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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok I think my rat might be pregnant because I unfortunetly must have left her cage open and my boys were having their free time in my room. Anyways when I came in the room one of my boys was "mounting" her and doing his thing. Anyways I just wanted to get some opinions and tips of rat pregnancy and stuff. I have been doing ALOT of research so I know alot I just want personal experience opinions. Please dont bit my head off because I know I made a mistake. Anyways here some info on my rats:

Female: She is a black and white berkshire. She is very sweet and loves kisses. She is around 6- 6 1/2 months old. She is currently in a wire cage with her sister but I will be buying them a 20 gal aquarium tomarow and moving them into it in a few days. Her sister will be going in the aquarium with her because I read that she will help out mama. And also I think mama would get stressed without her because they have always been together. I read that newspaper shreads and paper towel works as a good bedding for prego mamas.

Male #1: He is a black Irish male(all black except a litte white "V" under his chest). He is the one I saw mating with her when I walked in. He is about 8 months old. Hes a big lovey type boy.

Male #2: He is a black and white hooded male. I dont think he mated with the female because he wasnt even near the two when I walked in.

Thanks for your help guys.
 

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The thing with putting the other female in the cage with her is that it may help... or it may not. Some females get very irritated with others when they have babies. The other female may try to take the babies from the mother or the mother may attack her, etc.

Many people suggest keeping them apart incase this happens.

Either male or both could be fathers, the bigger one could have chased off the other one, I'd think.

All boys here, so no litters. :)
 

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Right now there is no way to determine whether it took or not. I've read where respected breeders have kept a pair together for months without conception... but it seems these darns oops take every time.

at any rate you will have your answer in 21 to 23 days

Did you mark the calender when this happened?

Some suggest removing some suggest leaving some suggest breeding in pairs... there are lots of suggestions. I have always felt the best suggestions to follow are the ones the rats give us. If your female is pregnant & she is ok with her cagemate being there life will progress nicely & there will be little change other than the expectant Mommy will get bigger & display nesting behaviors.

If she is the kind of Mommy that doesn't want company you will see/hear more squabbles & you will notice her posture being far less tolerant of her cagemate.

I've seen both behaviors in expectant rats. Neither is more frequent than the other.

Since you don't know if she is pregnant maybe you could consider just leaving things as they are now & watch for the signs that you should change living environments. I mean why isolate someone for 3 weeks unless you know for sure?

If you do have the means to get an aquarium then it might not be a bad idea. If money is an issue, there are more economical choices available. What you need is a roomy enclosure with proper ventilation & no levels or little openings for tiny feet & toes to get stuck in.

So that is a little feed back on that.

What is important now is to make sure they stay separated & take extra special precautions in not allowing uh-ohs to happen again.

Hopefully she isn't pregnant & this scare is a good reality check on how easy it is to have an accident when you decide to have both male & female rats.
 

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Depending on when it happened, you can check right after for a... well, a plug in the female. I don't believe that's 100% accerate, but it's the best way to tell if the male(s)... were... successful in any way. Heh.

Everyone's given you good advice otherwise, I'd check some other threads in this forum... Lots of great info.

The only thing I did want to say is sometimes, Mama and the other girl(s) will get along fine... Until the babies are born. Sometimes, the non-mama will want to interact with the babies (or "steal" some), Mama gets upset, and poor baby can be severely injured or dead if there's a tug-o-war. Personally, I'd rather never risk it just because the thought of that to me is awful, but some do with fine results. Definitely watch the cues of ALL the rats, if you leave them together.
 

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To prevent accidents you should try and keep the rats in separate rooms or watch the rats when they are having their play time seeing there is more things that can happen then them chewing on something.

Hopefully your rat will be fine and if you saw him mounting the one girl, while you were not there, he could of been doing this 'thang,' with the other female.

So observe a lot, and looking for good rat breeding and baby sites on google helps a lot. Some people here have had some oops litters, some just know about breeding, and others are breeders so if you notice anything of the strange, do post and I'm sure people will react fast in reply for you.

Post pictures of the belly if you think its growing, probably take a picture now then in a week and then after to see if there is any change because you see her everyday and you may not notice day to day change.

:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Ok thanks everyone. I will take a picture of her belly tonight. She seems to be doing fine with her sister with her so far. They are actually snuggling right now. And her sister is a sweety so I doubt we will have problems with that but if she has babies and they are fighting then I will seperate them immediatly. I bought a 29 gal aquarium the other day. I do have another question though: I read that newspaper shreds and paper towell is the bedding to use when the babies are born. I'm planning on switching the girls into the new cage on Thursday and I was wondering if I should use shreds of newspaper and paper towell right away or should I wait untill a few days before the pups are due? Thanks for all your help.
 

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it may be better to give her a bed of aspen shavings and then offer her some strips of "nesting material" (paper towels, etc.) so she can make her nest where she wants to. if the whole aquarium was filled with nesting material it would need cleaning a lot more than if you had aspen shavings, and she might pile all of the nesting material in one corner and leave the rest of the aquarium bare.
 

