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

Really dislike

Discussion in 'Rodents' started by piggybaker, Jul 5, 2009.


  1. piggybaker

    piggybaker PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    Messages:
    5,883
    Likes Received:
    210
    I really don't like my rats, jess and holly, they are both white with pink eyes, and i have a feeling they are blind, as everytime i go near them they try and bite, the children don't handle them only me, but about a month ago they really started to bite me, even putting food in the will rush out to get me, I have been nothing but gentle and softly spoken with them and I just feel really bad as i really don't like them,, I asked my son to feed them as i thought it was me and they got him and gave him a very nasty bite through his nail, now he will have nothing to do with them..

    I try to always have my hand smell free of food, we can no longer hold these little guys so I have a nice large cage and will have to make sure they have loads of toys, b ut if they bite again I htink i will have to have them PTS as i can pass this prob ont someone else,,they also smell very strong, my last ones didn't

    I feel so sad, as the last rats i had died of old age and where such good fun.

    does anyone have any ideas, i have even used a pencil wrapped in soft tisssue to try and get them used to being touched, pencil bitten to pieces.
     
  2. thedogsmother

    thedogsmother PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    Messages:
    20,846
    Likes Received:
    509
    I know they aren't hamsters but I rescued a hamster who was like that, (although this was due to ill treatment and not being blind), I had no idea how to tame her and U-look-like-a-hamster took her and has managed to tame her. If you pm her she might be able to tell you how she did it, seriously Oliver (the hamster) was savage I had to distract her at one side of the cage while I put food in at the other.
     
  3. owieprone

    owieprone PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2008
    Messages:
    5,043
    Likes Received:
    200
    how old are they? Are they boys?

    they may well be blind, but red eyed rats do have just really bad eyesight, however this won't be the reason for them biting you. you aren't frightening them in the sense that they don't know you're their, their hearing and sense of smell will make up for that.

    it sounds like they are just really frightened of people. to begin with leave them to it. if you can pour their food in rather than open the door to put in in. they won't care where it is. When cleaning them out put on gardening gloves and houk them out when they're in their house, put them in a box that you can close with their house. Have another house already to put in once the cage is cleaned and then turf them out of the one they're in. they will get wise to this but they may prefer it to being houked out bodily by you lol. Get a water bottle that sits outside the cage if you don't already have one.

    You need to be as patient as you can. It's not their fault, try not to get angry with them, they really can't help it.

    don't try to stroke them or touch them as they will just attempt to bite you. leave them to it, speak to them, be near the cage as much as possible, get the used to you again, show them they've nothing to be scared off as all you are doing is cleaning them and feeding them. give them lots of good veggies as treats that you can poke through the bars without your fingers being in easy reach. carrots etc :D

    it will probably take a while (we had a nibbler that never got use to us, but learned to leave us alone and learned that 'playtime' (command) meant a good run around and let us get her out for that but bit us the rest of the time, unless she was ill then she let us pick her up lmao). We;ve had babies that have taken months to get used to us and we've left them to it and eventually they come to us, it takes months sometimes. But eventually they get better, and nibble to investigate rather than bite, only occasionally do they bite us and that's due to us putting fingers through the bars lol our others don't bite so usually it's safe lmao.

    Just leave them alone in the cage as much as possible but make sure you see and speak to them at least a few times a day. put there somewhere quiet if possible so they can have times where they are completely alone to do ratty things without the constant fear of being 'seen'.

    If you want to see how they are getting on with you, put your hand in in a fist, thumb tucked in to protect it. keep it fingers down. if they bite at least it'll be less likely to be a soft part ;) try not to jerk away but take your hand away and say 'ow'. don't see nibbles as a bad thing, if its a proper bite and draws blood then they're nto ready but if it's a few nibbles, which shouldnt have much pressure at all behind it and then they run away that's a good sign. They're still scared if they nibble and run but they don't see you as as much of a threat. biting is meant to make you run away, so do it. Nibbling and them running is a sign that they're abit scared but you aren't an enemy so you can safely be ran away from. don't chase after them always let them come to you (if they run away when you're cleaning out the cage, try cleaning it out with them in there, have a spotter with you tho in case they ambush you ;).

    the best way to figure out if they're ready to 'meet' you is if they come to see what you're doing like a normal rat would but if you get to close run away. if they follow your progress from their hiding place it means they're interested in what your doing, scared rats generally run away and hide completely, looking at you would mean that you can see them and therefore know where they are hiding which if your an enemy isn't a good thing.

    just take it slowly and hopefully they'll come round. don't introduce any more rats to them, the new ones will pick up their cues from these 2 and become just as bad.

    if you can get a bird water feeder instead (with an open source of water) they sit on the outside so are easy to replenish. also means they have a better water source to clean themselves, rats generally prefer these types of water troughs than the old ball and tube type.

    if you need any more advice just let me know. :D
    remember they've the intelligence of a 2 y/o they'll come round eventually. hopefully ;) you might find if they're quite young they will come round with old age when they mellow out, like i said, be patient, they really can't help it.
     
