Obesity in Rats

Bucks should be strong and muscular while does should be lean and thin. When you pick them up they should not feel pudgy or even bony. Balance is the key here. Just like us, rats tend to favor the most unhealthy foods like sugary snacks and fatty foods so they will eat it if you give it to them. However, if you don’t ever give them such foods then they don’t have any chance of eating it and they won’t get fat. Your rats obesity is 100% your responsibility. In addition to a healthy diet, it’s key for them to get enough exercise as well so their one hour a day of free playtime is key. Their cages also need to be full of fun activities for them to get some exercise on.

Rats do not have menstrual periods so it you find one of your rats is bleeding from the vulva, then there is another ...

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Do Pet Rats Bite

Males can become more aggressive around 4 – 5 months old and can become hyper-aggressive if he has a hormone imbalance. Some indicators of this include biting but also hissing, puffing up his fur, scratching at things, peeing everywhere and rubbing his sides on objects to leave his scent.

If you find that he threatens to bite you or hisses at you then you need to take some action. This can include castration which will normalize his hormone levels and see his behavior return to normal. This will usually see the buck become a lot more happy and calm as a result. Being in a perpetual state of aggression is not the best state for a rat to be in. See a vet who has performed many castrations on rats before as it is a very different procedure from other animals.

Female rats on the other hand c...

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Play Time for Rats

Rats need to learn your smell, and get used to your voice. Play with them all day if you can, even if they try to run away or seem quiet. They will soon get over this phase and become the best pets you’ve ever had. You can let them sit on your shoulder as you walk around the house, keep them in your sweater or hold them in your hands. You cannot play with them too much in the beginning phase unless they are clearly sick or nervous to the point of peeing themselves. If this is the case, phone your breeder and mention it to them.

Don’t pick up rats by the tail. Their tails are extremely fragile and it can cause an injury for them. Rather pick them up from under their chest, holding them gently.

Once rats get used to you, it’s time to let them get some freedom and roam around your house a...

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Home Life

Place the cage in a busier part of your house, this way the rats will see you move around giving them some visual stimulation throughout their day. In terms of the size of the cage, there is no such thing as a cage that is too big. Rats are incredibly smart and thus need stimulation. Having a rat live couped up in a tiny cage for most of their lives is just plain cruel. At the minimum their cage should be around 24 by 12 inches but it can be as high as you like. Double, triple or even four times this space would be ideal for them.

It’s also important to make sure there is proper ventilation in their habitat. Rat droppings give off ammonia when they start decomposing and this can irritate the respiratory tract creating health problems...

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