Last Night's Chasing and Searching - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-14-2004, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
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Last Night's Chasing and Searching

Hello all..

Here I come with a little story for you...

Last night, at about 3:00 AM I was finishing watching a movie when Odie, my dog, starts running from one side of the room to the other. I pay him no attention, cause he's nuts... Well.. Suddenly he sticks his nose between 2 sets of plastic shelves I have in my room and I hear a squeak. I immediately told Odie off and he did, reviealing a tiny brown (agouti) mouse-like creature that ran under one of the shelves. I thought that my little Cheddar had escaped from her cage. I quick look at Cheddar's cage indicated me that Cheddar was standing on top of her house. Quickly I thought "the baby gerbil" and looked in the direction of their cages. The baby gerbil was there sleeping in her cage with her sister. I take a quick look at the rest of the cages and everybody was in their place.. I thought "darn, a wild mouse".

There is a pipe that crosses my room from side to side and since it goes outside, the door is about 1.5" above the ground, so it can open and close with the pipe under it. I put a piece of wood to cover it, but still there it a 1"x1.5" square that is uncovered, so i know that mice couold get in throught it and I wasn't surprised to find one. I could see it's little tail sticking out from under the shelf. I immediately moved to try and catch it. I tied Odie to a door so he could stay out of the way. Then, I looked for a small travel cage and a glove I have. I found the cage the cage but I couldn't find my glove. I decided to try and catch it without the glove. Quietly I placed the cage right behing the tail, and then went on the other side with a piece of paper and started moving the piece of paper under the shelf to scare it.

I knew it couldn't be so easy that it would go inside the cage.. but I had to try it.. I had no other idea. Of course.. it didn't went into the cage... it WALKED past it and WALKED across my room. It was the funniest chase ever. The little critter walking and I walking behind it, keeping it at reach but without any idea of how to grab it, since I had no glove. It walked right in front of Odie and went under my drawers.

Now it was a bit thougher. There is no space between the drawer and the floor so I couldn't see it. I start moving quickly around my room looking for and idea, and glancing back at the drawer in case the little critter got out. No.. he didn't came out... Finally I found my glove and I go back to watch the drawer.. still looking for ideas... all of this at 3:00 am. I shaked the drawer a bit.. nothing... I made noise... nothing.. I set Odie loose and he goes behind the drawer sniffing and scratching it... nothing... Then it occurs to me to take off the lower drawer. This thing is supposed to hold the drawer so the don't fall off if you pull them all the way... but last night it magically came off. My mom broke one of them pulling it out... but it was the top one, not the bottom one... Anyway... the thing is that it came off... and there was the floor!!! And on a corner.. the little brown fuzz-ball... Again another funny moment. What do I do? How do I catch it? It was there, standing still with it's back to me.. and I was there, standing still looking at it, with my glove on... and I had no idea what to do. Then.. another one of those crazy ideas that would never work... I take a plastic cup (those disposable ones) and and put it quietly behind the critter. Then, with my gloved hand I reach to the back of the drawer and put my hand in front of the critter. As soon as my gloved hand touched it's nose, he jumped back and fell inside the cup.

I quickly raised the cup and put my gloved hand over it. I ran to the cage I had taken out and drop the critter in it and closed it! YES!! I traped it!!!! *doing a little dance* I looked closer now that he's safe inside the cage and... OMG!!! It's not a mouse!!! IT'S A BABY RAT!!!!

It's so tiny and fuzzy. It still has one of it's eyes half closed. I went out and looked for a mom rat or a nest.. anything.. but I found nothing. Now I don't know what to do with it. I've been wanting a rat for some time... but anyone finds out of a rat in my room and they kill it. I thought of realeasing it, but it's so young that I don't know if it will survive.. so I would have to way a bit for it to get stronger. I don't know if it has any dangerous parasites for me or my critters (I have a dog, 8 gerbils plus litters, 1 mouse and 4 hamsters living in my room with me)

I gave her food and water and I've seen her eating and drinking. I have a few questions for you:

1. What do you think I should do?
2. What dangerouse sicknesses could it carry?
3. Could it carry Leptospirosis or Rabies?
4. I know wild rats don't get as tame as fancy rats, but, is there a chance that this one get's tame since it's so small? It doesn't seems to mind me getting near the cage, but does jump around like a jumping bean when I drop her food. I managed to get the water bowl in (moving slowly and quietly) without her jumping around.

Thanks for reading my story and any help you can give me. Here are a few pictures of the little critter:










Dimaris

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-14-2004, 08:42 PM
Tarzan Mama of Two
 
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omg! what a story!! I know it could carry potential diseases so definently keep it away from your other pets and protect yourself but I don't really have that much great advice to give you.
I had a rat chase one night too....only with the biggest rat I have ever seen in my whole entire life!!!!! It was huge and I caught it running across the computer room floor....where my mice live. I knew it wanted them for food so I had to get it out of my house. I had no where to safely put the mice....it had already sniffed them out so I knew it would keep looking for them. It was behind a huge cupboard that we couldn't move so I sat on the floor with a torch shining in it's eyes for an hour until Alex came home to help me. After another hour and a half of us trying to get it out from behind the cupboard (long and complicated story) we finally caught it in a bucket. I had been on the phone to the police (I was wanting someone from wildlife to come and help me and you used to have to ring the fire brigade but you now have to ring the police) and I rang to let them know that we caught it. The policeman told me to kill it which neither of us could do so alex took it down to the bush and set it free. Two days later it was back in my house hunting for the mice again. We set traps and killed it that way. Sad I know but it was after my mice and it wasn't a baby.....I have never seen a rat so big in my life!

