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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got two females from a rescue center. They have been handled since birth and are very familiar with people. They are very interested in me and when I get up and walk to their cage they come to me and act very interested in me. They will gently take yogurt drops from my hand with no problems. Only one has bit me, but gently and only because I had eaten fried chicken and I am sure my fingers still smelled like chicken grease.

However, when I open their cage and put my hand in to get them out and hold them they are very disinterested in me, almost acting afraid of me and back away from me. I was just curious how long it will take the girls to warm up and get used to me holding and handling them. They act very loving when in their cages but when they get out they don't want to be held.

I know females are usually very active and want to run around but approx how much time do females usually need to get used to being handled by you and are interested in being picked up.

thanks
 

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I think it pretty much varies between rats. My guys were from a pet store and probably were not handled very much prior to me, so it took them like a month, more for Remi, to completely be confortable around me. Since your girls have been handled since birth, I don't think it should take too long, just be patient. There are two ways that worked for me, one for Gus, one for Remi. For Gus, i just sat patiently by the cage every day and waited for him to get a treat from me. Each day I would have the treat furthur away from the cage. It worked for Gus. But for Remi, I had to force it. My favorite trust training trick is yogurt. Try it on a spoon first just to make sure they won't try and take your finger with them. Then you can put the yogurt right on your hand. That worked wonders for me. good luck!! And, don't worry they will warm up to you
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well last night I got them out of the cage and had them in the bathroom with some boxes and things to play with. The more skittish of the two girls came up to me and tried to crawl up my leg so I put my hands down and she ran right up my arm and around on my shoulders.

When I put her down she immediatley turned around and stood on my leg again. I think I am going to try the yogurt thing, I'm going to try it on my finger 1st and if they get a little to snippy then I'll switch to the spoon.
 

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It took Roxie a little while too, but man as soon as I dipped the tip of my finger in some baby food, things changed with a quickness! She's still really hyper and fast, and will NOT sit still, but she's definitely not skittish! :D
 

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Hey there!

These girls were actually adopted from me and I can tell you that it sounds like you are working with them very well. Keep it up and there is a great chance progress will be made. However, I wanted to let you know that this is a behaviour that these girls did with me and they spent most of their life with me. It is a habit that I was never able to break of them. Anytime I ever would try to pick them up they would always back away from me.

And as for the little nip you are right. It was the chicken! I give my rats chicken all the time so they know what it is! LOL

I hope other than getting used to you things are going ok.

Staci
 
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