So I was on the phone with a breeder located in north orlando florida.. and she told me that if you spay a female rat young.. i think she said about 6 months...that it can possibly double thier life expectancy. What do you all think of this?
Ummm no. BUT it will help prevent mammary tumours, pituitary tumours (hormone driven ones), uterine tumours/cysts and infections. Spaying gives a lot of health benefits but there's no guarantee it will double any rats lifespan, but it will improve it and give them a better chance to reach a really nice old age in a healthy way
I didnt mean it guaranteed the rat to live twice as long.. But like you just said if the animal is spayed it can prevent a lot of different types of problems.. Maybe thats what the lady was driving at when she told me.
Different people have different view on this. I have never been one for spaying/neutering rats just automatically the way you would a puppy or kitten because they are awfully small with awfully delicate respiratory systems and there's always a risk with anesthesia as well as a risk with any surgical procedure.
However, it certainly can curb hormonal behavior in boys and can prevent health problems in girls, particularly health problems associated with over breeding or with hormonally induced tumors. I think though if I had a happy healthy well adjusted rattie, I probably wouldn't do it.
On the other hand if you have a rattie that has been overbred before coming to you, has had reproductive issues, or begins developing tumors, it can be an absolute life saver!
One thing that I did hear about if you want ratties that live longer, is ordering them through certain labratories. Many labratories breed rats in sterile conditions to be myco free and free of certain genetic diseases such as tumors etc because they don't want any confusion between the effects of whatever drug or disease they are studying in the rats and any conditions the rat already had. Many of these labs sell pet rats to the public. Of course this would only work if you didn't have any other rats in your house at the time because of course as soon as they interacted with other rats they'd be introduced to myco. But it would be an idea if you didn't currently have rats. My only issue with that and the reason I haven't done it, is that the same labs specifically breed rats with diseases, and mistreat them in a variety of ways, so would i really want to buy something from them and financially support the rattie death machine? It's a somewhat gray ethical issue.
Those special lab rats are expensive as well, and don't normally deal with the public, sometimes they adopt out after an experiment is over, BUT when those poor rats are finally exposed to myco they get very sick and they are badly affected by the bacterium. Think of it like small pox and the indians when we gave it to them.
I advise most pet homes to keep only one sex or have the other sex altered, but if you keep only boys and your boys are nice and normal, there's no need to neuter. A spay on the other hand with competent vet can really do good things for your gal. A surgery early in life when they are healthy and strong, is much better for them then surgeries when they are much older and possibly compromised health-wise.
WOW.. you guys are so full of information.. it's great.. I never would have thought a month ago that I would fall for rats as pets.. but i love little Hector so much.. It broke my heart tonight when I read we lost Naria from the e spay operation. Those pictures of her are wonderful.. I love the one where she was eating the ensure.. and the last one where she is cuddled on top her buddy.. I miss her! May she live on in all our hearts!