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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Well.... ever since we got Husky from a tiny little baby he has not been quite the *tame-pet* rat; which is probably why he has had such a lack of mention from me in most of the threads and posts I've posted.
The thing was that when I got him, it was because of his beautiful colouring and Arthur came with him as a friend because I thought it would be a good idea. Well, I loved both of them, however, Arthur turned out the better rat. Not only could Husky not stop pooping, but he was nippy and cheeky and he really didn't like being handled. I decided to start handling him as much as I could and do loads of work with him while he was young so that he would be really tame when and as he gets older. My plan worked okay, but he was always the quiet one, shy and secretive in a way lol. It all kicked off when Husky began chewing everything. And since we started giving him more attention when he began chewing, he decided to begin starting more problems....
well, he still hasn't liked being handled and he hates being grabbed. When he is out in the room he runs off if I try to get him. So a little while ago now I realised that Husky was beating up on the others, I did split up big fights and stuff and I keep getting woken up by really loud squeaking in the middle of the night and I kept getting up to sort everything out, but nothings changed :(
I bathed the rats today because they were smelly and once their fur was wet their skin was more visible and I noticed bites on Arthur, he only had 3-4, maybe more, but they were big and nasty! Well, when I thought he was bad, I saw Rayray and he is literally covered in big bites, on his neck, bottom, back... everywhere! I already new Pepper was getting beaten up aswell because he is the smallest and Husky.... he is clear of everything, no bites or anything! It was obviously him doing the dirty work.
So because Arthur is better I put him back in with Pepper and Rayray, in which he made himself very happy at home again reunited with his buddies, than I cleaned out Arthurs spare cage and put Husky in there. You never geuss what...... and I'm TOTALLY confused, Husky started bruxing! I mean, I didn't expext him to be upset as such, but it's the fact he was actually bruxing thats got me in a pickle. I can't even let Husky out to play on the floor with the others because he will just chase them around the room all night trying to fight them! I wouldn't mind, but he doesn't even want MY attention and I don't know what to do :(
Not only am I worried about Pepper, Arthur and Rayray, but i am worried about Husky, I just don't know what to do with him.
Do I try to re-Introduce them? Will neureting *definatly* help? I need your advice, everythings going pear shaped at the moment and I feel like I'm getting stuck in a hole and digging myself deeper and deeper! Thank you for reading all this if you have, I am honestly trying my best, but things keep proping up which seem to be becoming harder to prop down again, thanks in advance xxxx
 

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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
AND what else could go wrong do I say...
Oh yes, there's more to the catch than thought. Husky has now worked out how to open his cage. Well, I put a bin on top on the door.
also, he was in the cage all of 5 minutes before he had chewed through solid plastic, I put duck tape on it. Now I'm hopeing he can't get out, but he is still attacking everything in his cage now he can't get out of it AND he's nippy now too, I think I'm doomed, huh!
 

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Fashion Animal Freak :)
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Oh hun i feel for you im stressed out atm with my boys aswell !
*hugs*

Well when did you notice the fighting?
Would he be cage agressive ?
Is there any of the rats that he doesnt fight with maybe you could split them into 2 groups for a while untill huskie gets neutered.

He might be hitting puberty and thats why :(
Neutering i think would help.
Does he bite you for nothing?
Or only when you try and bother him ?

I hope someone helps you someone with experiance.

Love ya xx
 

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RAT ADDICT
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WOW...sounds like he has some major testostarone issues right now.Neutring will help somewhat.I would maybe keep him seperated for now and try introducing him later,maybe after you get him fixed.I never had such a hormonal male rat before,but neutering seems to help big time from what I hear.
 

