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Hello,

I am a new rat owner, and I have a two young females, Bijou and Pashmina. The girls were recently spooked by my kitty when he slipped by me into the bedroom, and jumped up to a surface eye level with their cage. Both girls scurried up to the top of their rope perch, and huddled together for safety... which is all fine and good, but within about 10 minutes or so, Pashmina came down, and her behavior returned to normal. Bijou, however, has refused to come down from her perch for quite a good many hours now, and I'm wondering what I can do for her.

I tried tempting her down with tasty snacks, along with giving her both time with me present, and time alone. Pashmina seems to have done all she could to try to alter Bijou's behavior also. Cuddling, grooming, and also a little showing off of her own freedom. No change. I stroked Bijou a few times, but I didn't want to force her off the perch because she was as tense as a little stone.

Her behavior exhibits that tension, and she is continually swaying her head from side to side.
I'm not sure if she's scanning the room for predators, or if this behavior means something else.

I have no reason to believe either rat was injured, as kitty only wanted to have a look, and both of these rats have been in the presence of my other furry friend before, so I can't imagine why Bijou's reaction is so extreme right now.

Does anyone have any advice or insight for me?
I want to make her comfortable, without stressing her further.

Thanks for your time!
 

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Winter Snow, Dovahkiin (Dova/Dragon), Nibbles, Dumbo. All 3 month old rats
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She probably got scared. Just try to keep an eye on her and see if she returns to normal tomorrow. Rats sway so they can see better. She's probably searching to see if there are any threats. Just try to calm her down and let her know your here to keep her safe. You could even put a blanket or towel over the cage for the night to allow her to calm down.
 

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Hi there,
I had that with one of my rats soon after I brought him home.
While he was out the cat came over to say hello and he freaked out.
When I put him back in the cage he ran, hid and wouldn't come out.
I was really worried about this and thought that he wouldn't trust me again.
But I left him for a few days and talked to him and soon he was back to normal.
Now I keep them at a distance from the cats. 😺
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks so much for the replies!

Bijou is slowly coming back around, but she's still overall much more hesitant than she was before the kitty experience, so I'm hoping she'll forget all about it soon.

I was hoping, however, to be able to have the cat and the rats in the same room (highly supervised, of course) for small periods of time, since poor kitty has been getting quite lonely now that he's kicked out from one of only two rooms in our apartment. :(

Does anyone have a cat that can handle being around the rats without their kitty instincts overwhelming them into being little monsters? Or do you have rats that can tolerate the presence of a cat? If so, was it just the natural disposition of the animals which go you to this point? Or is training and safe socializing ever able to resolve these natural oppositions in your experience?

Thanks!
 

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Thanks so much for the replies!

Bijou is slowly coming back around, but she's still overall much more hesitant than she was before the kitty experience, so I'm hoping she'll forget all about it soon.

I was hoping, however, to be able to have the cat and the rats in the same room (highly supervised, of course) for small periods of time, since poor kitty has been getting quite lonely now that he's kicked out from one of only two rooms in our apartment. :(

Does anyone have a cat that can handle being around the rats without their kitty instincts overwhelming them into being little monsters? Or do you have rats that can tolerate the presence of a cat? If so, was it just the natural disposition of the animals which go you to this point? Or is training and safe socializing ever able to resolve these natural oppositions in your experience?

Thanks!
I wouldn't keep a cat and a rat together. You already know the rats are scared of the cat, and the rats would just get more stressed out if you tried to push them to be together. Plus the cat probably knows that the rat is "prey" even though he/she was just being curious before :)
 

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Does anyone have a cat that can handle being around the rats without their kitty instincts overwhelming them into being little monsters? Or do you have rats that can tolerate the presence of a cat? If so, was it just the natural disposition of the animals which go you to this point? Or is training and safe socializing ever able to resolve these natural oppositions in your experience?

Thanks!
My cat (Mollie), for the most part, ignores them. She will occasionally get her front paws on the table Turvy & Gigi's cage is on and peek in. But she doesn't bother them. She's also trained so when I say "leave it" - she walks away from whatever "it" is.

