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Hi, all. My name is Siobhan and I'm new to rats in general. I've been doing a lot of research online and have become increasingly glad that I got suckered into adopting my guys.

Here's the story. The other day, I'm at PetsMart looking for some stuff for the aquarium that I'm upgrading. I've picked up some stuff for my birds when I hear a girl say "Eww, they have rats here!"

Naturally, being the animal lover that I am and having never really seen a rat up close, I say, "Really? Where?"

The girl rolls her eyes at me and points me to one of the employees. He proceeds to take me to a back room where they've got several adorable balls of fuzz. He explains that the mother of these guys was left in front of the store, pregnant, so the employees took her in and raised the babies. Since they didn't come from a breeder, they can't sell them, but they are up for adoption. I fell in love.

Luckily, I had just come into a little extra money, so I agreed to take a pair of them. (It was just kind of instinctive to get at least two.) Having never owned any rats before, I had to buy everything new.

So, the employee prints up a care sheet (which really wasn't very informative or terribly accurate) and I wander around the store getting the proper supplies while he draws up the adoption paperwork. Half an hour later and over a hundred dollars poorer, I'm the proud new owner of a pair of brats. I take them home, set them up and start doing some research online.

First of all, I discover that I got probably the worst possible bedding for them...cedar shavings. Well, shoot. Okay, we'll fix that. I also got the wrong food, although it SAID 'formulated for rats'. *sigh* Of course, I'm used to improper packaging and sales of inappropriate stuff for pets since I've owned betta's and other fish. (Fish have got it soooo bad, 'cause they can't even really complain when their conditions suck.)

Anyway, I couldn't fix the mistakes right away, but I did proceed to fall completely in love with my new boys. They charmed the socks right off of me. I had no idea rats could be so sweet and friendly.

Anyway, two days later, I return to PetsMart with research in hand to pick up wood pulp bedding and Mazuri rat blocks, plus a couple of toys for them to play with as well as a paper tube for them to hide in. While I'm there, I just can't resist. I adopt two more. I'm such a sucker. *grin*

It's been about a week. I'm not sure how old my rats are, but I assume they're young, maybe two or three months? They are all males, so unless they developed some majorly aggressive habits, I will probably not be getting them neutered. The first two, I named Atra and Argent, but the second two look just like Argent and I'm not even sure which one is Argent anymore, so the only one that really has a name is Atra. He's a black (although, he's really more of a very dark chocolate brown) and the others are all cream colored. I assume they're probably feeder rat stock, but I love them anyway. I do know their cage is too small, so I'm working on building a bigger and better one. Yay.

So, I'm here to learn all that I can so that my little brats will lead the longest, happiest life that they can.
 

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Awww, that's awesome!

I'm a new rat owner too. I never knew there was such a thing as stray rats until two showed up at my house. They were both albino and both female, we think mother and daughter. And they were sooo tame!

One turned out to be pregnant by a wild rat. The two surviving babies were both females as well, so we kept them. We now have four sweet little girls: Abigail, Priscilla, Hoot, and Annie (my husband named the last two).

I had gotten a cheap cage from Craig's List for the two adults, but when I suddenly had four, I needed something bigger.

After googling, I decided to make my own out of a bookcase (also from Craig's List). Got the idea from http://www.dapper.com.au/grotto.htm . It wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. Some day I'll create a web page of tips for beginning grotto makers.

Anyway, also new to this forum. I'm going to try to post a picture of my grotto.

I was hoping I could find some rat toys that make the rats think. I let the run around the room every night and I would love some kind of free standing toy that makes them figure something out in order to get a treat. Hmmm....

Congratulations on your babies!
 

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Welcome both of you!! so sweet of you to adopt 4 little ones!! I just got some babies the other night that i'm going to try and adopt out and if that just doesn't work then i'll take them to a pet store. Theres a nice little family one in town and they have their own breeder as well as me!:D. I love your cage! i wish i could make/get one like that... I would just need a stop to put it in as my room is already pretty full :|. Anyways once again welcome, have fun on here i've learned a lot :D.
 

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hi there my name is tori. I am also very new to the rat world i have just got two baby boys about 2 months, they are called Kendi (african for the loved one) ans rafiki (african for friend). I decided to get rats as i have always liked mice and rats well animals in general, but I have recently broke up with my boyfriend of two years and although i have a horse i have extra time at home so i thought why not, yes they have cost me a small fortune but the love they already show me and they make me laugh is well worth it. so they are here to stay and im looking forward to the next possible 3 years with my new found friends.
xx
 
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