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Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Rat Scraps

By Shellyane Bryan
A rat owner from England shares tales of living with her first rat, Queen Dumbo Duncanson-Bryan, and a rat named Mouse.

Dumbo the rat  Photo Courtesy Shellyane Bryan
Dumbo the rat has started to squeak back when her cagemate Mouse starts a fight.

My rat Mouse has been a bit better behaved this week. I’ve been keeping an eye on both my rats when I’ve had the chance. Mouse hasn’t quite stopped biting the ears of Dumbo, but she does seem to be doing it a bit less.

Admittedly, earlier on when I was minding my own business on the sofa, the two of them started scrapping on my shoulder! I say “the two,” but Dumbo mostly was doing her thing, just flaked out watching the TV with me, grinding her teeth the way she does; that’s when Mouse dove on her. I think she was only playing, and Dumbo is a big baby and was squeaking up a storm over nothing, but Mouse always goes too far and starts using her teeth. Poor Dumbo has lost some of the fur on the back of her neck where Mouse has been yanking her about.

I have noticed that Dumbo has started to fight back now, and there is a certain pitch of squeak that makes Mouse back off very quickly. I was wondering whether she does it because I give Dumbo more attention than her. This isn’t intentional, it’s just she’s always first to the door and is a lot easier to pick up than Mouse, who wriggles and scratches until she’s on solid ground again.

On the subject of rats and solid ground, Dumbo managed to get hold of my phone charger today, which was safely tucked away until she came bumbling along and knocked it onto the floor. She then proceeded to chew the end of it! Luckily no fatal damage has been done, but it always amazes me how rats chew the one thing you would really rather they didn’t. They don’t even do it for any particular reason, other than the fact that they just enjoy chewing things to pieces and then leaving me with the mess to clean up!

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