Wordless Wednesday: Amy comes when called!

Here is Amy’s latest “trick,” which we’ve been working on for awhile now. When I call her, she comes running! Training a rat (or any small animal) to come when called is a great behavior to teach because if you were to loose the animal in your house, you could just call the animal. Of course, Amy has figured out how to escape my rat play area and she regularly goes roaming around my apartment. So, we are already putting this new trick to good use!

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  • Jet

    Hey Amy, Jet here. Hi Miss Mary.

    Great to make your acquaintance. Pretty cool, training Amy to come when called upon, JJ and I are not the best about that!

  • Our two rats used to be the same, i don’t think people realise how inteligent rats are.

    Sheba.

    • I completely agree with your comment — rats are SO smart, so much smarter than most people realize. I have had a lot of fun training my rats!

      cheers,

      Mary

  • Amy, good girl…much better than me. I usually have to think about it before I come when called!

  • Bassetmomma

    Nice to meet you! That is so cool that Amy can come when called upon!

  • Ann Paws

    Aw, how awesome! I have been wanting to teach my ratty some tricks too! She comes a little when I make a certain noise to her.

    • Hi Ann,

      Thanks for stopping by! Rats are pretty fun to train. I have a bit more info about rat training on this page of my site, including a few blog posts that explain some of the basics of training. (As well as some of the things that got me “stuck” at the beginning!) http://stalecheerios.com/clicker-training-pet-rats/

      Let me know if you have any specific training questions, I’m happy to try to help. :)

      cheers,

      Mary

  • Lyvonne (letsbepets.com)

    That’s awesome. My dogs don’t even come sometimes. :) Did you know the rats in the movie Enchanted were real trained rats? I thought they were computer generated.

    Happy Wordless Wednesday!

  • Audrey

    That’s a smart rat! Now, where are the bloopers? :)

    • LOL! I am accumulating quite a few photos and videos of Amy… a bloopers video would be a great idea. Thanks for the suggestion. :)

      cheers,

      Mary

  • Twiggy Onyx

    I didn’t know you could train a rat to come when called. Yay Amy!

  • Loy Cerf

    So neat! I love the way the rat just seemingly came out of nowhere!

    • Yes, she does seem to come out of nowhere, doesn’t she! :)

      She was actually on the middle shelf of a bookshelf that is right behind the wall. If you watch closely, you can see her in the air as she leaps off of the shelf.
      cheers,

      Mary

      Sent from my iPad

  • Im just curious as too what treats you use when you train them? Id love to teach my rats a few tricks so it’d be good to know what treats work well for training!

    • Hi Kate,

      Thanks for stopping by. Great question!

      For regular training sessions, I find small pieces of cereal work really well. Depending on the type of cereal, I usually break the pieces into smaller pieces. Typically I use chocolate rice krispies (they love those!), but sometimes I use honey nut cheerios or banana nut cheerios. I break the rice krispies into half and I break the cheerios into fourths, that way the rat isn’t getting too much sugar and she doesn’t fill up too fast.

      (For teaching Amy to come, I used bigger treats or several treats each time, so that she would be really enthusiastic about coming when called!)
      In the beginning, I tried a whole bunch of different kinds of foods, before I found something that worked. You really need something that can be broken into small enough pieces, but pieces that are still easy to handle and give to the rat. I tried for a few days breaking yogies (the little yoghurt treats) into 6-8 pieces… that was a mess!!! :)

      Another alternative is to use a small syringe and fill it with apple sauce, pudding, or something else yummy. Then, the rat gets a couple of licks from the syringe after every good behavior.

      Hope that helps. Let me know if you have more training questions.

      cheers,

      Mary