Rats are completely capable of being trained to perform tricks and simple commands. Owners train rats to exercise the rats’ minds and display their intelligence. There are hundreds of tricks, commands, phrases, and games that rats can learn very quickly. The owner must be prepared to spend several hours training the rat to execute particular commands and tricks, much like a dog or any other pet. Rats actually ENJOY learning new things, as they have a need for mental stimulation.
Our rats are beautiful, complex creatures that we struggle to understand sometimes. However, we still love them to the moon and back! We’ll never understand why it is necessary to stash our keys under the couch, eat all of the buttons off of the remote, or steal an entire chicken leg from the plate only to cover the wood floors in grease. But, it’s all part of being a rat! Anyways, I’ve got three little things that you might not know about your rats!
Rats Can Only See Within 3 Feet of Their Bodies- If That!
With the speed at which rats fly to the correct top corner of the cage when we enter a room or arrive home, you would think that the rat could see you as clear as day. NOPE! Rats actually have a very limited field of vision. The most they can see is within three feet of them; and even then, it is still blurry and out of focus.
Rats’ eyes are not the primary sensory organ that they use to survive. Instead, their noses and ears are the ones who lead them to safety and their food. This does not mean that rats do not somewhat rely on their sense of vision too; as it has been proven in many instances that blind rats are more jumpy, caught off guard more easily, and are generally more timid than rats who have their normal sight. This points to only one conclusion: while the vision of a rat may not be very good, it is still well enough that they WILL miss it should they become blind.
Almost All Rats Are Infected with Mycoplasma
Mycoplasma infections can be super nasty, sometimes claiming the lives of the young, the elderly, and the ill. The active infection is called Murine Mycoplasmosis,while the bacteria itself is called Mycoplasma pulmonis. This bacteria is found on (and in) virtually every pet rat. The only way to eliminate it is to birth a litter via c-section in a sterile lab to prevent the mother from passing it to the kits. Like staph and strep, it can become active when the immune system is under great stress.
Rats Can Detect, Understand, and PREDICT Patterns
Believe it or not, rats are able to detect pat-terns, under-stand them, and predict what the pattern will do next. As a rat owner, you might see this trait subtly in their every day behavior. Your rats have probably picked up on your daily rituals, such as your night time or morning ritual. They know exactly when they will be played with or fed based upon your activities. They also understand voice cues as well. Rats have actually been able to make surprisingly accurate guesses regarding stock market trends. This was one of the most intriguing studies that I have seen yet. I thought it was PERFECT for showing to those who know very little about rats. It demonstrates their intelligence and ability to learn.
Owners might walk up to their rats’ cage to find that one might be huddled in the back of the cage, swaying back and forth. The rat might appear drunk, with a “caught in the headlights” type of stare. The rat might also be easily spooked, especially with quick movements or loud noises. This is more common in red eyed rats, but why do rats exhibit this type of odd behavior? Let’s find out! Continue reading Red Eyed Rat Swaying, Weaving Back and Forth?
If you have a pair of rats and one suddenly dies, you as the owner will not be the only one mourning. Rats are very intelligent, social creatures who build strong lifelong bonds with their cage mates. Once the cage mate dies (especially one of only a pair), the remaining rat or rats will grieve. They might even be seen staying near the sickly rat as death approaches. Depression and grief is a very real thing for pet rats, despite the criticism they face from many humans who lack any knowledge regarding these animals.
Rats absolutely love to pee, I’m telling you! Rat pee doesn’t exactly have the friendliest odor, making it important to keep the cage cleaned often. Unlike dogs and cats, rats pee quite often. Their little bodies move through food and water quickly, so frequent urination is to be expected. Continue reading Rat Pee: How Often Do Rats Urinate & What Is Normal?
Having a litter of rats can be a very exciting experience; but very nerve wrecking for the first time ratty grandparent who doesn’t know what size litter to expect. Raising baby rats can be rather taxing on the humans, just as it is with mom. We are responsible for socializing them as they grow, while also feeding them, cleaning up after them, and finding them new homes. The bigger the litter is, the more babies there are to take care of. Can you handle it? Continue reading How Many Babies Can a Rat Have?
Rats cannot see quite as well as many animals, but they are not blind. Of course, there is always the possibility that they might go blind for various reasons throughout their lives. There are various ways to test for blindness in rats, but it is important to know that rats do not have perfectly clear vision as it is. On occasion owners might become worried that their rats are blind. If a rat is taken care of properly, it is unlikely that the rat will go blind. However there are several factors at play in this particular situation.
Are Rats Dangerous? How to Trap Wild Rats with Humane Rat Traps
Wild rats will sometimes get into the houses of humans. It’s just something that happens, just like with spiders, ants, and mice. Getting these little rats out of the house is important from a disease standpoint; we never know what a wild animal might be carrying. Generally, the animal is healthy and happy and just wants a bite to eat or a warm place to stay. FOR those who own abused rescues or skittish pet rats, I advise having a humane trap for them too! It makes life SO much easier when they get out! Continue reading Are Rats Dangerous? How to Trap Wild Rats with Humane Rat Traps
Why Do People Hate Pet Rats So Much? Tails? Disease?
All rat lovers hear it at some point: “EW! You have RATS as… pets?!” And what do we do? We roll our eyes! *Here we go again. Another person who has no earthly idea what they’re talking about.* Fortunately, these people can be educated, and a MAJORITY of them are won over! Before you can confront these people, you have to understand the multitude of reasons that people “hate” them. I say “hate” because you cannot hate something you know nothing about; hence the amount of people that are won over by the Ratty Casanovas! Continue reading Why Do People Hate Pet Rats So Much? Tails? Disease?
Adorable Rat Photography Shoot Ideas with My Canon EOS Rebel T5i!
I not only have a passion for rats and writing; I have a passion for photography too! Hence my beautiful little Canon camera, that my wonderful partner got for me for Christmas. He got a pretty sweet deal on Amazon and it wound up being an ENTIRE kit. I was ecstatic; and the first subjects I had to shoot were, you guessed it, rats!!! Continue reading Adorable Rat Photography Shoot Ideas with My Canon EOS Rebel T5i!