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Hi all fellow rodent lovers!
I just wanted to say hello and that I'm so glad to have found this forum. I am a big Rat lover, and as a matter of fact, I love all rodents big and small. Due to my current living arrangements, as well as my work schedule, I don't have any rats right now, I have 3 hamsters (a Black Bear Syrian, and 2 Dwarf hams), but hopefully one day soon I will be able to have 2 Dumbo Rats in our family. I found your forum through one of my vita-mealie customers (I raise and sell organic live vitamin enriched mealworms for critters and have done so for the last 7 years) that has a link to our site on their website and also has a link to this forum. and as soon as I saw it, I clicked on it. I'm happy that I will at least be able to read threads about my little furry rodent friends, even if I can't currently have some to snuggle and love in my home. I thought about getting a few and keeping them at the mealie house, but decided not to because even though I spend 70% of my time there, it's not a homey environment, plus I'd be too tempted to feed them all of the profit. My hamsters at home love them too, but at least I just bring them their own little orders home every now and then and store them in dormancy, taking only a few out daily to give them. One day soon though I'll be able to have a few Dumbo's hopefully...
Anyway, I can't wait to meet ya'll! ;D
 

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Woah. What a crazy interesting job. I've never met someone who does that. What is it like? Do you breed them? How does that work? Oh welcome to the forum!

Edit:
You don't have to tell me actually! I realize that my questions were a little bit of a business invasion. Haha sorry!
 

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Hello! Welcome to the ratforum. It is good to have you. I love how many interesting jobs and lifestyles this community has exposed me to that I never really thought about before. What made you start your business? Is there a quirky story behind it all or did things just happen to fall like that?
 

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Just make sure not to feed them too much profit lol too much of a good thing can cause kidney failure in male rats and tumors in females. By the way welcome :)
 

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Thanks everyone for the greets and for thinking that my career is interesting and not gross! It is intesting and I love it! My husband and I have been dealing with mealworms and mealworm eating pets our entire 27 year marriage (Ut-oh, I guess I'm giving my age away). We have been raising them ourselves for the last 18 years, ever since we found out that pet stores sell Giant mealworms, and Giant mealworms are bad for pets because they are raised with juvenile growth hormones. Giant mealworms are regular mealworms that were chemically created for fishing. They are given hormones as baby larvae to cause them to remain in the larval stage and continue to grow to larger sizes for fishermen to be able to put them on their hooks. The hormones prevent them from pupating and grow to be around 1 1/2 to 2 inches long. Even the ones that may pupate and change to beetles that are given these hormones will be sterile and not be able to produce offspring, so you can imagine that they are very bad for pets. The day we found that out, we realized that we didn't know what pet store mealworms were safe for our pets anymore, so we started raising our own. Then after several years of raising them for our pets and coming up with our vitamin enriched mealworms (which we named vita-mealies®), we decided to share them with fellow animal lovers in the lower 48 states of the US, and have been sharing them with others for the last 8 years. My husband still works his regular job, but I've made them my full time career. Animals are my life, I couldn't live without all the furry, scaley, and feathered friends (oh, and hairless ones too) that expect nothing in return from you except for love (well, and food and water-LOL), so I am so happy to be able to have a career raising mealworms, which are a lot of critters favorite treats!
And Zabora, you are exactly right! Just like with all treats, they are great for the soul, but moderation is key! Mealworms are a great protein treat, but too much protein isn't good for our pets, and they are also fattening (just as all of our favorite human treats are) which can be bad for our pets if fed too many as well. Mealworms should be treated like all treats, as an occasional "love" offering ;) . So, that being said- if you have never fed your rat a mealworm, you're in for as much of a treat as they are the first time you feed them one. The looks on their little faces when they realize how good they are is priceless. Oh, I almost forgot! Mealworms are also great for dentail hygiene. The chitin (outer skin) is great for cleaning their teeth as they chew them. It does the same for sugar gliders and hedgehogs. :)
And Gotchea, you are fine. I didn't take your question as an invasion. :) Thanks again everyone for the warm welcome. I'm looking forward to getting to know ya'll and your ratties!
 
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