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Soon-To-Be Rat Parent!

Love4Piggers

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Hi All,

Just wanted to share in my excitement, that I will soon be the proud parent of a pair of rats! The rats and all their initial toys and supplies is my parents' gift to me for my 25th birthday. I searched for rescues in my area, and found a woman that runs a rescue in her home, about 50 miles from where I live. She took in a couple of pregnant females a few months ago, and she is now trying to find good homes for the youngin's. We have been exchanging e-mails for a while now and she has gotten to know me, and has approved me for adoption! We are planning to meet eachother halfway, sometime hopefully soon. Tomorrow I should have all the supplies and toys, and I can prepare their new home, which I hope they will love!! It is a 3 level cage with a full 2nd level. I have never owned rats before, so I have been doing my research beforehand, so I don't make the novice mistakes that I made when I first got my piggers. I want to do things right from the beginning this time. Today I found out that one of the rats I will be adopting is a male albino; the lady says that he is soo sweet, and every time the cage is opened, he jumps into her hands wanting to be petted and cuddled. She has been waiting for the perfect loving home for him, and I am honored that she is letting me adopt him!! The other I am hoping will be one of her two male dumbo's, I think they are so cute, I love their ears! I'm sure I will be doing a photo shoot once I bring them home. :D

Any way, I'm just bursting with excitement. I have wanted rats for several years now, so I just had to share my happiness with you guys!! :tearsofjo

ETA: Oh, and if any current rat parents here have any wisdom/advice to share with me before I bring these guys home, it will be much appreciated.
 

Love4Piggers

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Well I talked to the lady on the phone early this morning, and we met up this afternoon, and I have my babies!! And okay, okay, I ended up with 3 ratties instead of 2. :cheerful: Three males... one albino, one gray dumbo, and one hooded dumbo. And, seeing as how I'm a Lord of the Rings freak, their names are now official; Frodo, Gandalf, and Shadowfax. I know, I'm a dork, but I don't care. :p

Here is a picture of their cage, which I set up with all the goodies earlier today before we met up:

rattiecageone11-28-07.jpg


I sure hope they will be happy in it.

I will put of pics of my new ratties in a minute in a follow-up post.
 

Love4Piggers

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Okay, well the biggest ham for the camera by far has been Shadowfax, the albino. The other two are sleeping and hiding and being shy so far, so haven't gotten many good photos of them yet, but any way, here goes!

Shadowfax:
(If you look close you can see Gandalf in there with him)
shadowfax1.jpg


Gandalf:
gandalf3.jpg


Frodo:
(The only halfway decent pic I've been able to get of Frodo so far, because he's been hiding away in a hidey house most of the time. He's the hooded one in front.)
frodofirstday.jpg


So there's my new babies! I can't wait until they're nice and spoiled!! :D
 

Mommy Of One

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Just a question?
Are they aloud to be on wire? Maybe put cardboard over the wire so they don't hurt their itty bitty feet? Absoloutely adorable! Did you choose those names too?
 

Love4Piggers

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Yep, I chose the names!!

During my research, I read that rats were allowed on wire... And the rescue lady had her rats on wire and thinks it's fine, too. If I have been mis-informed, please someone correct me, and I will change it immediately!! I don't want to make any mistakes this time around.
 

Love4Piggers

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You know what, I think I'm going to change it now anyway rather than wait for a reply. Even though the rescue used wire, and I read that it was okay, I still wondered. I'd hate for an injury to happen to my new babies over something so simple to fix. Going to do that now.
 

Love4Piggers

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Okay, problem solved!! I just happened to get a package in the mail that was long and flat, and perfect for putting in their cage. So I put in on both the 2nd and 3rd level, and put Aspen in it. I had doubted what I was told about that, and was thinking of fixing it anyway. So thanks for mentioning it. :D
 

Meeko

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They're so cute! I love dumbos too. And pretty colors.
 

