hello :)

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hello :)

Post by Babs on Thu Jan 12, 2012 10:47 pm

I live in Dublin, and am the proud owner of six rats!

I only found out about the forum yesterday, so I'm long overdue a visit!

I own three boys (Sherlock, Toby and Basil) and three girls (Jess, Buffy and Kitty), plus a ton of other pets who tend to look at my rats like they're something nice to eat Roll Eyes

It's great to find other people who love these great little guys as much as I do, because despite the strange looks and lack of visiting friends I've had since acquiring them, the rats really are my favourite pet I think I've ever owned. And I have owned a lot of pets!
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Re: hello :)

Post by redrach on Fri Jan 13, 2012 12:14 am

Welcome to the fourm!
Always nice to see a new face and hear of someone else who shares the passion!
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Re: hello :)

Post by smokierat on Fri Jan 13, 2012 12:42 am

Welcome Smile please feel free to post pics of your ratties
Wink we've all had Rhodes reactions,but their loss definatly !

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Re: hello :)

Post by Zoundz on Fri Jan 13, 2012 1:00 am

Welcome to the forum! Grin

xx

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Re: hello :)

Post by Catz on Fri Jan 13, 2012 2:53 am

Welcome! Pictures would be lovely Big Grin
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Re: hello :)

Post by Babs on Fri Jan 13, 2012 4:21 am

Haha, thank you for the warm welcomes! Smile

The boys:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/56223545@N04/6685181169/lightbox/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/56223545@N04/6685179925/lightbox/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/56223545@N04/6685178141/lightbox/



The girls:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/56223545@N04/6685186749/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/56223545@N04/6685183439/lightbox/

I suck at using forums, couldn't get the links to work and have no idea how to upload. Hope these are okay!
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Re: hello :)

Post by redrach on Fri Jan 13, 2012 4:57 am

lovely!
the girls looks so sweet!

if you upload via photobucket there's a link you can use just for fourms it looks like
[IMG**]http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d48/weedinosaur/DSC01652.jpg[/IMG**]
(minus the stars in the IMG bit)
using that type of link will make your pictures show up like this on the forum:

(3 of my girls a few months ago)

Hope that was a help.
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Re: hello :)

Post by Babs on Fri Jan 13, 2012 5:12 am

Yeah, the girls are such little sweethearts. I call them the little muffins, because as soon as I walk into the room they're over at the cage door waiting to come out! The little fawn and white girl on the left in the picture is pregnant right now, due to an escape from her cage a while ago. I'm raging because I never intended to breed them (all my rats are rescues) but I guess these things happen. Sad

Thanks for the help, your girls are gorgeous! I'm going to make a photobucket account now. Everything seems to require one!
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Re: hello :)

Post by GillianK on Fri Jan 13, 2012 5:23 am

Hi Babs,

Welcome to the forum! I'm fairly new here myself, and like you I am the proud owner of 2 rats amongst many other pets which include my horse, dogs, cats, birds, fish and hamsters! Your ratties are gorgeous. Your boys and one of your girls are very much like my black hooded girl Dorothy. :-)

Yep, know what you mean about a lack of visitors since getting the rats! I have friends who refuse to enter my house since I started keeping rats. Even when I say I'll pop their cage into another room (we keep it in the sitting room) whilst they are there, they still won't come in! But meh! This is why it's so lovely to have a forum like this to meet other normal (or potentially abnormal!) people like ourselves who quite enjoy rats in our lives!

Pleased to meet you!

Gillian
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Re: hello :)

Post by Babs on Fri Jan 13, 2012 5:54 am

You have a horse?! I am jealous! I ride at the local stables but no way could I afford to keep one in Dublin. I've got my six rats, twenty-eight fish (tropical, coldwater and large pond koi), three dogs and a bearded dragon. My poor mother is so tolerant of my animal hoarding! Thank you Smile All my rats were rescued from people who didn't want them anymore. Mostly kids whose parents bought them, looked after them for a little while and then the novelty wore off.

Haha, that's brilliant. My mam tolerates them for my sake, but we've had no relatives visit since getting the rats and my friends flat out refuse to walk into the sitting room (which is where we keep the cages). For some reason people get freaked out by the tails. I don't know what that's all about, I love their tails. It's what makes them rats!

Great to meet you, too. Rat people are good people Big Grin
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Re: hello :)

Post by GillianK on Fri Jan 13, 2012 6:07 am

Hi Babs,

Yes I have a 16.3hh Irish Sport mare - Sorcha - and yeah I am very lucky to have her, she's my honey. Attached a pic of me and her. Ohhh the bearded dragon sounds brilliant - you'll have to post a pic! :-)

I have ... wait for it .... 1 horse, 5 dogs, 2 cats, 2 birds, 2 rats, 2 hamsters and a tank of coldwater fish!

