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· Registered
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello :) I recently became a rat owner for the first time and I am in luv with Luigi, but I've got a couple of concerns:

Do you have to have pairs? What are the advantages to having two?

I handle Luigi daily, but he seems real cage protective and bit me last night when I was changing his water - He's not aggressive when I handle him- what am I doing wrong?

He seems real healthy and seems to enjoy the proper veggies and rat foods. :) If anyone has any input, I would appreciate it

Thanks! :D

19,823 Posts
Hi and welcome.

First,yes. Rats thrive in pairs. They do much better with a rat friend then alone. Of course there are exceptions (but this is rare). The advantages of having a pair are: when you are not around,they have someone to play with. Plus rats are highly social and need someone to groom/groom them,cuddle with,play with and just for company.

Here is a cute video I love.

Why it is important to have two or more.

· Official Loofah Tester
1,386 Posts

And welcome to the world of being owned by a rat.

It sounds like you've got some issues developing with your little guy though. They can still be worked through, but you don't want to rush through things or make changes without a little education first.

Your sweetheart has become cage aggressive. It will require patience and careful work to help him overcome this. Also, yes, he does need a rat friend in order to be happy and well balanced, but you will want to learn how to do proper introductions and before you get a new rat. Males can be very territorial depending on their age and temperament, and you won't be able to buy a new rat and just put him in Louigi's cage safely. Since it sounds like Louigi already has a potential temperament or fear issue, you'll want to proceed that much more patiently and carefully.

I found a few articles for you to read and some sites that might help if you're willing to work.

First of all a little 101 on aggression and causes:

General introductory article to new rat owners:

Another introductory article on rats that bite:

Next, what can you do about the biting?:

Step by Step training Shy or Biting Rats:

Outstanding site you can search and find video instructional training of fearful rats, biting rats, and videos on how to safely introduce two rats together (along with a plethora of other great care videos):

Top mistakes of new rat owners and other new rat owner questions answered. Also a bunch of care questions answered w/ intros and trust training: (Scroll down to find links)

If you'd like a first hand account of experience introducing male rats to each other, I've got a thread here that walked through an entire month of me obtaining, bringing home, and trying to introduce and integrate my six boy rats with each other. I was successful in the end, so hopefully something in the thread will be helpful to you too:
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