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Discussion Starter #1
Vedui'. I'm getting rats for my birthday. (Happy birthday to me!) Or, rather, I'll be getting rats with my birthday money. I've been doing research for a couple weeks. (I get a little obsessive when I decide to do research. I'm talking at least 2-5 hours of research a day, internet, print, and phoning shelters in the area to see if any have rats, as well as personal research into the pet stores around here.)

I'm currently debating between guys or gals. We're getting a Rat Skyscraper R-685 from Martins Cages, and we have room for it, so the size of the males isn't really an issue. I like the males because they'll sit with you and be petted, and because we have a rather small apartment. That line of reasoning is this: females are more curious, and we have a lot of stuff in this little apartment, so I would be more worried about smaller females getting into something they should not. I've also read that females get mammary tumors that require surgery, which is another reason I'm leaning toward males.

However... my husband has allergies, and I've read that some people are allergic to male rats' urine (I think that's what I read). I don't want to get three male rats home and set up only to realize a week later that my husband is allergic to them.

Any advice?
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

I would say Males because they rather "Hang-out."

And If you dont want a rat going through things...then dont let them.
Also, All rats will explore not just females. My Males have to check out everything, then Rokk will come next to me and chill. But Bear Never calms down no matter how long he has been playing.

Another thing I have been reading is Female rats gettin through bars of the cage a dissapearing for awhile. Where as Males tend to be a bit chunky-er and cant really do the same.

Females are more prone to Tumors. And males not so much, but can still get them. But with all the rats we have only females have ever gotton tumors.

Personally, my vote goes to the Males. But others may say the opposite.
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

It is up to you if you want guys or girls. Yes girls are more entergetic and boys are more of lap rats. Boys do scent mark more then girls. I will have to look into it if male rats urine can be allergic. :D
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

If you're worried about the allergies, buck grease might be something to look into. See if you can go to a local breeder, shelter, or petstore and do a test run.

But allergies are fickle things- my roommate's boyfriend is almost deathly allergic to dogs and cats, and the rats haven't affected him at all. I on the other hand have never known an allergy to dogs and cats, and I was awake all night the first night I had them because I couldn't breath. Luckily, that has since dissipated to all but nothing.

And about the difference- one of my girls is all typical girl, crazy and hyper. But the other one just melts in my hand if I start petting and scratching her. It's all about the rat. And they'll all by crazy as young'uns, and calm a little with age.
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

I have two girls, and though I can't speak to what having boys is like, the girls are a blast. Yes, they explore, and yes they're active... but they have limits, (most playtime takes place on the couch... and they've never once left the couch on their own to go explore anything else) and in the end it's all still about you. It's a special moment when your hyperactive little girl finishes exploring and comes back to you, climbs up on your lap and starts snoozing away.

And as for allergies: I'm allergic to almost everything and I haven't had a problem.
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

i haven't had guys, so i'm gonna vouch for the ladies here. ;]
my girls are:

a)small
b) sweet smelling (can't explain it..lol!)
c) soft
d) playful
e) explorers!
f) pro-wrestlers
g)spider rats (love to climb, dig, etc!)
h) cuddly (they often opt to sleep in my shirt/lap when i take them out & play when they're at home in the cage!)

i adore them so much..i really hope they don't get tumors, ever.
or not until they're at least 1.5 years old..:[

you could always let the rats pick you! the ones that seem friendly and eager to be held/petted, males or females, would make a great pets!
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

I would personally go for males, but this is just my opinion. I have experienced both genders and their both lovely. Males I find, are more gentle then females. My girlies quite enjoy me chasing them with my finger and the boys let me tickle them and pet them. I think males would be better for an apartment because they don't explore as much. If you put them on the ground close to you, I find that they don't go far. When the girls play, they always wonder of somewhere far away.

Though girls are really wonderful, boys are probably better for first rats. You better do lots of research to make sure your husband will be fine though!
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

i have 3 girls now, well i am introducing the 3rd lets put it that way. They have learnt that when out of the cage the sofa is out of bounds. They use my legs as a bridge to the coffee table and very often bring back a gift - pen, nail file that sort of thing. Izzie is more than happy to sit quietly after a while and groom you, Milly and Amy are both running on duracell batteries and don't stop. It is nice tho as you feel they are getting excercise and enjoying being out of the cage.
I have got the rat bug now i think, especially after saving the day by rehoming Amy.
I know this sounds daft but girls are a lot tidier....if you catch my drift... :wink:
Enjoy!
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

I've got 9 girls and 6 boys, and I've got to say they're all as mad/sweet as each other.

