Rat Forum banner

1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
2 points to anyone who can pin the title.

Ok my 2 are still relatively new, and they are making progress. But one (Mist) is making such less progress then the other, it bothers me.

When I pull them out, sniffles tends to come straight to the door, expecially if I have food. She still seems timid of me and her surroundings but now she's not as bad. She explores, and acts calm when in my lap she tends to just sniff around and accept my pets.

Mist on the other hand doesn't come to me period. She cowers in a corner staring at me and doesn't move. Even when I reach in to grab her she just sits there. And when I pick her up she grabs anything near her and struggles to stay in. When I bring her out all she does is find a burrow; in my blanket, a shirt, or even underneath me. And she just hides there, she occasionally pokes out, mainly if sniffles is out too. For the most part though she just hides. When she's in my lap, she just tries to get off. After maybe 5 or 10 minutes, she calms down and starts to clean herself, and lets me pet her, but that's about it.

One thing I have noticed though, once I put her back in her cage, she acts completely different. She moves around more, she comes to the door and waits for food. She acts more like Sniffles, but only temporarily.


Now it has only been about a week, and I was sick 2 of those days, and not very active the third. So I'm not expecting miracles. Just wondering if theres anything I'm missing or forgetting.

How do you guys normally break in new rats?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,160 Posts
I honestly can't help because in all the years I've had rats, I've never had one that wouldn't come to me.

However I have had other animals that were rather shy & in the end they were very loving & accepting.

time & patience

consistency & compassion

love & understanding

that is all I can suggest

Maybe you are moving at a pace that is too fast for her... back off & let her come to you. You may spend months with this one, who's to say.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,479 Posts
huntercs said:
Mist on the other hand doesn't come to me period.
its funny cuz you said ......period. then you put a period after it :lol:

some rats are slower than others, offer treats by hand and hold her for 20 mins or more every day
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,641 Posts
She sounds like the shy follower type. They freeze up if pushed so I wouldn't advise holding for 20 mins a day. That is trust training. They say rats cannot hold onto their fear for over 20 mins but in this case it could be a terrible decision. You said she likes to be under things, since she is not exposed and considers herself "safe"? Use that then. Lie down on a couch (make sure its relatively rat proofed (put a big blanket over the entire couch so that she cannot squish between couch cushions, etc. Put a small blanket over you and put the rat on you under it. right now she is contending with too many things like you (new and scary), being out in the open (exposed to predators), etc. If you cover her up, you are removing one of those fears. Eventually she will move around under the blanket, maybe start exploring, grooming when she is relaxed etc. Her braver sister will venture out eventually, but shy girl will continue to stay under there. Let her get to know you/your body/smell in her own time, if she ducks from patting, don't do it. Shy girl will eventually very bravely (for her) poke her nose out from under the blanket...then one time she may flatten out her little body and creep out ready to bolt. At this point stay really still and let her work things out in her head. She may take a little longer but some of those shy sweet girls can be wonderful once they bond with you :D

Once she trusts you, things will go along better. Soft quiet voice, smooth deliberate but gentle movements, no direct eye-contact if it seems to freak her out (like a predator again).

You'll be fine with time, patience and letting her lead you. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
192 Posts
It takes about a week and after that they all should be running to the door, at least in my experience. They may be shy about coming out of the cage... they will stretch and stretch... go as far as they can out of the cage while keeping one foot on the edge. That stage could last who knows how long, but there is no shame in having to reach in to grab the rat to take him out.

I saw the cage there, and I would nix the wheel, bad for their tails, at least that kind. I prefer my rats to be without ANY wheel tail, but that is just me, some people have rats that get extreme wheel tail (curling up and over of the tail)... just another thought for you to feed on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,641 Posts
yashu said:
It takes about a week and after that they all should be running to the door, at least in my experience. They may be shy about coming out of the cage... they will stretch and stretch... go as far as they can out of the cage while keeping one foot on the edge. That stage could last who knows how long, but there is no shame in having to reach in to grab the rat to take him out.

I saw the cage there, and I would nix the wheel, bad for their tails, at least that kind. I prefer my rats to be without ANY wheel tail, but that is just me, some people have rats that get extreme wheel tail (curling up and over of the tail)... just another thought for you to feed on.
If your girls use the wheel, keep it, make sure its an appropriate size for them. Rats who run on the wheel are usually much healthier and stay trimmer overall. Wheelie tail is usually the obsessive runners, and most run with their tail held wheelie style and then once they get out it drops again to normal.

I much prefer wheelrunners as older rats can be hard to convince to exercise and middle-age spread hits :roll:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
lilspaz68 said:
She sounds like the shy follower type. They freeze up if pushed so I wouldn't advise holding for 20 mins a day. That is trust training. They say rats cannot hold onto their fear for over 20 mins but in this case it could be a terrible decision. You said she likes to be under things, since she is not exposed and considers herself "safe"? Use that then. Lie down on a couch (make sure its relatively rat proofed (put a big blanket over the entire couch so that she cannot squish between couch cushions, etc. Put a small blanket over you and put the rat on you under it. right now she is contending with too many things like you (new and scary), being out in the open (exposed to predators), etc. If you cover her up, you are removing one of those fears. Eventually she will move around under the blanket, maybe start exploring, grooming when she is relaxed etc. Her braver sister will venture out eventually, but shy girl will continue to stay under there. Let her get to know you/your body/smell in her own time, if she ducks from patting, don't do it. Shy girl will eventually very bravely (for her) poke her nose out from under the blanket...then one time she may flatten out her little body and creep out ready to bolt. At this point stay really still and let her work things out in her head. She may take a little longer but some of those shy sweet girls can be wonderful once they bond with you :D

Once she trusts you, things will go along better. Soft quiet voice, smooth deliberate but gentle movements, no direct eye-contact if it seems to freak her out (like a predator again).

You'll be fine with time, patience and letting her lead you. :D
Wow, you are grand. She immediately starting acting braver and more adventurous under that blanket. No fear at all. It makes me smile.



Ok, they don't use the wheel. I thought about getting rid of it, I'd like to move it to the second floor,But i have no idea how I'd do that. Can't think of away to get it to fit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,641 Posts
That is great news that she is starting to relax. :)

If they don't use the wheel, there's no point it being in there taking up space they could be bouncing and pouncing in. ;)

Is it attached to the cage?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
By design of the wheel, not the cage. The wheel is seperate and can be removed.

I guess it would give them extra space.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,535 Posts
If they don't use it, I'd take it out. That cage is going to be too small for them eventually. :)
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top