Paw Talk - Pet Forums banner
1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Check this out. Watch this very short video of Dr Brady Barr.. who want to do a show on Nat Geo about rats. But it seems like he will be portraying rats negitivly. If you love rats and mice.. wild or not.. go to the second link. its a petetion to nat goe to put a stop to his show. If he shows the good side to rats and mice then by all means.. but these little lovable creatures do not need some jerk brainwashing the public into thinking they are bad.. ok I ranted enough.. watch and sign please.. and thanks.


Sorry this website will not let me put links in yet...
just read what i put.. you can copy and past these.. it should work.. if not just add the http and www


thanks all...


animals.nationalgeographic.com/wild/community/blogs/inside-wild/_brady-wants-hear-rat-stories


change.org/petitions/national-geographic-stop-production-of-bradys-disturbing-rat-show-and-portray-rats-positively
 

·
Resident Zoologist
Joined
·
262 Posts
But it seems like he will be portraying rats negitivly.
I hate to tell you this, but he has reason. You may love your captive pet rat(s), but wild/feral rats are responsible for millions of deaths yearly (and historically), billions of dollars in damage yearly to crops, food, wiring, and they carry quite a lot of diseases. Rats are the most insidious and destructive (and widespread) of all invasive species world-wide. I have nothing in particular against rats, but they are what they are.
 

·
canis lupus familiaris
Joined
·
552 Posts
I hate to tell you this, but he has reason. You may love your captive pet rat(s), but wild/feral rats are responsible for millions of deaths yearly (and historically), billions of dollars in damage yearly to crops, food, wiring, and they carry quite a lot of diseases. Rats are the most insidious and destructive (and widespread) of all invasive species world-wide. I have nothing in particular against rats, but they are what they are.
I'm going to have to disagree. Most diseases were not caused by rats but fleas and such. Also there are other creatures that do just as much damage that are waay overlooked (pigeons for example.)

I would have to agree, rats are rats. Shame that there are tame rats in that box with him. Stupid people are stupid and will think they are disgusting whether this show exists or not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Thank you Blacksheep for pointing that out. So many people don't actually know that it was not the rats but the fleas. Yes, there are other animals that do a lot of damage. What about the rabbits in Australia that have destroyed the land or the frogs (I don't remeber where) that have destroyed crops? It's not just rats that do destruction. Besides, what is it that makes rats dirty and disgusting? It is our garbage and our sewers that they crawl through, right?
I see that Toirtis is a reptile lover. Well, I too am very much a reptile lover and have had many snakes and lizards. I took to snakes because I have bad allergies to animals with fur, although I did get my first pet rat about a week and a half ago. Sorry if I offend anyone on here but I used to be so angry about having these allergies that I used to joke and say that rats and rabbits were nothing but snake food, even though deep inside I always wanted a pet rat. I was kind of ignorant about the fact that some rats are bred just for feeding and some are for pets, I honestly didn't know the difference. Anyway, sorry to rant, I'm just an animal lover no matter what kind of animal. But, anyone who owns snakes, for the humanity of the rat and the safety of the snake, please buy the rats frozen or have them humanely killed at the pet store, PLEASE!!!!
 

·
Resident Zoologist
Joined
·
262 Posts
I'm going to have to disagree. Most diseases were not caused by rats but fleas and such.
You seem to be referring to plague, and although the fleas were the immediate vector of transmission, the fleas had it in them from feeding on the rats that they were hosting on...rats that carried plague. That aside, rats carry far more zoonoses than plague.

Also there are other creatures that do just as much damage that are waay overlooked (pigeons for example.)
Believe it or not, no....no other animal (save humans) even comes close to the damage rats do. Most electrical fires in New York are caused by rats damaging wiring...the US alone loses over 25 billion dollars in crop and food damage to rats yearly...and you should see what India is like.
 

·
Resident Zoologist
Joined
·
262 Posts
Thank you Blacksheep for pointing that out. So many people don't actually know that it was not the rats but the fleas.
No so cut and dried...see my previous post.

Yes, there are other animals that do a lot of damage.
A lot, but again, nowhere near what rats do.

What about the rabbits in Australia that have destroyed the land
A fair bit of damage, but the rabbits are now under control, really only an issue in Australia (as opposed to world-wide), and only over the past 120 years.

or the frogs (I don't remeber where) that have destroyed crops?
Toads, actually (Cane toads, to be exact), and they are also in Australia, and not touching crops, but decimating native species, like shrews, native amphibia, and even damaging dingo populations.