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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah thank you both :)
Husky started nipping from an early age, but he grew out of it. Now he is in a seperate cage he is begining to try and nip me through the bars of the cage because he is getting upset. I noticed him to start fighting before I went on holiday, but I never thought it was as bad as it is. I've only just noticed the bites on the others backs and I want them to heal up first before I re-Intoduce them. If the introduction doesn't work and it goes back to normal than I will have to start looking into neutering him, but for now, How on earth do I keep Husky happy? I had to put him in a different room last night so I could sleep because he was chewing on the bars and getting at the bin and I kind of feel sorry for him and kinda scared right now :(
I think he has gone past puberty and he does bite for nothing somtimes, aswell as when I try to play with him because he gets fustrated. He is 5-6months old now and certainly grown a lot since when we had him lol.
I went into the room I'm keeping him in for now to see how he was getting on and he doesn't look like he has eaten anything and his water bottle had been pushed off the cage. Husky was asleep, but as soon as he saw me in the room he was up again. I'm thinking of trying to connect another cage to the spare one to give him more room, maybe tha will calm him down?
What is testostarone basically? I've heard of it, but never looked into it before. I'm going to ring my vets to ask how much neutering will cost and what they think I should do about the situation. Compaired to how good Arthur was in the spare cage, Husky is mad of his head, I mean, Arthur didn't try to get out once, he just sulked about the fact he was away from his friends.
I just want to take Husky out and give him a cuddle and let him know everythings going to be okay, but Husky is not a cuddly rat and I feel like it's my fault! Thanks for your help, It's given me some things to think about. Seeing what Husky is capable of is now a bit scary to see if you know what I mean, I definatly wouldn't want to live in the same cage as him LOL.
Thanks again, I'll keep you updated. xxxx Luvs ya to xxxx
 

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testosterone is a hormone that causes aggression along with other things such as reproduction desire, males have more than females but females do have some.

Its what makes male people grow facial hair, chest hair, and makes more muscle. testicles produce most (i think), that is why neutering helps with aggression.
 

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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
oh, okays, thank you :)
Husky has seemed to have settled down now, but he is still being a bit nippy and trying to escape.
xxx
 

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RAT ADDICT
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Hmmmm...like I said,I never had to deal with an aggressive male.
Maybe take him out and let him run around in a rat proof room to let go of some steam! :)


Cheweing on the bars usually means they want attention or are bored.My beloved Ninja (R.I.P) used to chew the bars like 4am because he wanted to sleep in my bed! I let him cuddle while I watched movies or read.He wouldn't accept anymore males after his cagemate died,so he always wanted me.And 4am EVERYNIGHT he would get my attention (sometimes I was awake then,other times he woke me up) by cheweing the bars.I tried giving him all kinds of chew things and toys to keep him busy,but he wanted me.


It came to where I had to often move his cage out of my room overnights.I didn't let him sleep with me,cause I was afraid I would squish him.


Good luck.
 

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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
LOL, your Ninja was such a sweety!
So, do you think that if I give Husky more space than he will be happier on his own because he has terratory of his own and if I let him out than he might warm up and bond to me more because I will stay in the room and be there with him so maybe he will start coming to me some more?
He has eaten and given up trying to escape now, which is good! He is also a lot calmer than since he was first put in.
Thanks Lisa xxxx
 

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Fashion Animal Freak :)
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Nikkita the other night i had to seperate my babies because of novo's wounds and toto went mad dragged a bag into his cage teared it up.
Ripped his boxes up chewed on the bars and everything, and i actually thought novo would be the more upset one but he wasnt which maybe is a good thing that if toto does need to be PTS :( but.. what i done to get toto more calm was put a cuddly toy in beside him and he calmed right down.
Maybe try and get a small teddy about his size to keep him company.
And yes more space might do him good because he will want you more then his buddies now because there away from him!
Good luck babes x
 

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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you Claire :)
The cuddly toy is a good idea and what you said came true..... Husky does want me more than the others!
I got him out on his own today in a place where he hasn't been in the house before and he was all over me! He wanted to stay close and have a love, hide in my hair, climb on me, all the stuff you'd expext and it felt so nice to have a rat that has never been close to you, actually want me!
I thought after that, maybe it would be a good idea to get one of the others out one by one to see how Husky reacted to them and how they reacted to him. First out was Pepper and Husky acted as if Pepper wasn't even there! It was a quick sniff of each other and than... well.. nothing, just like pepper turned into thin air! I think thats because pepper is the smallest and he can't really do anything to Husky so he is not a threat at all if you know what I mean, but when they are in the cage, Husky still beats up on him.
Next up, Arthur. With Arthur there was a bit of aggressive grooming to show dominance and also following him around, but nothing much.
Lastly, I got rayray out. This was very different from the other reactions, Husky wouldn't leave him alone, nipping and grooming, slightly pushing around and in the end Rayray came up to my trouser leg and was trying to climb up like he was asking me to put him back in the bedroom. Also, Rayray is the one covered in bites.
I decided it would be a good idea to see how they got on altogether as a group. Once again Husky wouldn't leave me alone until Rayray was out of reach, once he was gone he started nipping Arthur and it was the same with Pepper, just like he wasn't there.
So, I put all the rats back and husky was alll over me again!! I think its part jealousy, part dominance and also attention seeking and he only seems to want one to one interaction with me.
Do you all still think it is testosterone or do you think something else might be going on to?
I am ringing the vets tomorrow and ask for their advice, see how much neutering will cost and ask if they recommend anything else.
Thanks again xxxxxx
 

