Rattie Training Video: Tightropes

This video features Abby & Katie demonstrating how to teach a pet rat to walk across a tightrope on command! If the text in this video goes by too fast for you, please pause it so that you may read it all! Also, here are a few tips that got left out due to timing constraints:

– For beginner-level ratties, use ropes that are about one inch in diameter. You can try them with more narrow tightropes after they’ve mastered this trick.

– When setting up your rope, always make it as taught as possible. Tightropes are named such for a reason — if the line is too slack, it will be much more difficult for your rat to keep his balance on it. Also, make sure that your knots are tight and won’t come undone while your rattie is walking across!

– It’s relatively simple to build your own training platforms using wooden planks, PVC pipe, and large eye hooks. (See my video here: http://youtu.be/FtTbxPmrkvI ) However, if you don’t have these items handy, you can easily improvise by using a couple of kitchen chairs, taped-down cardboard boxes, etc. Just make absolutely certain that your platforms are stable and will not tip over!

– This video shows my ratties walking on tightropes that are relatively high up, because Abby & Katie are already master tightrope walkers. For beginner rats, it is best to set up your tightropes lower to the ground, in case of falls.

– If your rat hesitates to walk across the rope at first, try Shaping. Start by luring him to the tightrope and holding the treat just far enough down the line that he’ll need to put a paw or two on the rope in order to reach for the reward. Then the moment at least one paw actually touches the rope, praise him and give him the treat. Repeat this process until your rattie feels comfortable putting both of his front paws on the rope. Once he’s mastered this, start holding the treat further along the line so that he’ll have to stretch in order to grab the goody. Continue to increase the distance gradually until he has to step onto the rope with at least one of his back paws. After he’s been rewarded a few times for putting all four paws on the rope, try luring him all the way across again. Your rattie should then be given an especially big, tasty treat for succeeding at his first tightrope walk!

For more info on how to train pet rats, please see:

Introduction to Rattie Training: Part One – http://youtu.be/BkiPutSj-V4


Introduction to Rattie Training: Part Two – http://youtu.be/aadXsxMGtWE

DISCLAIMER: I am not, and do not claim to be, a professional trainer of any kind. I do, however, have more than a decade of animal training experience using positive reinforcement. I am confident that my training methods will be effective with any pet; however, because each animal is a unique individual, I cannot guarantee that you will have the same results as I’ve had. I also will NOT be held responsible for any injuries that may occur as a result of attempting anything described in these videos without taking the necessary

Thank you! 🙂

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15 Responses

  1. alohafrxnkie
    | Reply

    Cricket is adorable!!♥️

  2. Sydney Myers
    | Reply

    What do you use as treats for your rats? I can't seem to find good ones.

  3. Ellie Fieldhouse
    | Reply

    Your rats are adorable!

  4. P.J. Gonzalez
    | Reply

    How did you made the plat forms I want to make one for my pet rats. 

  5. Kate OBrien
    | Reply

    Ive never seen such a cute hairless ratite in my life!!!!!

  6. JAX X
    | Reply

    Where did you get the platforms

  7. crazy4ratties2
    | Reply

    With ratties it is best to keep your training sessions short; five minutes is a good duration, and I certainly wouldn't go more than ten. However if you give them a good break in between (at least an hour) they can definitely tolerate multiple sessions in a single day; depending on the individual rat, of course!

  8. usuckmygiiggles
    | Reply

    How long should your training session be a day? For as long as the rat is bothered? Or is there a certain time to stop the rat from training?

  9. crazy4ratties2
    | Reply

    Thank you! 🙂

  10. WandasPetsNCuteStuff
    | Reply

    such a cute trick!

  11. crazy4ratties2
    | Reply

    Thank you. 🙂 Yes, Kricket (who demonstrates the "goal" in the beginning of the video) was a Hairless boy. Sadly, my little "Trick Master" passed away earlier this month. :'(

  12. Night Surgeon
    | Reply

    Cute rats! Is one of them hairless?

  13. crazy4ratties2
    | Reply

    Some ratties can be quite difficult to motivate. First, experiment with different treats outside of the training area to see what your rats REALLY love. Try letting them play in your empty training area for a while (until they seem bored) before attempting a training session. And, if all else fails, you might try withholding their food for a short while before you begin training, so that they are hungrier and should be more interested in the food rewards.

  14. crazy4ratties2
    | Reply

    You can give the next command the moment your rattie has finished the reward from giving the first command; rapid succession. Repetition is key in teaching a trick! 🙂

  15. crazy4ratties2
    | Reply

    Thank you so much; they are my babies! <3 I'm glad that you enjoyed my video. 🙂

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