It's not just rats that do destruction. Besides, what is it that makes rats dirty and disgusting? It is our garbage and our sewers that they crawl through, right?
Right...humans are a terrible plague in themselves, and we are responsible for most of the rats world-wide, as we gave them ample free passage to places that they should never have been.

I see that Toirtis is a reptile lover.
Toirtis is a scientist...a zoologist, specifically, that specialises in herpetofauna, not just reptilia. I appreciate all animals, and like many more than others...and many of my favourites are mammalian.

But, anyone who owns snakes, for the humanity of the rat and the safety of the snake, please buy the rats frozen or have them humanely killed at the pet store, PLEASE!!!!
Home euthanasia is also an option, but live-feeding is always a bad idea....far too hazardous to the snake...a rat fighting for its life can be a very formidable foe....but then, so can a rabbit (and other animals), so always buy your feeder rabbits/mice/cavies/hamsters/pigs/goats/etc pre-killed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,468 Posts
I just want to say that it is not human fault for rats being so widespread. They would have found it to other places no matter what, that's just Nature's Way. If we wanted to never spread anything anywhere, we'd have to hole ourselves up in our houses day in and day out, but that's not any healthier. It's human instinct to travel; so is it for many other creatures, especially if their species is dying out and landing a new homeland might actually give them the time to rebuild their population. But creatures big and small, mammalian and not, if they want to spread out are going to figure out how to do it regardless of us.
 

·
Official Loofah Tester
Joined
·
1,365 Posts
The number one reason rats are considered a plague on man is because more than any other animal they are most adaptable to man's environment.

As my friends here and I have discussed and lovingly disagreed about, I've said before that while I'm a monster domesticated rat fan, I have no problems exterminating with extreme prejudice the wild rats who come into my basement garage and cause thousands of dollars of damage to my wiring, insulation, and cars. Not to mention what respiratory illnesses of they might be exposing my domesticated boys.

Any wild animal, or any domesticated animal who runs loose, is going to be much more likely to carry diseases that can transfer to other domesticated animals and people.

While the most recent study on rats actually theorizes that rats had a lot less to do with the transmission of the plague than previously thought (it is now thought by many researchers that it may have been a direct human flea human transmission rather than rat flea human), wild rats (rattus rattus and rattus norvi.) still transmit diseases to people all over the world and yes, in the United States.

BUT. Our cultural western bias against rats is extreme and over exaggerated.

Domesticated rats as pets probably generate more unreasonable hatred and attract more unreasonable cruelty than most any domesticated animal. At least snakes and arachnids get the inborn 'coolness' respect of being predators. Let's face it, most people are boneheaded and cruel to even the most beloved animal. Domesticated rats get it 100 times worse because of their herp food/'disposable'/disease infested perception. Nothing like watching a youtube video of some bozos as they drop a live domesticated rat into their pet Piranha tank and giggle while the animal dies by inches to bring that lesson home for me.

With that in mind, Dr Brady Barr's 'scientific' inquiry method for gaining a high ratings money making shock episode is unnecessary and unbalanced. Of course, Dr. Barr's show is built around the shock value which is fine, but rats need no help being shocking. What they need is help being understood.

With the criticism of petitions and comments directly to the natgeo website, this could end up being a more balanced portrayal of rats than expected, but I suspect it's going to do nothing but be a fear driven ratings generator. Perhaps they'll reconsider though. I've already sent my comments in to Natgeo. I think it's worthwhile to participate.
 

·
Resident Zoologist
Joined
·
262 Posts
The number one reason rats are considered a plague on man is because more than any other animal they are most adaptable to man's environment.
Bingo, although I would suggest that instead of "...to man's environment.", "...to ANY environment."

While the most recent study on rats actually theorizes that rats had a lot less to do with the transmission of the plague than previously thought (it is now thought by many researchers that it may have been a direct human flea human transmission rather than rat flea human),
True, but the rats of the time were rife with plague, and they are still one of the primary carriers.

wild rats (rattus rattus and rattus norvi.)
To be fair, these are the same species as 'domestic' rats, unless we are referring to ASFs, Gambian pouched rats, cane rats, etc.

still transmit diseases to people all over the world and yes, in the United States.
Thank you.

