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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My girl Lilly has the bold personality of the two rats. She’s the one who loves to explore and who I end up having to chase around my room. While her sister, Luna, loves to sit in my lap and cuddle she just wants to be running up and down my back and jumping shoulder to shoulder.

I have a morning ritual of getting them fresh water, food and then letting them out for a little play time before I go to school or work for the day. Yesterday morning was perfectly normal. There wasn’t anything or anyone new in the room. Their cage was the same way it always was. I had just gotten the girls water and was about to let them out of the cage. Luna was sitting up in the hammock and Lilly was running around the bottom of the cage. All of a sudden Lilly got spooked. By what I have no idea. She ran around in circles and pretty much just freaked out while Luna just watched from the hammock. Then she ran into one of the boxes. After ten minutes and her not coming back out I got really worried and picked up the box to look in it. She was huddled as closely as she could possibly be to the corner. Her whole body was shacking and all of her hair was sticking up. I tried to get her to come out by calling her name and gently tapping the end of the box. She always comes to this. Nothing. I tried to get her using treats. Didn’t work.

That day when I came home from school I ran to the cage to check on the girls. I usually find them cuddled up in their bed together. Once I enter the room they usually jump out and climb to the top of the cage eagerly waiting for me to let them out. But yesterday it was just Luna I found cuddled up in the bed and who came to great me. I looked into the box and sure enough Lilly was still in the same place as when I left. I tried to lift her out of the box but she put up a fight and freaked out much like she had that morning.


I am so worried about her! She’s not coming out to eat or drink. I placed a little container of water in the box with her and some food but she hasn’t touched it. I did manage to get her out for a little bit today but she wasn’t herself. Instead of running around and explore like the crazy girl she is, she just hid in my sweatshirt completely terrified. I tried placing her on the floor. She usually likes to run around and try to get in places she’s not suppose to. Instead she ran back up and hid in my sweatshirt. Once I put her back in the cage she went through the same routine as that morning. Ran around like something was chasing her scaring her sister to death and right back into the box. She is just not being her hyper little normal self and I’m so worried. She’ll shy away from both me and her sister. I can tell that Luna is getting upset by the whole thing too. Lilly wants nothing to do with Luna either. They are normally always by each other's side. I have no idea what to do or why this happened? Everything was completely normal. She was acting completely normal. I am sooo worried. :(
 

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How old is she? Sometimes they get over a freight on their own...maybe it will take a day or two. I'd hold her lots and give her comfort.
Sorry, I don't know what else to say. Good luck with her, hope she'll be her hyper self again soon.

Could it be some noise that humans wouldn't pick up from the other side of the wall (like a neighbor or something) that startled her? Water pipes? I'm just thinking it must be something that continues to frighten her.
 

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Rats can be very instinctual, and she may have smelt something or heard something that screamed "predator" at her.

BUT if she doesn't settle eventually there may be something else going on. Sudden behaviour changes can sometimes indicate impending illness.

How old are they? Absolutely no changes in theirs or your lives? Did you handle a cat at all?

What was the panicked running? What did it look like, was it like a wild animal trying to get away or was it really strange and she bounced off of things without seeing them?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
They are about three months old. I do have a cat but he was not near the cage when this happened. She ran around a lot how you first explained it, like a wild animal trying to get away. She acted as if something was chasing her.

Changes..hmm well they've moved a round a lot from home to home in the past month. I am the girl's third mommy. I just got them a couple weeks ago. I bought them a new cage about 4 or 5 days before this happened. The one they were in when I got them was much too small and I wanted room for the girls to run around.

Last night she came out for a little bit to eat and drink. As soon as she was done though she was right back in the box. Luna tried to get her to play with her but she wanted nothing to do with it. =/ I'm hoping that you guys are right and she is back to her old self in a couple days. If not should I be contacting a vet? I'm very worried about her.
 

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if she is coming out now to eat and drink, she should be ok in a couple of days. it possibly was the stress of moving from home to home catching up with her. maybe, just maybe, some little thing you did reminded her of something that had happened before you got them. i think she will be ok, especially if luna is trying to encourage her to come out and play.
 

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I know its not really related but my old canary did something similar once.For no reason she started shrieking and launching herself at the cage bars as if something was inside the cage after her.Then went totally quiet and bunched up.I put my hand in the cage and she hopped on my finger as if for reassurance.(she NEVER did that before)
The only thing I could put it down to was that she saw a ghost canary or something!
A few hours later she was fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well i gotta say you guys were right. Lilly is..Lilly again. yay. :] Luna took good care of her. It was really cute. She moved their bed into the box Lilly wouldn't leave so that they could both sleep together. She brought Lilly food too. I'm soo glad she's back to herself. I was soo worried. I still have absolutely no idea what caused her to behave so strangely. I'm gonna have to go with Gary26Uk's theory and say she saw a ghost rat. :]
 

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I had something like that happen today with my baby Turfle. She, Tucka and I were playing under the covers and all of a sudden, Turfle squeeled and tore towards me. Then huddled up against me for about 5 minutes and really hasn't been herself until about 6 hours later....ie NOW. LOL I figured she just spazzed for a bit and kept trying to comfort her. She is now normal for Turfle.
 
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