Classroom Pet Has Arrived!

Discussion in 'General Education Archives' started by hernandoreading, Jul 27, 2006.

  1. hernandoreading

    hernandoreading Comrade

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    Jul 27, 2006

    I just got my classroom pet and I'm sooo happy! It's a hairless rat! I named him Slick. I'm going to get him a buddy (another boy...no babies, please) with hair & will name him Harry. LOL

    Slick is so ugly that he's cute, and I got him & his cage for free! Woot!
     
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  3. ABall

    ABall Fanatic

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    thats very brave of you.
     
  4. Erin Elizabeth

    Erin Elizabeth Groupie

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    Jul 27, 2006

    That is too funny! I love it!
     
  5. TheConspiracy

    TheConspiracy Companion

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    Jul 27, 2006

    Congrats! You will LOVE LOVE LOVE having a rat. Mine are all of the "haired" variety - but the hairless ones are just as wonderful!

    Remember to feed it a healthy variety of foods and to change the litter often as they are prone to respiritory illnesses if their cage gets wet or doesn't circulate well (watch to make sure the water bottle doesn't leak as well). We feed ours a high quality cat kibble and healthy un-seasoned table scraps. They love grapes as treats and will fully consume banana peels.

    Also remember to hold it a lot (at least 5-6 times per day) for the first month (5 mins or so each time) to tame it. Old hole-y socks make good nests for them and they enjoy empty tissue boxes as little homes. You should also look into if your climate will require a salt-lick. (edited to add - I just saw you are in FL - yes - you will need a salt-lick because of the high humidity. They will nto use it unless they need it - and with 6 rats I have yet to have an enitre one dissolve in 6 months)
    Best of luck with your new non-furry friend and if you have any questions - PM me!

    ~J
     
  6. Mable

    Mable Enthusiast

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    Jul 27, 2006

    How exciting. It marks the beginning of a new school year!!! My pet is on "order". The pet store is getting me a special gecko. He should be coming next week.!
     
  7. loves2teach

    loves2teach Enthusiast

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    Jul 27, 2006

    Yall are better than I am ... No thanks!
     
  8. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Your rat sounds fabulous! How fun for the kids!
     
  9. kinderkids

    kinderkids Virtuoso

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    Jul 27, 2006

    don't rats bite????
     
  10. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    No! We had a white one a long time ago and he was as tame as a kitten...well, tamer! They make excellent pets. They never ever bite, that I am aware of. They are bred as pets...they are not the ones we see in the alleys!
     
  11. Nan

    Nan New Member

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    Jul 27, 2006

    Rats are the Greatest

    Rats are safer than hamsters or some other pets. They are very interactive and seek out attention from the kids. I have four rattie girls that visit my classroom from time to time...Tallulah, Tapanga, Tessa and Twila. They are such fun and have never bitten anyone. What type of gecko are you getting. I have a leopard gecko named Freckles that I adopted from someone who was going to turn him loose. He's cute!
    Diana
     
  12. flteacher7

    flteacher7 Rookie

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    Jul 27, 2006

    Classroom Pets

    I've been seeing a lot of posts about classroom pets, and thought I would post a message. As a child (and adult) with extreme allergies to many things, especially pets of all kinds, I wouldn't have been able to be in a classroom with a pet other than a fish, bird, or reptile. I am allergic to most mammals because they have hair, and I am even allergic to the "hairless" kinds of animals - cats, rats, whatever. It's not just the hair and the dander, it's also apparently the animal's saliva, and some other things I just don't know! I was always the child that couldn't go to birthday parties, sleepovers, and friend's houses because they would have pets. I remember sitting on the porch outside my best friend's house during her birthday and singing "Happy Birthday" through the window while all the other kids sat in the living room with the cats. I can't even be in a room that has pets living there - even if the room doesn't have the pets in them at the moment, and even if the room has been aired out.

    That being said...just food for thought - you might want to check with the parents of your students before getting a pet or bringing a pet to the classroom. I know that I wouldn't have been able to physically tolerate a pet (other than fish/birds/reptiles) if one was in my classroom as a kid.

    Sorry to be a "downer," but I thought I would just add my 2 cents from my own experience. And I'd like to let you know that I am considering getting some fish for my classroom! :)
     
  13. Nan

    Nan New Member

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    Jul 28, 2006

    `I can thoroughly understand this viewpoint. That is why I have a form that I have parents fill out before I bring any animal with fur into my classroom. I have a turtle, gecko, African dwarf frogs and hermit crabs that I can have which don't bother children with allergies. I have the interest of the children as my main concern. My second concern is the safety and well-being of the animals. It has to be a safe and happy environment for all involved.
    Diana
     
  14. Nan

    Nan New Member

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    Jul 28, 2006

    Oh and if you're wanting a non-allergenic pet that is as easy as fish you should check out the African Dwarf Frogs. There is also a African clawed frog, but they grow to be huge. The African Dwarf Frogs do well in a large container of dechlorinated water and live totally under water. They eat pelled food like blood worms. Don't worry it looks like fish food. They are very entertaining to watch. I had mine in a large bowl on my desk and they are just a little more fun than fish which are okay. The animals are my pets so it doesn't really change their lives if they don't go to school. They just stay here with me and play with my six grandchildren instead of my students.
    Diana
     
  15. ViolaSwamp

    ViolaSwamp Habitué

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    This is a very important point. I remember when a girl who was very poor and unpopular found a rabbit and brought it to school. All of a sudden everyone was nice to her because of the bunny. She had to give it away because her sister was allergic to it. Kids were kind of mad about it and weren't interested in being her friend any more. I would hate for kids to grow attached to a class pet and then resent a classmate because the pet had to leave due to the child's allergies. We have a new science kit on fish and snails this year. Those are going to be our class pets.
     
