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Adding any new pet to your life is a big decision, and not one that should ever be taken lightly. If you’re considering getting pet rats, there are lots of thing to take into account.
Rats make lovely pets. They’re intelligent little creatures, and will form a genuine bond with you. If you like the idea of a small fluffy friend, who grooms you, and can be trained to do tricks, rats are a great choice.
Space and Time
Before biting the bullet though, make sure you’re prepared to give them what they need. Rats need space and time. A good rat cage isn’t small, so make sure you have somewhere suitable to put it. They can be noisy too, so ideally, you don’t want to keep them in your bedroom. A high traffic room like the living room is great, but many people have dedicated rat rooms.
Rats need a lot of attention, and time outside of the cage. If being a rat climbing frame for an hour isn’t for you, neither are rats. You’ll need somewhere safe to free range them. This can be a whole room (bathrooms are often ideal), or a section of room you’ve blocked off.
After the initial outlay of cages and the first accessories, rats can be a relatively cheap pet. You can make their own food mixes, and many rats prefer cheap toys, like tissues boxes or things you’ve made yourself. Make sure you can afford the ongoing costs of food, bedding, substrate, treats and litter. Be aware that rats can be destructive and any toys and cage furniture will need replacing too. Many of us fall victim to spoilt rat syndrome though, and are forever buying them new things, which is an expensive hobby. Factor in the cost of vet bills too.
If you have the time, space and funds for it though, we obviously think rats are wonderful additions to the family. Our mischief make us laugh every day with their antics, and they’re all loving, smart little individuals.