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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So recently (1 week ago) I rescued two girls from a lady who had an oops litter from her rescue rats. They're 8 weeks old and very sweet and curious but also pretty skittish. For the past week I've been hand feeding them and they're totally good with that. I'll put baby food on my hand and allow them to lick it off while petting them and holding them in the palm of my hand to train them being held is okay. One of my girls is a lot more confident (Milly) and recently started letting me pick her up when I had a treat for her. Yesterday I thought it was time I tried to take them out of the cage and put them in my bonding pouch for some bonding time. I've been showing them that the bonding pouch is okay and Milly would come right to the front, jump in, eat a treat and then I'd take her out and she'd come back and do the same. So yesterday when I was ready I put treats in the bag and opened the cage and talked to them for a bit and gave them treats and they perked up and started popcorning all over and playing. Milly came right up to the front and I picked her up with a treat and went to put her in the bag and she squirmed SO FAST and darted from my lap to the floor, from the chair I was on and dashed underneath the cage. I was obviously terrified because the space where the cage is, is large and NOT rat proof. Long story short, I covered all escape exits except for one and tried to lure her out with treats and baby food for THREE hours and it just wasn't happening. At first she was hopping around and coming to me for treats but would run away after and not let me touch her, but shortly after she curled up in the corner and didn't move so I knew she was totally freaking out. I would try to use a paper towel roll to gently scoot her from the corner into the little carrier I had set up at the exit but she would run away. At the 4 hour mark I bit the bullet and tried to grab her (I really didn't want to do this as I didn't want to completely spook her but I ended up having to.) I attempted a couple times and when id put me hand over her shed start licking me but then dash when id try to pick her up. I finally got ahold of her but she was squirming so much I had to hold her pretty tight, she never squeaked or bit me so I know she wasn't hurt or too upset. She was put back in her cage and I gave them fresh broccoli and a treat and turned out the lights and let her calm down for the remainder of the night. This morning she's fine and came up to the cage when I came down but she is definitely a little skittish. ANYWAY, after all that, I'm just really terrified to try to take her out again or even open the cage if she's too close because she tries to get out. I don't want this to happen again but I want to bond with them and I know the only way to do that is to take them out of the cage to be with me. I've heard lots of people say I have to take them somewhere away from their cage but I just don't think that's possible because I can't get them into the pouch to take them elsewhere without Milly trying to escape. I have a spare room that's empty right by their cage so I was thinking I'd just roll their cage into the spare room and open it up and let them come out of their own (I know for sure Milly will.) I need advice! How do I attempt this again without her escaping me? I want to do free roaming but I'm terrified to say the least because I'm scared to take her out of the cage in the event she dashes again. I want to bond with them and I'm scared it will never happen as it's been a week and I haven't been able to take either one of them out of the cage except for when Milly escaped yesterday. HELP! :(
 

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It is ok I do bonding time to and some times the go far but you get them back anyway make sure that one you do play time are out side of cage time that there is no way they can leave one time the same thing happen to me so af that for out side of cage time I do it in my bed now I put a blanket in and put there toys in it and let them play so try doing it in your bed they should not pee In it
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have not done free roam yet. I attempted to the other day by putting them in my pouch and taking them upstairs to my bathroom but she escaped. My cage is also too large to transport upstairs or onto my bed
 

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Instead of the pouch, try using a small box to carry the rats around. A shipping box that is just going to be recycled, maybe a plastic storage container you have lying around, extra large Kritter Keeper, etc. A lid is a plus to keep the rats contained. Cut out some holes to allow for air flow if needed. Once they're more used to you and being handled, you can slowly introduce them to the pouch.

Can you can set up a rat play pen in the same room as the cage? It doesn't have to be huge. You can buy small animal playpens or DIY one. There are lots of DIY rat play pen ideas online.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
That's a good idea, maybe I'll try that! Let just hope they don't jump out of the cage while trying to wrangle them into it lol! I was also thinking of maybe rolling their cage into the room right next to the space where they are so they could free roam the entire room, do you think this is a good idea?
 

