BEST rodent as a pet? - Page 9 - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
General Rodent Chat Information regarding all rodents or any rodents without their own category.

View Poll Results: What's your FAVORITE rodent as a pet?
Degu 24 11.43%
Gerbil 12 5.71%
Hamster 17 8.10%
Rat 98 46.67%
Mouse 18 8.57%
Gunea Pig 18 8.57%
Other 23 10.95%
Voters: 210. You may not vote on this poll

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post #121 of 129 (permalink) Old 05-30-2011, 05:26 AM
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Originally Posted by punkinseed14 View Post
I'm so surprised that rats are so popular! I've heard they make good pets but how do you get past that tail?? LOL
What is wrong with the tail?

I know A LOT of people have a problem with the tail,but I personally like their tails. Plus the tail is an important part of the rat...aiding in regulating temperature and helping with balance.




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post #122 of 129 (permalink) Old 09-19-2011, 01:02 AM
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Prairie Dog.
Indefinately!
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post #123 of 129 (permalink) Old 01-15-2012, 09:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VanillaRat View Post
What is wrong with the tail?

I know A LOT of people have a problem with the tail,but I personally like their tails. Plus the tail is an important part of the rat...aiding in regulating temperature and helping with balance.
Hahah Agreed! I had real problems with the tail at first. Not only was it /naked/, it was big, scaly and mangy looking, unlike a cute ickle mouse which was small and dainty. Rat tails hit me on a reptile brain level. Appropriate I suppose because they looked like snakes attached to their butts.

I think the change came when I was able to handle a rat for the first time and stroke his tail. I've found that the sense of touch gets me past all kinds of irrational aversions, from snakes to spiders to slimy salamanders. In fact, the first rat who made me hold him by grabbing my sleeve and climbing up into my arms was a hairless rat. Hairless rats not only had mangy looking hairless snakes on their butts, but had the same look extend to the rest of their bodies in the form of dirty elbow skin. But this hairless rat begged for scritches and I fell in love his glorious pink warm gummy bear self. Perception is everything.

Now rat tails don't phase me in the least. I think they're just part of a rat's charm. I love their little bumsnakes. (I also have two naked rats)


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post #124 of 129 (permalink) Old 01-15-2012, 05:50 PM
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I chose rat because if I was to hand any of my rodents to a new rodent handler or child i would choose any of my rats over anything else they are so less likely to bite
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post #125 of 129 (permalink) Old 03-31-2012, 11:43 AM
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Why does everyone love rats? There gross...no offense. gerbils are so much awesomer!
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post #126 of 129 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 10:30 AM
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They are not gross...they are clean animals. How do you figure they are gross? Because of the stereotypes and myths? Pet rats are as different from wild rats as dogs are from wolves.

And the reason everyone likes them? They make wonderful pets. They are friendly, affectionate, bond with their owners, smart and can be trained. Also less likely to bite then hamsters.

I have gerbils and rats right now and ALL of my rats are less destructive then my 2 gerbils put together. I have found that out of all the rodents people can keep,rats are the best. I have had hamsters, gerbils, mice, guinea pigs and still go back to rats and always will.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion,but you need to have facts before you can form a proper opinion.




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post #127 of 129 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 12:57 PM
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I get the 'grossness' opinion Doglover. At least from the point of view of someone who's never owned a rat, or who's only experience with rats are seeing feeder rats kept in unhealthy and dirty conditions.

I mean seriously, lets compare:

Apples to apples to the uninitiated, rats are visually the least appealing of the rodents: Big muscular bodies. Small thick ears in relation to their body size. Large thick scaly tails. Slanted eyes that bug cross eyed when they look at you. Big clawed oversized bald feet. In fact, they look closer to creepy reptilian possums than adorable housepets. Not to mention their reputation for causing the bubonic plague which killed off up to 60 % of the world's population. A fact that still holds such a cultural stigma and fear in our minds that we can't even look at a rat without thinking we've caught something noxious.

Rats don't have the big adorable eyes and lion fuzzy tail of gerbils. Hamsters have the benefit of not even having a potentially off putting tail and also having little round chubby Buddha cuteness, unlike the ratty large muscular strength. Guinea Pigs, while big and massive like rats, also have the plump fuzzy cuteness and don't have the thick snakey tail.

