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Discussion Starter #1
We finally intigrated our newest member to our gang, after many weeks of slowly letting him and his cage mate get accostomed to each other. He is a sweet boy, but painfully shy. When I have him out he likes to hide in my lap and curl up. occasionally he will peek out to see what action is going on, but he rarely ventures from my lap. But the weird thing he does, at least weird to me as none of my other boys have ever done this, is in the new cage, he likes to hang out in the litter boxes. I will shoo him out and show him some more appropriate (and comfy) spots, but he goes right back to the box. Any advice? I'm attaching some pictures of his hide and peek because of course I think it's so darn cute. He is my nappy hair dumbo.
 

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i don't know, picasso (who looks a lot like your avvie ratty, lol) sleeps in her litter pan too some times, with or without messes in there. (another reason i'm obsessive about washing my hands after rat-time = salmonella, toxoplasmosis, etc) she mostly did it when she was sorta outgrowing the cute little sleeping nest i had hanging up for her. maybe your nappy dumbo would like a new sleeping quarters? extra hammocks? dunno. :D

someone who has actually had something work should really post here, i'm no help, lol.
 

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Aww, what a sweet looking boy!

What kind of cage do you have for your rats currently? Do you have any pictures? Just so I can get an idea of the setup in case that could answer your question.
 

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What a cute boy! :D

Perhaps he is just getting cozy?
 

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Thanks :D He is our newest boy but is quickly stealing my heart just because he is so shy and sweet. Our other boys are all sweet, don't get me wrong, but the rest of them think they own me and not the other way around :wink:

Their cage is the ferret nation 2 story. I will take some pictures later today when I am home. I think though that I will try getting him a smaller igloo today, watching him last ngiht and this morning it seems like he just wants his own space. All the other boys crowd up in one corner of the cage (he has 5 cagemates) and he goes off by himself to the litter pan :?

I am wondering though, when I rescued him from the shelter, he looked pretty much like he does now, all nappy haired, ive never had one quite this nappy, then I read on one of the rat sites that this can be a sign of illness. He has never shown any other symptoms, he is alert, playful, definatly eating plenty. Other than his shyness, and lack of wanting to socialize with other rats he seems just fine, just a little nappy furred, which is one of the things that I liked about him. Anyone have any ideas on this? I've been lurking on the forum for about a week now and I have learned a great deal from you guys :D

This is the best picture I have that shows a bit what his coat looks like.
 

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he's a rex. that "nappy hair" is just the normal curly hair of a rex. some curls are really tight in some rexs which makes their hair fall out in patches aka a patchwork or double rex rat. other rexs only have a slight wave and there's all the variation inbetween. but from the pictures you've shown he certainly looks like a rex and not sick at all. i'd say he has medium wave to his fur. this could also go away or become less with age. i'm getting a rex baby (coming home monday). when i got pictures of him at 3-4 weeks of age he had a nice wave to his coat but the pictures of him at 6-7 weeks and the wave is all gone. the breeder says this sometimes happens and in fact only two from the litter has any wave left.
 

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Unless he is being bullied, in which case a small area that only he can fit into is a very good idea, I would perhaps avoid getting a smaller igloo. I think it might encourage him to be a loner for longer, rather than force him to socialize and settle in.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for helping me with the type :) He didn't seem sick. You just read this weird stuff on the net and can't help but worry a little.
He actually seems to be a tad more social today. He cuddled up with one of the hairless rats for quite a while, so hopefully it will just take time! This is what their cage looks like right now. I'm working on making them more hammocks, because they really seem to like those, but for playing in, not sleeping. Thank you guys for all the advice!
 

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cute cage!

Yea--i think that your rattie is a rex as well. my guy has just a little waveyness (sorry about the spelling) in the back that you can see more in the color variation than the actually texture, but when i got him, they said he looked like a rex. guess what his name is? REX!!! lol...i know, i'm so corny! LOL :D
 

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Some rats love to hang out in litterboxes...you just can't stop them...:p He may gain some courage and join the others in more comfy places eventually.

Here's a tip for your nervous boy. Take a small blanket or towel and put it over your lap (are you sitting on a couch while he's in your lap?) and have him under it. He will feel protected and safe under the blanket, you can go under it with him and interact, or just leave him alone to feel safer. Eventually he will stick a nose out from under the blanket (might take a few days) and maybe bravely venture out. I've done this before with nervous newbies and it works well. :)

I would say your boy is a velveteen rex (its not a great rex coat, and their whiskers are mostly straight)...they are beautiful...I have one at home I adore plus 2 more regular rexes with the curly whiskers.
 

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My new foster boy spends alot of time in the litterbox as well. He came from a place where he was kept on pine shavings in a small hamster cage, so I figure that it's because he's not used to dealing with so much space (he has the top level of my FN all to himself).
 

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A lot of cats do this. Mainly because they feel secure in this space. I suggest getting the same litter box or whatever you're using for them to do their business in and putting it in the cage, maybe with something comfy in it. If he feels safer in this than in some other hiding place in the cage it may help to give him another option...one that doesnt smell like pee.
 
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