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Discussion Starter #1
I know absolutely nothing about breeding, and I don't plan on breeding in the future, I just was curious as to whether it is possible to have a litter of rats in which a few are tail-less, a few have corkscrew tails, and a few have regular tails? I was at a breeders home, and saw what I thought was a single litter (their markings were all very similar) only their tails were all different.
 

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WHY in the heck would someone breed a rat with no tail?!!! That's like us being born with only one leg!! That's just mean.....:(
 

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Sky14 said:
WHY in the heck would someone breed a rat with no tail?!!! That's like us being born with only one leg!! That's just mean.....:(
Many people find the tail to be the creepy thing about rats. My aunt hates my rats because of it, but I showed her a tailless rat and she thought it was cute.

This shows in dogs and cats, too. Most tails are docked at a young age, but some dogs are born and bred with the intention of producing a tail-less pup. Cats, too, the Japanese Bobtail and the Manx. It's all just personal preference and ability.

....speaking of breeding deformities, anyone else find the munchkin cat kind of cute? xD
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The thing is I don't think it was intentional... would it be possible for several rats to just come out like that?
 

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I can't find any info about frequencies of occurence but you might want to read this article...

http://www.afrma.org/breedtaillessrat.htm

I also found this
Breeding tailless rats involves some choices that are unique to the breed. Females cannot be bred. Less than one tailless occurs in every litter, which leaves the rest of the litter as tailless carriers

I also am going to guess that these "tailless" babies aren't true genetic tailless rats, but maybe their tails were bitten off by mom when they were born...happens when she is cleaning off the placenta.



Sounds like some very bad genetics going on. What is a corkscrew tail anyways?
 

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You can't breed manx females usually because their hips are somewhat deformed by the lack of a tail.

I am, however, wondering about the 'corkscrew' tails. It sounds like something isn't right there. You get 'wheelie tails' and so on, caused by the rats arching their tail over their back while running on a wheel. It only happens if they run all the time.

But corkscrew? That's more of a concern because it would mean the vertebrae in the tail are messed up, which could cause some problems in the future.

And occasionally you do have a doe who chews the tails off the babies. If it doesn't squirm and wake up and fuss, she doesn't always recognize all the little parts as being the baby, but confuses them with the after birth and birthing tissues and fluid.
 

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can that wheelie tail happen as a baby> i have rat, Kakushi, who will be a year old may 3. i got her and her mom when she was about 4 weeks old and at first, maybe a week, she held her tail straight but after that she started to curl it over her back or in a hoop, kinda like a husky. this was before she was large enough to go into the main cage with the wheel. she had not yet had a wheel to use in fact. she didn't do the curly thing all that often at first but as she's grown older she does it MUCH more, almost all the time now. but now she also has the wheel and LOVES it. she'll run it for all she's worth. anyway, just wondering if the curly tail could be caused by anything other then running in the wheel too much? also, does this cause them any harm? i asked the vet about her husky-like tail and she said that she didn't think it would cause any problems but she also admitted she hadn't come across such a tail before in person either.
 

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I read somewhere that manx rats have longer back legs to help compensate for their lack of tails...it helps them balance i think. Still, i think it's cruel breeding tailless rats - rats use them lots to help balance/climb etc, i'll bet manx rats aren't as agile.
 

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rats use their tails to sweet as well. think of it as a very long armpit. i would be worried about over heating with the tailless
 

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It's just mean...:(
 

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This is a picture of Harlequin's wheelie tail. She runs on the wheel all day long and the other girls have to kick her out of it for a turn. Manx rats are born without a tail and do need extra care during their lives so that they don't overheat.

It is no different for a rat to be born without a tail than it is for a manx cat or a bobcat to be born without a tail. I agree with Rodere, if the babies are being damaged by their momma or ther tails are deformed then there is a bigger issue at hand.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I'm going back tomorrow to see her other rats, and her new dog, so I will get a closer look and ask her what the deal is since she will be there this time... the last time it was just me and her roommate, and he didn't know much about them.
 

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Vixie said:
Sky14 said:
WHY in the heck would someone breed a rat with no tail?!!! That's like us being born with only one leg!! That's just mean.....:(
Many people find the tail to be the creepy thing about rats. My aunt hates my rats because of it, but I showed her a tailless rat and she thought it was cute.

This shows in dogs and cats, too. Most tails are docked at a young age, but some dogs are born and bred with the intention of producing a tail-less pup. Cats, too, the Japanese Bobtail and the Manx. It's all just personal preference and ability.

....speaking of breeding deformities, anyone else find the munchkin cat kind of cute? xD
I believe rats sweat through their tails, and their tails help maintain ballance. I haven't heard of rats without tails surviving very long without very carefully monitored temperatures and such....I'm sure it'd be a lot of work. Their tails are one of the most vital parts of a rat's body. Dogs and cats can usually function without, but rats would have a harder time of it, I'm sure.
 

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Corkscrew tails don't exist in rats. That's a common misconception. Manx mice are the ones that get corkscrew tails (they are shorter than normal and curl like a pig's tail). Rats, however, can have different lengths of tails and still be considered manx. The rumpy manx (complete lack of a tail) is preferred, but stubby tails can also be bred to produce manx.
The AFRMA article on manx rats is very, very old and has some incorrect information in it. 'Most' female manx rats can safely be bred with no complications. As long as they are out of a very healthy, proven line, it is quite possible to get large, healthy litters out of a manx doe. There are 2 main lines of manx rats in the US right now that are healthy and breedable. Sadly one of the breeders who helped establish the line is no longer breeding, but her stock is still going strong with other breeders.
Two manx rats can be bred together, but the chances of getting an entire manx litter is not likely. Manx is a polygenetic trait and requires everything to 'line up' perfectly genetically before displaying the manx trait. Manx rats are extremely agile, often more than standard rats. Their rear legs are often slightly longer and they have a cobbier appearance to help compensate for the lack of a tail. This is the way to tell a true manx from a docked rat. They look completely different. I would not recommend newer breeders jumping into manx. They are extremely hard to breed due to being polygenetic. Normally, there are lots of carriers produced and very, very few manx. Most breeders who try their hand at manx tend to give up after a few generations with no manx. It's disheartening.

Robin
Deer Creek Rattery
www.deer-creek.us
 
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