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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-27-2008, 03:52 PM Thread Starter
 
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Question Question...

I didn't get a rat yet, but I am hoping to get one! My mom is allergic to fur, would rat fur affect her? Should I get one or two rats? I kinda only want one. What kind of cage should I get? Which are better, males or females? I have all these questios running through my head!!!
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-27-2008, 03:54 PM Thread Starter
 
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Anyone?
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-27-2008, 04:05 PM Thread Starter
 
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aw, comon! I need help!
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-27-2008, 04:06 PM
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A rat's dander might very well affect your mom, depending on how sensitive she is. She might be ok living with them if she doesn't actually touch them. Or it might bother her just to be in the same room. In any case, make sure you clear it with her before you bring any rats home.

You should definitely get two rats. Rats are very social and it's important that they have friends to live with. Unless you can be with your rat 24 hours a day, he/she needs at least one other rat to live with. Their cage should be as big as you can afford/fit in your home. Rats need lots of space. They should be able to stand straight up on their hind legs on at least one of the levels of the cage.

As for gender, that comes down to personal preference. Males tend to be larger and lazier, more likely to just sit with you calmly. They often have a musky smell which not everyone enjoys. Females are smaller and more active. They like to run around and play. So it depends on what kind of behavior you want in a pet.

As a general note, never use pine or cedar bedding for rats. They are harmful to rats' respiratory systems. You can use aspen wood, or many types of recycled paper bedding like Carefresh or Yesterday's News. There is a lot to learn about rats, it's great that you are doing your research!

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Six new rats
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-27-2008, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thank you!
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 12:29 AM
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mtmaughan said it all, but I wondering if you ever thought about getting a couple of hairless rats? Hairless rats are just the same as ordinary, they just have no fur and it would be easier to live with if your mum is allergic to fur. you'd probably only find one from a breeder though so you'll have to search


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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 04:37 AM
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the trick with allergies, is that people are rarely allergic to the fur. its the actual dander, saliva, skin that causes the allergies. maybe take your mom to a pet store or friends house that has rats. hang out there, handle them for half an hour and see what happens. two rats are better than one but if she's allergic i'd hate to see you have to rehome them. I have bad allergies too, and I find experimenting before buying is the safest way of doing things. that way if you are allergic you're not stuck with the allergen in your home.

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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mulder View Post
the trick with allergies, is that people are rarely allergic to the fur. its the actual dander, saliva, skin that causes the allergies. maybe take your mom to a pet store or friends house that has rats. hang out there, handle them for half an hour and see what happens. two rats are better than one but if she's allergic i'd hate to see you have to rehome them. I have bad allergies too, and I find experimenting before buying is the safest way of doing things. that way if you are allergic you're not stuck with the allergen in your home.
Yes this is true, most fur alergies arn't actually HAIR allargies it is the saliva. When the animal cleans itself with saliva this saliva evaporates into the air. Some people are alergic to this.. =] wow i feel brainy =]

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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-29-2008, 03:27 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thank you everybody!
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-29-2008, 11:59 PM
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Also, my mom is actually allergic to the urine, so I don't know if that would be a problem for yours. As for the cage size, google rat cage calculator. It'll tell you if I cage you are considering is large enough for two adult rats. It's also important that they are of the same gender or I'm afraid you'll have a big mess on your hands. One more thing.... patience, grasshopper. Not everyone sits on Paw Talk all day waiting for responses like you and I.

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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-30-2008, 03:32 PM
 
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Hi bigstrawberrysw! Hi guys!

If your mother is willing, you can test her degree of allergy by exposing her to your pets and their paraphernalia. I am generally not allergic to pets, but I do get asthmatic attacks (rarely – once in 1 or 2 years). Dust from wood shavings and pellet leftovers triggers coughing. On such occasions, I wear wet masks and turn the electric fan or airconditioner off when handling pets or changing/cleaning their cage. The rodents per se do not trigger coughing. I do minimize handling them though and observe them only once a day (instead of as often as possible).

In case your mother agrees to the test, you should be ready with antihistamines (anti-allergy drugs) like chlorphenamine and diphenhydramine which are available over-the-counter (at least here in the Philippines) or steroids if she reacts more severely than is hoped. I hope your mother never gets allergic enough as to warrant an emergency room visit.

Having pets in a home where asthmatics or allergic people dwell is a public health concern we (pet lovers) deal with, with caution. Best of luck.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 05-31-2008, 06:25 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thank you everyone! My mom is also allergic to bunnies ans cats. I don't know if it will just be the saliva there...
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-01-2008, 05:31 PM
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Your mom very well may be allergic to rats then! Take her somewhere with pet rats and let her interact with them and see what happens.

My sister is allergic to my rats,but ONLY if she handles them.She can be in the same room as rats with no problems,it is only if she handles/touches the rats that she breaks out.




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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-01-2008, 10:44 PM
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Hairless is good, but they are usually prone to more health problems. But sometimes as said above, people are allergic to when they are being handled. I say bring to a pet store and see how she reacts to them.

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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 06-02-2008, 05:55 PM Thread Starter
 
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okay!
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