17th November 2004
Im happy to announce that Rufus and Reuben arrived home last night.I picked them up form Brenda,
(i changed my mind after speaking to a few different people, originaly wanted girlies).
Rufus is a little more outgoing than Reuben, but time will allow him to settle in.
Hi All its been 2 days since i bought Rufus and Reuben home...
Im just wanting to find out how long it usualy is til the ratties get use to you, and will not
scramble away when you approach their cage???
Am i expecting too much too soon???
Last night I gave them some chicken bones and some corn cob... this morning when I went
to check on them there was no sign of the chicken, when I cleaned out their cage, and the corn cob was stripped clean..
hearty appetites for 2 small creatures
They are soooooooooooooooo cute...Rufus is turning into a bully, but still a bit
skiddish, Reuben is a bit bolder now. I gave them some chicken bones and a corn cob last week, following morning Not
a sign of the bones, did find one small one stashed for later.... Corn was wiped clean.
They love cream cheese and peanuts... That's their Treaties When I give it to them
I tell them "mama has treaties"..They now come running to the edge of the cage when I say this with great expectations...
I told them on the weekend "Mama had treaties" for them And tried them on Banana... They were not impressed
Ive discovered my boys like cream cheese (and peanuts and almonds), I only have them a small
smearing of the chees on the fingers and as soon as i say " mama has treaties for her boys... they now come racing
up to the bars of the cage, or my hand if they are in their top nest box.. and grab my finger and lick it off.
then I thought i would try them with a banana... "Mama has treaties for her boys"..
Rufus and Reuben in discust "What you call that a treat...!!!" then scampered off with their noses in the air.
later that day i gave them a peanut half each. "mama has treaties" Rufus and reuben.."Now
thats much better...." grab scuttle to their corner and scoff the lot.
they are fond of avacado, cauliflower, and alfa sprouts, so i suppose that makes up for it.
im still trying things with them to see what they will and wont eat, so soon ill have a list of their likes and dislikes.
Well on the weekend had a little success with getting atleast one of the rats out of their cage..
Rufus was the 1st out only wandered a few steps, sniffing as he went along. then decided
that his Climbing tube was the safest place... Reuben on the other hand has found his footing on the out
side world. He ran, sniffed, explored the big wide world of my lounge area... I had to try and get him back
in the cage, Had to corner him and grab him. then he discovered tshirt diving.. down the inside back of my tshirt...
oh those cute little claws digging into the back.. what a feeling...
this happened twice, but the second time, Rueben put himself back into the cage... I had
to grab hold of Rufus to give him some out of cage time and interation with me so he would not get too jealous of his brother.
Well my boys Rufus and Reuben are making good progress settling into my place... Rufus
is still skiddish, but is making good progress and occasionaly ventures out from the cage for a short time.
Reuben on the other hand, has made huge progress... 3 times he has had a half our romp
around the lounge room floor, sniffing here sniffing there, and scurrying there and here... 1st time i had to corner
him to get him back to the cage, 2nd time he took himself back in and also the 3rd time.
this morning made my first mistake... usualy when im cleaning the cage, they have been
too frighened to go anywhere, but now that Reuben has had a taste of the good life... he wants more...
As usual i had left the top sleeping area open, thinking foolishly that all would go as before,
and they would just sit there and look around..... Not so for our Reuben.. out of the corner of my eye i saw a
ball of fuzz streeking towards the ground....
Half an hour later im still trying to get him back into the cage, so I though Ill make their
breakfast and give it to Rufus.... put the cage on the floor and leave the door open to see if Reuben would go in of
his own accord. Fortunately he did, which made me 25 minutes late for leaving for work...
Reuben: Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee im free.....
Mama: come on Rueben mama has to go to work.
Reuben,: catch me if you can
mama: mama has a treaty for you.
Reuben: Yeah right you just want to catch me and put me back.
mama: now Reuben where did you get to..
Reuben: he he he he he...
mama: Come on now mama is getting cross ill be late for work.
half an hour later.
Mama fuming gets breakfast for Rufus..
mama: Look Reuben Rufus is eating his breakfast like a good boy.
Reuben: I aint finished with my play time yet
mama takes a breath and steps back to count to ten and calm down.
Rueben wanders over to the cage door and walks in for his breakfast.
mama quickly closes the door
Thanks Ruebs. now mama is late.
