Trust training and tips on getting to know your rat

Trust Training If you have a rat who doesn’t like to be held, remember that baby rats and females tend to be very active and often don’t want to hold still to be held. Instead they want to run around and play and explore. See if your rat wants to play a game with you instead of being held. Then, wait until she/he is feeling sleepy to hold her/him. When rats are feeling sleepy, they are more willing to be held.

If a rat still doesn’t like being held, acts scared of people, or doesn’t want to come out of her cage, it’s probably because she hasn’t been properly socialized. Some rats just naturally have a more fearful personality too. You can help her/him learn to trust you by using food. It works best to use soft foods, such as baby foods and yogurt, because you can offer them on a spoon and the rat can’t grab the food and run away. Try different foods to see what she/he likes. You may need to let her try a food several times in the cage before she decides she likes it.

Use the food on a spoon to reward the behavior you want. For instance, use the food to lead her out of the cage and onto your hand, arm, or lap. Then reward her/him with the food. You have to do it little by little, just small steps at a time. Just give her/him a little taste each time and gradually make her/him come out farther and farther each time. As she/he learns that she/he gets good treats for being with you, she/he will be more willing to come out, be with you, and be held.

How much time do you spend with your rat?  A single rat needs about 4 hours of human attention a day.  If you can’t provide that I highly recommend you get another rat as a companion for her/him(although all rats need same sex cage mates to keep them from getting depressed). Single rats often feel very insecure. With another rat friend, your rat will be more likely to trust you.
 Another way iv found that helps alot and gains your rats trust fast, is the old trick i learnt, put your rat on your shoulder, they tend to love going on rided and this is a fun way to get your rat to enjoy spending time with you, also keep treats on hand helps as this teaches your rat that being around you is good and that he/she will have lots of fun.