Author Topic: Proper Age?  (Read 975 times)

Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Proper Age?
« on: November 14, 2008, 02:41:35 PM »
A friend of mine was surprised with a litter of rat pups, so I agreed to take 2 females. What I was wondering is, what is an okay age to take them from the litter? They're just opening their eyes, and they're so cute!




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Offline Dearpie

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2008, 02:43:46 PM »
They're adorable!  It's recommended to stay with the momma rat until about 5 weeks.  They learn so much about 'being a rat' in that time.

Congrats!

Offline Sorraia

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2008, 02:46:17 PM »
They can be weaned at 5 weeks of age.

Personally, and this is just me,  :wink5: I keep my babies until 6-8 weeks before placing them. That way they get extra socializing and learn more about what it means to be a rat. During this time the girls are housed with their mom and other females, and the boys with their dad and other males (all after proper intros of course!).
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Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2008, 02:50:09 PM »
Okay, thanks! I've been handling them every chance I get. I'm so in love with them! They groom my hands all the time, and they're so small and soft. he thinks they're about 2 weeks. Does that sound right? So, maybe I'll get to bring them home around the end of November?
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Offline Sorraia

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2008, 03:29:10 PM »
Okay, thanks! I've been handling them every chance I get. I'm so in love with them! They groom my hands all the time, and they're so small and soft. he thinks they're about 2 weeks. Does that sound right? So, maybe I'll get to bring them home around the end of November?

If their eyes just opened, they should be right about 2 to 2.5 weeks. To be safe, I would say 2 weeks, that way they aren't accidentally weaned too early. ;)
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Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2008, 03:31:00 PM »
What is the proper way to wean rats? He's had litters before, and usually he just waits until they start eating solids.
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Offline Sorraia

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2008, 03:33:47 PM »
What is the proper way to wean rats? He's had litters before, and usually he just waits until they start eating solids.

The babies will start eating solid foods between 2 and 3 weeks old (my current litter just turned 2 weeks old on Tuesday and are already nibbling), which is much too young to be weaned. Close to 4 weeks they'll be eating solid food more often, but will still be nursing.

When they reach 5 weeks of age, they should be pretty much eating solid food most of the time. They might still go to mom for nursing, but it is no longer an important part of their diet. All you (the human caretaker) needs to do to "wean" them is separate the babies. Usually at this age only the males need to be separated. The girls can be kept with their mom, or adopted out to new homes.
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Offline DazzleMe

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2008, 04:45:19 PM »
 Eyes open typically on day 14, but they could open on day 13 or 15. Usually it is right on the dot 14 days, though. You will want to separate the males from the group at 5 weeks of age. I leave the girls with mom until they go to new homes. My pups leave here between 6-8 weeks these days. They are much more 'ready' to handle a new environment at that age than 4-5 weeks old (some people place at 4 weeks..way too early).

 As far as how to wean... the mom does that basically on her own. Moms are typically starting to shove babies off the nipple at 4 weeks and complete the process along around 5 weeks. Males should always be separated at this age, though, and no later. They're eating plenty of solid foods by then!

 Your two are SOO ADORABLE! I haven't had a PEW in awhile..those pictures just make me want one even more ;).
-Melina & Crew

Offline Pennytherat

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #8 on: November 15, 2008, 04:51:21 AM »
D'aaawwwww! How cute! I don't really have much to say except good idea getting a pair ;) I need to get Penny a new friend soon...
I am ratless. Someday I will own rats again.

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Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #9 on: November 15, 2008, 02:42:48 PM »
She'll be my first PEW. The only reason I'm taking her is because she's so sweet, and I know if I don't then she'll definitely be food. There are 2 more white ones, a brown hooded and a black one. I think the only male is the black one. they're so cute, and the two I have picked have already started to groom me.
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Offline chiropteragirl

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #10 on: November 15, 2008, 03:34:01 PM »
 :BlueDumboBigEyes: Awww, a baby PEW... *melts*
My fat little cyber rattie:
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Offline Dearpie

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #11 on: November 15, 2008, 10:16:43 PM »
Have you considered taking three, and saving another from their 'fate'?   :cheeky: :cheeky:

Offline ⚡⚡DrachenDame⚡⚡

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Re: Proper Age?
« Reply #12 on: November 17, 2008, 11:22:39 AM »
I only really want two more. I have one more female at home, and one male in a separate cage. Plus, I have to keep the new babies in a 10gallon tank until they're big enough to go in the big cage. (It's a SuperPet Ferret Cage, with 1/2 inch bar spacing) And I don't think it would be fair to have 3 in such a small space.
Some people think the best way to protect animal life is to make scientists fear for theirs. Support the Foundation for Biomedical Research.