Adoption and introduction

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Gallowax
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Adoption and introduction

Post by Gallowax » Fri Mar 17, 2017 2:57 am

Hello everyone.

I've introduced a pair of rats to a single and vice versa under a few circumstances before. I have just adopted a couple of new girls, around six months but poorly treated. I was told by the very reputable home they were "biters", but I haven't had that problem yet. But I have had to organise getting them out for some quality time around when they're in their house, as they are very skittish about being lifted most of the time. I also have two older ladies that I am introducing them to.

The issue is, I can leave them all in the same cage for a long time without much of an issue (obviously religiously supervised) but then they need picking up again to move back to their house to give the ladies a rest. I don't want them scared I'm going to be chasing them round the big cage that will be their home, as they all need to live together sooner or later. What can I do to make them more comfortable with a light two handed lift from one cage to another? Sorry to go on.

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cyber ratty
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Re: Adoption and introduction

Post by cyber ratty » Fri Mar 17, 2017 9:33 am

I would leave them all together rather than keep separating them.

Go through the stages of the carrier method, and since they already know each other, the whole process could well be completed over the course of a week.

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[cub]
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Re: Adoption and introduction

Post by [cub] » Fri Mar 17, 2017 5:04 pm

I agree; if they're mixing together without any serious problems then separating them again is unnecessary. And once they've bonded as a group, the new rats may pick up on their older friends' confidence and become more confident themselves, saving you some work on taming them.
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Fondly remembering: Zephyr Delanynder the big floofy eejit (NLA28), Falere the contrary (NLA36), Mirala the best and finest (NLA36), Zephyr Opold the serene, and Rila the rodentist.
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Gallowax
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Re: Adoption and introduction

Post by Gallowax » Sat Mar 18, 2017 5:31 pm

They're all sleeping soundly together. But I'd like to ask an extra question. One of my older ladies is probably going to have to have a lump removed. Given that they're fairly new to each other, post surgery is it going to cause a big issue? My other old lady had the same and I know they can be fine together, but do I risk putting a sleepy post surgery lady with them or do I split them into two again again?

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[cub]
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Re: Adoption and introduction

Post by [cub] » Sat Mar 18, 2017 6:28 pm

Hmm, I'm not sure. When one of my girls needed blood tests partway through intros I was advised to take the whole group on the vet trip so as not to interrupt the bonding process, but that was just a blood draw (albeit under general anaesthesia) and not surgery. If your new girls aren't overly boisterous and don't pick on their older friends too much, and they're already at the stage where they're sleeping together, I'd be inclined to keep them as one group throughout the lumpectomy and recovery process. My vets have always been happy for my rats to be accompanied by friends when they go in for procedures; I just pack them a bigger lunchbox for the day. But I've limited experience with intros so I might be wrong! :?
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Fondly remembering: Zephyr Delanynder the big floofy eejit (NLA28), Falere the contrary (NLA36), Mirala the best and finest (NLA36), Zephyr Opold the serene, and Rila the rodentist.
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cyber ratty
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Re: Adoption and introduction

Post by cyber ratty » Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:51 am

When you say probably, if that means she's not going in for at least a week, then introductions should be pretty much completed by then - I don't think there will be problems in keeping them together.

(Beware the vet advising you to keep her on her own for several days - they often say that but they don't understand how detrimental it is.)

Gallowax
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Re: Adoption and introduction

Post by Gallowax » Sun Mar 19, 2017 6:10 pm

Nothing is guaranteed, but given the experiences I've had before I'm pretty sure she will. The two newbies would probably be very scared by a day trip, I don't want to put them through that.
The vet hasn't specified to split them before, it's just me being concerned that if she is weak from anaesthetic one of the new ones might try and do some bullying just when she should be resting.

Thanks for your advice everyone x

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[cub]
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Re: Adoption and introduction

Post by [cub] » Sun Mar 19, 2017 7:06 pm

I wouldn't worry about scaring the new girls with a day at the vets. It's likely they'll have to go themselves one day, so it's good for them to get accustomed to the journey and the smells and sounds there now. That way when it's their turn to have an appointment, they'll be more familiar with the place and won't be as nervous, and if they're going in for something like an op, being less nervous will help their recovery. Also, if they do get scared at the vets they'll be more inclined to stick to their older cagemates for comfort and support, and that can help the bonding process.
Poo-shoveller to: Lia and Lita.
Fondly remembering: Zephyr Delanynder the big floofy eejit (NLA28), Falere the contrary (NLA36), Mirala the best and finest (NLA36), Zephyr Opold the serene, and Rila the rodentist.
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