Of course, there are differences in boys/girls, but when it comes down to it, it's all personality.

It would be nice if you could buy the model rat - but the fact is, you could quite easily get a hyper boy who won't come near you or a lazy girl that won't leave you alone.

If you're getting girls though, remember, by spaying them it reduces their risk of getting tumours significantly. Many reccommend spaying and neutering regardless, for the health benefits.
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

I had my mind set on males, because they are more calm and cuddly by reputation. But, once we actually picked our rats out, the most outgoing and healthy and beautiful ones turned out to be the girls--so we ended up with girls (or, you could say the rats picked us).

Our girls are super active, always on the go (but they're still very young) but also affectionate and loving. I do worry about tumors...
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

No matter what ALL Rats are Hyper when they are young. They will ALL want to explore. And when they are babies they will cuddle and then fall asleep on you after you play with them for a while. If that cuddley-ness will stay with them, who knows.

Just pick a rat that you like before checking the gender.
(unless he is allergic to males)
Find one that will come to you when you stick your hand in the cage and not run away.

In the end Its your preference.
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

I had the same debate when I was first getting rats. But after talking to people, I learned that if you get females, you really need to get them spayed. And no vet I talked to (not even the one I work for) could quote me anything less than $200 per rat. So that was a deciding point for me. I'm a vet student, and at my school, students have an average of $109,500 of debt when they leave. I didn't need to add any more to it.

I love my boys, and I don't regret it.
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

In my personal experience and opinion, BOTH male and female rats make WONDERFUL pets. Quite frankly, I have not noticed much difference between males and females, where personality is concerned. It really comes down to the individual rat. My females are very "be with". They LOVE getting attention, and they beg and plead for it like little puppy dogs. My males will sit with me, but they are not as "be with". They'll tolerate it, but they don't care. They will ask for attention, but they don't beg for it like my girls.

For kicks, check out this video of my girls:
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

One last thing....regarding tumors

Males are not exempt from the tumor thing. They will not get them as often, but they can still get them. I have had two males develop tumors, and a third who developed an incurable cancer.

Also, being female does not condemn the rats to getting tumors or cancers. I have had many females who never developed a tumor. I have had many others who only developed very small, benign tumors that required no surgery at all. Whether or not the female needs a tumor, depends on the tumor and the situation. A younger rat, a malignant tumor, or a quickly growing tumor, I would definitely opt for surgical removal. An older rat, with a benign lump, that grows very slowly, I would rather leave than put her life at risk in surgery (and surgery does have its own set of risks).

Just more food for thought! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Re: Guys or Gals?

Hey guys. I went to PetSmart today, and I learned something surprising. The PetSmarts, at least in our area, are one gender only. They either have only females, or they have only males. That means no pregnant females! :D That's exciting to me. We're going to check another PetSmart in the area to see if it carries males, otherwise I guess we'll get three females. :)

We held a female today and she was so cute!! The salesperson who helped us was really good with handling them, too. She talked to them and picked them up right. It was encouraging as we don't have any breeders or shelters in the area.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Re: Guys or Gals?

I'm exited!!! I just did a search on Petfinder.com and found that a local shelter has 3 baby does and 5 baby bucks!!! That means I might not have to get petstore rats! *happy dances* Now if only my cage would come in and if we could get our apartment cleaned up. *shakes fist at homework load*
 

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Re: Guys or Gals?

that's great! adopting from a rescue is so much better than supporting pet stores (although i did get my girlies from the pet store.)
keep us updated! =)
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Re: Guys or Gals?

Okay. So I think I've decided between guys and gals. Ready for this?

Hehe. Both. :)

We're going to get two males and get them neutered, and a female. Getting the males neutered is about $40 where I live from the vet that the shelter uses, but they don't spay females, so I'll have to go to another vet to do that. $95. She'll probably have to wait until after Christmas so I can use Christmas money for her.

So yeah. Decision made. Thanks for all your advice.
 
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