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It never occurred to me to have a pet rat. Then a 13-year-old friend of mine got one, and when I met him, I instantly fell in love. It's been 20 years since I had a pet, and I always had cats. I started thinking about testing the pet-mama waters with ratties, since they don't (sniff! sniff!) live so long. It wouldn't be a 20-year commitment like with a cat. Result: my Boys. I got Beauregard first, thinking I would get just one rat. But we assembled his huge rat mansion cage, and it was all equipped and cozy, and there he sat, frozen and clearly terrified. So back we went to the pet store and brought home Marcellus. They are best buds (unless Marcellus tries to horn in on Beau's food). Such different personalities! Beau is rambunctious, headstrong, and bold. Once, when he was little, and I was cleaning the cage, I set them on the seat of a rocking chair while I worked. The chair was about 3 feet from the cage. Beau climbed up on the arm of the chair, bobbed his head around for a while, then leaped! And landed square on his water bottle! So I moved the chair another foot. Guess what … Marcellus explored the idea, but it took him a good while to try it himself. The both hit the water bottle square every time! Strangely, though, for all his boldness, Beau is easily freaked out. Once he found such a good hiding place somewhere in the house that I had to put out my live trap, so I could go to bed. I heard the trap spring around 4:30 am. Went down 20 min. later, and there was Beau, amid ten poopies!!

Marcellus is timid, but smarter than Beau. Another contradiction: though timid, he can calm down. At his second vet visit, I was able to scritch him into closing his eyes! Beau's one vet visit was a trauma--he was freaked for a good while, even after we came home. Here are some picture: Baby Boys on their first day at my home; almost-grown-up boys lounging in their luxury hammock; and … well, where could those ratties be hiding????

Rat Cage Degu Muridae Rodent Degu Gerbil Muridae Muroidea Rodent Green Bed sheet Textile Linens Furniture
 

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Haha...that last picture cracked me up. :) My two girls look a lot like your boys--one is hooded (Louise) and the other (Thelma) all brown (except for her belly and legs). Mine took a little while to climb and jump, but now there is nowhere they won't try to go.
 
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