BUT. Our cultural western bias against rats is extreme and over exaggerated.
I would argue that....although people in India, SE Asia, Europe do not 'freak out' over encountering a rat the way many Americans do (Canadians are more laid back, except here in Alberta, where we have a rat extermination SWAT team), they like them no more (with the possible exception of Korea and China, where they are seen as a food item....and they are actually fairly tasty).

Domesticated rats as pets probably generate more unreasonable hatred and attract more unreasonable cruelty than most any domesticated animal. At least snakes and arachnids get the inborn 'coolness' respect of being predators.
Snakes and arachnids are far from being anything like 'domesticated animals' though. I may be a big fan of snakes and arachnids, but they are pretty much mindless eating/mating machines....and the hate that exists for them out there is pretty ubiquitous and it runs very deep in human psyche.

With that in mind, Dr Brady Barr's 'scientific' inquiry method for gaining a high ratings money making shock episode is unnecessary and unbalanced. Of course, Dr. Barr's show is built around the shock value which is fine,
Aha...really no idea about this chappy, or his show...I have little time for most television dreck.

but rats need no help being shocking. What they need is help being understood.
It is true, even if only for the fact that we will likely be relying on them as a major meat source within the next 5 decades.

With the criticism of petitions and comments directly to the natgeo website, this could end up being a more balanced portrayal of rats than expected, but I suspect it's going to do nothing but be a fear driven ratings generator.
Of course they will ignore all the comments and petitions....people that love rats are far in the minority, are probably outside of the demographic that patronises the advertisers, and will all end up watching the show anyways. In the end (now this is going to sound rude, but it is not meant to be, it is just how they will view it), the online complaints are just the rantings of a bunch of marginalised rat-lovers that make up less than one-quarter of one percent of the population.

Perhaps they'll reconsider though. I've already sent my comments in to Natgeo. I think it's worthwhile to participate.
It is, but you need to ***** at the sponsors, too, and find a way to make both actually pay attention and care.
 

·
Resident Zoologist
Joined
·
262 Posts
I just want to say that it is not human fault for rats being so widespread. They would have found it to other places no matter what, that's just Nature's Way.
Really...no. You need to do some real reading. Humans are responsible for 85% of rat introductions, and 'nature's way' would never have had rats swimming thousands of kilometers of ocean to reach Australia, New Zealand, North America, etc....we brought them there on our ships, plain and simple....just like we did with dogs and cats.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,468 Posts
Really...no. You need to do some real reading. Humans are responsible for 85% of rat introductions, and 'nature's way' would never have had rats swimming thousands of kilometers of ocean to reach Australia, New Zealand, North America, etc....we brought them there on our ships, plain and simple....just like we did with dogs and cats.
Um, I think you'd be quite surprised. All creatures on this planet will do extraordinary things if they feel they must. Especially if it means survival of their species. Why the heck do you think birds migrate ungodly amount of miles prior to the cold weather? Why the heck do you think whales do? Why the heck do you think hundreds of thousands of other creatures migrate at any given time, with little motivation? You apparently have never heard of random critters suddenly moving in the thousands. I never denied we played part, hence why I said we'd have to otherwise hole ourselves up in our homes if we wanted to try and not spread anything anywhere; but it'll never be 100%, creatures will find a way under whatever circumstance. Rats would have found a way without us; they're excellent swimmers, and it's entirely plausible that they'd do it if that's what instinct told them.
 

·
Official Loofah Tester
Joined
·
1,365 Posts
My intent is not to debate with you as my response was mostly to contribute to the direction of the thread as a whole, and as I actually agree with the main things you are conveying- That A)Wild rats do cause a lot of damage and spread disease. and B) (Though this part is an unsaid subtext) That people might stand to not anthropomorphize their animals to the point that they ignore or deny the less savory aspects of an animal's reality. I will hope and respect that there is not a third unsaid subtext of stirring the mix a bit with silly little extremist rat lovers. Anyway, here's my thoughts on your comments to me. :)

Bingo, although I would suggest that instead of "...to man's environment.", "...to ANY environment."
Absolutely. I read a quote by Jeannette Desor, “You can drop humans anywhere and they'll thrive-only the rat does as well.”