Lesson learned.... dont ever leave the top of the cage sleeping area open unless you are
not going anywhere.....keep it closed after you have cleaned it.
finaly got a cuddle with both boys. I had left their cage door open, (it opens downwards
making a little landing.) while on the phone with an Aunt, Reuben ventured forth onto the open door.
So I thought... after getting off the phone, I sat infront of the cage with my hands under the door talking to the boys.
Reuben ventured out again, sniffing my hands and the air, then raced back inside. then Rufus ventured forth. only confident
enough to come half way out. Raced back inside, this went on for about 5 minutes.
Eventualy both boys tried coming out at the same time, Reuben tried to climbe the outside of
the cage, and Rufus rentured close enough to my hands to have a little sniff and put one paw on my hand, racing back inside,
I took the opportunity to take Reuben off the outside of the cage, and let him have a romp on mama.. After doing a few circuits
he sat on my left shoulder and started sniffing my ear. ( he was probabl6 wispering sweet nothings...
After a few minutes i put him back int the cage and tried to entice Rufus out.. He almost
made it onto my hand but Reuben bit him on the tail, and he scrambled inside.... While the were distracted in an argument,
i managed to get hold of Rufus and let him have a few minutes exploring mama.. then put him. Back.
After dinner i poped the cage on the ground leaving the door open to see if they would come
out of their own accord. for about half an hour they would stick their heads out have a sniff, go back in. walk
onto the landing, having a sniff and a look around, go back in, Reuben after 15 minutes got brave enough to come all the way out and set foot on the
carpet, then was straight back in. Rufus came out onto the landing a few minutes later doing the same thing.
so looks like we are making progress, slow but then i have only had them for a week, so thats
more than i had expected...
My 2 boys Rufus and Reuben are getting along very nicely now.. they both love roving around
the lounge, ive blocked off all "No Go" areas with some boards.. and only allow them out under supervision..
Rufus is a little more relaxed and easier to catch, he looks like turning into a Shoulder Rat,
where as Reuben is going to be a lap rat...
When im laying on the floor reading or watching TV, Rufus will sometimes come up onto the cushions
i have my head on and give me a lick on the ear... (now why can I get a nice Guy to do that..)
Or both boys will come and put both Paws on my shoulder or arm just to sa "Hi Mama"... then
its off again. they both have 2 games called "Tag mama and run" where they wait till im not looking, run up put
both front paws on my arm, or leg and then run off. The other game is "Stalk mama" I heard a russling on my left
from under the couch and saw Rufus heading my way, when he saw I was looking, he quickly turned and looked up at the bottom
of the couch.. as if to say "Hmmm whats this ive found" to throw me off te track. when I turned away again,
next thing i know there is a set of Rattie wiskers in my ear, and a little face looking over my shoulder..
they are just getting so Cute...
Well Rufus and Reuben have nicely settled in, Rufus has made a little Domain for himself on
the lounge, and Reuben has made himself a little stashing area under the lounge in the far corner where i cant get to it.
Its amazing how fast they are growing. Rufus is a little more people oriented than Reuben, unless there are peas or
corn on the offering... they are getting more and more inquisitive, and are now allowed to roam around the lounge dining
area, ill let them access to the rest of the house later (exept the kitchen. that is permanently off bounds)
Rufus is gurning into a real shoulder rat, he has learned that if he sits on my shoulder then
he get a treat... Reuben grabs and runs....
Well things are going swimmingly with Rufus
and Reuben (other wise known as Rufuses and Reubens, or Rufyand Reuby) they a re getting bolder and more inquisitive.
They are now 12 weeks old, and ive had them for 4 weeks, Gee that time goes fast.... Rufus now has the confidence to come
out and explore more, Reuben is an on the go Rat... "Oh theres something over there, better go look".... sometimes
i see him start running in one direction to be distracted by something else and head off in another direction, then gets distracted
by 3rd thing.. Hmmm which way to go, sometimes for a minute or two he will prance back and forth trying to decide what
to investigate 1st...
Rufus is turning into a real shoulder rat.. he has now
discovered that he is able to climb up on mamas lap and then up on her shoulder. I then set a few things up on the sofa
for him to explore, some postal tubes, cussions (not good ones) and other things. and he is happy to wander around.
if im sitting with my back to the lounge he then comes over and gets on my shoulder, checks my Ear canal for anything that
may be of interest, ruffles my hair and gives me a kiss then off exploring again..