Yeah I love the tails too. I can understand why people are creeped out by wild rats, after all they can carry disease and destroy wiring etc in peoples houses. BUT fancy rats are different. But I guess it's just a phobia. Personally, I'm terrified of spiders!

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Re: hello :)

Post by Zoundz on Fri Jan 13, 2012 8:08 am

Aww they look lovely... do ask if you want any advice on how to rear a litter Smile

xx

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Re: hello :)

Post by Babs on Fri Jan 13, 2012 8:27 am

That horse is beautiful. The background looks a lot like Ravensdale equestrian centre, have you ever been? It's a beautiful place for mountain trails, though a bit of a drive out for me so I only go occasionally. Smile I'll definitely post a picture of the bearded dragon soonish. She'd be mad at me if I ignored her and raved only about the rats!

And thanks, Zoundz! I may actually take you up on that offer real quick, if you don't mind me asking a question here?

Kitty escaped her cage and wandered into the boys bigger cage (the bars are spaced wider apart in their cage - girls can squeeze in but boys can't squeeze out) about 21 days ago now. I never intended to breed rats so all I know now is what panic-googling and information picked up along the way has taught me, but she looks like she's due any day now. I took her out of the cage she shares with Jess and Buffy today and moved her into a large old vivarium that my lizard used to live in. She's got heaps of blankets, loads of that fluffy bedding stuff I bought her in the petshop and water and food. The tank is in my bedroom, which is quite small and also home to the boiler in the house, so its nice and cosy. I just wanted to ask is there anything else I can do for her?
I'm so worried, I absolutely adore her. She's my baby! I don't mind looking after her kittens for as long as I need to because I have lots of spare cages, but I'm just so worried about Kitty right now. She's quite a young rat and was a lot smaller when I adopted her, so I'm assuming this is her first litter.

Sorry, that looks really long when I read it back. I'm just a nervous wreck. She's sitting with me right now and she seems so uncomfortable, keeps turning around and trying to sleep and then jerking back awake and cleaning herself for a bit. I'm more stressed about the whole ordeal than she is!
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Re: hello :)

Post by GillianK on Fri Jan 13, 2012 8:51 am

No, I've never been there. My horse is kept in Eglinton, just outside of Derry City. :-)

Good luck with your new rat babies, keep us posted!

I occasionally breed Cavaliers, and generally unless there's a problem, don't try and fix it. Mum will know what to do. She's prob uncomfortable now in her last stages of pregnancy, and in dogs restlessness and increased temperature is usually a sign labour is imminent. Same with humans so I'm sure rats are the same! If you see blood, you can be pretty sure it's starting!

Make sure there's a nest box with really soft bedding. In dogs we use a whelping crate which is a cardboard box designed to contain the pups for their safety, and to allow mum to leave them any time she chooses for a rest or to feed.

Zoundz will be able to help you I'm sure as she's an experienced rat breeder, but try not to worry! Keep your vets number at hand just in case, and keep a close eye on her. She'll need lots of protein and fluids I imagine, certainly dogs do. After my Nancy had her last litter, she took quite a bit of chicken soup over the following days, was very good for her. Provided her with the fluid and protein she needed whilst being easily digestible.

You'll be fine. :-)


Last edited by GillianK on Fri Jan 13, 2012 9:11 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: hello :)

Post by smokierat on Fri Jan 13, 2012 9:05 am

Oh ive been there!!Laura would definatly be the best person to ask but sounds like your keeping her quiet and warm,just make sure theres a stress free environment esp when the babies come along.Sounds like she may be in labour,its about the time,they lick themselves and get a bit anxious pre labour.just keep the room nice and calm,and try to disturb her as little as possible,i would avoid handing the babies in the first few days if possible and make sure theres no tissue or loose thread in the bedding as it can wrap around and suffocate the babies.if it helps,Smokie (our unplanned mommy) was really young,a small petshop girl and she was only with us for the 21 days before she had the babies so didnt even know us all that well and was on her own since we'd seperated her from her boyfriend and she absolutly Blew me away Love She rocks as a mommy rat,her babies grew up to be sweethearts and she sat the bar very high for us women Laugh

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Re: hello :)

Post by katherine on Fri Jan 13, 2012 9:45 am

I would leave her be. The room sounds as though she may be a bit too hot. Those tanks don't ventilate well and if the boiler on that will be a bit much. Have a window open a crack. Also what fluffy stuff? If it is the sort of cotton wool or shredded paper sold for hamsters then it is unsuitable for kittens as they can easily become caught up in it and strangled. Make sure there are no hammocks or high places mum can drag the babies to for the same reason. Also as far as a nest box goes, avoid something that would have limited access, An igloo is ideal, or failing that, a shoebox with an entrance hole in the side (no lid on) and turned upside down would probably do.

