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We are very hands on with our rats, and recently have started building a safe play area in the living room so they can run around more. One seems to get real excited about it when we let her in. When she is playing we pet her, and knowing that when rats play or even fight they go for the backside area Ill tickle her just above her tail and she gets jumpy and comes at my hand. While she has never done anything aggressive or bitten, in fact the worst she has done is bound around the play area and wait for another go it seems. My question is, is this something I shouldn't do, like teasing a dog, or is it something that the rat will just consider play?
 

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I do that with my ratty blaze and he will bite sometimes but never bite really hard more like a play bite that I hardly feel.
 

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Just thought I'd mention this, since I'm not sure if it'll bother you but if she's in heat when you do that she may react differently. I play in a similar way with Dela and I also skritch the back of her neck. When she's in heat and I do this, she'll sort of jump and crawl forward a bit or flat out run away. If I were to continue to play with her, she may eventually lift her tail in the mating stance of rats.
 

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I love when mine treat my hand like a wrestling buddy. : )
 
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