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What is the best way to litter train a rat. It seems that wherever I put it they won't go in it. Tonight I had them out on the bed with the litter box and oliver looked right in it and decided to go beside it. I'm a new rat owner and am not sure what to do
Any help would be appreciated
 

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Have you tried putting a round flattish river stone in the litter tray? Many rats (mine included) like to stand on it to do their business, especially to pee. My triangular litter tray is always filled with droppings behind the "pee rock" first, so it seems to help for poop too.
 

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When I first got my rats for the first couple months I had to have a litter box in more than one corner - it was especially important to have one near their favourite sleep spot as they tend to roll out of bed and poop on the nearest surface..
Like Roonel pointed out, a nice smooth rock in there will give them somewhere to perch while they preen and do their business. Rocks seem to encourage them to pee for some reason. I also would do a quick spot clean of the cage morning and evening, moving all droppings into the litter tray. My rats soon picked up that poops go in the box when they realised that was the only place in the cage they could smell poop! Keeping the rest of the cage super clean while leaving a little soiled litter in the trays at all times will help too (you can ease up on this once they are trained)
 

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Some rats tend to take longer than others to learn to use the litter box. Unfortunately there's really no set time to how long it will take. You can kind of tell if it will be easier or more difficult by looking at a few things when you first get your rat. This is my opinion anyways. Observe if your rat poops all over the cage or if they pick a corner and only use that corner to do their business because they don't seem to want poop in their "living" area. Or if your rat is lazy and poops right in their sleeping spot or right next to it cuz they don't wanna walk very far to do their business. Stuff like that can give you an idea of what you're dealing with. My rats happened to be very clean rats from the start and even though i waited a few months to litter train them until I got a bigger cage, they had picked one corner right from the start to use as their poop spot and they rarely ever pooped anywhere else. They would never ever have pooped in their sleeping cave or anywhere near it so in my opinion they seemed like they were pretty clean rats, not the type that would be found marinating in their pee lol. And sure enough when I tried to litter train them it took less than a week for them to be about 80-90% trained. It took a while to get that last bit but i'll take a few stray poops here and there. I only had a litter box on the bottom level of their multi level cage and they were never too lazy to walk all the way down there to do their business even though that is all they use the bottom floor for.

If you have a rat like that, they will probably take to litter training pretty well. They usually say it takes about a month, so I was surprised mine trained relatively quick. And if your rat is a little messier, that's fine but I'm guessing it might take a little longer to litter train. It could be a month, sometimes longer. You just have to stick to it and be persistent. Realize that it might take a while for them to get the idea when they are used to being able to use the world as their bathroom lol. If the cage is large, like a critter nation, something multi level it helps to have a box on both floors. That way if they are lazy they have 2 options close by. the rock thing definitely helps too. I haven't tried it but many people say it works. You could move it if they seem to stick to an opposite corner than your litter box is in but I wouldn't move it around everyday just cuz they didn't use it the day before because that might just confuse them in my opinion. I would say pick the best spot you think is right and stick to it for a little bit to give them a chance to get used to it. Then if it doesn't work you can try moving it if you want to. Definitely do as much spot cleaning as possible. At least twice a day would be good so they see that the poop belongs in the litter box. you will see that eventually you will be cleaning up less and less poop and even if they aren't getting it completely, hey, picking up only some poop is better than a bunch of it. It's a slow process so just stay encouraged. Trust me, it will be so nice to just have to change a litter box, instead of spot cleaning a cage all the time, so it will be worth it in the end.
 

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I have only had my boys for about 3wks now and I started litter training from day one. They are around a month apart in age with the oldest being 4 mths. I use fleece bedding and have a corner litter tray with paper pellets (not Carefresh). Like others suggest you have to be diligent about picking up the poops throughout the day and putting them in the tray. Then be sure to retain some of the old poop to add to fresh litter so the smell is familiar.

Mine were doing ok with it but I noticed they were also doing their business in the corner right next to the litter tray. I had an extra potty pad there so I could change it out without removing the main cage liner pad. But here is the thing I discovered....I believe they used that corner because the pad I had was from my stock pads I use with my guinea pigs. But when I made them a new pad from new materials...narry a poop was made on it! Plus I added some chew toys in that corner hoping to distract them from doing their business.

So now my cage is almost poop free with exception of the litter tray. Now...I can't say they only pee in the litter box. They do piddle in other locations. I am going to add the smooth rock and see if that helps curb their urge to purge outside of the litter box.
 

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Here's how we litter trained ours (they are very, very good at it BTW):

* Big cage with bedding/litter in it. When we first got them we waited a couple weeks to see where they did their business in the cage (in a large enough space they tend to favor a corner/side more than the others).

* Next time we cleaned the cage, we replaced the bedding with towel/carpet square/fleece, and only put bedding/litter in a tray over that side/corner they favored.

* Put droppings in the litter tray daily. We simply did that until they stopped doing it outside the tray altogether.

Not sure what to tell you about outside the cage... ours literally take themselves back home when they need to go. They didn't get free-roam time until they were litter trained in their cage, and thus pooping outside of the cage was simply never an issue to begin with. We've really (really!) never found a single turd outside of the cage.

IMO expecting them to pee exclusively in a litter tray is unrealistic.
 

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I posted this yesterday:
"With my boys, the moment I got them home I gave them a litterbox with a little bit of soiled litter from the place they lived at previously (they hadn't used a litterbox before). From then on I proceeded to place all their poops in the box as soon as I saw them, and always mixing a bit of soiled litter with the clean one upon changing, so it still smelled like the litterbox. Within a couple of weeks there were no more poops to be put in the box, and there haven't been any since - it's been a year now. "

For me it was as simple as that. I was VERY diligent about my poo collecting, too. :p
 
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