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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, so my partner and I bought a rat last weekend, who we thought was a neutered male (bc he didn't have balls). Well....that aside, it is obviously a female, because either late last night, or early this morning, she had a litter of 10, maybe a couple more. (We haven't really been able to count them.) We're really excited and nervous, and I just need to know what to do, and what not to do. She's in a wire cage right now, and I'm getting a 10 gallon aquarium from a friend today, and I'm wondering when I should move them and the mother into it, and what the best way to move them would be. Also, what should I feed the mom to help her out, and things like how soon can we pick them up, should we get them out, leave them alone with mom? I really just don't know what to do. I've been doing some research and reading some threads on this site, but there's just so much info I'm kind of just overwhelmed so I decided to register and start my on thread. I would GREATLY appreciate ANY AND ALL advice you all have to give!! Thanks!

P.S. As soon as we can, we'll have pics of the babies!!! :D

Here are some pics of, well...her name was Ralphie, but I think we'll call her Roxie now!!!










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UPDATE:

Well, we finally got the chance to sex the babies, and from what we can tell, there are 7 girls and 5 boys! And they are the CUTEST things I have EVER seen!!!

All 12!!


The girls
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The boys
 

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Re: We have babies!!!

That cage will be fine to leave her in since its got a nice deep plastic base. You have to worry about wire cages when the wire sits in the pan because eepers can get stuck between the bars. :(
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Re: We have babies!!!

Well, that's good to know! What about when they start moving around and stuff, though? I don't want them to try to get out of the bars and get hurt..
 

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Re: We have babies!!!

Rattiegma said:
Well, that's good to know! What about when they start moving around and stuff, though? I don't want them to try to get out of the bars and get hurt..
They'll be too big by then :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Re: We have babies!!!

Thanks! We're planning on getting a R-680 from Martin's cages, but it'll be a few weeks.
 

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Re: We have babies!!!

If mum's a lone rat, you could always keep one of the babies :wink:
As rats much prefer to be in pairs.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Re: We have babies!!!

Yeah, as soon as we heard the little ones squeaking, we decided that we just HAVE to keep one! So we're gonna keep a female to live with mommy!!! :D
 

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Re: We have babies!!!

Rattiegma said:
Thanks! We're planning on getting a R-680 from Martin's cages, but it'll be a few weeks.
Thats the cage I moved my Bron and her litter of 13 to after 1.5 weeks. Its a great cage for babies :D
 

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Re: We have babies!!!

Just make sure mom gets lots of protein. After my girl had her accidental litter I gave her cooked eggs and a bit of kitten chow along with her regular food. Also I gave her a bit of kitten formula every day....just for a little extra fat and protein.
Other than that Mom should have good instincts about how to handle her babies :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Re: We have babies!!!

Thanks for all your help and advice, guys! I'm soooo excited!!!!!! I feel like such a dork, because none of my pets have ever had babies, and it's so weird. I almost feel like I had babies! :p
 

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Discussion Starter #11
UPDATE on the babies!!!!!!!

Okay, so we got an official head count last night while mom got a few minutes of alone time...and there are...12 little itty bitty jelly bean lookin pups!!!!!!!!!!!!! They are so cute! I didn't want to mess with them too much, but all of them seemed to have really nice white milk bands across their tummies, and momma Roxie seems to be doing a really good job!

Pictures soon!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Re: We have babies!!!

UPDATE!!!! :


Okay, so we got an official head count last night while mom got a few minutes of alone time...and there are...12 little itty bitty jelly bean lookin pups!!!!!!!!!!!!! They are so cute! I didn't want to mess with them too much, but all of them seemed to have really nice white milk bands across their tummies, and momma Roxie seems to be doing a really good job!

Pictures soon!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
What do I do...

I know i need to stick to the same thread...but this isn't really about the babies or the mom per se....I just need to know when it would be ok to move momma and the 2 day old pups to their new cage?
 