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I just want to say "Kudos", Ratty_Mama, for doing your homework once you realized that you might be in this position. Accidents, unfortunately, do happen and it sounds like you are doing the best you possibly can, given the circumstances. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Ok I have all my rats on aspen anyways so that will work out good. I will give her strips of newspaper and paper towells tomarow when I put her and her sister in the aquarium tomarow(exactly two weeks since the incident). She has deifinantly been acting different. She used to be pretty hyper and would always go explore when I let her out for free time. For the past couple days she has been very laid back and calm and she would rather snuggle up with me then to explore. Also her stomach has gotten a little bigger this morning. So I am assuming there are little ones in her. And dont worry I will definantly take lots of pictures for you all to see.

Thanks Sparker! I just want the best for my rats.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ok I also have another question. When will I be able to put the mama and babies back into her origonal cage? The bars are about a half inch apart maybe smaller(I have no idea lol). Maybe around 2 weeks old or what do you guys think?
 

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i'd wait until their eyes were open at least. then i would place them by the bars and see if they could fit through. if it looks like they might fit through, wait until it looks like they can't then watch the cage like a hawk for the next hour or so to make sure they can't get out.
 

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bar space is definitely something to consider since you don't want them to escape but I would suggest you wait until they are at least 3 to 4 weeks old because they will want to climb & they may not yet be strong & coordinated enough to spider-rat on the bars

start out by watching them climb, if they tumble easily... hold off on leaving them in the cage unsupervised
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Alright I will wait untill they are at least 3-4 weeks old. I'd rather be on the safe side so I think it will be best to wai untill I am certain they will not fit through the bars. But it just seems sad because I dont want mama to get bored with just an aquarium. Do you think she will be ok? I'll make sure that I take her out a whole lot so she wont get bored. Because she has a but, 2 levels, a hammock, and lots of free time now so I'm ust a little worried she will get bored. But I think her little ones will keep her pretty busy so I think she'll be ok. So anyone else that has opions or tips then shoot them at me. Thanks for everyones help. I'll be sure to post pictures if and when the babies come.
 

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she won't be bored... considering she will be nursing them for about 18 hours a day to start

& you don't want to be disturbing her too much because it may cause her to become anxious & this will result in her not caring for the babies
 

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She'll be okay. If she wants some time away from the babies, let her out to play. You may find that she feels better and actually returns to the babies, refreshed and ready to baby-rear.

It's actually best not to have a multiple-level cage for the first few weeks (though some people do, it's recommended not to). Mama may try to relocate her nest in a dangerous area and babies could get inured or killed (falling down ramps or shelves, getting stuck between bars...). Also, you don't want mama to have *too* much room... Some moms would stay away from their litter if given the opportunity.
 

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Kimmiekins said:
Some moms would stay away from their litter if given the opportunity.
i know i would. :lol:
it looks like you've done your research Ratty_Mama, so here's hoping all goes well and we get some pics of the adorable little rittens when/if they arrive! =)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Oh ok good. Well I wont bother her too much then. But I will let her have some free time so that she can go back to taking care of her babies nice and refreshed. Oh I know, I read that its dangerous to have levels, hammocks, and wire cages thats why I am switching them into an aquarium. I'm going to be putting them into the aquarium tomarow. Thank you for all the help guys! I'm excited to see how many pups she has and what markings they have. I'm guessing her litter will be around 7-18 by the size of her tummy already. I'm also guessing that all will be black and white with cute markings such as bareback, variegated, berkshire, irish, and hooded. Once the babies are born I am going to start finding homes for them. So if anyone lives in Arizona and wants a pair(or trio) or knows some one who does then send me an email at [email protected] .
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
jellybeanqueen said:
Kimmiekins said:
Some moms would stay away from their litter if given the opportunity.
i know i would. :lol:
it looks like you've done your research Ratty_Mama, so here's hoping all goes well and we get some pics of the adorable little rittens when/if they arrive! =)
Haha!!Thank you. I definatly will put of lots of pics if/when the pups come
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Ok just an update: She seems to be getting bigger and eating alot more often. She loves her bread wih milk on it. Anyways tonight would be the 21st day exactly. She doesnt seem as big as some of the rats I've seen get in pics. But she was normally a smaller rat. So I need opinions. DO you think shes not pregnant and just got lucky and getting fatter or shes pregnant but hasnt hit her "balloon" stage yet? I'm really not quit sure. I did move her into a 29 gal aquarium just in case. I have her on aspen and have been giving her paper towel strips but shes not ripping them apart like I thought they are supposed to. She just moved them all to a corner of the cage,which is kinda wierd. Anyways I just wanted to keep you guys updated.
 

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she may not try to nest until just an hour or so before giving birth. and she may not give birth for a another couple of days. some pregnacies will run a bit longer for whatever reason, the general guidelines for gestation is 21-24 days after. its like humans that way where the gestation is 36-40weeks and is still in the normal range without being overdue or a premature birth.

as for showing, i've heard of females not showing until a couple hours before giving birth and that some small litters don't even show at all. so its not always the best indicator. have you been measuring her weight? that's a much more accurate way to tell if a female is pregnant.
 
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