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Hi all, I'm a new rat owner and have two lovely boys. Chandler is still very nervous but he's coming round and is relatively calm, he still has issues with me touching him but I think I can win him round. My other boy, Burrito, however, just wants to escape all the time! He'll happily climb on me as I'm sat at the door of the cage but he wont let me touch him so maybe he thinks hes the dominant one? i just don't know how to amend that. He is also VERY fast and VERY skittch. He bit me today when I stroked him, i think he'd just woken up though but when I played with him earlier, he was climbing on my lap but he was just after escape and cheerios and if he gets out there wont be an getting him back cause I cant touch him! I want to let him out to play but he is SO skittish about touching...what do you reckon?

Thanks!



 

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Discussion Starter #2
Oh, to add to this, he's so fast and skittish that he makes me nervous! He nibbles a lot but mostly cause he can't find his treat but now I'm nervous that either he'll bite me again or that he'll escape and it's cutting down my time with both him AND chandler...I'm at a loss!
 

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Read Rat Daddy's post on Immersion. It worked wonders for me and my rats!
 

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I have but I'm not all together sure I understood what to do, that or I don't feel brave enough to do it yet...if some one could give me a basic pointer on the immersion that might help? In fact that would help a lot! (I'm not the smartest when it comes to walls of text, especially as a new owner, it's a little overwhelming!)
 

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Ah sorry, just saw your new post. I wouldn't want to give pointers in case i miss something important out, i've only ever done it with three of my rats and they were all such different characters. But yeah i'm not really anybody to be giving immersion lesson haha, did you read his second post 'Immersion: The Practice' it explains it quite well. :)
 

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Not to worry! Haha, this might sound silly, but I'm also worried about getting them to the room I want to try immersion with them, as I can't pick either of them up...can you recommend anything?
 

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With my biting rat i waited until he was tucked away in his house and then carried the house to the area i would be doing to immersion in. But in all fairness it is in the same small room just a different sectioned off part as i don't have any other rooms available to my rats. If you have to carry them farther then you could try quickly scooping them into a pet carrier or 'herding' them in...if that makes sense? How do you remove them to clean the cage? :)
 

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If you're afraid of getting bit then I would go for the safe method and put gloves/oven mitts on. This way, you're less likely to be afraid of getting injured and making them nervous with your own nerves and you should not be injured. To be completely safe, I would wear kind of heavy, loosish clothing during this firet immersion lesson or until you feel calm and comfortable with them. For getting them used to you, I have heard that many people have success with putting skittish rats in a hoodie pocket or a jacket hood and just letting them hang out there, maybe petting them if the rat allows them to.

I found immersion a bit confusing at first but I've steadily figured out what Rat Daddy meant. From my experience with my two, you put them in a smallish, secure area with you and you release them inside with you. (Bathrooms work great with towels shoved under doors, just be wary of holes under cabinets and block them if you see them). Then you basically just mess with them. Skritch them, scratch them, play with them gently, pick them up and hug them (If you get thebone to stop biting you). Just be patient and be willing to spend a few hours with them. I would also suggest treats but they may not take them from you just yet.

As for getting them in there, you can take them in the oven mitts or some people will make a sort of box and letting them crawl in it and then transporting them to your immersion area.
 

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No problem, i hope everything works out for you and you rats! :D
 
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