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Rat Tails & Mug Shots / Re: In memoriam Bartholomew (2/20/16 to 6/15/18)
« Last post by gramma2jaakk on Yesterday at 04:01:59 PM »
Oh no, I'm so sorry to hear of Bartholomew passing! I've been going so am just now seeing this. You gave him a wonderful home, given how his life as a pet first started. I'm sure he will be missed, and is missing you and his cohorts in rattie heaven.
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Adoption Center / Chicago, IL Upcoming OOPs babies for adoption
« Last post by kerri.howard on June 18, 2018, 05:50:59 PM »
A few weeks ago I adopted a 4-5 month old little rattie girl (grey dumbo), and she is suddenly quite rotund and today has started nesting. Lady I adopted her from thought she wasn't pregnant...  ::) haha. The bubs should arrive any day now.

Most likely candidate for Mr. Dad is an 11 month old cream Rex dude (whom I also adopted from same lady; he's very sweet... and has since been neutered :thumbsup2:). Mom was somewhat timid at first, but over the last couple of weeks has really warmed up to me and is a super sweetie. Both Mom and likely-Dad are in great health.

Anyway, with these two latest additions I am already at 10 rats, and don't really have the space for all these (potential) babies in the long term. So I am going on the look-out now for responsible, rat-loving forever homes in 4-5 weeks! I will update once they're born with pics and more info. They will be spoiled and socialized in the meantime.  :BlueDumboSmile:

I live in Chicago, IL but am willing to travel/meet to make sure the future little ones find good homes. I will ask that potential adopters demonstrate their knowledge of and experience with rat care (or sincere willingness to learn)-- including veterinary expenses.

Message me here, or email me at bahzew at gmail.
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Rat Tails & Mug Shots / Re: In memoriam Bartholomew (2/20/16 to 6/15/18)
« Last post by purple rat on June 16, 2018, 07:56:09 AM »
oh Big Ben, I'm so sorry for the sudden passing of Bartholomew.  It's hard enough to lose our fur babies, but when it happens so suddenly it's even more difficult :'(. What a lovely memorial for such a sweet rat ambassador.  Take care of yourself.
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Rat Tails & Mug Shots / Re: Current Mischief
« Last post by BigBen on June 15, 2018, 09:21:15 PM »
Oh, what cuties these ratties be! :heart:
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Rat Tails & Mug Shots / Re: Oh my goodness, guys! Check out this website!!
« Last post by BigBen on June 15, 2018, 09:18:25 PM »
. . . I first heard about this from Marty Mouse house, who shared it from Steph Laberis, there are several discussions about it:
https://www.facebook.com/stephlaberisart/posts/1778081115599686

Marty's Mom is herself a serious photographer.  When I alerted her to the use of some of her rat photos on another site, she stated that she generally doesn't care, as long as the "Martymousehouse.com" that she puts in each photo is not cropped out.  That makes her mad.

P.S.--BTW, I have published--with permission!--a few of her rat photos on Jigidi, the jigsaw puzzle Web site, if you want to do some rat puzzles.

P.P.S.--Check out the new trio of ratties at Marty Mouse House; they are real cuties!
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Rat Care Corner / Re: Dry tail?
« Last post by BigBen on June 15, 2018, 09:07:47 PM »
Even boys that otherwise groom themselves quite well can let their tails go.  Apparently, past a certain point, the other rats in the cage decide that if he isn't going to worry about it, they're not going to help him out, either.  Now that his tail is clean again, Beppe may well start to take better care of it again, but don't hold your breath.  Like their human counterparts, male rats tend to be slobs.  :yelcutelaugh:
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Rat Care Corner / Re: Rat letting medicine leak out of her mouth.
« Last post by BigBen on June 15, 2018, 09:02:09 PM »
That is a large dose.  Giving it in increments is a very good idea.

In addition to the tips already mentioned, another trick is to take up some maple syrup into the syringe after loading the med.  That way, what hits the tongue first is sweetness, and it makes the bitterness of the medication more palatable.

In addition, you need to squirt the med into the back of your girl's throat, so that she swallows it by reflex. Once the syringe is loaded, hold her facing you, in your off hand, with thumb and forefinger around the throat and the other fingers wrapped around the belly, with the front paws between the index finger and the middle finger.  This gives you a great deal of control.  Then, with your good hand, slide the tip of the syringe into the side of your rat's face, that is, into the gap (diastema) between the incisors and the molars, angle the opening of the syringe towards the back of the throat, and plunge.  If you do it right, she will automatically start swallowing in quantity.  (This is a reflex left over from babyhood.  I'll never forget the post on GM by a guy who was trying to get milk into a pup; he was finding it difficult, until he suddenly discovered the pup's "power-suck reflex.")