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Rats each have their own personality. Just like people. And just like people there are good rats, bad rats, social rats, unsocial rats, hyper rats, sweet rats. Mean rats, etc. You have to remember that everyone is very different and has their own little way of acting and dong things. Some rats are more tame and domesticated than others. Some hold onto their primal instincts more than others.


I have had rats a long long time. I have breed rats a long time as well. I will trail off and say this as I am used to getting ridiculed. I do breed rats; I have a waiting list of people who want rats before I will breed. I know the ages of when to breed and when not to breed. I know to wait in between, I wait much longer than needed, and I would never let my rats have more than three litters in her life time. They are a pet first. I do not breed rats to make money, although I ask an adoption fee because at the very least is assures that they are not going as snake food. As someone looking for food would not pay over the amount pet stores ask for a small rat, which varies in the area. I breed rats because people know that mine are healthy and come fully socialized. Plus, I have some “exotic” colors. Including hairless and dumbos. I want people to understand what great pets they make. And no offense to any one with pet store rats, as I own quite a few, but they are often not a good idea. Most pet stores do not house them properly, keep both sex together, and they are not handled. Plus, you do not know where they came from or what health conditions they may have in their genes that develop later. If you go with the intention of holding each one to find that special rose among the thorns you will come home with a winner. (And most likely the pet store worker will look at you as if you are nuts and wonder what you would want with a pet rat. Their loss.)


Back to my point. Owning rats and breeding rats has taught me a lot. As I said above, they come in all kinds, just like people. Husky sounds like he is the type of rat that is slow to come out, has a lot of anger/energy, and would do better on his own, living conditions wise. Play dates to let him know he is not alone will benefit him, as long as you keep an eye on him and let him know it is not ok to behave badly. When mine fight, I pick up the one attacking, put them at eye level and tell them they are being bad. A few times of that and the tone of my voice makes them behave. But, that does not work with every rat, plus if he is already shy to your touch he may react badly. It is hard to give advice when you are not right in front.


I have had rats like him, and sometimes they do come around when they get older but sometimes they do not. My female Madeline will only accept one other female rat near her, Raisin, besides her babies. Any other rat will be beat up until I remove her from her sight. It is just what happens. He has his own personality and knows what he wants. He may want friends but he can, obviously, not control himself. It is not fair to your other three rats to live in fear and pain just so he can be a little happier. I do believe in the good of the majority. I have rehomed young rats that I loved dearly, but because they could not be kept with other rats and I knew people who were set on adopting just one rat I let them be adopted. It was best for everyone. I watched when I put Mishka and Morgan in With Madeline and Raisin. Mishka and Morgan kept a fearful possession, were always on guard, and just scared. Madeline would always be looking to fight and soon got Raisin to join her. After being in there from just one night they had a lot of wounds.


I guess what I am saying is, he may not be a social rat. Neutering him may or may not help. But with any surgery there is a risk of him not making it. With my experience, things like this take a large part of their life to fix. It is nothing you did or did not do. It is just his personality. You giving him more attention proves that you tried everything you could and have given him a fair chance. But you need to be fair to your other rats and not let them live out their lives in misery.


I hope I have not said anything to offend you, or anyone else. I am just trying to help and give my experience and advice. It is a hard thing to accept that a rat may be unsocial, but just like a parent of a child who hears their child is being a bully, it is something that is normal and does occur. It is nothing you did. You are a very good rat owner for dealing with him and trying to make everything all right. My best wishes to you and your rats.

