Welcome to PetForums

Join thousands of other pet owners and pet lovers on the UK's most popular and friendly pet community and discussion forum.

Sign Up

Bought a pregnant rat and didn't know it until now.

Discussion in 'Small Animal Chat' started by Pickles2, Apr 6, 2011.


  1. Pickles2

    Pickles2 PetForums Newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2011
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bought my rat Snowbell about two weeks ago from a local petstore and I have just started to notice her waistline grow day by day! I have read up on what to do to prepare her birth etc but three questions I have are, how many weeks in do I have to separate the boys from the mum and when can I give them away and can anyone tell me from their own experience what to expect?
     
  2. tagalong

    tagalong PetForums Senior

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2010
    Messages:
    418
    Likes Received:
    23
    Hi -whereabouts are you from ?
    was it Pets at home ? if so then tell them and ask them to give you another cage for separating the babies when they are 4.5 to 5 weeks old -you can keep the girls with Mum . They should give you food etc too as it is not legal to sell a pregnant pet.
    they should not go to their new homes until 7 weeks old and either in pairs of same sex or to someone with rats of the same sex and age as company
    mum will be pregnant for about 21-23 days -she may become hormonal and a bit bitey this is normal before birth -give her plenty of soft bedding such as torn up paper towel and keep her on sometihng like Carefresh not wood based sawdusts.
    Feed her good quality seed mix plus soya milk or Lactol which you can also use when babies are weaning-things like pasta -cous cous -pilchards -kale -soya pud -egg boiled or scrambled etc all good and needed .
    Do'nt disturb mum too much during birth but afterwards distract her with some food and check the babies have a white band around their under tummies means they are getting milk -you can rub your hands in the bedding before touching them to hide your scent.
    try to handle the babies (while distracting mum )every day as they will get friendly and much easier to home this way.
    average litter can be 8 or so can go up to 20s or just 1 so it's not easy t5o say -she will look like she has swallowed an orange when she is about to pop.
    A picture will help to see if she is near to delivering
     
  3. Argent

    Argent PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    499
    I second everything tagalong said. If it was P@H, kick up a fuss, demand a spare cage to put the boys in when they're old enough, and more food and whatever you do, do NOT take them up on any offers to 'take the babies off your hands', they'll just end up sold on to god knows who >.<

    Lactol, scrambled egg, baby rice, bits of cooked chicken etc are very good for Snowbell alongside her regular food.
    Babies should be separated at about 4 and a half weeks to prevent the boys getting it on with their sisters. It's pretty easy to sex them, even from a few days old, gets easier as they get older though, girls develop nipples, boys do not, and laddies have the obvious nads too.

    Are you going to keep a daughter or two to keep Bluebell company?
     
  4. niki87

    niki87 PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2009
    Messages:
    6,862
    Likes Received:
    42
    Yeah I can't say more than that! Do you know how old Snowbell is? You may find, as with my Bijou (rescue), that if she is young she may not grow anymore. Keep her plied with protein rich food and if you can get your hands on Lactol, or kitten formula, or at least goats milk, then that will help with lactating. xx
     
  5. Pickles2

    Pickles2 PetForums Newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2011
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    i was going to post a photo of how big she has grown but i woke up this morning and she's had 12 healthy kittens. thanks to everyone that replied, i will buy her some formula. i will have to think of where i can find homes for them! i shall keep a few :D
     
  6. Argent

    Argent PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    499
    Wow 12! Good luck! You're going to have your hands full as soon as they're mobile! Keep reading and learning everything you can about raising a litter, and lactating does - you can't learn enough at this stage. I've had rats for 6 years and I'd be flapping in your situation right now!!!

    She still needs extras other than formula too, to keep her strength up - give her cooled down scrambled eggs, baby food and kitten food pouches too (just a bit at a time though or it'll make a right stink!)

    There's some good articles on the Fancy Rats Forums about raising a litter etc.
     
