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I have been wanting a rat for quite some time now. I purchased a used Martin's skyscraper for $50 over a year ago. It was SUPER rusty and the plan was to take each piece, sand it down, and respray. After attempting to sand down one piece, I gave up and the cage has sat in my garage for the last year. I currently have some mice (1.5 years old) and I was planning on getting a rat once my mice passed away. Things never go as planned.

Yesterday, my coworker texted me and said her husband (who is in school to be a vet,) was about to learn how to euthanize rats. Apparently, they purchase rats from pet stores, learn how to run tests on them (poop screens, deworming, etc), make sure they're all healthy, and then put them to sleep to learn how to perform necropsy (postmortem surgery). I was mortified, my coworker was mortified, and even my coworker's husband was mortified. So he spoke with his instructor and whatever rats he is able to adopt out will be spared being put to sleep for the sole purpose of performing surgery on a healthy rat. Anyway, bottom line, tomorrow I will be adopting a 6 month old rat and saving him from being put to sleep for no reason. And, the best part: since he has had every single test and screening run on him I know he's very healthy and free of parasites or worms or anything. I think the pictures are too small to see, but I have posted them below.

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So, of course, I'm scrambling today to put the rusty Martin's cage together. It is all ziptied together and I put a sheet of Coroplast (corrugated plastic......like plastic cardboard) on each level. I then plan on putting fleece on the ramps and possibly on each level as well. Below is the cage in all it's glory....not sure why it's coming out sideways but I can't figure out how to fix it. :p

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Unfortunately, I have high living standards for my future rat....(well, unfortunate for me but fortunate for him). This is just a temporary cage. My dream cage has always been a Critter Nation cage. They're large, sturdy, portable, easy to clean, and I absolutely LOVE that you can open it and have full access to the entire cage. I DON'T love the price. My boyfriend suggested Craigslist....I was turned off by the idea. I was doubtful anybody would have their Critter Nation on CL and even more doubtful that it would be in good condition if one was found. Lucky for me, my boyfriend was right on the spot about Craigslist. 2 hours away (far, but worth the drive....you'll learn why in a moment), someone has a TWO-STORY Critter Nation cage for sale for $350. Their story: they bought the cage, a ton of accessories, and adopted 3 rats just to find out their daughter was severely allergic to rats. So after a month, they adopted the rats out and now have a 1 month old Critter Nation for sale (COMPLETELY cleaned because they had to get rid of all rat smell/hair/etc). The even better part? The $350 is for the cage, a large wooden hut, 3 lbs of rat food, 2 litter boxes, 1 large space pod, 1 hide n go treat pod, 2 water bottles, a toy kit, a small Hendryx cage platform, 2 dishes, 2 bowls, 1 party cubes shredding toy, 2 perches, a 30 lb bag of Yesterday's News litter, 12 yards of fleece, 2 rat care books, and a hammock bought on etsy.....ALL for $350 and most of it never even used yet.

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HUGE chunk of money to pay at once but definitely absolutely worth it. I've already contacted the seller and I'm driving out there this weekend. May or may not actually purchase it this weekend but we shall see. We're going to try and ask for $300 rather than $350.

Anyway, I don't get my little guy until tomorrow. I'm super excited. It's ALL I can think about.
 
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