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Discussion Starter #1
The rats have two cages, and one cage is on the smaller side (still more than large enough for 3 rats!), but in this cage design in particular, and how I have it set up with the shelf, it's perfect for them to chew on one spot. There's a small door with a little window on the latch area big enough to fit a ratty nose in and more comfortably chew on the bar. They do this when I wake up in the morning, when I'm sleeping (they know i'm still there!), when I come home, and basically anytime they're trying to tell me they want out, which in this location, I do often and let them have run of the entire bedroom so thats a big factor I think. They know they get "freetime" at least once a day, so they're excited for it.

Here's an example, with Aoife being the lovely model:



She and her mother are the biggest chewers, and now the brother is learning to chew too! He was a little slow to learn, but I've caught him chewing twice now and I'm surprised!

Anything to do to discourage? I will often clap or tell them "no chew!" and they will stop, but sometimes they don't. When they INSIST on chewing and won't listen, I'll mist their tummies with a spray bottle (not the stream, and not the face!) and they dislike the wettness and stop to groom it off.

But I can't think of anything else. I've become a light sleeper, so the only thing I can do to sleep through the night mostly is to wear earbuds and listen to music which gets a little uncomfortable.
 

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Zip tie a chew stick or wooden block to the bars right there so they chew on that instead? Not sure if that would solve the noise issue or not, depends on how soft the wood is.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
They also live in a critter nation at another location when we all go there together (they always come with me!) and they never chew there. So I think it's just this cage design plus them knowing that they will get run time in this same room?

The chew stick is a good idea, I might try that.

Any other suggestions?
 

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The chew stick doesnt nessecarily work. My boys chew constantly. I zip tied flavored wood chews to their favorite chewing spots and they ignore them. Theyve nibbled on them here and there but they just found new chewing spots. They do it in the middle of night and no other time.
 

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I have found that my boys like to chew up liners where the doors would need normally open up and it seems like that is the case here. I think it is their way of telling me to open up and let them out. To counter this, we place large objects like PVC pipes where they would usually chew and that has deterred them.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hm, yeah I was thinking just anything to block it, though I wouldnt' use PVC pipes since they contain toxic chemicals in the plastic, I wouldn't want them to maybe chew on that instead. Maybe wood I guess.. When They were itty bitty babies, I was worried they might be able to fit through that hole and had chop sticks tied to block it. I guess i'll have to do something like that again!
 
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