Rat thinks she's pregnant but isn't!?

Help Support Rat Shack Forum:


New Member
Mar 18, 2020
Hi! I have two female rats, in the last week or so one of them has suddenly had a big behaviour change. She is hoarding all the food and has become very territorial - she's taken one of the shelters in the cage as her den and is nesting. She takes all the bedding and will lash out at the other girl if she comes nearby (she has never been aggressive at all before!) She has got bigger from all the hoarded food but is no way at pregnancy size from what I've seen of other pregnant rats.
The only time she's ever been around males was nearly 4 weeks ago when our friend was looking after them; they were also looking after two male rats who were in the cage next to them but they never had actual contact with one another (and if they had they would have been born by now!)
She would always sit and stare at the male rats cage all day when she was there!

SO I'm wondering if, having been around the male rats even if not in contact with them, is she having some kind of phantom pregnancy symptoms?! It seems that, if she isn't pregnant, she definitely thinks that she is. I'm worried because of the way she is acting out towards my other rat, and if she isn't pregnant will she realise it or just continue behaving in this way?
I feel sorry for her because she has been doing all of this nesting and hoarding for the bubbas but she just.. isn't pregnant! That or she is just being greedy?? My other girl is suffering because of this - she is being pushed out of the comfiest sleeping spots and we have to make sure to feed her separately so that she gets her food.

Any advice would be great!! Is this something rats are known to do?? And any advice to train out this behaviour would be great? She isn't aggressive towards me at all only to my other rat. Thanks so much!
Last edited:


Staff member
Jul 21, 2007
Toronto, Canada, Earth
Its likely a phantom pregnancy where the body thinks its pregnant. These will pass in time :) They aren't common but I've seen one myself. It lasted a long time, longer than a normal pregnancy so be prepared LOL

Latest posts