Rats can be very common pets. They’re small enough to fit into your hand, yet they’re also smart enough to want to play with you! However, there isn’t much information out there about rats as pets, so it can sometimes be difficult to get an idea if this is right for you or not.
If you’d like to learn more about how pet rats work, read on. We’ll go over everything from where to buy them to what they eat and how they live.
First off, let’s talk about what exactly a pet rat eats. Many people think that all rats are filthy animals who will chew up anything, which couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, I’ve found that my pet rat only chews on things that he likes. He loves to gnaw away at his toys, but other than that he doesn’t really need any food. If you feed him too many snacks, he may start chewing on your furniture. So make sure you don’t give him table scraps.
As far as rat nutrition goes, you shouldn’t feed your pet rat human foods unless it’s specifically labeled “rat” food. This is because most humans’ digestive systems aren’t geared towards digesting large amounts of protein (which is what we typically refer to when talking about animal meat). Instead, you would feed them grain-based pellets made specifically for rats.
These pellets come in different brands and flavors depending on where you purchased yours. Some even contain antibiotics and vitamins just to keep your pet healthy! Just remember that if you do decide to feed your pet rat grains, you should never use whole wheat flour. While it won’t hurt your rat, he likely won’t enjoy eating it.
Now that you know what kind of diet your pet rat gets, you might wonder what its lifestyle is like. Well, unlike larger house pets such as dogs and cats, they tend to sleep more during the day and wake up later. But once they wake up, they usually do so around 5 pm or 6 pm.
After that, they’ll either spend their days sleeping again or playing around the cage. They’ll also hang out together after dark oftentimes they’ll sleep in the same room or next to each other.
During the day they’ll run through tunnels, climb onto shelves, and generally explore their surroundings. At night, however, they prefer to stay inside their cages. When they sleep, they sleep deeply, with little movement or noise.
One thing to note is that if your pet rat has access to outside areas, they’ll try to escape their cage. Just be aware that your rat could end up getting lost or injured while doing so. One way to prevent this is to put a barrier between your pet rat and the outdoors, such as a fence or door.
Most pet rats are perfectly healthy, although they do require special attention since they’re smaller than us. A lot of health issues arise due to improper housing, so it’s important to provide your pet rat with proper care. While rats are small compared to other mammals, they still weigh around 30 pounds.
Because of their size, they need plenty of space to move around. For example, the typical cage size for a male rat is roughly 12 x 15 x 20 inches, while females are closer to 11 x 13 x 18 inches. It’s best to pick a cage that at least matches this size range so your pet feels comfortable.
Their teeth grow continuously throughout their lives, so they must be kept trimmed regularly. Once their teeth begin growing longer, you’ll need to trim them using wire cutters. As long as you take this extra step, your rat will continue to look cute without any unsightly gaps!
For those interested in adopting a pet rat, you’ll need to figure out how much money you’ll be spending per month. The cost depends largely on whether you purchase a purebred or a mixed breed pet rat. Purebreds are more expensive since they come from specific breeding stock, whereas mixed breeds are cheaper and less prone to genetic disorders.
Purebreds can cost anywhere from $100-$500 per year, while mixed-breed rats can cost half as much ($25-$125) each year. Of course, prices vary depending on where you live and how big your rodent becomes.
Before giving your new rat a home, you’ll need to choose a name. There are two ways to do this. Either you can pick a name based on the species of rat you adopt, or you can choose something unique to you. Most rats love to play and explore, so pick a name that lets everyone know you own a playful little creature!
After picking a name, you’ll need to set up a cage. Since your new pet weighs about 30 pounds, you’ll need a cage with at least 12 square feet of floor space. If possible, avoid buying a tall cage since your pet rat can jump up and down with ease. Also, avoid putting a water bottle in the cage because this could cause drowning accidents.
Once you’ve picked a cage, check the dimensions carefully before purchasing one. Make sure that the bars on your cage are wide enough for your pet rat to squeeze and turn around easily. This will help reduce potential injuries.
Since rats are fairly easy to maintain, you don’t need to worry about cleaning the cage very often. Just clean it every few weeks to remove feces and urine. If you notice mold or bacteria building up on the bottom of your rat’s cage, then you’ll need to wash it thoroughly.
Lastly, don’t forget about exercise! While your rat probably already spends lots of time running around its cage, you’ll need to introduce additional activities to keep them stimulated. Try hiding treats around the house or setting up obstacle courses for your pet rat to navigate.
With a bit of thoughtfulness, you can bring your pet rat into your family and experience the joy of having a furry friend around. And now you know everything you need to know about caring for a pet rat. Now it’s time to find your perfect match!
Rats have originally domesticated thousands of years ago in Asia, so they’re actually native to the continent. Today, rats are popular pets worldwide. Not only do they seem fun and friendly, but they’re also pretty inexpensive to own.