Good luck!
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Rat Care Corner / Re: How old?
« Last post by BigBen on June 15, 2018, 08:45:05 PM »
I'm guessing five or six weeks in that photo.
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Rat Tails & Mug Shots / In memoriam Bartholomew (2/20/16 to 6/15/18)
« Last post by BigBen on June 15, 2018, 08:34:54 PM »
I'm in shock.  I went into my bedroom just now to find my downstairs ratties in the Space Pod, with my beautiful sweet Bartholomew half-in and half-out.  He apparently died while climbing in to be with the girls, so I'm thinking heart attack or stroke.  Something sudden, anyway; there was no indication that he was unwell.

Bartholomew was an unintentional rescue.  I was buying rat and chinchilla toys at a pet store on Mother's Day, 2016.  I asked an employee for help, and we got to talking.  She asked about my animals, and I gave her the spiel.  I mentioned having six rats, and suddenly she said, "Do you want another one?"  She explained that Bartholomew was a baby who had been sold to a customer the previous week, but had been returned the following day with a degloved tail and a broken leg.  The purchaser had tried to claim he'd gone berserk and done the damage himself, but Michelle didn't believe her and banned her from the store, confisacating Bartholomew.  She took him to the vet, got the tail amputated, and took him home to heal.  He was such a sweetheart that she was planning on keeping him herself, until she discovered she was violently allergic to rats.  So when she saw me buying toys for rats and chins, she struck up a conversation and ended up offering him to me.

It took me a week to decide, but then I realized I had to give him a home.  I came to pick him up the following week, and he turned out to be adorable, and extremely affectionate.  He was about twelve weeks old at that point.  Introductions to the boys at home did not go well, although I tried several times.  He actually seemed to prefer being on his own, whether by himself in his cage or out cuddling with Daddy.  He was always affectionate and very eager to meet people; he was a superb rat ambassador.  I used to take him with me to visit my spiritual director, whom he instantly charmed.  When I would go to pick up some food at local food pantry, he would usually insist on coming along.  The volunteers all wanted to hold him, and the times I didn't bring him, everyone was quite disappointed.

Bartholomew never forgot me during my long hospital stay in 2016.  When the friends who had been caring for my rats brought him back home, he was so big I almost didn't recognize him, but he clearly remembered who I was.  He never forgot Michelle, either; when he was around nine months old, I brought him back to the pet store to say hello, and he jumped straight into her arms and cuddled there, pleasing her no end.  She was thrilled to be the recipient of many kisses.

My old boys all died in the fall of 2016, and the West Side Highway boys followed in April of last year, shortly after my mother's death.  Bartholomew and his cuddles were a great consolation during that difficult period.  My sister persuaded me to buy a house with her and move in to take care of my niece and our dad.  We moved in in stages, my sister as soon as we closed, then Dad, and then me at the end of August last year.  Meanwhile, the empty cage began to weigh on me, and I realized that there were plenty of rats out there who needed homes.  I got in touch with Mainely Rat Rescue, and arranged to adopt six of their least-adoptable rats:  three brothers, one of whom was a biter, an old doe no one would take, and two Holbrook rats, a mother--also a biter--and her daughter.

The boys and Louise moved into the upper level of the DCN, the mother-daughter pair moved in with Bartholomew.  At first, he was all "Daddy y u do dis 2 me?" and took every possible opportunity to get out of the cage, but the girls were so meek and unassertive that he soon fell in love with them and became very protective of them.  The times I brought them out on the bed (not often, because they were so scared) he would be right there, making sure his girls were safe.  They appeared to derive great comfort from his presence, and he enjoyed cuddling with them, to the point where, in the last several months, he would actually pass up opportunities to come out of the cage.

Bart was a rat ambassador all his life.  Despite the misadventure with his first owner (I suspect his injuries came from running in a metal-mesh wheel), he always loved people.  He charmed them almost instantly; it was amazing.  The day I picked him up from Michelle at the pet store, every staff member insisted on petting him and saying goodbye.  Wherever I brought him after that, people always fell in love.  He charmed the staff of the vet office I went to in New York, and he had the staff at our new vet's in Connecitcut wrapped around his tiny paws in no time.  He had an excellent memory for people; he still knew who I was after our three-month separation, and he still remembered Michelle after an even longer period.

Although Bartholomew didn't get along well with most rats, he was extremely gentle with Mary and Martha, my Holbrook girls.  He seemed to understand how badly traumatized they had been, and watching him look after them was very touching.  I think his gentleness and encouragement helped Mary get over her fear of me and stop biting.  His eagerness to let me handle him seemed to surprise her at first, and I think it helped her stop seeing me as a threat.

For such a small ratty, Bartholomew had a big presence.  He will leave a large hole in my heart.  Farewell, my sweet and lovely boy.  I hope you get along well with all the other ratties at the Bridge while you wait for me to come and find you.  :love9:
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Rat Tails & Mug Shots / Re: Some Old Pics!
« Last post by purple rat on June 15, 2018, 05:42:04 PM »
Love the pictures and the stories of your ratties.  Your Moose looks like my dearly departed Neo who also loved to eat. His nickname was Mr. Fattypants :hyper:
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