Now my other rat, Suzie is a different story. Suzie is much older and I've only had her a short time. She attacked the cat, when I had Suzie on the bed, one night.
The cat is now terrified of Suzie .... but only mildly curious about the other two.She won't even make eye contact with Suzie when Suzie is in her cage. :ROFLMAO:

BTW - the rescue I got both Gigi & Suzie from has all sorts of critters, including cats. out of all the critters, her personal rat goes wither her everywhere. And this rat .... sleeps with her cat! I've seen the pics and the two of them cuddled up together is about the sweetest thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
My cat (Mollie), for the most part, ignores them. She will occasionally get her front paws on the table Turvy & Gigi's cage is on and peek in. But she doesn't bother them. She's also trained so when I say "leave it" - she walks away from whatever "it" is.

Now my other rat, Suzie is a different story. Suzie is much older and I've only had her a short time. She attacked the cat, when I had Suzie on the bed, one night.
The cat is now terrified of Suzie .... but only mildly curious about the other two.She won't even make eye contact with Suzie when Suzie is in her cage. :ROFLMAO:

BTW - the rescue I got both Gigi & Suzie from has all sorts of critters, including cats. out of all the critters, her personal rat goes wither her everywhere. And this rat .... sleeps with her cat! I've seen the pics and the two of them cuddled up together is about the sweetest thing.
Mollie sounds like a sweet girl. :)

I'm still having problems with Bijou, however. She's simply too frightened to explore. It can't be just the kitty incident, because it's been too long now. She won't leave her hammock, or my hood, or wherever she feels safe. She's not very food motivated, so I can't tempt her out with treats.

I also tried to put her in the playpen, while removing myself from that area, to see how she'd behave. There's enough to explore and even hide in inside the pen, but she jumped 15 inches in the air to escape, and when I caught her, she scrambled up my arm to the safety of my hood. I think she panicked when her safe spot (me) was gone.

Without using treats, I'm not sure how to get her over her fear. She's non-aggressive, allows me to pick her up and hold her, but she just stays so still... no interest in anything, and I don't fully understand her. Pashmina is getting along perfectly, but Bijou is not following her sister's lead, and I'm not sure why.

Any ideas of what I can do to help her?
 

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Mollie sounds like a sweet girl. :)

I'm still having problems with Bijou, however. She's simply too frightened to explore. It can't be just the kitty incident, because it's been too long now. She won't leave her hammock, or my hood, or wherever she feels safe. She's not very food motivated, so I can't tempt her out with treats.

I also tried to put her in the playpen, while removing myself from that area, to see how she'd behave. There's enough to explore and even hide in inside the pen, but she jumped 15 inches in the air to escape, and when I caught her, she scrambled up my arm to the safety of my hood. I think she panicked when her safe spot (me) was gone.

Without using treats, I'm not sure how to get her over her fear. She's non-aggressive, allows me to pick her up and hold her, but she just stays so still... no interest in anything, and I don't fully understand her. Pashmina is getting along perfectly, but Bijou is not following her sister's lead, and I'm not sure why.

Any ideas of what I can do to help her?
The fact that she jumps to you like that means she sees you as "safe".
I would just give her some time. Try working on just getting her to the cage door and don't push on the out of cage thing for now.

And yeah - Mollie is a sweetheart ... but cats can learn to either get along with critters in the house or just ignore them.
Don't push for friendship and be happy with a "de taunt" .... they'll probably all learn to live together. :)
 

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The fact that she jumps to you like that means she sees you as "safe".
I would just give her some time. Try working on just getting her to the cage door and don't push on the out of cage thing for now.

And yeah - Mollie is a sweetheart ... but cats can learn to either get along with critters in the house or just ignore them.
Don't push for friendship and be happy with a "de taunt" .... they'll probably all learn to live together. :)
I've opened a new discussion because after some odd days, her behavior is still strange for her age, especially in comparison with Pashmina, who is getting along swimmingly. I've tried to describe Bijou's behavior in more detail in the subsequent thread.
 
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