rat wants to be alone?

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Well-Known Member
Mar 13, 2009
United States
Is it possible that some rats just may want to live alone? If they are happier on there own , and fight with other rats? I have a guy that is interested in Sasha ... he says he has dealt with nippy rats and handles them well and also enjoys the challenge of socializing them (not that she isnt , but she is nippy) What should I do?
Our oldest rat, Yuki, is a bit of a loner. We always joke that she would be happier as an only child. She seems to far prefer the companionship of her daddy(my hubby), even throwing a tantrum if he is caught snuggling with one of the other rats. Having said that though, even she sometimes will seek out her sister, or one of the boys to snuggle with, and the babies sometimes seek her out for a snuggle. As much as she likes 'her time' I am sure she would really miss the others if they weren't there.
Sasha needs to live with rattie friends.
It would not be ok for her to be a lone rat.

You have said she was fine until recently. Did you make sure she isn't responding to illness, or mites, etc.
If you can't care for her, perhaps she needs to go to a more experienced rat owner who will work with her and will provide her with rattie friends.
It is very, very rare for a rat to want to be a lone rat. Usually they have a medical problem, or they will do better with different rats.
So maybe she needs different cage mates.
I did go back and look at some of your previous posts but didn't notice where your wrote about things like cage size, health, when she stoped getting along with them, or if some were recently introduced. etc. If she previously got along fine with them, then there is a problem and once you figure out what it is then it can be worked on.

Difficult to understand the situation or figure out what is wrong from a distance.
Define "beats them up". What exactly does that look like.

and please don't yell .... capitals are yelling.
Sorry , I meant to yell. I was a little offended when you said "she needs to go to a more experienced rat owner who will work with her and will provide her with rattie friends."
Although I may not be as experienced as others , the love is there and I would do anything to correct the problem. and I did provide her with rattie friends , whom she got along with flawlessly until these past couple weeks.
I didn't mean to be rude I am just a little sad as I spoke to family and Rat Shack members about options. After taking her to a vet and finding nothing medically wrong , I decided to give her to a friend that experts in dealing with biting rats. He assures me that she will ultimately have friends and no further incidents when she is done with "school" . It was such a hard decision to make , and I am also feeling a little guilty for letting her go. She left a few hours ago and I am just a little defensive about it. I love training rats , but I just could not get her to trust me. She was in two different homes before me , and when I first got her I could not understand why , she was sweet as anything , then once she got used to her surroundings she became very territorial. Not letting the others eat or use "her" litter pan.
In the end her new master promised me that he would be able to give her one on one time , and the attention and love she needs right now to correct her behavior and out of love and desperation I had to let her go. I only take peace in knowing she will be in a better suited home for her personality.
"she needs to go to a more experienced rat owner who will work with her and will provide her with rattie friends."
I said that because you seemed to be looking to give her to someone who could deal with her.
And the need for rattie friends part was in response to your post asking if she could be a lone rat.
In your first post, you seemed to be saying that you were thinking of giving her to "a guy", you didn't seem to know very well, who was going to keep her as a lone rat.
I hope that your "friend" is able to provide her with what she needs.
I must admit the words "train" and "school" frighten me.
Train as in teach her not to bite and school was just a term i used because in the rat chat earlier someone mentioned that it was kind of like going to school. it was , at the time , meant to be funny ..... thanks for the support And , why do you say ... "friend" like that ?
I have never come across a rat needing to live alone. I do/did everything possible to avoid that at all cost.
Rats learn from other rats, they get comfort, security, grooming, love, fun from other rats. Even the scuffles are good... it's all part of living in a colony which is what rats do.
But some pet rats are exposed to all sorts of things in their short lives which shape their behavior and most times need patience, love and attention as well as a medical intervention to help them overcome what has been ingrained in their behavior.
Some rats are born aggressive... thanks to the irresponsible breeders. Most of the time a neuter sets them straight and puts them back on track to a full and healthy life with buddies.
But some rats need work... rats that are taken away from mom too early don't have that social teachings from mom from the beginning. Without care and love from mom and humans early on, this changes a rat. Again, most times a neuter, even a spay can help.
But don't mistake his/her unfortunate beginnings in life as a need or want to be alone. They need help to overcome their stress and anxiety with other rats. But when they do... it's a beautiful thing to watch.

I've had several lone rats.. I worked with them and found the perfect companion... for Radar, I gave him Isabelle. She taught him what it was to be a rat... Radar came out of his shell. Isabelle made him ready for rat buddies and he sure had fun when he was finally put in a colony of 12. Radar was also neutered which helped tremendously.

I have had females that are more aggressive and mischievous than most. For example Julia. She was an angry little thing... she had to be first, she had to eat first... until one of the baby males became older and became alpha. Julia mellowed out completely. She needed a good strong Alpha to take over and reign over the colony so that she could just sit back and feel secure with the right alpha.

Each rat have issues and you need to work with those issues to find the true rat in them... the true rat lives in a happy, healthy colony.
I did have one rat who I got as a baby with her sister.......she was introduced in with a group of older rats...everything was great for a long while. As the other rats got older this one girl got very mean to them........She became possessive of her food and bed......I added more bowls and lots more beds and as long as they stayed away from what was hers she was okay. I eventually separated her because the older girls became stressed and I did not want them to have to put up with this........She would have playtime with them and seemed to enjoy it but seemed happier living on her own.....I eventually got her a younger friend....whom she loved very much but still did not want to share either a bed or food with......with people this girl was great. Rats like this are the exception rather then the rule and it is very rare. I never gave up trying to have her live with others.........maybe a neutered boy would have worked???

I think sometimes it is just finding that special someone..........I would try an altered someone of the opposite sex.....that might work.
If she is good and healthy try everybody elses suggestions, however I did lose a rat due to stress that was brought on by an introduction. Just let you know what can happen.
Dee brings up a good point. An unhealthy and unstable rat will become highly stressed and unable to cope with new buddies. slow and steady wins the race.
My pet rat Squishy passed away in his cage, with his little brother Ducky. Ducky is aggressive to other rats, but to Squishy and my family, he's very sweet. He was nice to Squshy as Squishy was there long before we got him. But when Squishy died, it was as if Ducky was happier. He started being more active and eating more, and he started showing interest in playing with me. I'm not sure if this is a sign of grief as I've never seen a rat grief this way. Or if he's not understanding that Squishy has passed away. I left him with the body until he showed no interest like I did with all my past rats so they understood. But I see nothing but positive changes in Ducky? I've never seen this before and I would like to ask for some help.
I've had that happen. As long as you're able to spend lots of out-of-cage time with Ducky each day he should be just fine. It's better if rats have a cage mate, but like some people, some actually are happier living alone.