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Get yourself a big 55 gallon tote from like home depot. Put some bedding in the bottom,toye,water...ect. While there in there start introducing your hands and play with em. Before you know it,they'll be crawling all over you. BTW I move my girls with a winter hat ♥
 

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That's a good idea, maybe I'll try that! Let just hope they don't jump out of the cage while trying to wrangle them into it lol! I was also thinking of maybe rolling their cage into the room right next to the space where they are so they could free roam the entire room, do you think this is a good idea?

Put some treats into the box so they'll be distracted from trying to jump out of the box. A box will high sides will work. If the rats aren't hand friendly, use a smaller box to scoop them out of the cage and into the box with the high sides so you can then carry them wherever.

No reason why you can't roll the cage to a different room for play time. Just be sure to rat-proof the room. Plug up any cracks, close off floor and low-to-the-floor vents or block them with something heavy, etc. If the room can't be rat-proofed well, set up a play pen that you can easily take down and put away after play time.
 

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So recently (1 week ago) I rescued two girls from a lady who had an oops litter from her rescue rats. They're 8 weeks old and very sweet and curious but also pretty skittish. For the past week I've been hand feeding them and they're totally good with that. I'll put baby food on my hand and allow them to lick it off while petting them and holding them in the palm of my hand to train them being held is okay. One of my girls is a lot more confident (Milly) and recently started letting me pick her up when I had a treat for her. Yesterday I thought it was time I tried to take them out of the cage and put them in my bonding pouch for some bonding time. I've been showing them that the bonding pouch is okay and Milly would come right to the front, jump in, eat a treat and then I'd take her out and she'd come back and do the same. So yesterday when I was ready I put treats in the bag and opened the cage and talked to them for a bit and gave them treats and they perked up and started popcorning all over and playing. Milly came right up to the front and I picked her up with a treat and went to put her in the bag and she squirmed SO FAST and darted from my lap to the floor, from the chair I was on and dashed underneath the cage. I was obviously terrified because the space where the cage is, is large and NOT rat proof. Long story short, I covered all escape exits except for one and tried to lure her out with treats and baby food for THREE hours and it just wasn't happening. At first she was hopping around and coming to me for treats but would run away after and not let me touch her, but shortly after she curled up in the corner and didn't move so I knew she was totally freaking out. I would try to use a paper towel roll to gently scoot her from the corner into the little carrier I had set up at the exit but she would run away. At the 4 hour mark I bit the bullet and tried to grab her (I really didn't want to do this as I didn't want to completely spook her but I ended up having to.) I attempted a couple times and when id put me hand over her shed start licking me but then dash when id try to pick her up. I finally got ahold of her but she was squirming so much I had to hold her pretty tight, she never squeaked or bit me so I know she wasn't hurt or too upset. She was put back in her cage and I gave them fresh broccoli and a treat and turned out the lights and let her calm down for the remainder of the night. This morning she's fine and came up to the cage when I came down but she is definitely a little skittish. ANYWAY, after all that, I'm just really terrified to try to take her out again or even open the cage if she's too close because she tries to get out. I don't want this to happen again but I want to bond with them and I know the only way to do that is to take them out of the cage to be with me. I've heard lots of people say I have to take them somewhere away from their cage but I just don't think that's possible because I can't get them into the pouch to take them elsewhere without Milly trying to escape. I have a spare room that's empty right by their cage so I was thinking I'd just roll their cage into the spare room and open it up and let them come out of their own (I know for sure Milly will.) I need advice! How do I attempt this again without her escaping me? I want to do free roaming but I'm terrified to say the least because I'm scared to take her out of the cage in the event she dashes again. I want to bond with them and I'm scared it will never happen as it's been a week and I haven't been able to take either one of them out of the cage except for when Milly escaped yesterday. HELP! :(
Do bonding time with them, rat proof, and make a playpen. 💛
 
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