Mommy Of One

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Yeah, just think of how much more comfy they will be. Sleeping on wire isn't my idea of comfortable. ;)
 

Love4Piggers

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Here's what I did:
rattiesfixedcage.jpg


I hope that it's okay to leave the ramps open...? They are made of very tiny squares, and they need the little squares to climb from level to level. Yes, they will be a lot more comfy this way. I should've done what I personally felt they would like the best in the first place, rather than following others' advice. I probably would've changed it any way, as I was already thinking that the levels being wire wasn't very nice for them. :( But luckily they had only been home with me for a couple of hours before I fixed it.

Last night Frodo and Gandalf were basically hiding out a lot, being in a strange new place and all, which is what I expected the first night. But Shadowfax was super-friendly and exploring right off the bat! He explored every house and toy multiple times and was even climbing the walls, LOL. Also, when I open the cage he just comes right out and lets me hold him right away. He's a sweetie, I can tell. :heart:

I got up to go to the bathroom around 5 a.m., and checked on the ratties. They were all up and out of their hidey's. So I got my treats, and all 3 took the treats from my hand, yay!! They even wanted more. :cheerful: I can't wait until they have all warmed up to me and I can start having a lot of fun with them!! I've been reading about little games you can play with them and such, it will be a lot of fun. I'm going to love these little guys to pieces. :love:
 

Aertyn

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For a ramp, if your wanting to avoid using the wire ones you can get pieces of wood the same size as the ramp and use a non-toxic glue to stick paddle pop sticks to the ramp for traction.
 

Love4Piggers

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Hey that's a great idea Aertyn, thanks for the tip!
 

Aertyn

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Also, if you are afraid of bacteria buildup on the wood you could get some linoleum (make sure it has a textured backing) and glue it upside down to the wood. Most Lino's do have ripples (to help it stick to the floor) but a lot of the poorer quality Lino's don't.

Or you could try rubber matting, like what is used in baths and showers to prevent slipping.
 

Love4Piggers

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Oh, rubber matting, hmm, that might be the best solution for me. It would work well, and is simple to cut to size. Plus I can buy it at Wal-Mart, LOL. I just might do that, thanks again!

Well, I did get some decent photos of Frodo and Gandalf's cute little faces this morning, and of course I must share! Gandalf is gray all over, with a white undercoat and a soft white belly. It's quite beautiful really. Well, here you go:

Gandalf
gandalfnextday2.jpg


Frodo
frodonextday1.jpg


And I managed to get all three ratties together in this pic:
rattiesallthree.jpg


In that last pic, you might notice the food pellets in the corner. What they did is quite funny actually. I had a bowl on the bottom level, that was full of pellets when I went to bed last night. This morning I woke up, and there was only a couple pellets left. I thought surely they didn't eat all of that! So I looked up in the very top corner of the cage, and they had hoarded it all up there! I wonder if they carried them up one at a time. If so, I guess I know what they spent their night doing! lol These guys are going to be great fun, hehe.
 

Percy's Mom

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Your boys are adorable and already looking very spoiled!
 

Love4Piggers

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Thanks PM, I wanted them to have their cage full of fun things to do and be spoiled as quickly as possible, cuz that's how I like 'em, LOL.

Well, the ratties and I had our first floor time today. I set up boxes, tunnels, crumpled up paper, and a box with wadded and ripped paper mixed with treats, so they could go digging! They loved it, and my 11 year old sister took a break from school after she finished her math, (she's home-schooled,) and came and sat with me where the rats were playing. She loved holding them and was laughing when they crawled around on her, it was cute. We all had a great time, and I hope that it helped the rattie boys get a little more comfortable with me. During their playtime, I got a great photo of Frodo finally, and a few other cute pics as well. Okay last pics for a while, really. *cough* First pic is Frodo.

frodostandingtall.jpg


shadowfaxsniffingmyhands.jpg


Digging for treats!
shadowfaxdigsfortreats.jpg


gandalinpaper2.jpg


gandalfinpaper.jpg
 

Love4Piggers

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Just a quick update Aertyn; I realized I already had a bath mat here at home that I don't use, so I measured it out and cut two strips to match the ramps, and attached them. My rattie babies are much more comfy now, I'm sure. :) Thanks for the great idea!
 

wickedrodent

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Another good thing to add is fleece. They will probably chew it up but they sure like it! A lot of different people from the Rats Rule forum use it (I am also using it in my cage, but will have to see how my babies react once they get here Sunday). I have it on the bottom, levels and ramps.. I just sewed ties onto top pieces and tied onto the metal.

