Rat Forum banner
1 - 3 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
383 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I suspect there really isn't an answer for this, but I welcome dissention. Maybe I'm too pessimistic.

My oldest (at 2+ months) is becoming quite adventurous. Twice, she's leapt from my arms toward the cage. She's friendly enough, but sometimes she's just in the mood for the cage. The first time started my wife and me. I was holding the rat about a foot from the open cage, and she leapt from my arms into the cage. That wouldn't be an issue but the next time she tried it, she goofed somehow and thudded on the floor. Being so tiny, she wasn't hurt, but I did have to spend the next 5 minutes hunting for her as she decided that the new environment with all these fascinating cables was worth checking out.

Is there a way to stop her from leaping? She understands "no." When she's gotten too curious about something that she shouldn't be curious about, she'll (usually) stop when we say "no." The problem is that she goes from standstill to catapult with no warning whatsoever. We wouldn't be able to get off a preemptive no.

This could be potentially interesting now that I have a playground built. It's tempered hardboard that's 2 feet high. I've seen her jump more than a foot up when she was younger, so I have a suspicion that 2 feet will not be much of an obstacle when she gets bored of the playground. Any thoughts on how to discourage jumping? I mean, she's a rat, so jumping comes second nature to her.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,526 Posts
Rats can jump about three foot (up), so don't expect the playground to work for unsupervised time.

As to leaping for the cage, there's no real way to dissuade this. I usually make sure the rats back is to the cage (involves a lot of spinning), my hands are actively on them - restraining, petting, etc - or just watch closely. While they do go from still to jump, you can usually see them start looking and gauging the jump.

Rats can be pretty silly. They don't have excellent eyesight for details though so I've had falls where they thought they saw a surface to jump on but it was something flimsy they fell right through (blankets stretched out).
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
6,244 Posts
With time you can train your rat to be "house competent" which means to do no or very little damage and to come when called. Our big girl Max lived most of her life free range in the house and as she had been sick for the past week we kicked her roomie out of the cage to live free range. Yes there are chewed up wires occasionally, but Max and Cloud are pretty good about not being too destructive like one of our other rats was.. But Max and Cloud were raised pretty much free range and the other rat was more of an outdoor rat who destroyed stuff when she got bored to get attention. Outdoors she was allowed to chew or tear up whatever she pleased so she had trouble with understanding that wires weren't something she could just slash through when they got in her way. That and she didn't seem to like electronic appliances that took our attention away from her.

Some rats get "no chewing wires" and "stop eating the furniture" other's take it as a personal challenge. I think it's a matter of how young rats are when you start free ranging them. But the choice is yours... try and make a rat safe house or raise a house safe rat, both are possible. And yes.. before you ask... we also raised a house safe kid rather than overly kid proofing the house... Rats and kids are smart.. intelligence that can be used to your advantage.
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
Top