Rats introduction - 4+4 boys

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PannaDominika
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Joined: Mon Jan 29, 2018 9:25 am

Rats introduction - 4+4 boys

Post by PannaDominika » Mon Apr 30, 2018 12:51 pm

Hi,

After reading 2 different post chains on some polish forums and checking this one too I have decided to come and ask some questions.

I have my rats since July 2017, all of them were 6 weeks old when I got them. Not my first rats, but first ones in such a big group, as I have decided to get 4 boys straight away.

My cage is quite big- 92x64x160cm (http://www.littlepetwarehouse.co.uk/pro ... -cage.html) so I have decided recently that I would like to add another 4 boys.

Old boys:
Cutpaste and Ahmi - both acting like Alphas, both quite clumsy, very cuddly and not really aggressive
Bigguy and Dohmi - playful, less dominant, calm

At this point my cage has been divided in two, as the metal floor is removable. In the second half of the cage since yesterday I have 4 7 weeks old boys - all spent 8 days in a separate cage to ensure they are not ill, all have all paperwork from the vet that was given to me when I bought them from the breeder.

New boys:
Fuzz Ghost and double fuzz Patchwerk - very playful, very calm when carried in my hoodie, incredibly curious and in general nor problematic
Bear and Cinnamon - very curious but still quite scared, playing with me a bit every now and then, eating food from my hand, sleeping on my lap

None of them is showing any aggressive behavior, so last night I have cleaned the cage, put both groups into separate halves and waited. Nothing happened - no hissing, no drama. Normal sniffing only. This morning I have swapped halves - still no drama, a little bit more sniffing around but both groups went to sleep very fast.

I was planning to keep changing halves for a few days to make sure they got used to the smell and slowly start introducing them on a neutral floor in the bathroom - question of the day would be - is there anything else I should do/change? I am aware that it will be all up to rats how quickly they will bond but avoiding mistakes now will make it all easier. I have introduced rats before (10 years ago or so) but it was always 1+2 or 1+1, never 4+4 so I am slightly scared that I won't be able to do it properly.


PS. Forgive me language mistakes, English is not my first language

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cyber ratty
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Re: Rats introduction - 4+4 boys

Post by cyber ratty » Tue May 01, 2018 7:49 am

I wouldn't follow the 'swap the cages over' method of introductions, leave them in their own half until the babies are a good size (over 250g) or when they reach 10 weeks old. Introducing 4 to 4 is no different to smaller numbers.

Then I would recommend the carrier method, it works well with all combinations, but especially with kittens because they won't be able to dash away from your adults, and that is when accidental injuries would usually happen.

Good luck, a big group is a lot of fun. :luck:

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