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How to Introduce a pet rat to water

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Uploaded on Aug 27, 2008

Please read:

This video should help to show a good way to introduce your pet rats to water and one day could result in them diving and swimming in it :).

However, it's important to understand that some pet rats will just not like water. Your success will vary depending on your individual critter(s).

This description runs along-side the video so please read:

Important Rules:
* Never place your rat in the water, if your rat has not chosen to go in itself then it will instinctively just want to get straight back out again. This will not be a good water experience and can really set progress back.
* Always use fresh, clean water and clean the tubs out well before each use.
* It's really important to take the increase in depth slowly. Base it on your rats progress so that you are going at their speed not your own. They will go in deeper water in time but if you make it too deep too early they will just not go in and you will end up taking steps backwards.
* Its again important that your rat can at all times get out if they want to. So, if the sides of the tub are too high for the rat to EASILY jump out of, there really must be a ladder. If the rat does not have an easy route out they will feel less secure and this will lead to either not wanting to go in, or once in they will just want to get straight back out.
* With the last point in mind I'm against using the bath tub as a swimming place for rats. The sides of the bath are too tall for easy and safe escape, also there is very little in the way of a slope on the base of bath tubs so the rats don't even have the shallow ground to retreat to if they get tired or scared.

General Guidelines:
* Water temperature can make a huge difference. For me I've found that Whiskey prefers cold water and Womble prefers luke warm water. Don't make it too cold and definitely not too hot, but, experiment and see what your rat likes.
* Have lots to explore in the water. Both floating and sunken preferably. Floating stuff will be obvious to them and they will go to it, to investigate. Stuff on the bottom they won't see but they will come across it with their feet and then hopefully dive to find it.
* The bubbles come from a fish tank air pump and the rats both really love it. (see my next video - i'll post in the next few days). A worth while idea.
* Toys and balls etc that your rats love out of the water can be used to help encourage your rat to go in after them.
* Treats in the water will also help, have treats close to the ladder at first so the rat sees them and picks them out. Once the rat is happier going in for them then put the treats further away or in deeper sections. It's about encouraging the rat in, not forcing.

I'll add more comments as I think of more. Please feel free to leave your own advise and suggestions and I will add to the list as I see them. Thanks for watching and for the support.

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