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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have two ladies, Gidget and Daphne, that live with each other and have since about late September 2014. Both were young when introduced and have gotten along smashingly up until the past month or so. The short story is that Daphne (a month or so younger, very active but more shy/timid outside the cage, spends most of her time on her wheel) is leaving Gidget (older, more dominant, not as active but far more adventurous and ballsy outside the cage, never steps foot on the wheel) with horrible bloody scabs and gashes. My first reaction when I saw the damage was to separate them. All I had was a decent sized travel cage (not big enough for permanent living) so for about a week I had them take turns 24 hours in each cage and took them out separately. Hoping they missed each other (they did still cuddle and groom each other) I tried putting them back together and it went well for about 2 days before the antics reappeared. But this time I witnessed what was happening.

The fights are initiated by Gidget showing dominance, usually when Daphne is on the wheel or amusing herself in some way. She'll tackle, pin, wrestle, etc. which I'm aware is all normal. But Daphne seems to not want or appreciate the play dominance and fights back hard leaving Gidget scabbed and bloody. I take them out daily to explore the couch, the bathroom, the countertops, etc. and I really want them to be able to get along... would adding a 3rd rat help their hierarchy not be so one on one? Would that just cause more trouble? I have a young (roughly 5-6 week old) hairless rat who I'm fostering/nursing back to health but she is near and could end up entirely blind and while I'd like to give her a permanent home with my girls, I don't want to place her into a feud totally handicapped... What can I do???
 

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If there is blood and injuries I would keep them separated. You should probably look into getting a second cage.

I'd probably also have a vet check them. This being sudden it is likely to be health related. I know when one of my girls had a tumor, when she got worse her long time cage mate began picking fights with her.

Adding a third rat might help, but I am don't think if adding a rat that isn't fully healthy/blind would be a good idea when one of the rats is being so pushy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
If there is blood and injuries I would keep them separated. You should probably look into getting a second cage.

I'd probably also have a vet check them. This being sudden it is likely to be health related. I know when one of my girls had a tumor, when she got worse her long time cage mate began picking fights with her.

Adding a third rat might help, but I am don't think if adding a rat that isn't fully healthy/blind would be a good idea when one of the rats is being so pushy.

I never even thought of the fact that it could be health related. I've been on the hunt for another cage for about a week now hoping I could find a suitable one for under $50 but tomorrow I will be making a purchase for sure whether its in my price range or not. I hope it isn't a tumor but I'll look into it :( Thank you for your response!!
 
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