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  #1  
Old 08-31-2010, 10:09 AM
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PWCorgi PWCorgi is offline
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Default Rats/Guinea Pigs/Ferrets/etc...tell me about them.

So, if my mom and sister ever move out (*crossingfingers*) they will be taking Balou the chinchilla with them as my little sister has pretty much claimed him as hers and taken over his care.

If that happens, I *may* get another smallish/caged animal, I haven't decided yet whether I really want to or not, but I'd like to research possibilities now.

The animals I am looking at now are mainly rats, cavys, and ferrets. From what I have been reading, it seems like cavys are way less demanding of human attention than the rats and ferrets, which could be a good thing if my schedule is more on the busy side, but at the same time I am also looking for a social animal that likes to interact with me. This is one reason why I am not really looking into getting another chin, because although he is a cool animal Balou isn't very interested in me or what I am doing.

Anyway, if anyone would like to share their experiences with any of these animals, or has websites/forums to recommend, they would be much appreciated.
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Old 08-31-2010, 10:12 AM
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Chewbecca Chewbecca is offline
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I had guinea pigs as a child.
Mine were always moving EVERYWHERE. And while they tolerated being held (I was never rough with them), they didn't crave attention from me. And they didn't care what I did.

I just got my new rats last night, and already they are wanting to climb out of their cage to get to me, and they take food from my hands, and they follow me around when I'm in the room.
They are big squishes. And I cannot wait to get them out of their cage this afternoon to play with them!

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Old 08-31-2010, 10:14 AM
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PWCorgi PWCorgi is offline
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I'm not gonna lie, seeing your little ratties in your thread was the final straw in me posting this thread, lol. They are *so* cute!
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Gimme Drugs Not Hugs RL1 "Frodo"
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*All Siri's rally/obedience titles are to be considered handled by Megan,
because ain't nobody (read: me) got time or skills fo' dat.
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Old 08-31-2010, 10:19 AM
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Picklepaige Picklepaige is offline
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Ratties!

From my experience, ferrets are like eternal kittens, and rats are like dogs.

Seriously, out of all the pets I've ever had (cats, dogs, gerbils, frogs, parakeets, and horses) rats have been the absolute BEST. I bonded with them in a way I've never bonded with a pet before, and they were just sooo interactive and fun and freakishly intelligent and every other positive thing you can think of
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Old 08-31-2010, 10:19 AM
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Baxter'smybaby Baxter'smybaby is offline
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I had numerous guinea pigs all through my childhood, into college, and then my kids had them when they were young. Like any animal, how they are raised can make a big difference--they need to be socialized and handled, or they can be skittish and not fun to have. Our piggies were great--we'd take them out, let them run around in a defined area, which was really fun to watch. They'd squeal when we came home--loved to have treats,etc.
Now, they are not the brightest of the small animals--but ours did learn to beg on their hind legs, and "talk" for their treats.
I'd have them again--probably will someday.
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Old 08-31-2010, 10:36 AM
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I haven't owned Rats or Ferrets, but my sister has a pair of guinea pigs, and I must say, they are enjoyable, but a pain in the a** to take care of.

They need to be cleaned out every couple of days, and since they need so much space, it's really a pain to have to have to take the cage apart, get out all the dirty bedding, put clean bedding in, etc. And since my sister is an idiot, I'm the one who has to clean them out.

They also eat hay like none other, and you have to give them hay and food every day, and veggies, and refill their water a lot more often than say a hamster or something, because they drink quite a bit of water.

They also take a lot of time and effort to get tame. Both of mine nip, even though we've gently handled them EVERY day since we got them. I don't really know what to do to stop this, but it makes it a lot less appealing to hold them when you know they're just going to bite you.

And even though they don't mind being handled nearly as much as when we first got them, they still run around the cage at high speed trying to get away from you every time you try to hold them. They don't really like to be taken out, and one of them will actually run and jump back into the cage the first chance she gets.

I'm not trying to discourage you from getting one, because I have seen some reaaaally sweet guinea pigs, and I do enjoy mine, apart from everything I said, they are SUPER cute, and they get sooo excited and happy, and start squealing with joy whenever we bring veggies or hay into the room. It's really fun to hold them in your lap, and feed them lettuce or carrots from your hand. And nothing's sweeter than hearing their little happy squeaks when you're petting them under their chin, or behind their ears.

But if I were going to get a pet, and my choices were between a ferret, rat, or guinea pig, I'd probably pick a ferret. Just because I like a more interactive pet. I love rats, but I'm pretty much done with caged pets after these guinea pigs. If I got a ferret it would be primarily free range, and only caged it when I wasn't home, and at night.

But honestly, depending on what you want, all three are great pets! I've spent time with all three, and they're very charming in their own ways!!! Good luck!!! It's always exciting getting a new pet.
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Old 08-31-2010, 10:39 AM
JessLough JessLough is offline
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Want a pet that is like a chinchilla, that does not care what your day is like? Get either a cavy or a rat. Want an animal that will play with you, want to be with you, get a ferret.

Ferrets are amazing pets, I will never be without a ferret again. Their care is more so of a dog than a chin, rat, or cavy, so you have to keep that in mind. They should have atleast 2 hours of out of cage time a day, however, if my day is super busy, mine are fine being in the cage all day, since they have each other to play with. They are fun, entertaining little creatures who are very misunderstood, but are always giving me a laugh.
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Old 08-31-2010, 11:33 AM
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I had guinea pigs. After about a year I decided they were too much work for too little enjoyment and I rehomed them. But I was 13, so that may have been a factor. But they do need a lot of cage cleaning and they really weren't all that social. They were willing to be handled, but they preferred to wander around the room without me interfering.

Now hamsters, OTOH...
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Old 08-31-2010, 11:41 AM
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PWCorgi PWCorgi is offline
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Thanks guys! From what you are all saying (and what I kinda expected) is that guinea pigs don't sound so much like what I am looking for.

So that narrows it more to ferrets and rats. I am going to start a little research, but I doubt I will be getting anything until next summer at the earliest.

Quote:
Now hamsters, OTOH...
Hamsters are the devil, lol. I have never met one that wasn't evil and that could keep their teeth to themselves!
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Ado's Gimme Victory RL1* "Siri"
1.5 year old Jack Russell Terrier
Gimme Drugs Not Hugs RL1 "Frodo"
8 year old Pembroke Welsh Corgi


*All Siri's rally/obedience titles are to be considered handled by Megan,
because ain't nobody (read: me) got time or skills fo' dat.
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  #10  
Old 08-31-2010, 11:45 AM
JessLough JessLough is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PWCorgi View Post
So that narrows it more to ferrets and rats. I am going to start a little research, but I doubt I will be getting anything until next summer at the earliest.
If you have specific questions, feel free to ask them. I was not too sure about what to say really without knowing what you wanted to know.
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