True, but the rats of the time were rife with plague, and they are still one of the primary carriers.
Not arguing that, but with this point I'm referring less with reality that diseases exist, and more the collective western psyche of it. Mention rats to the average person, and they'll bring up the fact that rats cause the bubonic plague.




To be fair, these are the same species as 'domestic' rats, unless we are referring to ASFs, Gambian pouched rats, cane rats, etc.
I know there's more rat species, but I am focusing on those two because they are the ones most likely to be found in the average home.



Thank you.
You're welcome. :)



I would argue that....although people in India, SE Asia, Europe do not 'freak out' over encountering a rat the way many Americans do (Canadians are more laid back, except here in Alberta, where we have a rat extermination SWAT team), they like them no more (with the possible exception of Korea and China, where they are seen as a food item....and they are actually fairly tasty).
Again, I'm not arguing their known status. I'm focusing on the psyche behind it, because the reason for this thread is not supporting (yet another) slanted sensationalist portrayal of rats.



Snakes and arachnids are far from being anything like 'domesticated animals' though. I may be a big fan of snakes and arachnids, but they are pretty much mindless eating/mating machines....and the hate that exists for them out there is pretty ubiquitous and it runs very deep in human psyche.
Okay, my apologies for not acknowledging that pet snakes and spiders were not domesticated. I agree though. And yes, I very much agree that they get a lot of bad treatment and press from the same place in the human psyche that rats live. My only point is that they do get at least a degree of respect that rats don't. Fear and ignorance is bad enough for animals. Fear, ignorance, and lack of respect is so much worse.



Aha...really no idea about this chappy, or his show...I have little time for most television dreck.
With all respect, this a reason why I questioned your possible motivation for posting here. The whole point of the thread is dealing with an example of the television dreck.



It is true, even if only for the fact that we will likely be relying on them as a major meat source within the next 5 decades.
And this also makes me wonder about your motivation here. Let's just stir the mix with the cold hard truth is it? If they get angry about thinking of their pets as a food source well, too bad, the truth hurts? It's not my intent to start anything with you or even continue. Just know that if it's your intent, on behalf of the more gentle hearted folks here, it's not necessary or appreciated.

My opinion? Dogs are eaten as a food source. Cows are kept as pets. They also deserve fair handling, and if kept in the care of humans, humane treatment whatever their purpose.


Of course they will ignore all the comments and petitions....people that love rats are far in the minority, are probably outside of the demographic that patronises the advertisers, and will all end up watching the show anyways. In the end (now this is going to sound rude, but it is not meant to be, it is just how they will view it), the online complaints are just the rantings of a bunch of marginalised rat-lovers that make up less than one-quarter of one percent of the population.
Your point is valid. Yes, your wording is quite rude and disrespectful if it comes from your personal opinion rather than merely to drive home the likely thoughts of the cooperation in question. I'm sure the fact that rats are not popular will not stop those interested in defending their animals to participate however.


It is, but you need to ***** at the sponsors, too, and find a way to make both actually pay attention and care.
It's all part of the process.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
WOW..
So I think my thread got a little out of control. I was not trying to say save all rats and wild animals. I only do not want this so called DR guy to have a TV show, in which he is going to portry ALL rats as being bad. Because they are not. ANd the mas public is stupid and will believe anything you put in front of it. Now if his show shows the bad rats... and the fun, loving ones too then ok fine. But that advertise did not lead me to believe that was the case. And just for the record... Sure a rat or mouse or DOG with a communicable disease is bad.. and should be put down if it cannot be helped.


Thanks for all the replies be the way.



Jimmie
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,083 Posts
I don't think the mass public will be watching this show. It states in the title that its going to be about rats, so the audience is limited.

also i would hope most tv shows don't completely change the minds of every person that views it. Most people will call an exterminator or trap a rat if they have one in their home, if they don't see one they won't actively go after them. i don't think this will change based on one hour of tv.

There have been shows on pet rats, and there have been shows on the problem of rats. Same as rabbits, toads, pythons in florida and so on. This is not the only show that shows an animal as being a problem or unpleasant light

Wild snakes and spiders get lots of horrible treatment, not to mention squirrels and gophers. Think about how many spiders are squished, flushed... snakes hit with tools, stepped on, tossed... Rats i would stay fair better than snakes and spiders in the wild.