Im in love with Frodo (love all the names!), he is too precious! What are the dimentions of the cage?

Also, another good thing to add are those hamster/guinea pig balls (the ones they shouldn't have); tied up in the cage they make really good little houses. I have a left over one from my hamster (cleaned and sanatized) that my boys will be able to use until they get a few months old. Its a cheap and easy house if you already have one. If not, dollar stores are the greatest place to find things for the cage. Little mini stacking bins are great - from the dollar tree.

I would LOVE to see more pics! Its helping my rattie-craze. Has anyone else noticed more and more people have been adopting ratties lately? I,for one, will be guilty as well. They are just so darn cute!


EDIT: WOOT, this is my 1,000th post! (Sorry for thread-napping; Ill stop editing now. lol)

EDIT 2: Ok, lied.. I just saw you are in Dallas.. If you are interested there are 2 hairless babies (4 weeks and the last cagemates of the 2 I am adopting) that still need homes if you are interested. The lady is actually heading to Dallas soon I believe.
 
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babybunny

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Aw your ratties are so adorable. Makes me want some too. Happy Birthday! Glad you got a neat present!
 

Love4Piggers

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NP about hi-jacking the post, wicked. ;) Woohooo, 1,000!! Wow, maybe I'll get there someday... Anyway, congrats, that's awesome!

About the cage, I ended up talking my Mother into a larger one than we had originally planned on. :mischievo We intended on only 2 rats, but I'm glad she was persuaded into the larger cage since I ended up with 3! (And I have now covered up all the wire, so they won't be walking on it anywhere anymore.) The dimensions are 31" L X 17.5" W X 28.5" H. According to Ratty Corner's cage calculator, those dimensions can house up to 4 rats, so I think I'm doing alright. Maybe a bigger one someday, but I think I'm off to as good of a start as I can be right now! As for toys, hanging a hamster ball is a great idea. I used to have gerbils and had one for them, but I think I got rid of it. We gave away a lot of things when we moved last year. As far as toys they currently have... a hanging cozy hammock and a hanging play tunnel, fiddle sticks, a chube, a wooden house, an igloo, and a hanging rope bird toy which they like to climb and chew on. So I sure hope that is enough to keep them happy!! And there will be floor/play time, and as I study more of the posts on Rats Rule, I will try more of the games and things that people talk about, oh I'm going to have so much fun with these guys. I want to try pea fishing, that looks like fun. :silly: Thanks for telling me they like fleece, because I happen to have some left over from when I cut the guinea pigs' fleece to size, and I wasn't sure what to do with it. I assumed fleece wouldn't work out well with rats because they'd just destroy it. But I might as well put the leftover fleece I have in there and let 'em go nuts, LOL. Please let me know how it works out when you get your ratties. If it goes well I just might try buying some more for them! How exciting that you're getting some rattie babies, too!!! I want lots of pics of yours as well! How many are you adopting? Oh you're going to love these guys. I've only had them for 1 1/2 days and I'm already in love! I find myself wanting to be with them all day today. So glad you like Frodo. He is the most shy so far out of the 3. But with a lot of love and of course treats, I think he will warm up to me. :heart:

Glad someone is enjoying the pics besides me, hehe. I have to say, I can see why more people are adopting rats. They are sweet and smart, and also funny and entertaining. Great pets, but just like gp's, must be nice and spoiled of course!

I sure wish I could take in those 2 hairless rats that need a home, but I think given the space I have, I'm at my capacity. (For now anyway. MUWAHAHA.)

Well anyway, it's been too long since I've checked on my new babies, I must take 5 (or maybe 10 or 15) and see what they are doing!
 
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