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Taming a wild rat

A glimpse of the wild rattie girl.

Today a dream has come true for me in the form of the cutest pet: She is so perfect, I could’ve not pictured her better.

For the last half year I was looking for a rescue rat and now she came in the form of a wild one.

I love pet rats, but they can have certain diseases, some created by man in laboratory facilities similar to but not quite like in ‘Pinky and the Brain’.

One very painful one to watch is a respiratory illness caused by the bacteria Mycoplasma pulmonis. It is being transferred at birth from mother to child.

Most pet rats are affected by it. Maybe a wild rat can be free of it and thus live longer?

Rats are usually seen as vermin and more likely to be killed than captured. When a clan started to invade city housing and openly walked in through the kitchen window, something had to be done. Thankfully Dave, a good friend and fellow rattie enthusiast, decided to try out live traps and captured a young and tiny wild rat girl alive.

As she looked fragile and had nowhere to go back to, Dave asked if I wanted to look after her. I don’t know if it’s possible to tame a wild rat, but she is still very young, she looks only a couple of months old.

Luckily we had a good start so far:

Dave had captured her in a live rat trap, which I took home to give her a long shower. Not sure what sits in her fur and not wanting to find out either. So I put her together with the trap under the shower and let it rain.

She simply sat through the shower of warm water. I didn’t want to stress her, so unfortunately couldn’t towel dry her. I released her into the cage, where I had prepared a box with dried out oat grass for her to snuggle in.

Immediately she took to grooming herself. As she was wet to the bone, it took her a long time to dry herself. A good half an hour of intensive grooming later and she finally rested.

No proper photos yet, as damsel is very shy. She has a roan coat with tones of browns and an underlayer of softer grey fur. Her belly and socks are white. She is very small, but her face is already quite long, so she must be out of her baby age.

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