Tulip was approximately 4 months old when she came into rescue in February 2021. A homeowner had seen her outside and recognized that she was not a wild rat. The temperature w as far below 0°C and the ground was covered in a thick layer of ice and snow. Tulip was freezing and struggling to find food. The homeowner purchased a live trap and outfitted it with warmth and food. Tulip couldn’t resist and was caught! Her rescuer had Tulip’s health and safety as her priority, and drove 4 hours in the winter weather to bring her to Teeny Snoots. When Tulip arrived, she immediately welcomed love from humans but did not trust other rats at all.
On the night of her arrival, Tulip snuggled in my hood for 5 hours until she was ready to move to her cage. I kept her cage on the pillow beside my pillow on the bed, and so began our journey together. Tulip took a long time to warm up to other rats; she likely had to fight for food and shelter during her time outside and quickly developed a fight-first, think-later strategy to life with other rats. Today, one year later, Tulip is in a mischief with 3 other girls and is one of Teeny Snoots’ most social girls. She is very intelligent, she will come when she is called, and she love going on walks. Tulip will stay at Teeny Snoots forever.
Sophie & Luna’s Story
Sophie was 4-5 months old when she came into rescue with her “mom”, Luna Rat. A few months prior to Sophie’s rescue, another rescue of over 150 rats had been conducted at the house. The rats were hardly ever fed and were trying very hard to stop themselves from chewing on their tails or the rumps of other rats for food. Despite common belief, rats will not cannibalize unless absolutely necessary for survival. During the initial rescue, Sophie and Luna were hidden so that they could not be rescued. When Teeny Snoots was called in the second time, Sophie had severe injuries to her rump and abdomen, and Luna could not walk. Both were in such severe condition that they were not expected to survive, and, in the end, we did end up losing Luna. Sophie’s injuries were horrific and were likely the result of her being the weakest and smallest rat, and being “food” for the others when they needed. Her injuries are too graphic to show in full detail. Luna’s condition was a mystery; however, it is likely that she was thrown or severely abused. Her paralysis was severe and sudden, and she did not show any other symptoms of potential stroke. Her x-rays couldn’t determine the cause.
After arriving at Teeny Snoots, Sophie and Luna were given a comfy, flat cage so that Luna could access all areas easily. Fleece was used as their bedding to ease the pain in both of them and to keep Sophie’s wounds clean. Luna was given a mini sponge bath a few times per day and both were fed a high-calorie intensive core diet. Both were also give pain medications, ivermectin and antibiotics. Sophie being a young rescue rat, was very nervous but also very curious. She loved to explore the couch with the reassurance that Luna was nearby and safe. Luna loved resting on the couch with good snacks and TV. But, as if she knew all along, a few days after rescue, once Sophie was settled and felt safe, Luna allowed herself to pass away quietly. As with all passings, we were devastated. I kept Sophie with me all day to help her grieve and heal, until a lone baby rat named Cheesecake arrived one day. Sophie and Cheesecake became fast friends and were exactly what the other needed: Sophie was social and curious but lived with high anxiety whereas Cheesecake was shy and nervous but overall a very calm girl. They levelled each other out perfectly. In April of 2022, Sophie and Cheesecake found their forever home together with an amazing new older sister, Coconut. Sophie (now Strudel), Cheesecake and Coconut adore each other and are living an amazing life with their mom.
Daniel was around 4 months old when he came into rescue. He was rescued from horrific conditions inside a hoarder house. Daniel had spent his life sharing a tiny, filthy cage with 10 other rats. His cage had never been cleaned throughout his life and potentially even before he was born. He was not fed on a daily basis and at the time of rescue, he did not have any food or water. Daniel was soaked in urine and feces, despite trying his best to keep himself clean. Rats do not like being dirty but Daniel did not have a clean place to go. On the day of rescue, he was given a bath, treated with ivermectin and placed onto clean, warm bedding for the first time in his life. He ate and drank as much as he could – he didn’t know when the next time he would see food again would be. Since that day Daniel has never had to worry about food, water, cleanliness or love again. Unsurprisingly, when Daniel came into rescue, he was very fearful of humans and was quick to bite. He could not be held by his foster family and they needed to wear protective gloves to clean his cage. But one day, Daniel met his best friend: an 11 year old girl who changed his life. His girl was never afraid of him and knew right away that he was a gentle soul.
Despite her mom’s best efforts to stop her, the little girl found a way to open Daniel’s cage and, to the shock of everyone, Daniel snuggled right into her. She showed Daniel that he is loved and that he is worth time and effort. Together, Daniel and his girl worked on building his confidence and feelings of security. She showed him patience, understanding and love, and he gave her happiness, peace, and fulfillment that only an animal can give you. Today, Daniel loves to snuggle, takes treats from the people in his house and enjoys doing spins for Cheerios! Daniel will stay with his girl forever.