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Discussion Starter #1
My little girl who is only 3 months old when sitting still sometimes sways slowly from side to side, just her head that is.
Any ideas.
 

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Head tilting can be a sign of an inner ear infection. I would recommend a check up with the vet.
 

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MyGirls said:
My little girl who is only 3 months old when sitting still sometimes sways slowly from side to side, just her head that is.
Any ideas.
Is your girl pink or ruby-eyed? Those rats have terrible vision and do the swaying to focus on objects. I have some that sway from side to side (whole front of body swings...poor Kyrie has horrible vision and is a nervous girl)


from ratbehavior.org
Problems coordinating what the two eyes see: There are even further visual differences between albinos and normally pigmented animals, involving the eye-to-brain connection. In normal mammals, the left side of each eye is connected to the right hemisphere of the brain, and the right side of each eye is connected to the left hemisphere. Albinos have a much simpler connection: most of the left eye is connected to the right hemisphere, while most of the right eye is connected to the left hemisphere (Silver and Sapiro 1981). In addition, the deeper neural projections involved in vision are disorganized (Creel et al. 1990). The consequence is that albinos may have trouble coordinating and processing what their two eyes see.

Poor depth perception: The albino rat's poor visual acuity leads to poor visual depth perception. In the visual cliff experiment by Schiffmann et al. (1970) described in the previous section, rats were placed above a sheet of glass over a ledge and dropoff. Pigmented and albino rats with intact whiskers relied on their whiskers instead of their eyes and chose to walk on the glass over the dropoff as often as the glass over the ledge. When the whiskers were clipped, however, the rats were forced to rely on visual cues. Pigmented rats with clipped whiskers chose the glass over the ledge. Most whiskerless albino rats also chose the glass over the ledge, but a large percentage of them (20%-33%) made no choice at all but stood stock still. This failure to choose indicates that albino rats do not use visual information to perceive depth as readily as pigmented rats do. Albinos appear to be more impaired by whisker removal than pigmented rats, probably because their fallback sensory system -- vision -- is so poor.

Pet owners often note that albino rats bob their heads and sway frequently. This bobbing and swaying may be the albino's attempt to increase its perception of depth using its greatly impaired vision.

Poor motion perception: Albino rats have greatly impaired motion perception. They are not motion blind, but they have poor motion perception when compared to pigmented rats. Albino rats require about twice to three times the coherence level to distinguish coherent motion patterns from dynamic noise.
 

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If she's just swaying she's probably fine, Baileys (the one in my avatar) does that, since his eyes are ruby. If her head's actually tilted, it's time for a vet checkup. :)
 

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Vixie said:
Even black-eyes rats do it, Acid does it.

It's just them trying to get a decent picture of things.
I have never heard of a black-eyed rat doing the sway for focus. What colour is Acid? Could he/she be a dark ruby-eyed?
 

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yeah, i've had black eyed ones do it too, though not really that often. maybe they were just trying to be cute and get extra treats. but i know for sure they were black-eyed rats, the ones that did it all had black coats. in fact i think all of them were mismarked black berks come to think of it. i wonder if that means anything about the rat or just that i have had a lot of black mismarked berks...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
That would explain why she is not so forth coming in jumping onto things. Milly who is dark eyed is a fruit cake where as Izzie is very reserved and is happy to sit around or very relaxed.

Thank you!
 

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lilspaz68 said:
Vixie said:
Even black-eyes rats do it, Acid does it.

It's just them trying to get a decent picture of things.
I have never heard of a black-eyed rat doing the sway for focus. What colour is Acid? Could he/she be a dark ruby-eyed?
No, Acid is a black berk with black eyes. Not as much as a red-eyed rat would, but she still sways.
 

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Wow! I didn't know swaying was so common. We must've gotten lucky with our PEW, as she hasn't swayed, yet.
 

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Yep, my pink & ruby eyed rats sway *constantly* if they're hanging out outside the cage.

I haven't witnessed it with the black-eyed rats, though, or at least haven't specifically seen it and remembered!
 

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I have a ruby eyed boy that does it and a black eyed girl that does it all the time. I also have an odd eyed boy that sways only when his ruby eye is facing me it is hilarious LoL
 

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Generally the white and red eyed rats sway from time to time. Though I've never understood why, I've always known the red eyed rats to do the weird swaying motion.
 

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MagicalLobster said:
Generally the white and red eyed rats sway from time to time. Though I've never understood why, I've always known the red eyed rats to do the weird swaying motion.
My post covers all the reasons up above.
 

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I have a pink eyed rat who sways whenever im near or looking at her. I didnt know it was to focus though, I thought it was she was completley blind and was trying to hear where i was better! Im glad other people have noticed that! I took her to the vets and they said oh shes fine but it still worried me a bit!
 
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