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How to explain why you have rats as pets?im always asked why rats for my pets. When asked what do you say?
 

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Well,,they are cute, gentle, very adorable, can be trained, don't need long walks, love attention, very trusting and loyal,, need i go on? I think that once you have rat as a pet, it may become addictive.
 

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They're sweet, smart, clean, fairly low maintenance compared to other pets, quiet (well, sometimes), and while their short lifespans can be sad it also makes them easier to keep for people who can't commit 5, 10, or more years to a pet. Mostly I talk about how affectionate and clever they are! I tell them my rats 100% know me and will come when called, etc. Most people don't know that rats can be sweet or smart like that and when they do they understand the appeal a little more.
Sometimes I mention the studies about how rats dream or "laugh" or show signs of empathy
If it's someone I know rather than a stranger, I will indoctrinate them over time with cute rat videos and pictures ;D
 

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The first thing I always say is that "they're like mini dogs!" and then explain that they're social, they love being with you and (need to be) with other rats and get excited when you come home or walk into the room and want to come out to play or say hi, they're social, very smart, very affectionate, playful, trainable, and are also the cutest animals to ever exist! But I usually leave off that last part hehe. I also tell them they give kisses and like to cuddle too and people seem to think that's cute.
 

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But if they want to talk more about rats or actually seem to be considering owning them and want to know more about their care, I also think it's really important to mention that they cost a lot of money! they frequently get respiratory infections and need to go to the vet and get medications and that can be very often depending on the rat, or a lifelong thing even. And finding a vet that seems to actually know about rat health and care is very hard too (most will just throw antibiotics at you no matter what the symptoms are..). And a lot of times, getting meds needs to be done fast since URIs can sometimes kill them overnight practically. So they're not the cheapest pets and you will definitely have to take them for vet visits and meds at least once or twice in their short lives. And that they also need a very big cage and no pine/cedar shavings. So housing education is important too. But this all probably way more than what typical people want to know, haha!
 

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I agree with MinorRobot, most people asume rats are a kind of pet that merely see you as a food dispencer and will tolerate you but never really form a meaningful bond with you.
 

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I simply say that pet rats, contrary to common belief, are much better than hamsters.
They are much cleaner, more sociable and friendly, and more intelligent, at least from the experience I've gathered so far.
I always talk about what my ratties have been up to just to break the stigma of rats being disgusting animals, an idea that have been with humans since the Plague. xx
 

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Even though a lot of my friends either know that I have rats or met my rats, interestingly noone has asked me why I decided on rats.

The reason I decided to get rats was because one day I rescued a baby field mouse. She was probably about 1 week old, I fed her every 3 hours (my roommate did when I was at work) and it was growing well until she died in an accident a week later the rescue :'( I was devastated, and wanted to get a mouse so naturally I started doing the research. I found out that rats are much more friendlier to people and trainable so I ended up getting rats :)

If I want to convince people that rats make great pets, I tell them about how intelligent they are and how they are domesticated like dogs, so they actually enjoy the company of humans. And that they are also clean and quiet.
 

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They are the most intelligent and social of the "small pets" that you can get. They are also less likely to bite (if from good lines and socialized) than, say, hamsters.
 

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The first thing I always say is that "they're like mini dogs!"
This is what I say too! Lol I went from living in a straight up farming community to city living. When I talked about my rats to people at work they freaked out completely disgusted because they were used to the giant street rats unning around the city. When I showed them pictures they warmed up a bit. I usually just tell them all the perks. Basically what everyone here has already mentioned. But I'm also sure to tell them little personal stories about my rats. How my girl used to groom herself by my hand and then proceed to groom my hand. Or how we played chase. Just strange little quirks that we take as just normal rattie behavior but everyone else would never guess!

I do however recall when having my girlie pts, I told my manager what I was doing and she looked at me like I was ridiculous for requesting the day off for "just a rat". So some people never warm up to the idea. But just tell them all the amazigness of owning a little furry friend. =)
 

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I tell people that it's like having the best qualities of both a dog and a cat. They are clean, fun-loving, litter-trained, and smart.
 

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You can always tell people that rats are

friendlier

easier to care for

need smaller cages

eat less than

are easier to clean up after

are generally less expensive

are easier to train

form better bonds with you

and aren't as likely to bite

as (or than) Bengal Tigers...


Actually, I've learned that people don't really get rats until they meet one...


This is what it looks like when people get it...

A IMG_0604.JPG A IMG_0588.JPG

No one in these photos ever met a rat, much less touched one before....
 

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I show them a pic of a baby rat & say omg how could u not after seeing that cute face!!!

Really I wanted a small pet that was sweet and very hands on. I love how much personality rats have. How intelligent they are. How just adorable.

Im not sure if anyone has asked me that really. I'd probably respond with well why does anyone have any pet? Companionship? Why a cat vs a dog or a bird or a fish? Every pet is unique and fun. For me rats just fit the niche I needed.
 

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When I was first introduced to rats I honestly expected the worst, but after having them for so many years they are much different from what was first explained to me.

They're super smart, clean, and loving. I also chose them as a pet as opposed to others because I'm still in my 20's, don't have a stable place of my own, and I'm not ready to commit 10+ years to a pet just yet. Their life expectancy was one of the things that appealed to me. I would never want to re-home pet, and I never plan on doing so. They also bring out my creative side. I love to make hammocks, toys, and cage liners for them. Their cage is always decorated for the holidays, and they enjoy everything I put in there. I think anyone wanting to be a home designer should consider them as a possible pet because they can become creative with their cage and try out new ideas. =P
 

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I spent most of my life as someone who did not consider rats pets. I was 55 when I saw a program about rats on the Animal Channel. Part of the program showed Siamese and Naked rats. This aroused my curiosity and I went searching to find out how many colors rats come in. It took several days of looking and on the way I read so much about rats and discovering that pet rats seldom bite made me wish someone had told me that when I was buying hamsters and gerbils for my young son.

I discovered that we had a rat rescue and a rat forum locally and one day I wrote in the forum to ask if anyone would be willing to introduce me to their rats. I got two positive responses. I went to the home of one after work one day. I had such a good time that I made an appointment to visit the other as well and invited my husband and sister to come along. They both came reluctantly, and left with a whole new outlook on rats as pets. Over the years I have introduced several people to rats and I have learned that if someone is willing to open their minds and meet rats, they will be converted. Unfortunately, nothing can be done with anyone who won't open their mind.

I also find the idea of their lifespans to be a positive point. At my age, I have to recognize that if something happens to me I will be leaving someone else with a possible 10+ year commitment if I adopt cats or dogs, but with rats, if I am capable of their care when I adopt them the odds are very good that I will still be capable of caring for them when they pass and if something happens to me I am leaving a commitment of months rather than years to someone else.
 

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Rats are great pets, really great pets,,if you have a rat,,,hope,(they should never be alone without cage mates) more one. we all know what great critters they are super pets:D
 

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I've been asked this so many times I even have a cool answer... wait for it... 'Because you can't put a dog in your pocket.' Makes people go 'aaaah...okay' every time :D
 
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