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Re: We have babies!!!

I read over the thread & I'm not sure what cage you are speaking of... you said it would be a few weeks before you get the new Martin cage.

Right now it is best to not move them to any cage unless it is absolutely necessary. Disturbing a new Mother with a brand new litter could stress her out too much. Resist the urge to change out all the bedding as well. Just do some spot cleaning but don't do a complete change. Also when doing this, remove Mom before reaching in to do so because she may bite. This is the only time I have ever been bit by a rat. Moms are very protective.

I assume they are in the cage you have pictured above (red pan)... correct?

That cage will be fine for some time to come. If you do anything... remove the ramps & shelves so that Mom doesn't move the babies to an unsafe location & so that they don't injure themselves once they start moving around really good at 2 weeks.

If you are talking about the Martin cage... personally I would make sure you have it by the time they are 5 weeks old at the latest. That way you can move mom & the girls to it & keep the boys in your original cage until they go to their new homes. If you don't have the Martin cage by the time they are 5 weeks you will need something or have them placed becaue that is the time you need to remove the boys from the girls.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Re: We have babies!!!

Well, I actually ended up getting a really nice cage from Petco today, because it was on clearance it and its the perfect size for momma and one other female (one of the babies we're going to keep.) So we're not getting the Martin's cage after all...at least not anytime soon. Ok, I definitely won't move them then. Mom has been really, really sweet though. I was really worried about her getting aggressive, since we've only had her about a week, but when I reach my hand in there to give her pieces of egg, she just sniffs and licks!

yes, they're still in that cage. It's not very large, but it seems to be doing the job while the babies are still small. And as soon as she had the litter, we took the ramp and platform out and put her food bowl in the bottom, as well as the hammock so the babies will be safe. :)

So how long should I wait until it will be good to move mom and the babies into the larger cage? I have no need to rush it, I don't want her to stress, I'm just curious. We have homes lined up for quite a few of them so far, and I figure that if we still have some without homes at 5 weeks, Roxie and her babies will stay in the big cage and I'll move the boys to the smaller cage until we find them a good home.

Sorry this was so long! Thanks so much for all the advice! :D
 

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Re: We have babies!!!

they should be fine where they are for the first two weeks but once they are a week old you may be wanting to do a cage cleaning... that would be a good time to make a switch since you have a cage you prefer to use long term

set up the new cage... place some of the cleanest litter from the cage they are in now so that the smells are all there & simply scoop them up & move them over. Be sure to keep ramps & shelves out for a couple more weeks. Everyone may have a different opinion on this but from my experience, I'd say the babies are ready for shelves & such when they are between 3 & 4 weeks of age. They are walking good & far more coordinated by then.

I think it is cool that Mom has been ok with your reaching in & all but you better be careful because she might change her mind without any warning. I've handled a few litters over the years & I did suffer one nasty bite, that was all it took. I have gotten numerous warning shots that didn't break the skin but this prompted me to change my methods completely which will assure I will never be bitten again... I always remove Mom before handling babies or messing with anything in the cage including adding food or re-hanging a water bottle. I'll let her sit on my shoulder, visit with friends or get some free time running around but never will I put my hand in a cage again when nursing babies are involved.

Just a word of advice from someone who has felt rat teeth scrape against the bone... not a pleasant feeling & definitely one you will remember for life.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Re: We have babies!!!

yeah....I got a pretty painful hamster bite when I was about 12, and I never looked at that hamster the same way again! ahaha But thanks for the advice, I'll definitely heed that warning. The only thing that really sucks is that since we haven't had her that long, she seems like she wants to get out and play, but she's not used to being held by us. She lets us pet her in the cage, and she'll walk out on the cage door and into my hands, but she's just so jumpy and i'm afraid she'll get loose! :/
 

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Re: We have babies!!!

everything will work out fine

once she has weaned the babies she will be ready for playing with you, don't let these few weeks cause you to think you are missing out with anything
 
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