    #6 Argent, Apr 7, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2011
  7. tagalong

    tagalong PetForums Senior

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2010
    Messages:
    418
    Likes Received:
    23
    Glad all are doing well :)
    where in the UK are you ? there are forums who will allow you to post for homes when time comes.
     
  8. Pickles2

    Pickles2 PetForums Newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2011
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    haha I didn't know 12 was a handful, now I'm scared haha. I actually live in Australia but I couldn't find an active aussie forum, I'm not sure what to do about the ones I don't keep.
     
  9. Argent

    Argent PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    499
    Either find an Aussie rat rescue, or put up a notice in the vets, spread the word by word of mouth - two of my baby girls were adopted by the vet that checked them over in the first place when I rescued my Lavi and her bubs!

    Once they're fully furred and wandering around, you can free range them in the bathtub for their safety. You can start handling them for short periods now if you can keep mother happy somewhere else for two minutes. :)
     
  10. Argent

    Argent PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    499
    Hiya, how are the bubbins? :)
     
  11. Pickles2

    Pickles2 PetForums Newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2011
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey, they are going great, I looked up how to tell their sex and I'm pretty sure that there is six girls and six boys! It looks like they are all getting fed and the Mum is with them for most of the day. So far I have a few friends that will take a rat, I might keep 2/3 not sure yet, I've never had a boy so I was thinking of keeping a boy :D Now just waiting to see what colours they will all be. I'll post a photo of when they start growing hair.
     
  12. Argent

    Argent PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    499
    Ooh only adopt them out in pairs minimum! Rats are very social and really aren't meant to live on their own!

    Also, if you keep a boy, you could have him neutered and let him live with his mum 3 weeks after the op so neither are lonely. :)
     
  13. Snippet

    Snippet PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2011
    Messages:
    1,244
    Likes Received:
    8
    Mummy rat is probablt only a baby herself, so I'd keep a baby or 2 as company for her. If you want to keep boys then I would keep 2 from the litter. I don't recommend neutering male rats who don't need it, and keeping him alone until he's 6 months old (best age to neuter) will harm him as when it comes to intro'ing him to his mum and sisters he won't have any ratty social skills.

    When you're adopting out the babies they should be in same sex pairs or trios.
     
  14. manic rose

    manic rose PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2011
    Messages:
    2,465
    Likes Received:
    20
    aw congrats on the new arrivals! know its probably not ideal and not what you were planning but good luck :001_smile:
     
  15. spoiled_rat

    spoiled_rat PetForums Senior

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2008
    Messages:
    688
    Likes Received:
    13
    I personally wouldn't neuter a rat so young, or for the sake of convenience. I tend to view it as a last resort to remedy hormonal aggression or for health reasons.
    But that's just me lol :D
     
  16. Snippet

    Snippet PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2011
    Messages:
    1,244
    Likes Received:
    8
    How are mum and the eepers getting on?
     
  17. Pickles2

    Pickles2 PetForums Newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2011
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yea really good, they have all survived so far and all look really healthy. Luckily my cousin wasn't using her cage which is massive and has 4 levels so they have much more room to move aorund. I've read up on the sexes and Im pretty sure there is 6 boys and 6 girls, i will post a picture in a few days, my cameras at a friends house but they all have fur now, one black/white one, 9 cream/white and 2 grey/white. I think I will keep 2 girls and the pet shop said they will buy back the others. I'm really happy that they are all still alive, they are so cute! I kinda want a male but not sure as my cousin said they tend to be smellier but I've always thought if they were lazier then they'd tend to move around less meaning its easy to hold them. I'd keep him in a separate cage of course.
     
  18. Argent

    Argent PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    499
    Please don't give them back to the pet shop, it'd be much better for the babies if you could home them yourself through the ratty community. If the pet shop buys them back they could end up anywhere, in a snake's tank or alone in a tiny hamster cage because some kid got bored. Please consider trying to find them suitable homes yourself, we can all help and spread the word around...
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice