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So long story short me and my partner got two adorable rats we called milk and ink(due to there colour).
im not 100% when it’s comes to rats but I’vedone loads of research.
so I got this huge cage that’s at least three stories high but it’s depends how you build it because you can build it all types of ways🤦‍♀️
so I probably didn’t think much before buying this cage I just wanted to spoil them rotten?
Anyways cut to the case I spent all day on Saturday putting it up was a nightmare and it was huge took up so much space but I’m not complaining it’s fine.
anyways the rat lady gives me the rats early I was meant to have them on the 11th but she gave me them Sunday just gone...seemed odd to me but they seem in great health.
first day they wereso scared but once I moved them to the top floor of the cage they seem to adjust.
now the go the problem...
The cage is too big for them as the sides etc are easy to fit through so they just keep escaping and I don’t wanna loose them! Same time they seem relatively okay if the lights on but soon as it’s night and there no light they just want to get out and odd thing they just run straight to there travel carrier I brought them in when they first came? And it’s not like there scared now they happily came forward to me take food etc they don’t jump or run if I come close but they just don’t like it in the cage in the dark and I hate the fact that I have to keep them in there travel carrier during the night just so we can all get some sleep which is a nightmare because I feel horrible about it but it’s either that or no sleep for any of us specially them?
I really need help on this problem I resulted into putting meshing around the cage completely to see if that stop them escaping but of course they still find ways I hate this because I want them to settle and be comfortable.
am I doing something wrong?
what do I do here?
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"And it’s not like there scared now they happily came forward to me take food etc they don’t jump or run if I come close but they just don’t like it in the cage in the dark and I hate the fact that I have to keep them in there travel carrier during the night just so we can all get some sleep which is a nightmare because I feel horrible about it but it’s either that or no sleep for any of us specially them?"

That's a really big cage . When mine were babies, I kept "losing" them in their big cage - so I got a smaller cage. It made it easier to work with them and for them to bond with me. Once they were much bigger - I moved them back to their big cage. That being said - since yours seem to feel safe in their carrier - can you fit the carrier into the big cage? Also add lots and lots of hammocks; pockets and hides on all the levels. They really don't like being exposed.
 

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You'll have to apply garden fencing/"hardware cloth" to the entire cage so they can't slip out. Chicken wire will not work as rats can chew through it. Apply it from the inside or they will slip out through gaps where the hardware cloth is clipped to the cage bars.

Something similar to this will work: https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/gardenzone-cage-wire-30-x-10-ft-1-2-x-1-in#

Those huge openings in the bars won't contain anything but a large adult male rat, because those panels weren't originally made to house animals with.

They should also have some sort of litter pan at the bottom that they can dig around in. Or at least a dig box. Having them walking on bare bars like that with the pan underneath is not ideal for rats.
 
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