Reubs is still a little on the wary side, but the other day
I was laying watching the TV when out of the corner comes a grey blur, somthing hits into my side, then that grey blur is
streeking off back from whence it came... "Who on earth was that" I cry as i look around... Oh there is
Rufus on his cussion, so it must have been Reuben... sure enough looking through the bars of their big cage is a wiskery
little face with a rather smug look.
Oh Yeah, they also have trained me to hold their water bottle
for a drink when they want one so they dont have to go to the effort of going back in the cage before they are ready, in case
mama closes the door...
So ends the 1st month of being new mama to Y.U.M.M.R.'s
(young upwardly mobile male ratties..)
10th January 2005
Well its back to work for Mama, and so Rufus and Reuben are
at home by themselves for most of the day.
During my Christmas break i spent lots of time out and about
with the boys, They had their first Vet Visit which went swimmingly, i thought i would have trouble getting them
in their travel cage, but i managed to grab Rufus 1st and put him in. Reuben went into one of his tubes to hide.
so i went away for a few seconds and then when he came back out, i nabbed him and got him in the travel cage. I left
it an hour before we went out, so that they could settle and get use to the cage again, as it had been a while since they
came home in it and it was a "newish" environment to them.
Went to the Morley Vet Clinic and saw Dr Sundra.... he thought
they were very cute.... (but hey, who doesn't)... they passed with flying colors, Rufus was reasonably well behaved
for a few minutes, but Reuben.... poor Dr Sundra had a battle keeping hold of him... The doctor was very impressed with
Reubens equipment too...
I also have now got the boys out of their nursery cage, and
into their big cage, now that i have it finished. They have 2 hammocks a platform a litter tray, which by the 2nd day
in the new cage, they were using well.. 2 halves of a milk container they can snuggle into and lots of paper to bury
themselves under. all in all they seem to have settled inthere quite nicely
Last night I was on the phone for a good hour or more and the
boys had just had their free range access exctended to include mamas room and the bathroom.
Rufus and Reuben decided that since mama was busy, they would
amuse themselves. they had been having access to mamas room for a few days now and usualy go into the wardrobe or under
the bed or behind the door.
After getting off the phone It was time for Mama to retire
for the night, so she calls the boys and tells them its time for Mama to go nigh nighs... cant find them anywhere.
I looked in all the usual places in the lounge, bedroom and bathroom. and no sight of them. I was starting to get a
for over half an hour i searched for them.. then i decided
to get ready for bed and then continue the search.... I sat on the edge of the bed and moved the pillows to sort out
the bed, and who should be under the pillow.. Reuben.... !!!! How did you manage to get up here!!!!??? I asked
him.. he just scuttled off, next as i was searching the dooner as to where he went, down the bottom of the bed was Rufus.
Rufie has always been easier to catch than Reubs, so i put
him in his cage and started the stalking of Reuben. after much hassle i finaly got him into his cage.
Whew, now that i know that they are capable of getting up on
the bed via the bed side tables ill have to review the situation.
January 19th 2005
The case of the missing corn cobs
Well i thought i would sit down to dinner with some pie and
corn cobs. The boys were no where insite!!!
so I thought I would take this opportunity to leave my dinner
on the floor (mistake Number 1) go into the kitchen (mistake number 2) and get a drink!!!
On returning to my dinner i found that 2 of the half cobs were
missing from the plate!!!!
I glanced around and noticed that one corn cob was dissapearing
into my bedroom and one was dissappearing under my sofa... !!!
One guess as to who the culprits were....... You guessed
it My cute furry little critters Rufus and Reuben, the corn was about the same size as their bodies... how they
managed it is beyond me!!!
January 21st 2005
Well my two boys are having a great time roaming around the
house these days. Last night i let them out when i got home and Rufus heads strait for the bed room door which was closed
at the time. He reaches up with his little hands on the door and looks back at me. "Pllleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaassssssseeee
Mama open the door"..... he paces franticaly along the edge of the door, waiting for mama to ope it for him..
then its off and under the bed onto a suitcase i have there, where on inspection Mama finds a cob of corn, ontop of the case.