Rabbits, while big and muscular, have a powderpuff tail, big round eyes, and long adorable ears. Rat ears are among the smallest and stumpiest of rodents.

Even mice, who structurally are the closest to rats in form, benefit from cute button round eyes instead of eyes sly and slanted. They also benefit from dainty proportions, which make their snake tail look less scaly (though it is every bit as much if you look closely). And they have huge delicate ears that perch cutely on their fuzzy heads.

Many people are put off by rats even if they like rodents. But, for me, once I researched them and kept them, for my wants and needs, I have found them to be much more enjoyable as a pet than any other rodent I've ever kept. Everything Vanillarat said, I've found to be true.

If they're not made to wallow in their own filth like they do at pet stores, rats are cleaner than and absolutely less smelly than all of the other rodents. Mice reek the worst of all of those. Rabbits are stronger smelling and not as clean, but stringent cleaning can keep the odor down. Unfortunately, nothing helps mice. LOL

Norway rats (from whom pet rats descend) are incapable of spreading the black plague--black roof rats are the once susceptible to it. Domesticated rats do not spread any kind of illness to people any more than any other domesticated rodent from a pet store.

They are hands down problem solvingly smarter than every other rodent, though rabbits come close.

They bond, enjoy, and play with their humans. Rabbits do this to a slightly lesser degree, but I've not seen any other rodent do this.

They are less destructive than rabbits and gerbils (gerbils are the most destructive and therefore most likely to be escape artists). Guenea pIgs are not very distructive at all though.

If they do escape, rats easier to catch than mice, gerbils, or hamsters. (Gerbils being the hardest to catch). You can train rats to come when you call their name, like you can with rabbits.

Aggressiveness: While all animals bite, rats are the least likely to bite of all of the rodents. I've been bitten by several of my mice, all of my hamsters and gerbils, and bitten and aggressively scratch attacked by my rabbit. I've never been bitten or aggressively scratched by my rats or by guinea pigs.

Noise: Rats are silent unless something's wrong. Guinea pigs are noisy. I've not had noise problems with any other rodent.

I would compare rats cost and otherwise most closely to guinea pigs and rabbits. Rabbits and guinea pigs have the edge when it comes to cuteness and longevity. Rats have advantage on rabbits when it comes to odor, destructiveness, and aggression (rabbits stink worse, destroy more, and bite/scratch more). Rats have the advantage over guinea pigs when it comes to intelligence, human bonding, and entertainment factor.

As for looks, I wasn't attracted to rats for their looks at first. However, they've grown on me, and I now find them adorable.


In the end, as Vanilla said, it all comes down to what you prefer in a pet, which is an individual choice. You may research rats yourself and still decide that their looks are off putting enough that it doesn't make up for their intelligence, cleanliness, and bonding abilities. Or you may decide that for a shorter lived pet, their relative cost isn't worth the expenditures compared to a rabbit or guinea pig. You may also decide that their social need time requirements, isn't something you want to fool with and you actually prefer a rodent that doesn’t need as much from you as an owner.

Or you may be sucked in like me in spite of yourself. I love all the rodents I've had, but rats happen to be my fav.


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post #128 of 129 (permalink) Old 10-31-2012, 03:14 AM
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I would say degus, but I have to say I never owned rats, yet

However, Degus are not for everyone and they are for experienced pet owners. They need a big cage (or adapted large showcase in my case ) They are not that easy to tame as other rodents like guinea pigs, rabbits, hamsters... but once they recognize you as one of them they are so affectionate and playful. They do tend to be stubborn sometimes, they will cuddle with you only when they want to.
They groom my fingers all the time, they make this wonderful sounds to each other, and even me, similar to bird courting when they cuddle and groom each other.

They are smart and can do tricks. They are incredibly curious they will immediately check on anything you put in their cage.

They are vivid chewers and must have things to trim their teeth on...

Their lifespan is 5-8 years, they MUST be kept in pairs at least...

I just adore them

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post #129 of 129 (permalink) Old 11-17-2012, 07:04 PM
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Rats. (: They are affectionate, clean, smart, and every single one is a unique, sweet ball of fur.
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