Provide lots of leafy green veg (kale is excellent), chicken, fish and egg mixed with good carb sources such as baby porridge, cooked brown rice, mashed chick peas etc. A vitamin and calcium supplement is advisable too, though as she approaches labour she probabaly wont eat much, but ramp the food levels up once the babies arrive. Good luck Grin

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Re: hello :)

Post by Zoundz on Fri Jan 13, 2012 10:58 am

Katherine's said everything I would have said (and the others have too! Smile) - she's early yet, day 21 you say - and it's usually day 23 - but they can go a day either side. Just leave her be, and keep a nether eye on her to make sure she's not in trouble.

I would leave the babies the first day, but if all appears to be well, do start handling them soon after birth. Check for milkbands too, to be sure she's feeding. You can't miss them, they have little white tummy bands if they're feeding <3

xx

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Re: hello :)

Post by Babs on Fri Jan 13, 2012 9:53 pm

Ah, thank you for all the help. I was woken at 6am to the sound of scurrying, and lo-and behold, when I looked in there's Kitty nursing several little pink babies!

She seems very chill about the whole thing, although I did offer her some food and she just sniffed and ignored it. Probably too busy with the new kids! I haven't counted them yet because I don't want to make her anxious or disturb her too much, but there's definitely a good number. Well over six, anyway. They're adorable, now that my fear for Kitty has proven unfounded I'm just taken with these babies. This is why people like me can't breed animals - I want to keep them all!
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Re: hello :)

Post by Zoundz on Fri Jan 13, 2012 10:31 pm

We definitely need pics when they're a bit older (and of course feel free to ask all the questions you need). High protein is the key where food is concerned, and don't worry about her not eating straight away, as she'll have eaten the afterbirth and placenta etc and will probably be full! Shocked Laugh Lips Sealed

xx

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Re: hello :)

Post by Lew on Sat Jan 14, 2012 12:27 am

Breakfast of Champions™

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Re: hello :)

Post by Zoundz on Sat Jan 14, 2012 12:29 am

Lips Sealed Lips Sealed Lips Sealed LOL! Grin

xx

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Re: hello :)

Post by Babs on Sat Jan 14, 2012 1:14 am

Definitely will be posting pics when they're old enough Smile I can't believe she's had them, looks like I joined the forum just in time! How long do you think it should be before I attempt handling them? They're so teeny tiny, and I had a peek for a while (this count there seemed to be 12 :o)and they all have little white bands. Kitty is doing great, she's laying with them and cleaning them like a good little mom! Every time she moves the babies all squeal in protest, and I have to resist the urge to cry rainbows at how adorable it all is. Laugh
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Re: hello :)

Post by Zoundz on Sat Jan 14, 2012 2:14 am

I would give them a day or two before handling, but I would certainly handle after that Smile even just tiny periods per day, just move them around the next to check them over, that's what we do. Then from about 10-14 days onwards, the fun really starts with major handling. They open eyes on day 14 as a rule, and then they start moving around more Smile

Any help at all needed, do just shout - can also give you our pet contract for when you home any, and our application form too, so you know they're going to good homes. If you like, I'll vet any applications you get? Smile

xx

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Re: hello :)

Post by smokierat on Sat Jan 14, 2012 12:00 pm

Congrats Big Grin

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Re: hello :)

Post by Babs on Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:36 am

Brill, thanks so much for all the help. I've been checking in on mom and babies every now and then, all seems to be going well, no deaths or anything so far. The only problem (which admittedly might not even be a problem) is that Kitty has started to get a bit restless. She's still looking after her babies, but she's spending a lot more time away from now in favour of trying to scale the side of the aquarium. I've opened it up and sat with her to let her have a run around the room, but she seems reluctant to come out then. I'm not quite sure what she wants.

And thanks for the offer, Zoundz. I might just take you up on that one! Today I was bringing Sherlock to the vet and one of the nurses was so taken with him that when I told her we had 12 kittens at home she asked if I'd mind holding a couple of girls for her. A lot of people have been asking (I made the mistake of announcing my new arrivals on facebook, when a lot of my friends are snake keepers) but I really don't mind holding on to the babies for as long as I need to just to make sure they go to good homes. If people are willing to provide good homes then they shouldn't mind answering a few questions! Smile

Thanks, Smokie!
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