Reuben has dashed off to his stash under th sofa, thats the
last i see of him for a while... every now and then i check to see where they are to make sure they have not got stuck
or in any bother. Rufus came up to me wanting a cuddle... They are now 5 months old and growing fast. At
this time Reuben appears From under the sheets on my bed so i put Rufus down to go play with his brother.
after 3 hours of free range time its time for Mama to go to
Nigh Nighs, Rufus is always easy to pick up and put in the cage where Dinner is waiting. But Reuben!!!!
he is another matter. That Rat never seems to go into the cage when I want him to, so its a matter of trying to outsmart
him..... I try catching him when he is under the sheets, get hold of him, but being great Hudinis, he manages to escape...
and off he goes running. When is enough enought... I dont thing the terminology of enough playtime exists in Reubens
So mama has discovered that no rodent can resist a TUBE.
I have several tubes i got for the boys, some pvc piping and some cardboard tubes from the post office. after 15 minutes
of no success at catching Reubs, I have to employ the Lieur of the tubie.. "Look Reuben mama and Tubies... "
mama wriggles the tube infront of Reuben... tentatively he approaches... he goes half way in and then backs out.
after 2-3 minutes of wriggleing the tube infront of him it is tooooooo much for him to resist he has to go into Tubies....
So mama quickly covers both ends with her hands and then carries the reluctand Reuben to the cage and puts him in.
"Nigh Nighs boys mama is going sleepies"
Yet again the boys have entertained me for the weekend...
with lots of mischief, and antics.. I had a bowl of peas set up for them, normaly Rufus sits on either my shoulder or
my lap and takes one pea, Dashes off and eats it or Stashes it for later then comes back for another. But lately both
he and Reuben have not been satisfied with one pea at a time. I have to give them 3 or more that they can stuff in their
They are quite determined that they can fit more in their little
mouths than they realy can. Yesterday Reuben had 2 rather largish peas in his mouth and was trying to fit a 3rd in..
evertime he tried one of the others would fall out... Rufus in the mean time was not content to wait until mama had
sorted out Reuben, but helped himself by sitting on the edge of the bowl and crabbing as many as he could...
They both seem to be having a good time on my bed still, I
found a nice little stash of half eaten chicken bones and pea shells. I had managed to pick up a vacume cleaner
from lay-buy on saturday after mine had broken... So i managed to clean up the areas where they had deposited their
Rat Berries (for the uninitiated in the Rattie kingdon, Berries refer to that little deposit that should actualy go in their
litter tray.).... not 2 minutes after letting them out for a bit of a run saturday afternoon, did if find, the startings
of another collection of berrie. Ah but thats the fun of them you never know what you will find next.
Onward and upward with the next few years im sure ill find
out more as things come along.
Boy this month has zoomed past... My pet rats are having
a lovely time monopolising my bed and pajama draw. They are getting very cheeky, very quick and very sneeky...
once they have worked out how to get up somewhere they are then almost unstopable.
I found Rufus up on my dressing table, by mistake I had left
the laundry basket sitting next to it. Rufie climbed up onto the basket and then jumped over onto the dressing table,
where there are lots of things to investigate, and cause mischief with.
Reuben has made his little hidey hole in my wardrobe and also
the PJ draw, if he is in the draw it makes it easier fo rme to get him back in the cage as i just take the draw out and carry
it to the cage and put him in that way... Rufus is usualy not too far away from Reuben, but atleast Rufus will come
to me. He stands on my feet to get my attention then reaches his little hand up to me... "Pick me up mama"
he is saying.. I would love to be able to hear the frequency the rats speak in, as it is too high pitched for humans
to hear. But other animals hear it quite well...
When Reuben Hides in the Wardrobe it makes life so difficult
getting hold of him. he is so quick i have to try and corner him to catch him. As soon as I say "mama is going to bed
now time for boys to go back in the cage" Reuben wants nothing to do with me.
But if i tell them i have peas or corn on the offer, they cant
come and sit on my lap or shoulder fast enough, then they grab and run. come back sometimes sit on me while eating,
and then grab 2 or more peas annd then goes to stash them for later...
Oh the joys of Owning rats, wouldnot be without them now.
This page is now complete.... To continue the tails oops
tales of Rufus and Reuben Click here....