Having ratties and rattlets is CERTAINLY NEVER DULL!!!
I have a 4 month old rat who recently bit me. I don't know who was scared more? I need some advice on how to work through this and keep my rat at the same time. Here is the background story to get you up to speed...
I had a 2-month-old rat who gave birth to 7 babies. When I got Faith (the mother) I also got her a cagemate that was in the same tank with her at the petstore. Hope seems to be a bit older maybe 4 months old? Anyway, Hope was always more skittish and tended to nip or squeal when frightened or picked up and struggled to get away.
Also I only had both rats for 2 weeks total when Faith had her babies so I was JUST starting to socialize both my rats!
When Faith had her unexpected litter I moved Hope to a tank for 3 weeks. Always making sure to let Faith visit Hope to play and interact with each other since they are so close and both seemed depressed away from each other. I think Hope might be Faith's mom.
So when I finally put Hope back in the cage with Faith and the babies she was FANTASTIC with them. Faith was happier, Hope was happier, I was happier and the babies had a new play pal.
The first day Hope was put in the cage I was feeding Hope a pea when it rolled way, I went to move it closer to her when Hope tore across the cage and bit me. It scared the crap out of me but the bite wasn't too severe. However, I did become scared of Hope and tried to avoid her as much as possible. Still giving her attention from a distance.
After a week I got a serious Strep infection from the bite and developed a dangerous case of lymphangitis which almost turned into blood poisoning. So after spending time in the hospital and still recovering I am now REALLY scared of Hope!
I can't even get her to come out of the cage to clean it! I won't pick her up and I have to wait for her to go to another level to get a watter bottle or a food dish. Unfortunately I had to clean the cage around Hope and the noise and shaking only made her more frightened of me and in general.
Does anyone have some suggestions on how both of us can work this out? I really don't want to get rid of Hope since Faith is so attached to her and I think she could be a good rat with time, but right now all my attention is on raising the babies.
Here's my rattie brood: http://youtube.com/user/etrnluv
They just celebrated their 1 month birthday today!!! YAY