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Rat Tails & Mug Shots / Re: In memoriam Martha (6/2/16--10/22/18)
« Last post by gramma2jaakk on October 22, 2018, 08:59:30 AM »
Memorials always bring tears to my eyes, no matter how lovingly, hopeful, cheerful, or precious they are. And this one was no exception. I'm glad Martha (and all the other littles you have) are and were able to find some love with you. It is difficult enough being a rat, so misunderstood, but they do make the best pets, and blossom with you. I'm so sorry for your loss. But she was finally in a loving home, and with wonderful rat (and human) friends!
Rat Care Corner / Re: Missing Rat!?!???
« Last post by gramma2jaakk on October 22, 2018, 08:47:41 AM »
Oh dear! I'm just now seeing this, so any luck yet? What I've heard of others doing is, if they have access to a Hav-A-Hart live trap, set it up in the room with the cage. Bait it with the favorite food, but if the fave food is peanut butter, be sure to thin it out. And then wait. I'm really hope for some good news!
Rat Tails & Mug Shots / In memoriam Martha (6/2/16--10/22/18)
« Last post by BigBen on October 22, 2018, 07:53:20 AM »
Life has been at me lately, and I haven't been here in a while, but the passing away of my beautiful sweet Martha has drawn me back.  Martha and her mother Mary were Holbrook rescues, adopted from Mainely Rat Rescue.  Mary apparently had a horrific time before her rescue, and even though Martha was born in foster care, Mary's trauma affected her daughter as well.  Neither girl was ever very comfortable outside the cage, though Martha enjoyed it a bit more than her mother did.  When I adopted these girls last year, they were already old enough to be difficult to place, and Mary's biting made them especially difficult to adoptees.  Unfortunately, their age and previous experiences made it hard for us to get acquainted, but I took great satisfaction in giving them a safe and loving home, and they came to trust me enough that Mary no longer felt the need to bite.

I put these very shy girls in with Bartholomew, who never got along well with most rats, and it didn't take them long to win him over.  Mary preferred to spend a lot of time by herself, but after a few weeks of "Daddy, why u do dis to me?" Bartholomew could generally be found cuddling with Martha in the space pod.  From wanting to get out of the cage at every opportunity, he became a champion snuggler.  Although he still enjoyed out time, he only insisted on coming out when one of his girls was out, and he would spend the whole time next to her and making sure she was safe.  His gentle protection did a lot to make Martha and her mother feel at home.

After Bartholomew and Mary both died (Mary of old age, Bart of a sudden, unexpected heart attack), I put Martha in with Louise and the boys, whom I had adopted at the same time as Mary and Martha.  I wasn't sure how Martha would do with the others, but she was clearly grieving and in need of companionship.  It was a good choice; she provided some female companionship to Louise in her last days, and she quickly won over the boys.  Despite her timidity, the boys never bullied or mistreated her.  In fact, she proved a great comfort to David, who was grieving his brother Peter, and he quickly became her protector and cuddle partner whenever she was not spending time with Louise.  In the last month or so, they were usually found together inside or on top of one of the hideouts.

Despite her timidity, Martha could still be assertive.  She was always one of the first to get to the treat bowl in the morning, and she was fairly aggressive at getting to my hand whenever I was passing out Yogies.  I loved the little Himalayan spot on her nose, which seemed to come and go.  She and I never really grew close, which is why I will treasure the memory of snuggling with her during her last hours on earth.  Yesterday morning, she was obviously drawing down, but the spark of her personality was still there.  I took her out of the cage for a quick hug and kiss before heading off to church, and when I put her back in the cage, David started gently grooming her.  It was clear he knew something was up.  When I came into the bedroom last night, her body had started shutting down.  She still had a bit of strength left, but she let me bring her into the bed with me, and I believe it was some comfort for her to know that she was surrounded by love during her last hours.  The end was very peaceful.  They say that there is no awareness once Cheyne-Stokes breathing begins, but Martha seemed to pass in and out of consciousness, and although she changed position a few times, she stayed right by my thigh the whole night.  I buried her before dawn in the front flower bed beside Bartholomew and her mother.  Rest in peace, my beautiful, sweet girl. :love9:
Adoption Center / Re: Looking for boys (Boston area)
« Last post by purple rat on October 22, 2018, 07:30:08 AM »
Have you checked with Mainely Rat Rescue? They have rats that are being fostered in New England and New York
Rat Care Corner / Re: What is this coat color called? Baby pics!
« Last post by BigBen on October 22, 2018, 07:14:45 AM »
Agouti hairs are "ticked" brown, black, and grey.  These guys look as though they are unticked black or dark brown, with light-colored guard hairs.  It's an interesting effect.

I'd call the coloration a blazed and variegated black (or brown) Berkshire.
Rat Care Corner / Re: Missing Rat!?!???
« Last post by BigBen on October 22, 2018, 07:08:04 AM »
First of all, take your shoes off!  Then double-check the cage.  I once spent an hour-and-a-half looking for a rat who was in the cage all along!

Turn everything off, and listen for quiet rustles that indicate a rat moving around.  If Gadget knows her name, try calling her.  Shake a treat container.  Lie down on the floor, and wait for her to come climb on your back.  Mamarat's suggestions, as well.  Hunger and thirst will often bring a stray rat back to the cage area, and the sound of food being put in a bowl will often call them back.

Check the rats' usual play area for hiding places.  I use my bed, so I look under the covers and behind pillows, and in the tissue box or other hideout.

Look under the furniture for hiding places up inside the spring coils.  Look inside drawers and on top of curtain rods, and behind the curtains on the windowsills.  Look inside the kitchen cabinets, especially in the food cupboards and pantry.  Check under the stove and behind the refrigerator.

I used to have three boys I trusted to free-range, and they always came back to the cage eventually (I would leave a ladder out for them).  But the ones who weren't allowed to free range often enjoyed exploring, especially under things and in the closets.  They were often reluctant to be recaptured, but would eventually let me scoop them up once I found them.  My chinchillas, however, are a very different story!
Rat Care Corner / Re: Missing Rat!?!???
« Last post by mamarat2 on October 21, 2018, 07:55:08 AM »
Any luck?

Just seeing this. I've had them get out and we put food treats down and they wander back. Events they come back to the cage especially when all the other days are still in the cage.
Adoption Center / Looking for boys (Boston area)
« Last post by ArabellaFlynn on October 19, 2018, 09:54:06 PM »
WANTED - 3-4 friendly male rats for live-in companion to experienced rat mommy in Belmont, MA. Job duties include napping, cuddling, napping, gnawing new windows into the nest box, napping, being spoiled, napping, and occasional napping. Must be willing to taste test a wide variety of foods. Spacious living quarters + meals provided, medical care (with rat-adoring local vet) included. 365 vacation days per year. Breed and appearance unimportant, as long as you have a good heart.  :heart:

Interested parties please contact
Rat Care Corner / Missing Rat!?!???
« Last post by MaatAset on October 18, 2018, 12:38:00 AM »
Iím gutted. I donít know what has happened. In my two decades of rat ownership Iíve never had this happen. Gadget has vanished. Sheís not in the cage. Iíve searched all over the house in case she somehow managed to sneak out when the door was open and I missed her. I havenít heard nor seen a trace or her. Iíve already formed such a close bond with the babies and Gadget is such a joy with her playful, exuberant energy. I donít know what to do 😢

Anyone had this happen before?
Rat Care Corner / Re: Rat Life Expectancy Survey
« Last post by purple rat on October 16, 2018, 08:07:37 PM »
Merlin, 28 month old intact male from a breeder. Soft tissue cancer
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