to change it!) so lets see what happens now o_O

The 4 sisters and Max I can't really trust in the living room as they're free spirits who either run, hide and don't come back or chew up a storm. So they get the free run of my sisters bedroom (mwahahaha) with all wires and chewables tucked safely away :)

It's just a case of your situation at home and how well you can trust your furkids
 

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what do you guys do about piddles/scent marking on your carpet? i could never let my boys on the carpet, it would reek in less than 3 days, and i have no way of washing it that often :(
 

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BlueSkyy said:
what do you guys do about piddles/scent marking on your carpet? i could never let my boys on the carpet, it would reek in less than 3 days, and i have no way of washing it that often :(
If it gets smelly (the sofa certainly does) we spray it with what we call febreeze (it's a spray that elliminates (sp?) odours) then we usually get the carpets washed every year and do the sofa ourselves every 6 months. But to be totally honest, i've not noticed the carpet smelling too bad o_O
 

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I actually have a "rat room". Spare bedroom where their cage is. I let them run around there as much as they like. They're pretty cage trained as far as going to the bathroom. They have a barbie dream house and some mazes, blankets, a futon. Sometimes they don't feel like going back in the cage but i've never had them disappear for more then a couple minutes. Besides, if they're being difficult they come running as soon as i close the cage up without them.

Maxie on the other hand will follow my all around the house. Even up/down the stairs if i let her. She's the only one i trust to do this because she comes when i call her. She never goes off for to long before she comes back to sit on my feet.
 

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I haven’t noticed my carpet smelling at all. I imagine they do a little scent marking, but overall they’re really good about using their litter box. I vacuum and use Febreeze (which is supposed to be pet friendly) regularly, and that seems to keep things smelling fresh.
 
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