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Discussion Starter #1
Hi! I'm contacting you because I have a quick "rat" question. Right now, I have a male hoodie who is about a year and a half old, and, though very active, is definitely past his sexual peak. His name is Gregor, and he is, in all ways, the perfect rat. Loving, smart, friendly, etc. What I want to know is, if I wanted him to be the "father" of a litter of rats, and if I were able to find the perfect young female sexy thing - not that I know what rats consider sexy - would he be able to perform sexually, or is it simply a matter of that his body doesn't do that anymore?

Thank you so much,
Holly, Gregor's "Mommy."
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well, Gregor, whose full name is Gregor Samsa, is what I would consider an "exceptional" rat, and I am interested in raising his son; I am hoping that a male rat who carries Gregor's genes might be, in some small ways, outstanding, like Gregor is.

Some of these qualities that I enjoy is that Gregor is ~very~ smart...he knows about 35 words. (Well, I've never heard him say anything but "chirp," but he knows them when I say them. :wink: ) He is friendly to a fault, and he makes it clear that he LOVES everything and everyone - except the vet! But he loves people, and loves getting pet, and loves to sleep on your shoulder, and loves to groom me, and loves lying in the beautiful sun in his "sun room" (small, portable cage,) and he loves watermelon and other "sweeties," and loves life, and loves YOU!

He has an amazingly loving personality, and is incredibly bright. I prize these qualities, dearly.

Also, he has decided to take on the role of "Caretaker" of me! :lol: If I cry, he licks away the tears (probably salt, I know, but he has a salt lick, and it's still an endearing behavior.) Another behavior he has learned is the "kissy." If you ask for a kissy, you will probably get one, full on the lips, unless you have a moustache. (He doesn't know how to handle that, yet.)

He is a very active rat, especially for his age. (I expect him to live at least a bit longer than average, because he doesn't seem to be slowing down at all.) In the evenings, I will take him into his "playroom" (bathroom,) and he will scamper and run and climb like a kid! As you would expect, he loves to play, too.

I've gotten as much internet information as I can find, read some rat books, am in the process of reading more rat books, (I really like "The Story Of Rats" by S. Anthony Barnett,) and whenever I feel I can bug her, I ask Gregor's vet important questions. (She said he might even live to be five!)

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:oops:

Um, to answer your question, instead of just rambling on about how great my Gregor is...

I would like to have one litter, and then that's it, with an eye on selecting one of Gregor's sons as a pet for me. I am a very responsible pet owner, and would, of course, work in conjunction with the "Mommy's" owner to place all other rats in good, quality, loving homes.

I am aware of the problem with rat litters...sometimes once you start the process, they start breeding before you separate them, and you wind up with a WHOLE LOT of rats. I would take every precaution not to let this happen, but if it does, don't worry...I'm not the kind of person who would or even ~could~ "dump" a litter of darling baby rats.

I am not intending to start a formal rattery, but rather, aiming for just one litter. If it works out, someday, I might breed Gregor's son, but for now, I'm looking at Gregor's age, and the fact that I know he already "peaked" sexually - I was his "girlfriend," ha ha - and wondering if he could give me a son, or if it's just not physically possible.

I'm sorry this post turned out to be a novel!

I'll close with a recent pic of Gregor Samsa, the Hoodie Wonder. (Sorry if this doesn't work. Computers and I don't really get along.)

Thanks!

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GREGOR SAMSA WITH PRESENTS

"Is it for me?"

 

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if you just want one more rat then you should go to a breeder and get one. don't breed yours to get a whole litter, which can be as many as 12 or so just to get one rat. go adopt a rat that already needs a home instead of creating more rats that will need homes. their are lots of great rats out there like yours, im sure you can find one.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
hjkaga:

I notice that you have six rats.

Gregor is my first, and I feel that I got lucky to wind up with such a special guy.

I fear that, if I just pick out another rat, he might not be as outgoing, as loving, as smart.

Since you have six, can you give me some "tips" on selecting special rats as babies?
 

