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Thread: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

  1. #1

    Default Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    Hello, I have a Guinea pig right now, and I CANT stand the smell! I have been researching rats and have only heard good news about them. so I ask you guys this: do rats smell better, worse or just about the same as guinea pigs? Thanks

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  3. #2

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    Male rats have a more of a musky smell to them, but Im not sure about females as I only have males. Also the state of their cage effects their smell too.
    Oh dear, there are rats in my house.

  4. #3

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    The degree to which a rat will smell depends on a lot of things. Most importantly, what litter you use. I use a paper-pellet litter called "Breeder's Choice" which, in New Zealand, is rather cheap and can be purchased at most supermarkets. It really masks any urine smells well, and is low in dust which is good for ratty respiratory systems. Some people have also recommended Carefresh as a bedding, apparently it also works well at controlling odour, but I have never used it so can't say. Wood shavings like Pine and Cedar are not good beddings to use in rat cages for multiple reasons. Firstly, they are dusty and treated with chemicals which are harmful to rats. Secondly, in my experience, they really don't do much to mask any smells (despite the fact they are 'scented'). Also, from what I've seen, using hay as a bedding for rats generally doesn't do much to mask smells either, in fact it sometimes makes them worse! Cleaning out your rat cage at least once a week will really help with the smell. I would be very careful about using air fresheners/deodourants in the room you keep the rats, as they can also be harmful to rats.

    Boys and girls smell different also. Boys generally tend to smell a bit stronger, like a musky kind of smell. Males also produce a greasy substance on their fur called 'buck grease' which can contribute to the smell. Getting your male rat neutered will generally reduce the amount of buck grease they produce and thus the smell. It's not necesarrily a BAD smell though. Females really don't smell that much at all, in my experience. I currently have 2 female rats. I clean their cage every week, as well as spot cleaning every day (picking up bits of soiled litter from in their cage). Like I said, I also use Breeders Choice litter which really helps with the smell. The cage is in a well ventilated room, you can smell I have rats in there but it doesn't smell of urine or anything like that ( as it can do with mice, for example).

    Some people choose to bathe their rats, I don't. I imagine it would help with the smell but I don't find it necesarry. If my girls get a bit smelly or get covered in food, I gently wipe them down with a non-scented baby wipe or a warm, damp cloth. Works wonders Hope you have found this helpful!

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  6. #4

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    I've never had a guinea pig, but I clean my cage twice a week [sweep the poops, wash the bedding, wipe down the levels and bars] and I have never really smelled anything displeasing from the cage.
    <br />RIP: Hajeet&amp;Poco&amp;Nosferatu<br />My girls; Maxine&amp;Lustra<br />My Boys; Casper&amp;Larry&amp;Jinxi&amp;Woden

  7. #5

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    Rats smell WAY better than guinea pigs. Infinitely better. Especially the girls. (There's been a factoid that female rats smell like grape soda and I've tried to notice it before, but one day my girl was just done grooming herself, so her coat was a little damp from where she'd been licking. I picked her up and smelled her, and sure enough it was just like grape soda! Sorry off topic.)

    It does depend on litter, how often you clean the cage (I clean the top and bottom level of mine once a week and the smell is perfectly fine), and how many rats you have (I have two in a 4ft tall by 2ft square base, so it's a big cage for not a lot of rats)

    And it also depends on rat cleanliness. My girls will only pee and poop in the litter box, so getting rid of the smell is pretty much as simple as changing out the litter box daily. But some rats will pee wherever their heart desires.

  8. #6

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    Quote Originally Posted by collisiontheory89
    Males also produce a greasy substance on their fur called 'buck grease' which can contribute to the smell. Getting your male rat neutered will generally reduce the amount of buck grease they produce and thus the smell.
    I wouldn't recommend neutering a rat for the only reason being to reduce the amount of buck grease (to please the owner). Any operation is risky. I would only neuter for health problems or severe aggression.<br /><br />

  9. #7

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    well that is great! I believe I will sell my guinea pig and get a rat then. I love my guinea pig, but everything I try to get the cage smelling better only makes it smell better for a while. I also have mice, which dont really stink at all, I mean you know I have them, but its not the unbearable smell like the guinea pig. what are some recomended cage items for rats? Thanks

  10. #8

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    Instead of "swapping" a pet for a different one, which in my opinion isn't fair, why don't you look into ways to reduce the smell of the guinea pig?<br /><br />

  11. #9

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    Have you taken your guinea pig to the vet? They shouldn't have that strong a smell under normal circumstances, assuming it is the animal that stinks and not the cage needing cleaned.

  12. #10

    Default Re: Guinea Pigs Vs. Rats

    I have / had both rats and Guinea pigs but I prefer the smel of Guinea Pigs but I prefer the personalities and sociability of rats.
    You should have checked out this issue before you adopted the GP. Please think about swapping; a pet is not an item but a creature depending on your care.
    If you still decide to get a rat check out the smells at someone else's rat cages before giving up your piggy.
    or... you can add two rats since they need to be with a friend and keep your piggy as well and take good care of al.

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