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Does anyone have any advice on how to introduce rats to dog?

Discussion in 'General Dog Forum' started by C&Hugo, Oct 17, 2020.

  1. C&Hugo

    C&Hugo New Member Registered

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    It's pretty nice you got to train terriers and ferrets together! I had one called Marlo when I was little and he killed my hamster :( They are natural rat-mouse catchers... (ノ・_-)☆
     
  2. C&Hugo

    C&Hugo New Member Registered

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    Thanks for this, it was indeed helpful! Hugo is a cocker spaniel (a gun dog) used to retrieve birds for hunters, but, he does seem to enjoy chasing a toy around rapidly whilst a drag it around the carpet. He also really gets into chasing games outdoors. Are these signs of a hunter? He is an 11 week old, so, still teething, and yes, he prefers to bite human jumpers and hands, more than his toys. He has learnt how to sit, come to his name when he's not distracted, and wears a harness attached to a lead no trouble. I've held him up to their cage a few times and it's been the sort of the same each time. The rats are pretty curious, Hugo barely notices them until about 5 minutes of me holding him, he sniffs, ears perked, then after a mintute or 2 he wines and looks at me, then tries to sqirm away. As I said, in the safety of their cage, the little ones are somewhat curious about the creature, but it changes a little when out. I like to take them onto the sofa with me while Hugo is sleeping. They potter around, but, I can tell they know the dog smell and are sniffing around. One particular evening Hugo had floped in his bed (which was in the living room), so I decided to let the ratties have some time out. I put them on the sofa where they just pottered around as usual. All was fine... well until. Until Hugo awoke. He's usually very tired after waking up, so I wasn't so bothered. But he jumped up and put his front paws on the sofa. He didn't at all notice the rats, as they were behind a cushion hiding. He barked. The rats absolutely HATED it they were shaking they're hearts were beating. After a while they calmed down and came to the edge of the sofa. Hugo slowly out his paws up. The two touched noses, before Fang ran away. Hugo did not jump onto the sofa to get her he simply plodded away to see my dad. Thanks for the help!

    -C&Hugo
     
  3. lurcherman

    lurcherman Well-Known Member Registered

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    My black saluki x might have been ok but who knows, my brindle geez he would have ripped the stinky rat apart, I enjoyed a bit of ratting, hell they squeal, from a hunting side a good rat is a dead one .
     
  4. Hemlock

    Hemlock Well-Known Member Registered

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    I wouldn't even consider it. It's a huge risk. Dogs are predators and rats are prey. It might work for some dogs and some rats, but it's far more likely to cause huge stress to each. I respectfully suggest you have places where the rats live and to which your dog doesn't have access, and places where the dog is and the rats don't go. As humans, it's up to us to choose incompatible species or not, and if we do, to arrange their lives so that they are as stress-free as possible.

    You sound a caring owner, so I hope whatever you choose works well for you.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2020
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  5. Flobo

    Flobo Well-Known Member Registered Partner

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    I do have to agree with Hemlock, especially as your rats have all ready been freaked out by Hugo barking.. I was very lucky with my Jake, he was a very chilled out and well trained dog and my rats were not in the least bit bothered by him, well they got a bit fed up by being licked and groomed by him at times, but that was understandable! I wouldn't take a chance, if an accident happens, you can't turn back the clock and make it un - happen... now, like I said, with my ferrets, I have ferret time separate to dog time and it's just about getting into a new routine of making time for both.;)
     
  6. C&Hugo

    C&Hugo New Member Registered

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    lol but you see, my rats are aparently fancy rats. Screen Shot 2020-10-20 at 16.11.37.png Screen Shot 2020-10-20 at 16.11.37.png
     
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  7. JacksDad

    JacksDad Active Member Registered

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    “We should NOT become so preoccupied with if we can, that we didn’t stop to think if we should.”
    Ian Malcolm, while evaluating Jurassic park…paraphrased of course.

    The more I think about this, the more the simplest, safest course of action is what Hemlock suggests. I can think of several things that would complement the suggestion, but Hugo doesn’t sound like he can even respond to basic name, sit, down etc. which makes perfect sense he is a puppy, only 11 weeks old. Without those typical and common skills being in place, he isn’t even capable of responding to any additional training I might suggest.

    If you were my client, the goal would be to train Hugo to NOT seek the rats, to disengage. Then build in safety behaviors. The most reliable recall possible. A drop into a down/stay. Rat means look at you. Leave it without hesitation. Drop what is in your mouth…not just let me take it, but drop it and back up.

    When you want rat time, Hugo is in a crate, xpen, or behind a baby gate. They time share you. Rats have their time, Hugo has his.
     
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  8. C&Hugo

    C&Hugo New Member Registered

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    True, true. What I am getting alot is that it's best not to let them together, from multiple people. I will train him more and try when he's at least 6 months, but if it doesn't work out, I guess I'll have to live.
     

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