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 Post subject: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 9:20 am 
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So yesterday I started introductions with my 3 girls and a neutered rescue boy, and am a bit unsure whether I need to separate them.

Firstly, one of the girls was in heat and he was humping her periodically. Is this normal or should I be worried about pregnancy? He was homed to me as ready to go with girls and the rescue had already tried him with a female group so fairly confident it's been long enough since his neuter, but I've never had neutered boys do this before.

More worryingly, one of the girls has a large gash on her back. I don't know when it happened as apart from a fight when they initially met, they've been relatively calm. I've cleaned the wound with hibiscrub and she seems unphased by it, and as I said things seem to be okay in there. Obviously the no blood no foul rule applies but don't know if it warrants taking her out.

What would people suggest? I feel a bit mean leaving her in there but don't know if it's worth starting from scratch :?

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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 8:09 pm 
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Location: South Cambridgeshire
The humping is nothing to worry about - bucks are sterile by 2 weeks after the op.

I would assume the gash is accidental, so clip everyone's nails to reduce the chance of any more accidents, and then keep an eye out in case something more serious is happening.

What size carrier/cage are they currently in, and what are the timescales on progress so far? If there is enough space to chase and hump, and to cause accidental injury, you may have moved up size too quickly.

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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 25, 2017 8:33 am 
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They're still in the carrier at the moment, as I'm sort of in and out of the house all week I thought I'd play it safe. I think the wound could be from the initial fight, I just hadn't seen it because it's under the fur. Not sure if it was from nails as it was a pretty deep cut, and had sort of puncture wounds at each end so possibly a grab?

Currently things seem to be going really well, haven't seen any scuffles in the past 24 hours, and they've been sleeping in a big ratpile. Ned (neutered boy) has stopped puffing his fur and is letting the girls walk all over him.

Thanks for the reassurance, just wanted a second opinion before starting over again.

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Leah


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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 25, 2017 5:29 pm 
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I hope it continues well :luck:

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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Sat Nov 04, 2017 11:08 am 
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I'm a little bit worried about Pangur, the girl who I saw Ned mounting on the first day of introductions, everyone has been doing great and all getting along really well now in a permanent set up, but Pangur is being very aggressive, both with me and the other rats recently. I dont know if I'm overthinking it, but there also seems to be an extortionate amount of nest building going on in there. I haven't been tracking her weight gain as I assumed there would be no chance of a pregnancy, but I haven't seen her in heat since the incident.

It's coming up to two weeks since I introduced them - is there at way I can tell for definite if she's pregnant at this point? Is there such thing as a phantom pregnancy in rats? Or should I be thinking about preparing for a litter? :shock:

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Leah


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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:48 am 
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Rats can have a phantom pregnancy when mated with an infertile buck, so it could be that.

How long had it been since his neuter when you introduced them?

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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:02 pm 
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I'm not sure, will try to get in touch with the rescue today, but I assume it was over two weeks as he had no visible wounds on him or anything like that, and she'd tried before with some girls. Is it advisable to start monitoring her weight? Or will I be unable to tell at this stage?

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Leah


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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:25 pm 
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Weight gain in a phantom is usually faster than a real pregnancy, but if you do start to monitor (maybe twice a week) then once it begins to drop your mind will be put at rest.

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Mary x

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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:40 pm 
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Will she be likely to show other signs of pregnancy, fur loss around nipples etc, or just the weight gain and behavioural changes? Have emailed the rescue, no reply just yet but am pretty sure the answer will be that he was neutered more than 2 weeks before introductions as she's pretty overrun at the moment and highly doubt she'd risk more by putting him in with a group of girls before he was ready.

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Leah


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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Mon Nov 06, 2017 9:59 am 
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There aren't any very reliable signs of real pregnancy, and even if a rat is pregnant there's no guarantee they'll stay pregnant. (loss of hair around nipples only happens in some rats, mine never lose any)

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Mary x

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 Post subject: Re: Neutered boy introductions
 Post Posted: Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:54 am 
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Alright, will keep an eye all the same. Have spoken to the rescue. She said she doesn't know the date of his neuter for certain (she's had 85 rats from one home and neutered 3 large groups of males in the last 6 months), but if she said she'd already tried him with girls she definitely would have given it 2 weeks. Fingers crossed it's just a phantom pregnancy, she seems to be slowing down on the nest building etc so hopefully nothing to worry about.

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Leah


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