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Hey all,

So I adopted two intact adult males (Jerry and Peanut lol) as a bonded pair in February; the foster that I picked them up from said there was occasional fighting but they would usually stop once they (the humans) approached the cage. About maybe two weeks into having them, they got in a loud enough fight at 3am that woke me up and I saw that Jerry had some blood on his back. I think this is where I messed up - I separated them, took them to the vet to see if they could get neutered but the vet decided that since they were already over a year old and their balls were pretty fiberous the recovery would be harder. I kept them separated for a month (i know I messed up I was applying human emotions cause of how awful rat yelling is). I finally looked into rat reintroduction which is what I've been trying for the past two months. I tried the bathtub for an hour a day, but they usually just avoided each other and Peanut could jump out of the bathtub with ease. I swear he's an olympic high jumper. I bought a small carrier cage and a medium sized transition cage for them. Each time I would introduce them, they would be cuddling and sleeping together usually within an hour and half. I've tried total reintroduction with the carrier method 3 times now each time going slower. Once I get them to the top half of my critter nation cage with the just a litter box and hammock, they would do the usually fighting and this is where I would start to see puffed up fur from Peanut. The first two times, I separated them with gloves on and avoided any blood. This most recent time - (24 hours in the smallest carrier, 4 days in the medium sized cage with limited out of cage time) they were in the critter nation top half for four days and everything seemed good. Peanut was chewing on the cage bars like mad but my mindset was boredom now would be better for him to be reintroduced in the long run and he's been doing this the entire reintro process. While out of my room cooking, I missed something big, I walked in on Peanut pinning Jerry down in the hammock with Jerry squealing pretty loud. I took Peanut out and saw he had some blood on his back. I checked on Jerry and saw he had blood on his back, chest, and hind leg and he wasn't putting any weight on his hind leg.

This brings us to now, they are still separated while I try and decide what to do. All the bleeding was minor and surface level. They are both 16 months old and I only just recently noticed in the past month a decrease in grease production from Peanut so I think he's got some horomone issues or smthing. I'm stuck wondering if I messed them up and if 1 month they were separated originally was enough for them to forget to "speak rat" or if I should try again this time much slower even if Peanut is getting restless and chewing on the bars. Jerry is still limping on his hind leg and it's been 48 hours so I'm thinking about taking him to the vet tomorrow. I don't know if I should wait until Jerry is healed and avoid the stress or start the reintro process of he can have his bro with him while healing.

I would love some help and advice on how to move forward both for vet care with Jerry and the reintroduction process. Sorry for the essay lol
 
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