tiny rescued rats and advice needed

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charlie4591
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tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by charlie4591 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 8:42 pm

I came across an advert local to me for baby rats for £1 :/ It turns out some uniformed man decided to breed rats in what i'm assuming was a misguided effort to make money and ended up with more than he could handle. i asked the names of the rats and he said they didn't have any as 'they were just gonna be for breeding' he obviously had no clue how many rats you can actually get from a litter or how to care for them. he told me he ended up with 40+ rats and 'had to get rid of them cos even the pet shops wouldn't take them'. I took the boys that were left, there was 3 of them and i honestly thought they were mice at first sight. they were absolutely tiny. they had their eyes open so they must be 10 days but i doubt they're much older than that. they'd already been separated from their mum and i don't know for how long. I've gave them scrambled egg with tuna, some cooked pasta and some veg and the amount they're eating is phenomenal considering their size. obviously they should still be drinking mum's milk so i'm really worried they wont survive even with the high protein foods. is there anything specific i can give them, maybe kitten or puppy milk?

when i left the man said that he 'took the boy out too late so they're pregnant again, if you want any more they're due in 2 weeks' :cry: since the gestation period is just over 3 weeks i believe, then my boys must be barely 10 days if the girls got pregnant again straight away. i didn't see any food in the cage and definitely nothing high protein. i'm worried hes going to take these babies away from mum as early as he did my boys. i'm assuming he's not going to attempt to breed again after the mess he's made this time and i'm thinking of offering to take the pregnant does and the lone male and re-home them and the babies myself so he doesn't sell them as feeders. i don't know what to say to convince him to give up the rats but they're not exactly loved pets, they don't even have names. any help and advice on what to do here is appreciated.

here's a photo of one of the boys so you can see how small they are:
Image

and here compared to a normal sized rat:
Image

i've popped them in a cabrio cat carrier for now and even that swamps them. the smallest cage i have is a tom cage and i'm scared to put them in in case they a) get through the bars or b) fall and injure themselves. its a huge drop for such a tiny animal. they look so fragile i'm apprehensive about picking them up. they're friendly little things despite their bad start in life. should i risk popping them in the tom or keep them in the cabrio?
Last edited by charlie4591 on Tue Jul 26, 2011 8:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by spoiled_rat » Tue Jul 26, 2011 8:45 pm

They look about 4 weeks old, not 10 days thankfully!

I would let them settle in the carrier for now, as too much space may freak them out at first especially after an upheavel so young.
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by charlie4591 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 9:00 pm

thank goodness, i've never seen rats that small so i feared the worse. he told me they were 8 weeks on the phone, obviously not :/.
:love: Owned by my 8 beautiful girlies, Isis, Artemis, Venus, Athena, Freya, Parvati, Sonea and Trinity :love: 3 beautiful baby boys, Akkarin, Ceryni and Neo :love:

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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by NickyE » Tue Jul 26, 2011 9:07 pm

It is quite possible they're 8 weeks old, sadly -have you seen Aquajen's 'another sad rescue' thread? The babies are supposedly 10 weeks old and are the size of mice. The first 2 Jenna took in were under 40g and Lucian was 66g when he came here last Thursday. He's up to 101g now though :D

Kitten food is going down a treat with him here and he arrived with a part eaten hard boiled egg from his Aunty Jenna :D
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by charlie4591 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 9:52 pm

i've just checked it out, it's infuriating and upsetting that people are so careless with their animals :x, going to get some applepaws tomorrow for them. fattening them up is going to become my mission :D
:love: Owned by my 8 beautiful girlies, Isis, Artemis, Venus, Athena, Freya, Parvati, Sonea and Trinity :love: 3 beautiful baby boys, Akkarin, Ceryni and Neo :love:

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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by rattypetrolhead » Wed Jul 27, 2011 8:13 am

I've just taken in 2 babies that were handed into my vets (they were dumped on a train...), they're also very tiny. Baby girl has just started to moult her baby fluff so I'm guessing they're 5-6 weeks-ish, but they're about the size of 'normal' 4 week olds :(

Unfortunately there's a boy and a girl - obviously I've had to separate them as they're old enough to breed - I'm keeping everything crossed that baby girl isn't already pregnant... Also, in case anyone wonders - I'm chasing up company for them as soon as they get out of quarantine (at my sister's house). Baby girl is staying with me :love: and I have a home lined up for baby boy :D .

