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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got my first two rats and tonight will be their third night home. As a new owner, I am wondering if my rats' behaviors are normal... First of all, they won't be picked up or petted. Whenever I try to pet them, they go inside their igloo or simply avoid my hand. I have fed them by hand, but they still won't let me touch them, unless it's them stepping on my hand.

Also, one is very shy and usually runs into the igloo when i enter the room, but will come out after a couple of minutes. The braver one always tries to climb outside the cage when i put my hand inside. After sniffing at my arm, she attempts an escape.

Is this just them getting used to their new home and me, and will I eventually be able to hold them calmly?

My last problem is the water bottle. Earlier, they were both drinking from it, but both were very eager and this nearly resulted in a fight. As of now, I put a dish of water in the cage, where both immediately drank from it, and I'm wondering if this is better, or if I should get a second water bottle...

Hopefully I'm just a nervous new mom?...
 

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Many rats are somewhat uneasy about being picked up or petted right off. The best way to calm them down is to keep at it.

As to the water bottle, I prefer a bottle... and I've had four boys use one without issues, though I usually give them two for my ease of keeping it full.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks! It’s definitely reassuring to know nothing’s wrong… As for the bottle, I’m not sure if it’s even working well. I’ll keep the bowl in there until I can maybe buy a new one.
 

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It's good they are taking food out of your hand. Keep that up, it will help them feel comfortable with you. Water bottles are better than water dishes that can get pooped in, dirtied by bedding and knocked over. It's okay to be a 'nervous mom', it means you care. It will bring you rewards in time!
 
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