 

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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thank you very much Anya for taking your time to say all that because it has opened my eyes up some more :)
You have not offended me at all, you've helped my out and thats all that matters ;)
Since Husky has left the cage I've seen a lot more of Rayray. I always thought it was Rayray being lazy because when it was time to come out and play he always stayed in the cage and went back to bed, however, now Husky is somwhere else Rayray is coming out to play!
I understand what you have siad and after thinking about it it really does make sence. The only thing is that I don't know how to keep him occupied in his own cage because if I don't leave something over the cage door he will just open it and run off!
If you think it's a good Idea, than do you think I should buy Husky a bigger and better cage just for him, to keep him in by himself and to get him out of the spare cage?
Thank you for your help once again :)
xxx
 

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RAT ADDICT
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As you know my Ninja was kept alone the remainder of his life after his buddies passed.As long as you are willing to provide the extra attention,then yes.Get him another cage that he cannot open the door to and see how it goes.Just make sure he gets extra attention,otherwise he will get lonely.


You can have play-dates,if Husky doesn't beat up on the others.It sounds like he is a very dominant rat.After reading more,it doesn't sound like testostarone issues,because in alot of those cases,friednly rats will turn and attack other rats,their owners and even items in their cagaes and neutering does help this or even stop it BIG TIME.But Husky isn't attacking you by the sounds of it.So he is probably just a very dominant rat.
 

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Yes, a bigger cage with lots of toys and things to hide in and climb on would be good. The stuffed animal idea was a good idea too. Keep his little mind busy.


Those were some interesting links. I like the vanilla idea. It also reminded me to look and see if I could find any ways to make my rats less of an allergen to my boyfriend. He is allergic and gets stuffy and has a hard time breathing at night, since they are in our room for the time being. No other place to have some of them until the move. Cleaning the cages even more often than normal doesn't help at all.


It has always been my females who were more aggressive and dominant than my males. They are much more laid back when it comes to accepting new cage mates.

 

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Fashion Animal Freak :)
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Nikkita i know your capable of handleing your boys so hun you do what is best for everyone!
Anya that is some very useful info you gave nikkita and i enjoyed reading it! it was very useful for me also :)
Yes the stuffed toy has worked for me brilliant like if my 2 boys get in a squabble and they sleep seperately i always give them a toy and they cuddle into it, ive also caught toto trying to play fight with it LOL!

So hun you do what your heart is telling you because either way your boys will always be happy with you xxx
 

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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks Claire, your always so supportive and great! :) xx
And Thanks Anya, your help and your self-knowledge has been a huge help!
Also, thank you Lisa, I read the links and they've helped, also the other things you've said has helped to. xxx

Anyways, I've made up my mind that I'm not neutering Husky. I don't think it will help him that much and I also think that I wont be as satisfied with what I get for the money I spend and over here it's expensive, probably over £100, though, if I did think it was gunna help than I would.
I'm going to leave Husky to settle in the spare cage and get used to being on his own and I'm also holding of any play dates until Husky has finally settled into a home of his own. Once he has, I will try another Introduction and if that doesn't work out than I'm going to buy him a cage of his own and leave him on his own from there on.
If Husky is already happy on his own without the others, and no play dates, and no intro - I may just go straight ahead and let him stay on his own, with occational supervised play dates.
I have thought about this, and yes, I do think I have enough time on my hands to keep a lone rat happy and give him what he needs.
Thanks everyoe for your help, I've appriciated it! :D
 

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Zippy Chickenshorts
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Husky's hissing at me now :(:(
I'm used to him hissing if he is in the bath, but for no reason, thats never happened. Now I feel like I'm back at square one, when I finally thought I was getting somewhere :(
Husky did escape today.... again. He pulled the top half of the cage of the bottom (the cage came with no latches to hold it down)
Husky must be strong! He only wondered into my room and wasn't hard to gt back in the cage. He's out in a different room right now.
I scared Husky might hurt himself if he doesn't stop his determination and I really don't want that to happen 'cause I'll end up feeling like it's my fault.
I only need Husky to wait for a bigger cage for two more weeks. I'm doing extra work to get more money, just to get everything I need and Husky isn't helping my mood, especially when I'm trying to help him!
xxxx
 
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