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Discussion Starter #1
I'm not quite sure where to post this, but I've got a question about housing rats. Is it imperative that you have more than one rat so they can have friends, or are they okay by themselves? I've heard mixed opinions saying both things. I would love to have more than one rat but can't have another one right now, so would mine be okay until I can get another one? He's really social and even plays with my cats. Okay, it's probably not really playing but if either one of them is going to get hurt it's the cat.
 

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Rats are much better in pairs, but if there’s no way you can get him a buddy just yet then all I can say to do is pay lots of attention to him. Let him have a lot of play time with you. When and if you get a new rat be cautious. Males can be very territorial especially when introducing someone new into the cage. That’s something that has to be done slowly. I would love for you to eventually get him a buddy, they really are happier with one. :D LMAO I know what you mean with the cat...my BFs cat was just curious about the rats and found out that they are not something she wants to mess with. So now she keeps her distance.
 

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its best not to have loan rats but i had one and i have one now only problem is if u leave it to long your rat might no accept a new rat, lone rats need alot more attetion then two rats! but its not imposible to keep a rat on its own!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
He's not very old, I got him in I think the middle of December. He's a big boy, though. I'll definitely get him a buddy if it'll make him happier. I want to get one of those 3-level cages you can get at petsmart, would that be enough room for 2; or would a bigger cage, like one for ferrets work as long as the bars aren't big enough for them to get out of? Should I try to get a rat-buddy for him that's about the same age, or would a younger or older one be better? Does it even matter?
 

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Actually, younger rats are much more readily accepted than older rats. The previous rat(s) won't consider them as much a threat.

I only keep rats alone if all options are exhausted (neutering/spaying included), since rats are extremely social animals and no amount of human interaction can take the place of another rat.
 

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I agree with fallinstar. I had a loner boy, Ichabod, who even after his neuter he just could not live with other rats (though, I know more now about introductions and could probably easily get him to live with my crew). I made a lot of time for him, and he was always out of his cage. He was my heart rat :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Wow, I didn't think people neutered their rats, but it makes sense, just like any other pet. Crichton's a real sweetheart, and he's so peaceful I hope he'll get along with his buddy.
 

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I think that depends on the rat...lol. At least mine anyways, bully boys! haha. But thats seems right as well, less of a threat. I would love to add another ratty to my bunch! Maybe I will one of these days, maybe adopt :D
 

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fallinstar said:
there is a high risk neutering rats as they are only small and may not make it thu which is why roobs is a lone rat
I have to disagree that it is high risk. Is it higher risk than with a larger animal? Yes. However many more neuters go perfectly fine than don't especially if you're working with an experience small animal/exotics vet. I've only attempted a neuter once and I did indeed loose the rat so don't get me wrong.. it happens. But I also have a friend who rescues and spays and neuters all incoming rats and she loses VERY few. She's had many many successes. I've also known other people who have had it done and were able to introduce previously overly aggressive rats to the rest of their rats as it calms them down a lot more often than not. It was just bad luck on my part methinks.


Basically there is the chance the rat doesn't make it out of surgery.. but then theres the much greater chance that it does and leads a happier life because it is able to be kept with others of it's kind.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I'll look into vets that will neuter rats in my area. I'm all for 'fixing' animals, and besides honestly, even if it wasn't for health reasons I think he'd look a lot better being fixed.. o_O
 

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Namo, I spay and neuter all of my rats. With males, it's for their behavior issues. I neuter them before they hit the ever-terrible "teenager" stage, which is around 6-8 months old. With females, it's because of their health. Unaltered females have a much, MUCH greater chance of getting mammary tumors and infections of the uterus, such as pyometra.

I am very much an advocate of altering animals. I have had many rats undergo their neuter/spay surgery and recover without a hitch. It's an extremely safe procedure with an accredited exotics specialist :) Plus, neutered male rats are softer, cleaner, and don't "mark" as much when they're out playing. Plus, they more readily accept newcomers. There would be NO WAY I could have my wonderful group of 12 rats if they weren't all neutered.
 
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