Pet Fancy Rat
Pet Fancy Rat

9 Practical Reasons To Own Pet Rats

Author: Amy

Pet rats are fun, easy-going and can make great pets. They are rapidly becoming more popular as younger and older pet lovers adventure beyond more common types of pets.

The domesticated rat or "Fancy Rat" is very different from the common "Brown rat" that many people attribute ownership to. These fancy rats are extremely clean and are safe to own, much like your common hamster or guinea pig.

Many new pet owners relate to cat or dogs at first. But there are a few practical advantages to owning a pet rat. Besides being practical, most rat cages are affordable and rat food is fairly cheap.

So if you have other pets and want to branch out or if you are a first-time pet owner who wants to know what all fuss is about, then this article is for you. Here are 9 reasons to own pet rats:

1. Rats are charismatic

A rat is a playful, fun and social pet that is full of character. Each rat is different bursting with unique personalities. You'll very easily tell that some rats are more withdrawn and shy while others are more outgoing and demanding. Furthermore, you can even have intelligent rats and conversely, ones that are more down to earth.

Either way, it's an adventure to own a rat and fascinating to watch them grown, learn and play.

2. Rats are low maintenance

Unlike other pets, rats are very low maintenance. They are very content in their cage and can go for hours of the day without much attention. Of course, just like any other pet, the more social interaction the better. However, if you have a hectic lifestyle or are not able to return home for long parts of the day your rat will be able to take care of themselves.

Just leave lots of fresh food and water, and toys, out for them so they can eat, drink and be happy!

3. Rats will bond with you

If you've owned a rat before you will know that they are very warm-hearted pets. They enjoy socializing with you and spend long parts of their day grooming, playing and interacting. Rats thrive in social environments and so you must have at least a pair together.

To introduce a new pet rat to another rat, the best thing to do is to keep them separated for around 2-3 weeks. Once you are ready, put their cages together for around 10-15 minutes twice a day for around 7 days. This will help them get used to each other's scent.

The more time you spend with your pet rat the faster you'll notice how compassionate and fun-loving they can be. Of course, as mentioned above, not all rats are as caring as others and overall it will depend on their character. Either way, all rats will be happy to see you especially if you've been away for the day.

4. Rats are surprisingly clean

Rats keep themselves well-groomed and clean. This may come as a surprise as most people associate rats with unsanitary hygiene, but that isn't true for fancy rats. Although all male rats do mark their territory, as long as you give the cage a weekly clean it's unlikely you will smell any foul odours.

They can also be litter trained and will naturally choose one corner to use the toilet which makes them more hygienic than some other pets.

5. Rats are budget-friendly

Rats in comparison to other household pets are much cheaper to own. Naturally, you need a rat cage, food, bedding and other small accessories for play and fun, but once that's been taking care of you won't have many more major costs.

Rat food is relatively inexpensive and you can even feed rats scrap of food you eat, which just makes feeding costs more budget-friendly. Make sure you check that you are feeding safe human foods first!

Furthermore, generally being practical will help you keep costs down even more. Things like using everyday household items for bedding. like cardboard bosses and paper shredding, is a smart way to save money and be resourceful.

6. Rats are intelligent

Rats are smart pets and it's very common for them to understand how to do basic tricks.

Some pet rat owners can train their rats to do some incredible things and it's all to do with a simple reward system. Simple commands, like getting them to come to you on command or to stand up on their back legs, are really simple to do.

The best part is you can teach them new tricks within the span of a few weeks. This is a great way to increase the bond between you both and you can even teach them party tricks to show off in front of friends!

7. Rats are sociable

Rats are sociable pets that are generally friendly, down to earth and playful. Rats will only scratch or bite if they feel immediately threatened or are in great pain or discomfort. They will seldom bite or scratch you or someone else for no reason and if they do feel scared they will warn you first.

Safety is important whenever you think about buying a new pet and introducing it to your family. However, rest assure that rats are very friendly, happy animals that like to be handled and enjoy being playful.

8. Rats hardly ever get sick

One of the biggest reasons to get a pet rat is that they rarely get sick. Rats are immune to many common illnesses when compared to similar species and breeds. If you keep your rats in clean living conditions, give them lots of playtime and interaction and make sure they have a balanced diet they will stay healthier and happier for longer.

It's important to note that one illness that some females suffer from is mammary tumours. However, in comparison to other pets is still on the lower side of things.

With an average lifespan of two to three years, health and hygiene is important but if you follow the advice above you’ll have plenty of time to bond with your special friends.

9. Rats come in a variety of shapes, colours and sizes

We always say that there is a "Fancy rat for every kind of person".

Coming in different shapes and sizes, it's an adventure to find the perfect fancy rats for you. Having the ability to choose from pet rats with a variety of fur types and a variety of colours you'll definitely be spoilt for choice. 

There are plenty of Rat breeders available and also many rescues looking for loving new homes. This keeps your options high and prices competitive, so ensure you find a fancy pet at a fair price

Always remember to do some digging into the family history before buying your rats so you can be aware of any hereditary problems.

Overall we recommend letting these cute, sociable, hands-on pets into your life. They are very friendly pets who are low maintenance. This has increased their popularity especially amongst children who are more interested in first-time pets or finding a new pet friend that they can easily bond with!

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Hey, I’m Amy and I’m in love with my Pets! I have a diverse variety, including 2 cats, 1 dog, 3 rabbits, 2 guinea pigs, a rat, and a beautiful macaw. I love writing about everything pet-related and spend as much time as I can sharing my personal experiences on my blog.

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