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-14-2004, 09:11 PM Thread Starter
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I have thought of a place to release it that is pretty far from my home. It's in my college campus, in a far part near a farm, that's also part of the campus. There an area that there are no buildings, and has a lot of plants and grass and stuff.. I was thinking of releasing it there... Leave her a bit of food for a couple of days...

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-14-2004, 09:38 PM
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I would defenitely say that is a sad looking kangaroo rat, it doesn't look good at all and sad that you now introduced it near the others, but hey their just pets you'll replace them im sure, let wild things go and do let them mingle in things for poss contamination. The nearby ranchers can easily lay out poisons for it but it doesn't look healthy.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-14-2004, 09:45 PM Thread Starter
Stinky Liverbrain
 
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What? What does that mean? It's in my room.. but my room is big, and it's not near my other pets... There are no kangaroo rats in PR.. just plain old rats... and I was just pondering at the options.. I feel bad to let it die outside seeing that it's just a baby.. and I just plain don't understand part of your post... My first language isn't english.. so go on easy non-metaphorical english for me. Thanks. 8)

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-14-2004, 09:56 PM
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Awww...its cute...but, there is a chance it could carry something potentially harmful. Its our first instinct as animal lovers to want to help these critters. Is it eating solid food? If so, its probably not too young that it can't survive under normal circumstances in the wild. I know you want to help it, and you have, but sometimes it's best to let wild animals be that...wild. I agree that you should probably release it. At least you didn't set traps and kill it like most people would have. I'm glad there are people out there who have some compassion for little critters, even though I know that rats and such can be pests. Let us know what you decide.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-15-2004, 02:48 AM
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Could you ring a wildlife organisation maybe? Ask them of a safe place to release it? If it is eating on it's own and is eating solid food then releasing it may be the way to go.

Diggy that message was kinda harsh. I'm not quite sure what you were trying to say there but it sounds as though you were knocking padfoot as a pet owner which I personally think is totally unfair in this case. Not everyone is experienced with what to do in these situations and she is doing the best she can, meanwhile asking for advice from more experienced people. Not that long ago you had a vent about people not replying to your posts...I don't think you'll get too far with posts like that. I don't want to clog up padfoots post about this but I wanted to stick up for padfoot on this one.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-15-2004, 04:10 AM
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I agree with you 100% on your post Carmen.

Asking for advice does not mean knocking the person down. Padfoot is doing the best she can. She knows the risks. She said to me that the rat isn't near any of her pets last night. She was trying to figure out what was best for the rat. She didn't want to let it loose just anywhere for fear of being harmed.

Carmen, I too suggested a wildlife rehabilition center. I'm not too sure what is all available in Puerto Rico, but it's always worth a try!!


Karen

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-15-2004, 05:06 AM
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Great minds think alike karen!!!!

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-15-2004, 06:07 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Carmen and Karen for sticking up for me. I sent this message to a couple of forums to see what they said to me. I also sent the message to the SPCA-PR group and nobody answered. I feel I was kinda ignored cause I the SPCA president posted a message, so I know she checked her e-mail and she didn't answer my post (she usually answers stuff like animal abuse complains pretty fast). I think I'll release it later today. I have class in the morning, so I have to go now, but when I come back from class at miday I'll go to the place I thought and release it. I'll tell you later about it. Thank you all for your replies. They are much appreciated. 8)

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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-15-2004, 11:45 AM Thread Starter
Stinky Liverbrain
 
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Hello all!

Just to inform you.. I released the rat today. The night I caught her she looked weak but last night and today morning she was jumping around trying to get out. Plenty of food and water got her better. I think she didn't see very well, cause if I got near the cage silently she was calmed, but if I made a noise or if Odie barked she started jumping desesperate. Maybe that was the reason why she was weak, couldn't found too much food? Either way, there's a part in my college where there are no buildings and there is plenty of grass and plants to hide, so I released her there. I left her food for a few days (dog kibble, mouse and rat lab blocks, hamster and gerbil seeds and a piece of carrot) where I released her. I hope she makes it. 8)

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-15-2004, 12:06 PM
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i really hope she makes it to. baby rats are so adorable, i know. but i am sure you did the right thing. you wouldnt want to get you or your pets sick. i bet it was a hard choice for you to make, i know it would be for me.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-15-2004, 04:20 PM
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I agree with Karen and Carmen. Trying to help the rat was very compassionate of you, and I'm sure most of us here would have done the exact same thing! I'm so glad that she is a little stronger now and you were able to give her a second chance.


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Rats have rights...& mice too!
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-21-2004, 04:01 PM
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I think maybe you could find a vet that you could give it to. Then they could examine it and if it was sick put it to sleep or something. If it was healthy then they could find it a home.
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animal abuse, animal lover, animal lovers, baby rats, fancy rats, lab block, lab blocks, pet owner, water bowl, wild animal, wild animals


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