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Old April 7th, 2011, 10:39 PM
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kathryn kathryn is offline
chronically insane.
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: South Jersey!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dracen View Post

I've read that rats need to be out of their cage for an hour per day. Well, before I did that, I'd have to rat-proof my room, but I'm worried they'd chew on the books that are currently being used to ferret-proof the room (don't worry - the ferrets and rats would never be out at the same time!). I was wondering - would letting them out in a plastic ball be fine? If so, what size ball?
No, rats do not appreciate being in a plastic ball at all. It is very awkward for them due to their long and not very flexible tails. There are a few here and there that will do okay with it, but the majority of rats just hate it. Rats are meant to be held and played with. There is hardly any reason to "rat proof" because if you are properly supervising them you shouldn't be worrying about them going anywhere to chew anything up. They will like to hide in your shirt/hair/blankets etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dracen View Post
The page also said that a clean rock or brick is good for rats to wear their claws down on. Something like this would be ideal for me - my mom doesn't like rats and would not hold one to help me clip its nails like she does with my ferrets. Would a rock on its own be enough for rats to clean their nails on?
I've never heard this before and it sounds pretty unnecessary. Rat nails really don't get very long and a brick isn't going to do much at all. I don't really know of anyone who clips their nails. I always clip all my pets nails because I'm weird.. with a rat you can just use tiny little nail clippers and snip the points off. You should be able to do this yourself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dracen View Post
Would a rat bite, especially a young one? My ferrets are still biting, but they're young as well. I imagine there would be some biting in the first couple of days as they adjust, but how long can I expect this to last? Can rats be litter-trained, or no? Thanks! =)
Depends on the rat. I've never been bitten by a rat or mouse, but have been attacked by PLENTY of hamsters. (Hamsters are snake food to me ) I would suggest if possible to check out www.petfinder.com and see about possibly adopting a rat offline because they are often more socialized compared to some random pet store. I work at a pet store and we have feeder rats (for snakes etc) and they generally aren't socialized, but occasionally people will purchase them for pets. Even the unsocialized feeder ones don't really bite, they just don't like to be handled. I've never been bothered by them... I have to feed and water them and clean their cages every so often when I am in the back and I'm more afraid to stick my hand in a tank with a tiny hamster vs. a dozen rats.

Usually rats are "nippy" at most. They don't really bite...

Oh, and you can find some really unusual rats too! I love 'em! They come in all shapes and colors. They have hairless, dumbo, rex etc. All kinds of neato breeds. I wish I could have rats again, but I am so allergic And my cats will probably freak out.
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