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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I introduced my rats last night. First I put them in the opposite cage so they could smell each other's stuff and get a scent for each other and then I introduced them in the tub. It seemed to go good I think. The older rat looked kind of annoyed though and the baby was so curious at first but then got scared after 5 minutes and wanted out so I put them back in their normal cages for the night.

I'm wondering how often and for how long I should be introducing them?

I have videos of their meet on my Instagram. I have no idea if I can even upload photos here, but my account is:

www.instagram.com/erikablanchette
 

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How we've introduced girls is we first put them in a tub or tote together, and we wait until they have acknowledged the strange rat in some way, even if its only in passing. We haven't had this taken more then maybe fifteen minutes. If they don't react horribly then we move on. Then we move them to a carrier and watch them for a while, usually thirty minutes to an hour, depending on how they react. Then if even all that looks fine we clean the cage they'll share and put them in together, and watch them for another half hour to an hour, depending on how they react to each other. Then we leave them. I agree, I don't like repeat intros either, unless of course things go south and you have to stop for safety reasons. But I'm used to animals who react very badly to repeat intros so that is part of the reason. We have done the side by side cage meeting through cage bars kinda short intros before, but we usually do that a few weeks before we try actual intros. Just a sort of test to see what the snap reaction is between them. But we have a mix of friendly, relaxed rats and some grumpy brats.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
How we've introduced girls is we first put them in a tub or tote together, and we wait until they have acknowledged the strange rat in some way, even if its only in passing. We haven't had this taken more then maybe fifteen minutes. If they don't react horribly then we move on. Then we move them to a carrier and watch them for a while, usually thirty minutes to an hour, depending on how they react. Then if even all that looks fine we clean the cage they'll share and put them in together, and watch them for another half hour to an hour, depending on how they react to each other. Then we leave them. I agree, I don't like repeat intros either, unless of course things go south and you have to stop for safety reasons. But I'm used to animals who react very badly to repeat intros so that is part of the reason. We have done the side by side cage meeting through cage bars kinda short intros before, but we usually do that a few weeks before we try actual intros. Just a sort of test to see what the snap reaction is between them. But we have a mix of friendly, relaxed rats and some grumpy brats.
Shoot :(. Well the main reason why I seperate them again is because my older rat got slightly aggressive towards her (no blood or anything) and it just kinda made me nervous because the newer one is still so much smaller and shy.

Would it be a good idea to have their cages side by side for the day while I'm gone for a few hours then do another Intro right away with a little bit of water on the bottom of the tub as soon as I get home?
 

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No blood no foul is the big rule to follow. It can be hard, especially if your not used to it all, to let them work out issues and meeting for the first time. Trust me, I've dealt with my fair share of horrible intros across various species. Rats are by far the most violent looking little brats when they get into a spat. And if you have a complainer then they can be so loud! If it was me, I'd wait a week and then do intros again and then if it works out I'd leave them together. Heck if they don't seem particularly stressed out then you might even be able to just retry now, but I'm not knowledgeable enough to say if that would be good or not with rats.
 

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I'm going through the same thing right now! My 2.5 year old girl Paisley is grumpy and aggressive in general; she was always that way.

I have two new babies , about 5 or 6 weeks old... When I introduced them Paisley was pulling them using her mouth... To see the babies being jerked around and squeaking freaked me out..... She was pulling them by the scruff of their neck too, which scared me! If the babies were bigger and could defend themselves I wouldn't be as worried...
Oh I'm pretty sure she also puffed up and sidled them! As soon as that happened I stopped intros ...

I've always had intros go smoothly (within one or two days I hav cage mates) and I've introduced several rats!
Am worried about the babies, as well as Paisley being lonely....


Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

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Our mama rat does the drag and pull, I think it's a mothering instinct? She does it to her babies, and has all while they were growing up, and then when she started to meet the older ones. It can be kinda... creepy... Darjeeling doesn't just grab their scruff, she'll grab their face and ears and drag them up and over ledges, up ramps, even right up the walls when the babies were smaller. Its funny when she tries it with ones that are the same age or older then her.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
No blood no foul is the big rule to follow. It can be hard, especially if your not used to it all, to let them work out issues and meeting for the first time. Trust me, I've dealt with my fair share of horrible intros across various species. Rats are by far the most violent looking little brats when they get into a spat. And if you have a complainer then they can be so loud! If it was me, I'd wait a week and then do intros again and then if it works out I'd leave them together. Heck if they don't seem particularly stressed out then you might even be able to just retry now, but I'm not knowledgeable enough to say if that would be good or not with rats.
They honestly don't seem stressed out now. I think at the time my little one was just startled because she's shy as it is. I've only had her for about a week.

Right now their cages are side by side and they were running around sniffing at different angles but they're so chill now. The youngest one is laying in her hammock and the other is just going about her normal stuff she does so honestly I think they're fine for another Intro today and hopefully the final one hehe.

