Our Rat Personalities:
All of our rats are super friendly and active especially as youngsters. They love people and are not shy about begging for attention and treats at the side of a cage. Many of our rats are big kissers, and will grab your hand to lick you. Shoulder rides are a favorite, but make sure to do so at home away from dogs or cats.
They love free-roam time, and are pretty good about getting into trouble while doing it. Hammocks, hanging baskets, deep bedding, and hides are a must for their busy brains.
Quick and Dirty Facts:
- Gestation is about three weeks, with pups born blind, deaf, and hairless
- Pups are fully weaned by four weeks old
- Sexually mature at about five weeks old
- Lifespan: two-three years, though some lines live 3+ consistently
- Females tend to be more active throughout life
- Read about rat type/standards here: http://www.afrma.org/stdsrat.htm
Avoid: uncooked potato, avocado, and anything with seeds to avoid choking (ie: apple cores, seeded grapes, etc). Avoid seed mixes as they will happily pick and choose what they like which is often the yummy unhealthy stuff.
Really easy toys come from trash: egg cartons, small boxes (rip off bottom to avoid pee-soaking), or ripped up paper for extra nesting material. Don’t give them anything you don’t want ripped up. There are so many YouTube videos on how to repurpose stuff for rat toys so I won’t go into too much detail here. Just make sure to change out toys/hides before they start stinking as paper and boxes soak up pee and that built up ammonia can lead to sick rats. Hammocks, hanging baskets, flower pots, or anything that is easy to clean (or can be thrown away once soiled) can be put in a cage and they will make a toy or hide out of it.
One of the easiest forms of enrichment is treat balls (wrapping up in paper or hiding in paper rolls) or simply scatter-feeding. There is nothing wrong with having your pets work for their food. This works their brains and keeps them active physically as well.
Rats love getting out of their cage for a time as well, so feel free to pick them up and set them in your lap or in a designated play space they can’t escape from (tub, table, large box/bin). Always make sure to supervise during free-roam time. We do not recommend permanently free-roaming your rats. They will destroy everything they can, and it’s very possible they will escape the room or even your house all-together. They can easily get into things they shouldn’t, get stepped on, or get attacked by another pet in the house. It’s not worth the risk.
We do NOT recommend taking your rats out in public with you in a hoodie/on your shoulder as this is begging for an accident to happen. The only time a pet should leave the house is in a secure travel cage. Do NOT take your rat to the pet store with you as this exposes them to possible diseases from the animals housed there.
How many rats should I keep? This a common question, and one that has many answers. First off, one should never get more rats than they have the time or money for. While fairly cheap and easy to care for, it can be easy to get overwhelmed. The best number for a new owner is three rats, otherwise known as a trio. Rats are highly social animals and should never be housed alone, and getting a trio ensures that should one pass away, the remaining rats are not alone. Once you get down to one/two rats you will have to make the decision to bring more into your household, or perhaps give away the remaining single rat either back to TGR if from us, or to another home that has rats.
People are never enough company for a rat. If you go to work or school that’s at least eight hours away from them and then another eight or so while you sleep. That means your rat is alone for 16/24 hours of the day alone not counting social time, driving, shopping, or any other duties you may have. If you spend every moment other than sleeping and work/school with them, that’s still only 1/3 of their day not alone. It’s not enough.
Though male mice cannot live together male rats absolutely can, and should, be housed with other males.
Only knowledgeable homes are able to take home new pets from me. I will not adopt to you if you have obviously not done research on your new pet, so please use this page to help you do just that! You must fill out the following adoption questionnaire and provide proof of proper housing before you can adopt.
Thank you for choosing TGR!