hi guys! I’m not a native English speaker, but since this is one of the only forums with a lot of activity, I thought I should join! So I had to put down my old rat a week ago. My other rat, Pepper, is 1,5 years old. I didn’t want to get a rat which is around the same age, because I know that rats sometimes just don’t get so old. I got 4 young rats this week, they’re around 8 weeks and they weigh 200 gr. (They’re all females btw, including Pepper). The neutral introduction in the bathtub went well, but after I’ve put them in a smaller cage, things started to get a bit more tense. The young rats like to play together and Pepper is having non of it. They all lay together when they’re lazy, so it’s not that they’re avoiding eachother, but Pepper is acting weird. When one of the younger ones is playing and jumping around, Pepper starts to act defensive whenever they’re coming too nearby. She sometimes stands on her hind legs and just kind of pushes the other rat away, but sometimes she also makes her back really round, her back hair stands up, and she starts pushing the other rat with her side, or jumps directly on them. Whenever she jumps on one, the younger rat will immediately obey and lay still. Pepper usually just walks of after a minute or so. She doesn’t bite (thank god) but I don’t want her to get more agressive, since the small ones are more vulnerable. Is this normal behaviour? Should I start over again? Is Pepper just grumpy? Are they figuring out who the alpha is? This is my first introduction ever and I just don’t want to mess this up and have someone wounded because of it. I really would like to see them all in the big cage, but I’m too scared that something goes wrong in there.