  4. Mischievous_Mark

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Messages:
    353
    Likes Received:
    6
    Dont have them PTS, theres a few rescues you can contact that will take them in a rehabilitate them.

    If you was closer i would of taken them, doubt theres a way to get them to me 250 miles away.

    I shall PM an email address of a great lady who rescues rats she may know someone in Kent that will foster them.
     
  5. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2009
    Messages:
    17,032
    Likes Received:
    9,489
    Pity you live too far away, id gladly take them. Ive had biters before.
     
  6. piggybaker

    piggybaker PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    Messages:
    5,883
    Likes Received:
    210
    They would nip my ear when they where out the cage and if i tried to move them off my shoulder i would get a nip on my finger,, not hard mind but hard enough,, I chat to them all the time as they are in the kitchen,, I have never allowd them out the cage as we have cats and to children doors are opened closed and i would hate and accident to happen.

    I generally just believe these 2 have a thing about me, I chatter away to them all the time and they climb the cage, but if i walk to close to the cage the grab at my clothes and have almost hurt one of them as they had bitten my skirt through the cage and i had moved away, a loud squeek came from one of them,,

    about 3 weeks ago one was bleeding from somewhere, and she let me clean her with some damp cotton wool but she was a cross patch, they get on well together and snuggle,
     
  7. Neza

    Neza PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2008
    Messages:
    1,076
    Likes Received:
    6
    At least the get on with each other, it's something. Sometimes a small animal that was friendly will turn and you just have to give it space. They have moods too and like humans it can sometimes take a long time to play out. Perhaps in time with patience they will come around.
     
  8. owieprone

    owieprone PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2008
    Messages:
    5,043
    Likes Received:
    200
    I would move them out of the kitchen it sounds too busy. If you've not given them playtime, out of their cage may mean that they see it exclusively as their territory and therefore don't like anyone going near it as you are 'trespassing' it might also mean that they aren't getting enough quiet time. Rats are very territorial and may not see you as 'alpha rat' which is what you should be to them. they should have a preferred human but one of you in the house should be alpha rat and the other humans should be accepted members of the clan.

    that this hasn't happened is odd. The biting and grabbing of things near their cage is a bad sign really, if you can't move it out of the kitchen move it higher up so that they are more near shoulder height, they shouldn't be able to grab s skirt it means you are walking 'over' them, which in rodent terms is 'danger from above' which could be why they are so aggressive.

    Nipping needs to be stopped as this can become a permanent problem. When they hip you (not bite as it indicates fear, but nipping of ears and fingers) you need to grab them gently but firmly, plonk them on their backs on the nearest surface and say 'NO' and let them wriggle out from under your hand. do this EVERY time they nip you. if they bite you put them back in the cage and close the door and ignore them.

    they aren't beyond saving from the sounds of it but it will take time.

    I would also up the amount of time they have out of the cage if you can, even if it is merely 5 mins in the bathroom with the door locked so the kids can't come in and accidentally scare or injure one. make sure the holes in the floor behind the bog and the sink are blocked with something they can't move. If you have playtime away from their cage they will not only have more exercise, they should also be less territorial if they get good time away from it they should see any other space they play in as an extension to their territory and this will lessen their need to control the 'small' space they are 'confined' to just now.
     
  9. Mischievous_Mark

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Messages:
    353
    Likes Received:
    6
    haha dont think my rats know what a cage is they are always out running around my bedroom.

    Theres one asleep on my pillow now as im typing shes extremely lazy.

    Hope the email address i sent you was some help.
     
  10. u-look-like-a-hamster

    u-look-like-a-hamster PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Messages:
    2,387
    Likes Received:
    149
    Don't have them pts :(
    It takes time, dont just give up.

    Be patient and dont be nervous around them, they will pick up on nerves and will bite!! if your confident with them they are less likely.

    I know you shouldn't but GLOVES is probertly your best option, yes it takes time for them to get used to your hands BUT they will be tamer

    Just try gloves to start with and get back to us :)
     
  11. piggybaker

    piggybaker PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    Messages:
    5,883
    Likes Received:
    210
    Have had loads of leads, belong to a fancy rats forum and they have been great and a couple of people on here have given me some directions to go on and will be taking them up,, gonna give it 3 months of hard work and if we don't gel i feel it would be better for them not for me if the went to a new home, I want the to love me as much as i love them to curl up with me like my last rats and i do know that will all take time and they have there own diffferent personality and these aren't my old rats ,, I get that, just wish they where:blushing:
     
  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