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Here I go again....can you talk to me about rats please

(11 Posts)
Curlybrunette Thu 19-Jan-17 21:24:56

Hey everyone,

It wasn't long ago that I had a similar thread to this one where I wanted you to tell me about having rabbits. This time I'm asking about rats.

Basically DS 9y and I love animals. He I has 3 guinea pigs who are amazing, but he wants more pets. We've discussed various animals in the last few weeks and he's now settled on rats. I have read up on them in the past, when I got his first pigs I got it down to either pigs or rats and went for pigs instead. From what I read rats are friendly happy little devils.

Have any of you got rats, can you help me please. I am prepared to get a big enough cage, more than 1 rat so they aren't lonely, daily cleaning and attention etc. etc. but what I need to know are the hardest things about having them. The worst bits I suppose.

I read somewhere that they can become aggressive and depressed if they don't get enough attention and get bored. How much attention do they need?

Thank you,

SprogletsMum Thu 19-Jan-17 21:30:29

I used to keep lots of rats but it was a while ago so my info might be out of date.
I always found 3 to be the best number to keep together. The bigger the better for cages, they love hammocks and tunnels and anything else you can think of to put in there to entertain them.
We used to feed the shunamite (I think) diet. Can't remember what it was but I remember it was very popular at the time.
I think girls are less likely to get aggressive than boys. Sometimes boys can randomly get aggression issues, we had a couple that went a bit funny and couldn't be with other boys and even decided they didn't like being handled after having been fine.
Rats are ace I have been wanting more but need to wait until I don't have a baby/toddler so I have time to give to them!

happy2bhomely Thu 19-Jan-17 21:51:15

I've got 3 girl rats. They are wonderful pets.

The worst thing is probably the smell. They don't smell any worse than a dog if you keep their cage clean, but I am quite sensitive to smells. No one else can smell themhmm

They do like attention, just like a dog would. They watch us a lot from their cage and notice when DH gets home from work etc. They are active but spend quite a lot of time curled up in hammocks, or in a dressing gown pocket!

They enjoy being held. They are not like other small pets that will just tolerate being handled. They actually enjoy a cuddle. Well ours do anyway. One of ours lays on her back for a tummy rub!

They can be trained, which is a fun way to spend time with them.

Curlybrunette Sat 21-Jan-17 14:19:02

They do sound like really lovely pets. I've seen 2 girls on a gumtree ad (there are no rescue rats near me) which I think I'll go and see, tho info know once I see them I'll want them!

Do you know if they'd be ok in the same room as my Guinea pigs? The pigs are in ds's room and that really would be the best place for the rats too. I wouldn't want any of them getting distressed by the other...when we let them out we would do it in the same room though so there'd be no chance of the rats getting to the pigs.


Curlybrunette Sat 21-Jan-17 14:23:53

Actually I just googled it and ended up on a gerbil forum where someone had asked about keeping different rodents in the same room. The general opinion was that it was ok as long as the cages weren't directly touching.

HarryPottersMagicWand Mon 06-Feb-17 11:58:14

I will always advocate rats as pets. Brilliant little pets. So friendly. Mine don't stay still for cuddles but are happy to climb all over you. We have just lost one yesterday and we are all gutted.

Be prepared for the vets bills. They suffer from respiratory infections a lot. Our lasting rat is on her 4th infection. Usually costs us just over £20 a time for the vets and medicine so not too bad. I have just paid £40 because it was an emergency on a Sunday and she was given oxygen but sadly didn't make it. I'm assuming the high bill was because the vet had to be called in.

MoosicalDaisy Mon 06-Feb-17 12:05:08

Seconded on respiratory issues - keep them clean and don't use anything dusty for bedding, like sawdust.

Curlybrunette Tue 07-Feb-17 14:57:33

We got the rats about 2 weeks ago and we LOVE them!

2 girly white rats, not sure how old, I think about 18 months, and I think they must have been well handled as they are really friendly little things.

We sit on each of the sofa and they happily run along from one end to the other, jumping over us and into our sleeves etc. This morning one of them was snuggled in ds's onesie with him!

They are a big hit with us. The (very little) downside is that they only seem to wee in their hammock so it is v stinky when you get up close, but I've bought another so am going to wash them every 2 or 3 days. They poo in a litter tray but there is no wetness anywhere but the hammock. Which must be unpleasant for them to sleep in???

Gorgeous girls!

Sorry for your loss HarryPotter it never gets easier does it x

HarryPottersMagicWand Tue 07-Feb-17 21:51:10

Thanks curly, no it doesn't. sad

Ours only wee around the top edges of the tray at the bottom of the cage so it's never on the bottom. We tried using a litter tray but they weren't interested plus I think the one I got is too small for them.

AKinkAdmirer Fri 10-Mar-17 01:12:26

Mine had respiratory infections almost constantly. The first time one of them succumbed the only sign was that he would occasionally make noises when he breathed but as it was so infrequent I didn't think it was an issue until he started to become withdrawn as well. He got over it with a course of antibiotics but after another infection his lungs became damaged to the point where he creaked with every breath. This didn't bother him but it made it harder to identify more infections as he would get them periodically without his breathing becoming any noisier than it already was. About eight months after his first infection his feet started turning blue from lack of oxygen and as this was the cumulative effect of all that lung damage, he had to be put to sleep. The other three also had multiple respiratory infections. One other ended up with permanently noisy breathing, though not as severe. Strangely, even though they were all from the same litter and lived together all their lives, one of them didn't get any repiratory infections until he was about two by which point the other three had all had several. I honestly don't know what could have been done to prevent this. Perhaps it was genetic weakness as they had been from an accidental litter originally, not a professional breeder. Perhaps it was because I didn't get the first one treated promptly enough, or keep their cage clean enough. They were all wonderful pets though, apart from constantly having an antibiotic-laden syringe stuck down one of their throats.

avamiah Fri 10-Mar-17 01:16:16

I think I have mice or a rat in my walls, ceiling.
I hear it running about in the ceiling at night,and it is very worrying .
Not every night that's the strange thing,
Any thoughts?

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