  16. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    I have had an African Claw frog for about 10 years. He eats earthworms, available at the bait shop. He is so awesome and the kids love him. He's not "huge," so I'm not sure what you mean Nan. He lives in a 5 gallon aquarium that I can empty and rinse out quite easily once a week. One time I decided to get him an enormous aquarium so he could swim from one end to the other. Well, he quit eating for at least a month! He liked his old home. I found out that amphibians are like that...very picky. So, back to his old house he went!!! The kids are just crazy about him.
     
  17. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    Jul 28, 2006

    I had a white hairless rat for a classroom pet a few years ago. Actually, I got him and his brother at the same time. (My first rats, fed them twice a day...they got HUGE!) The kids named the hairless one Baldie and the gray one (with hair) Stewart (Little). They were the best.
     
  18. moonbeamsinajar

    moonbeamsinajar Habitué

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    Jul 29, 2006

    We had a pet hamster once in my classroom. He was an escape artist, and we often had to have the kids hunt for him! I even had to buy humane traps (the kind that catch squirrels alive). One time though, he escaped, and we eventually found him behind the telephone stand. He had chewed through the phone line and electrocuted himself! It was gross! Plus, we had to have the phone replaced. The kids fortunately, did not know he died. Since then, we have stuck to hermit crabs or fish. We usually have a frog or a toad we catch and observe for a week or so, then release. Those frogs you all are talking about sound neat though! The only thing I don't like about having frogs and toads is going to the pet store all the time to buy crickets for them to eat! Plus, the crickets have to eat too, (raw potato- which smells!):eek:
     
  19. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    I refuse to have anything that lives on crickets. They stink worse than the pet itself. The African Clawfrog has lived 10 years soley on earthworms(is favorite are the little red worms though,) bought at a pet store when I can find them. A container of worms lasts about 2 weeks.
     
  20. moonbeamsinajar

    moonbeamsinajar Habitué

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    Grammy Teacher, you are right... the crickets reek! That is why I only keep the frog or toad a week and then release it. How do you keep the earth worms alive? Do you just keep them in a jar of dirt, or what? I tried making a worm farm once, and they all died. That stunk too! Does the frog that you have live only in water, or does he need some earth too?
     
  21. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    There are bait shops around here and that is where I buy the worms. They sell them in a plastic carton and they need refrigeration. Yes, they are in dirt and live for about 2 weeks before getting thrown out the back door! The red worms do not require refrigeration and the frog prefers them. He lives in water and never needs land. He pops up for air now and then.http://exoticpets.about.com/cs/frogsandtoads/a/africanclawed.htm Here is some info. on them!
     
  22. Mable

    Mable Enthusiast

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    I've had many classroom pets now my house is turning into a small pet store. I bring them home and they stay. OH well....it's been fun learning about all the animals. The worst (for me- guniea pigs) the best (my turtle, Tina- I love her!) My basset hound goes crazy when I let my turtle out for a walk outside. It's the most comical sight.
     
  23. moonbeamsinajar

    moonbeamsinajar Habitué

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    Grammy Teacher,
    Thanks for the info about the worms and frogs. I really think I might get one of those frogs. They sound neat!
     
  24. mrs.oz

    mrs.oz Companion

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    Why was the guinea pig your worst?
     
  25. Mable

    Mable Enthusiast

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    I had two guinea pigs and they were given to me in a cage that sat inside a small swimming pool. The idea was to leave the cage open during the day so the pigs could free roam around the pool. Unfortunately, I spent every spare minute (yes I really mean every spare minute) cleaning and feeding the guinea pigs. It took all my extra energy to make sure their bedding was clean, they had food, water, etc. It was really too much. The cutest things though. The girl (Pumpkin) was SWEET! She would talk to me at the times she knew it was her feeding time. Toward the end I came in one morning with Spike (the boy) getting waaay too friendly with Pumpkin. I had to separate them because he would not leave her alone. It was miserable. Fortunately, two students gave them new homes.
     
  26. mrs.oz

    mrs.oz Companion

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    Just wondering since I just bought 2 guineas myself. I do believe I am going to keep one at home and only take one of them to school. They do require a lot of cage cleaning but I am hoping that will slow when they are seperated.
     
  27. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    OK, yet another reason why I couldn't teach the really young kids. I have a real problem with rodents.

    Fish, puppies, even frogs, all OK. But no guinea pigs or rats.
     
  28. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Guinea pigs like to have friends, don't they? I have found that with any rodents, if you use plastic for the cage or accessories it eventually absorbs urine and no cleaning will cure that. They have cage liners for rodents but my hamster shreds it and nests in it. I absolutely love how guinea pigs communicate.
     
  29. mrs.oz

    mrs.oz Companion

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    I have two somewhat dominant sows and one may be expecting. I think it may be best to seperate them due to the fact that they are constantly marking their spots and chirping at each other constantly.
     

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