- snip a bit of fur off one so it's different than the other (takes awhile to grow back, but will need to be re-done every so often)
- use Blu-Kote or something similar (takes awhile to wear off, as we found with one of our PEWs, marked by the foster home)
- mark one's tail with a permenant marker (some markers have chemicals, so check them first)
- use a washable marker instead of a permemant one (will need to be re-applied often)
- rub cooked beet root on fur (but may be eaten off by others)
- use food coloring (as you said... I'm not sure how long it'd last)
- use human hair dye (some people do this, I wouldn't... if you do, rinse VERY well)
Yeah, I was having trouble telling mine apart for awhile, since they are both beige girls. But Topher is bigger. Not by much, but I can tell the difference now. They also have total opposite personalities. But I think just to make it easier, I'll try one of those. I was also told to use permanent marker. How do you know which ones are ok? Are those black sharpies ok?
I had/have this problem with two orange kittens. It's been 2-3 months now and sometimes I still have difficulties from a distance, but I can promise you, you will be able to tell them apart after a while! Certain unique features will start to jump out at you. In the mean time maybe find some of the dye they use for Poodles? lol. Otherwise I'd try food dye.
a while back i had two PEW sisters, and i couldn't tell them apart until kate and bianca got into a scuffle and kate took a bite out of bianca's ear, leaving a permanent notch. (guess i named them appropriately, huh?) eventually, though, i could just tell by body shape and shape of their heads.
in my experience, food coloring is the safest route, even though you'll have to reapply it from time to time. my friend had lots of white baby hamsters, and to tell them apart, she dabbed food coloring dots on their backs (and named them things like "blue" and "red"...) if you put a dot on each of their backs, where it's harder to reach, i think food coloring would be the safest thing. i mean, we're meant to eat it, right? i wouldn't really trust markers.
On occasion I've used (probably gonna get reamed for it) Special Effects hairdye, since I have it around the house by the gallon anyhow. It's a veggie based dye, nontoxic, and I just put a blot of it on the top fur, not touching the skin at all. I only leave it one for maybe 3 minutes, then rinse rinse rinse. Depending on how groom-addicted your rat is, it can last a while (only lasted about 3 weeks on Spork....lasted about four MONTHS on Zero...)
ok i'll use food coloring instead just to be safer, in the future it probably will be easier to tell them apart by there personalities but i just got them on saturday and there still young so it will take some time. thanks for all the replies!!! do you know about how long food coloring will last? and will the others ones try eating it off?
My dogs are twins and my rats are triplets. I have an easy time telling the dogs apart. I don't even have to look at them I can just tell who they are. The rats... not such good luck. I haven't had them very long. I'm going to put food coloring on them and try that. I don't see why it would harm them. I've heard of a lot of people doing it before.