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Just about a week ago I rescued two female five week old African soft-furred babies from a man who breeds them for his pythons, a breed of rats I've never heard of.

At first, one of the two was letting me hold her but since bringing them home, I've noticed she's gotten super unsocial/ scared of me like the other baby female. At first I thought it was just that they were getting used to a "home" as opposed to a feeder farm but now I'm starting to question the breed all together and looking them up, I've found hardly any advice on them other than resources on them as food for snakes!

What worries me more is that I've rescued rats in the past and they've hardly ever had difficulty warming up to me whatsoever -- they were practically snuggling with me in about the same amount of time I've had these two new females.

Are African soft-furred rats more like mice in terms of their intelligence/ social capabilities? Really looking for some information on what to expect from them... I don't want to scare them further if they're meant to truly be a buddy. :(

Please help!
 

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I don't know much about ASFs besides the fact that they're not rats. They're not really mice either but I've read that they act more like mice than rats. They're also far less domesticated than fancy rats and mice. They're pretty new on the pet trade scene and are almost predominantly bred for snake feeder purposes.

Some people do keep them as pets, though. I've read that they're usually not as interested in human interaction as rats and they can be more bitey (and that their bites can be pretty bad). They seem like more of a look but don't touch kind of pet.

Being that you've already purchased them, definitely post your personal experiences!
 

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Just about a week ago I rescued two female five week old African soft-furred babies from a man who breeds them for his pythons, a breed of rats I've never heard of.

At first, one of the two was letting me hold her but since bringing them home, I've noticed she's gotten super unsocial/ scared of me like the other baby female. At first I thought it was just that they were getting used to a "home" as opposed to a feeder farm but now I'm starting to question the breed all together and looking them up, I've found hardly any advice on them other than resources on them as food for snakes!

What worries me more is that I've rescued rats in the past and they've hardly ever had difficulty warming up to me whatsoever -- they were practically snuggling with me in about the same amount of time I've had these two new females.

Are African soft-furred rats more like mice in terms of their intelligence/ social capabilities? Really looking for some information on what to expect from them... I don't want to scare them further if they're meant to truly be a buddy. :(

Please help!

Hi, I don't know how you are getting on with your ASFs now, and I came across your post while googling something else, but I've had ASFs before. They are not actually rats, you can't keep them with domestic rats. But interestingly u can keep them with domestic mice. Mostly they are bred for snake food, but more people now are using them as company for single male mice and this works well. Mine were both rescues too. They are very tricky to handle. They are more of a watch pet. I found that if I put treats on my hand and just waited quietly, eventually mine would take a treat and run away, after several weeks. After a few months they would sit on my hand to eat as long as I kept still. One of my boys I put in with my girl mice (they can't breed with mice) and I think that helped because he saw them being friendly and confident. Other than that he would let me scoop him up in my hands for clean outs and allow the odd stroke. It might help yours to grow a bit more confident if you added in a couple of girl mice? But if you don't want to that's absolutely fine. Just be aware that they won't appreciate cuddles. But if u can get them to take treats and tolerate being handled briefly that's wonderful! I hope this helps. Xxxxxx
 
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