And honestly, this promo just sounds stupid, and i think many would agree, if they like rats or not.


storyseeker- why do you search out those videos on youtube?! the more people that watch those the more likely the person will make another. sometimes ignoring is the best action.
 

·
Official Loofah Tester
Joined
·
1,365 Posts
storyseeker- why do you search out those videos on youtube?! the more people that watch those the more likely the person will make another. sometimes ignoring is the best action.
Who said anything about searching it out? It came up on my feed while searching for rat behavior vids.
 

·
Resident Zoologist
Joined
·
262 Posts
Um, I think you'd be quite surprised. All creatures on this planet will do extraordinary things if they feel they must. Especially if it means survival of their species. Why the heck do you think birds migrate ungodly amount of miles prior to the cold weather? Why the heck do you think whales do? Why the heck do you think hundreds of thousands of other creatures migrate at any given time, with little motivation? You apparently have never heard of random critters suddenly moving in the thousands.
Umm...I have a degree in zoology, I teach this stuff...I know of what I speak.

Rats would have found a way without us; they're excellent swimmers, and it's entirely plausible that they'd do it if that's what instinct told them.
No matter the 'instinct', no terrestrial mammal swims hundreds of kilometers across open ocean. However, I am beginning the think that next along your line of "Rats would have found a way without us" reasoning is that without humans, rats would have discovered boat-building...
 

·
canis lupus familiaris
Joined
·
552 Posts
Just pointing this out but the better rap an animal has, the more damage is shrugged off. Anyone live near Deer? Yeah they cause a crap ton of damage but hey its shrugged off. After all, insurance will cover whatever right?

Rats by themselves damage man made areas well. Yes fires and all that. Anyone consider how much damage cats do to wildlife? Same with foreign frogs. Here they are in a debate because someone released carp and it has caused so much damage to our natural river that Fish and Game don't see a point in it and will be draining it in case of drought!!!

I'm sorry I didn't know important damage had to be monetary or involving humans only.
 

·
Resident Zoologist
Joined
·
262 Posts
I will hope and respect that there is not a third unsaid subtext of stirring the mix a bit with silly little extremist rat lovers.
Not at all...although rats are far from my favourite animals, they are also far from my least favourite....I have owned them in the past, both as pets and as food, and although I respect them for what they are, I find them very 'beige' for the most part....although admirable in their ubiquitousness, they are simply not scientifically interesting enough for me.

I am simply saying that the prevailing attitude towards rats is not without reason and long history, and that (you said it very well) "That people might stand to not anthropomorphize their animals to the point that they ignore or deny the less savory aspects of an animal's reality.".
 

·
Resident Zoologist
Joined
·
262 Posts
Just pointing this out but the better rap an animal has, the more damage is shrugged off. Anyone live near Deer? Yeah they cause a crap ton of damage but hey its shrugged off.
Damage to what...their native habitat in their native range? Not their problem that you dropped your home there.

Rats by themselves damage man made areas well. Yes fires and all that.
They do...the point is that you do not regularly find deer chewing the wires in your walls....although other animals do cause damage, it is much less than what rats are responsible for...I do not dislike rats...they are simply highly destructive little buggers...I do not dislike geese, either, but there is no denying that they are almost unrivaled in covering an area in fæces....it is just what they are.

Anyone consider how much damage cats do to wildlife?
I believed that I mentioned cats earlier...I believe that they rank second only to rats as exotic, introduced species world-wide, and being canny little predators, are unbelievably damaging to native species.

Same with foreign frogs.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I am assuming that everyone is referring to the introduction of Bufo marinus to Australia?

Here they are in a debate because someone released carp and it has caused so much damage to our natural river that Fish and Game don't see a point in it and will be draining it in case of drought!!!
Just out of curiosity, where is "here"? I find it amusing with all the flooding in the US...all those ponds, pools, lakes with deliberately stocked Asian carp,, that authorities thought were 'secure' because of their segregation and distance from other waterways, were free to travel wherever they pleased when all these floodplains North American seem so fond of building on, flooded.

I'm sorry I didn't know important damage had to be monetary or involving humans only.
Actually, monetary and human damages are the very least important...they are simply the most important to most people, so I used them as examples.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,317 Posts
Any reason why this debate is occurring in a forum for people who keeps rats as pets and obviously love them as such? There are times and places for a debate like this, but I really don't believe that this is the proper place.
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top