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5 female rats; Stormin, Hailey, Sandy, Mittens and Zastfa
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've had several rats in my life with varied backgrounds, but I've never had a biter. I rescued 3 girls from a lady who had a few to many litter. She seems to be territorial over her cage and cage mates at times. For example I could be petting someone else and she'll come over to me and bite me. She has improved and doesn't draw blood as often as she used too. Seems she doesn't like being suddenly woken, nor does she like me in the rear of her cage. She gets along as expected with her cage mates. It seems like she doesn't want me to touch/bother her in certain areas of cage. One time I was just saying hi outside the cage and I put my hand near the cage bars and she came to bite me, however unsuccessful.
I don't fully understand why she lashes out the way she does. We got her as a baby in May, Born in April so she is about 7 months old most of them with us. She lives a very privileged life in my opinion. I just don't fully understand her aggressiveness. Anyone have insight or a similar experience?
Thanks!
 

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If you haven't yet, I recommend trying the spoon method with her. You put some kind of licking treat on a metal spoon and sit by the door of the cage with her, if she bites the metal then squeak, take away the spoon, and close the door of the cage for a while. The goal of this bonding method is to show her that having you by the cage is exciting and good, and biting only results in a mouthful of metal and loss of what she wants. You can also drop some treats in the cage when passing to show that you being near the cage can result in good things and won't mean you will invade her space.
 

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5 female rats; Stormin, Hailey, Sandy, Mittens and Zastfa
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23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
If you haven't yet, I recommend trying the spoon method with her. You put some kind of licking treat on a metal spoon and sit by the door of the cage with her, if she bites the metal then squeak, take away the spoon, and close the door of the cage for a while. The goal of this bonding method is to show her that having you by the cage is exciting and good, and biting only results in a mouthful of metal and loss of what she wants. You can also drop some treats in the cage when passing to show that you being near the cage can result in good things and won't mean you will invade her space.
I'll try it. I kinda thought we were past this point. She is definatly food motivated, she comes to the front of the cage to get Yum Yums (treats) all the time and cage free time. I take her out and she runs about exploring, just like the others and even comes to me when she gets spooked for safety.
Any ideas why she so territorial or cage aggressive?
 

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I think it may be a fear thing, your rat may be a bit wary of you or her surroundings and she considers her cage her safe place, when that's invaded she wants you to back off. I have also had territorial biters, one would hide all the time and would only bite as a last resort, the other was very confident and would bite constantly while in the cage, both of them got way better once I got them used to me and showed them I meant no harm. The thing with the confident biters is that their body language is hard to read, I highly recommend looking out for your rat freezing and if she does then back off.
 
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