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well if you go to a breeder to get a rat then you will be able to talk to them about its temperment and the parents temperments....this will give you a good idea of what the rat will be like....most petstore rats are inbred and have lots of health problems. 4 of the 6 I have came from the same breeder, the other two I got from a friend of mine. The 4 from the breeder are all related and are all very sweet. If you want a well tempered, healthy rat then find a good breeder and ask to meet the rat first and the parents if you want.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you, h., for the good advice! Much appreciation going out from San Diego to Pennsylvania! And happy new year to you and all your babies...not just the rats! :D
 

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Holly said:
hjkaga:

I notice that you have six rats.

Gregor is my first, and I feel that I got lucky to wind up with such a special guy.

I fear that, if I just pick out another rat, he might not be as outgoing, as loving, as smart.

Since you have six, can you give me some "tips" on selecting special rats as babies?
Keep in mind, even if you successfully bred Gregor, there is absolutely no guarantee that the resulting babies would have the same temperament and personality that Gregor has. How many people do you know that have very different personalities from their parents? I know many and the same thing happens with rats. Genetics, in the end, only has so much to do with the qualities you are looking for. I have four rats right now, all from the same litter, all brothers raised in the same place, together, and I have four different little personalities and temperaments to go with them. They are like four shades of day and night, nothing alike, really.

Your best bet is to love Gregor as long as he lives, and then, when he passes on, if you're ready, find a new rat, or better yet, a pair of rats to care for, but realize that Gregor is Gregor. He will be the only one that is ever just like him. If you get new rats, accept them and love them as they are and you'll probably find just as many amazing and wonderful things about them that you did with Gregor. In the end, he deserves a special place in your heart, all by himself.

Good luck and I hope he lives a very, very long time.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
FalconStorm, thank you very much for the well-put and helpful post, above. I agree with you that no one else will ever be Gregor - not even his son.

If you own a pair of rats, do they get more interested in each other than they are in you?
 

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Well, they can, if you don't interact with them separately, but that also means they have company and someone to play with when you're not around.

It's pretty easy to get them to bond with you, though. When you're spending time with your rats, do so separately for each one for at least a little while. That gives them a chance to bond with you as well as their cage mate. It's like a person having more than one friend and it's healthier for the rats to have other rat companions. It doesn't mean they'll love you less, you just have to work on the relationship a little more. ;)
 

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I have 2 males and my worst fear was that they wouldn't give me the time of day, but I found that they love me just as much as they love each other and they love having me around them as much as possible! I had one rat Beavis before I had gotten these two babies and I havent noticed any difference between how much attention they give to me. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I can't tell you how much your advice, and the sharing of your collective experience, has helped me work things out in my mind, and make a decision not to breed at this time.

People who do breed...can you give me some reasons why you do?

Some of you were very perceptive, and helped me to realize that, yes, what I'm really trying to do is to "keep" Gregor's personality alive, and, as has been my experience with other pets, everyone is an individual. Thanks for helping me to see this clearly.

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I had only dropped by to ask this one question, but I really like it here, and have decided to stay. :) I don't get a lot of time for the computer, but little by little, I'll create a profile, introduce both myself and Gregor formally, read the threads, and get to know you all. I've found myself a "nest!" :lol: Please have patience with me while I get started on this. I'm sticking around.

Question: Why don't we have any "Rat Smilies?"
 

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I think most *good* breeders breed for the love of rats. (There are those who breed for snake food and those that breed for lab testing, but we don't like to talk about them.) Those that breed for the love of rats do so because, well, they love them. They breed for certain colors and appearance. Most of them try to breed healthier rats to improve the overall health of the species

There are actually rat shows out there, you can have your rat registered if they have a pedigree and you can figure out your rat's color name and fur type. These 'pedigreed' rats can be very valuable, but in the end, it's all done for love of rats in general.

I've heard, though, that they've started using rats to identify land mines. The rats are smart enough to sense where one is and mark it, but too light weight to set it off. Very cool.

As for rat smilies...umm...no one has created any? I think it's just the default. Maybe I can see about making some. They would be so cute....
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Awesome info about the mines!

Some people I know don't accept rats as furry cuties...I think they saw "Willard" one too many times! They should know about all the ways rats help us humans.

Someone please breed me a rat that will live 20 years? I'll pay well! :wink:
 
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