Stable room temperature is adequate. No special requirements.
No special requirements
Rats are nocturnal, keep out of direct sunlight. Use room lighting as needed.
Water & Accessories
Rats should be given a sipper bottle, hung from the side of the cage. They also need small toys to play with and a running wheel for exercise. Keep a food bowl; chew stick and nesting house as well.
BASIC REPRODUCTIVE INFORMATION
It is recommended that the males and females should always live and play separately, and only meet for a planned mating. When the mom gives birth, she immediately goes into "post-partum estrus," and if a male is present she can get immediately pregnant again, which is not healthy for her, her newborns, or the unborn litter growing inside.
Different people have different methods as far as the actual mating is concerned. A possible method is to place the rats into a cage with all the necessities (food, water, bedding etc.) towards the end of the evening (keeping an eye on them to make sure they get on ok for a little bit) then to remove the male in the morning.
Signs over the first few weeks will include your doe being very dominant over other females in the cage; she will generally instantly become the alpha rat and be very restrictive of others taking "her" food. BUT, this doesn't mean that you need to give them extra food as the doe will become large and may cause complications during labor. Generally the other rats will "know" that the doe has become pregnant and will let her have the food that she needs and will give her respect and space if needed.
After the first 14 days you should notice an increase in weight and the doe can look like she has swallowed a tennis ball. BUT if the doe is large and carrying a small litter there may not even be a noticeable weight change.
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