I'm leaving for a few hours shortly but I'll leave their cages side by side and when I get back I'll fill the tub with just enough water to make their feet a little bit wet and introduce them again, take them out and put them in my little carrier and see how they react. If all is good then I'll clean the biggest cage super good and put them in it this evening and keep a close eye on them :).
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Awwww This is adorable!!! Mine are still a bit smaller than your little one, but I hope in a couple weeks I will have my own success story ^^
You'll have to share the intro story with me when it happens!

I actually have no idea how old my girls are. The brown one is the one I've had for about a month and a week and the orangey one I've had for only a week so I'm assuming she's like 10 weeks? I honestly have no idea.
 

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I agree that she is probably about 10 weeks or maybe a month older than that cuz she looks about the size of my little girl and my girl is 14 weeks. They look like they are the best of friends. My baby did the same thing when i introduced her to an older rat. She instantly attached herself at the hip to Lily and sleeps on top of him every night and used to follow him around during play time. its so cute.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I agree that she is probably about 10 weeks or maybe a month older than that cuz she looks about the size of my little girl and my girl is 14 weeks. They look like they are the best of friends. My baby did the same thing when i introduced her to an older rat. She instantly attached herself at the hip to Lily and sleeps on top of him every night and used to follow him around during play time. its so cute.
I was honestly so scared they'd hate each other and I'd have to house them separately. I introduced them the day before yesterday and Beatrice (my older brown one) was kind of aggressive and kept making the baby squeal to the point where I separated them because I thought she was going to get bitten or hurt. But I'm so glad the water in the tub thing worked yesterday. They tried to help each other get out of the tub and by the end of it they were at least aquaintenses haha.

The baby does however still do this weird grinding teeth noise. She's done it pretty much ever since I got her and I thought it was due to the fact that she was pulled away from her friends and being housed alone but she's still doing it now also. She sometimes will do it then sneeze. Maybe she's getting used to the smells all over again? Because she's in a totally different room now. Although when she does it, I don't find her sneezing nearly as much. Sometimes she'll do the sound and not sneeze at all.
 

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Teeth grinding in rats usually means they're happy ^^ . This is usually accompanied by boggling (where their eyes pop)... It's like a rat purring :). They also do it when angry, but it's louder/sounds different, with no boggling, and only when very very stressed. Likely shes happy.

The babies are still soooo small, but Paisley is so lonely :(. I put their cages next to eachother, and she gets eager to see them... Shes not being aggressive about it either (I've seen her do that- she vehemently hates my friend's male rat, soooo)... She watches them and sniffs them. Shes really gone down hill since all 3 of her cage mates died... Once my exams are over on Dec. 11, I am going to try intros again...



I was honestly so scared they'd hate each other and I'd have to house them separately. I introduced them the day before yesterday and Beatrice (my older brown one) was kind of aggressive and kept making the baby squeal to the point where I separated them because I thought she was going to get bitten or hurt. But I'm so glad the water in the tub thing worked yesterday. They tried to help each other get out of the tub and by the end of it they were at least aquaintenses haha.

The baby does however still do this weird grinding teeth noise. She's done it pretty much ever since I got her and I thought it was due to the fact that she was pulled away from her friends and being housed alone but she's still doing it now also. She sometimes will do it then sneeze. Maybe she's getting used to the smells all over again? Because she's in a totally different room now. Although when she does it, I don't find her sneezing nearly as much. Sometimes she'll do the sound and not sneeze at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Teeth grinding in rats usually means they're happy ^^ . This is usually accompanied by boggling (where their eyes pop)... It's like a rat purring :). They also do it when angry, but it's louder/sounds different, with no boggling, and only when very very stressed. Likely shes happy.

The babies are still soooo small, but Paisley is so lonely :(. I put their cages next to eachother, and she gets eager to see them... Shes not being aggressive about it either (I've seen her do that- she vehemently hates my friend's male rat, soooo)... She watches them and sniffs them. Shes really gone down hill since all 3 of her cage mates died... Once my exams are over on Dec. 11, I am going to try intros again...
She hasn't been doing eye boggling along with it. But I've noticed her bottom teeth are quite longer than my other rats (or so it appears) so maybe she's just been trying to grind them down and the bitting the cage could be part of that as well? I don't know haha.

Aw. I'm sorry about Paisley being lonely :(. It's always hard seeing them like that.
 

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Maybe you could try getting her a chew toy and see if she is wanting something to chew on? Like something wooden? One of my rats loves chewing on things and will just go at it anytime I get him a new chew toy. He loves it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Maybe you could try getting her a chew toy and see if she is wanting something to chew on? Like something wooden? One of my rats loves chewing on things and will just go at it anytime I get him a new chew toy. He loves it.
She has a bunch of them. I have a big wooden watermelon ball shaped one, a few tiny ones and a hanging one. She seems to like chewing on the cage better haha.

Also, last night I was putting her in the carrying cage and her toe got stuck between a crack and she was squealing. I unhooked her toe and she was able to walk on it right afterwards, no problem. This morning it's kind of more pink than the other toes and has a tiny little bump. She still seems to walk on it fine though. Anything I can do for her tonight if I notice it's still kinda pinky after I come home from work?
 
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