They're getting a high protein diet - they're dwarfed by chicken wings, it's hilarious :lol: . But they're loving their kitten mix (lactol, EMP and vitalin), plus they love their veggies.
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by Neotoma » Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:30 pm

If it's a standard Tom you should be ok on the bar spacing as it's 1.1cm - I've had babies that small in one. they look big enough to survive ok - just lots of nice nourishing food to beef up their start in life.
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by charlie4591 » Thu Jul 28, 2011 7:10 am

making food for them is more fun than making food for me :) there's quite a difference in just a few days in their size and confidence, they're becoming happy little men :D
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by Natarat » Thu Jul 28, 2011 12:19 pm

Any news on those poor pregnant does the guy still had?

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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by Midnight Rose » Thu Jul 28, 2011 1:46 pm

They look about 7/8 weeks to me, they are tiny but they have more mature heads. You can usually tell by the head if they are older and just tiny :)
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by acapae_wolf » Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:04 pm

Neotoma wrote:If it's a standard Tom you should be ok on the bar spacing as it's 1.1cm - I've had babies that small in one. they look big enough to survive ok - just lots of nice nourishing food to beef up their start in life.
1cm Marchioro cages are suitable for adult mice, so any sort of moving about rat is fine.
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by Rach210 » Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:39 pm

Poor little guys :/ At least they have good homes now. If you have the time/space/money then it would be the best thing for those does to take them and home the babies.

Do the tiny ratties have names?
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by charlie4591 » Thu Jul 28, 2011 6:11 pm

thanks for all the advice guys, they're in the tom now and bounding around like little fireworks, it's fab to watch :D i'm really glad they're not as young as i though, they're just so tiny but are wolfing the food down.

I've offered to rehome his does and babies and his lone boy but haven't heard back yet. I'm finished uni for the summer so have a lot of spare time at the moment so if he agrees to let me foster them i'll have them sociable in no time... forcing love on ratties has worked in the past :P

As for names thats an ongoing debate, i wanted to name them after harry potter characters, with the agouti hoodie being Dobby but the boyfriend is refusing to allow it, he won't let me express my inner nerd so names are still up for negotiation. at the moment they have become know as my 'little chickens' which didn't please my boyfriend either. i think they're smart enough to know they're not poultry but Dan thinks i'm giving them a complex :oops:
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by NickyE » Thu Jul 28, 2011 7:57 pm

charlie4591 wrote: at the moment they have become know as my 'little chickens' which didn't please my boyfriend either. i think they're smart enough to know they're not poultry but Dan thinks i'm giving them a complex :oops:
Hehe! I'm trying to stop myself saying "CHICKEN LEGS!" to River when I pick him up because he sticks his back legs out at an angle to his body and they look like furry chicken drumsticks

Glad the boys are doing well. My little man Lucian (named after a Lunar Crater....Wiki'd to find that, it wasn't something I knew...Huxley is also one, although that wasn't where his name came from) is doing great too and loves his big gootie brothers when I let them out together. They're so good with him, I'm hoping to get him moved in with them soon - although they're the same age he's obviously about 1/3 of the size and I still want to get extra tasty food into him that they're not really needing now.
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Re: tiny rescued rats and advice needed

Post by charlie4591 » Sat Jul 30, 2011 7:02 am

i want to wait til they get bigger before intro'ing them to my big boys too. while they're very gentle with the babies and have freeranged together i'm afraid they'd get squashed in a rattie pile by my little fatties :D

they now have names, Dobby, Dumbledore and Harry :D
:love: Owned by my 8 beautiful girlies, Isis, Artemis, Venus, Athena, Freya, Parvati, Sonea and Trinity :love: 3 beautiful baby boys, Akkarin, Ceryni and Neo :love:

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