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It's a pretty well know fact that pet rats need at the very least one hour of free range, or at the least, out of cage time, a day. A lot of people with rats have issues with Rat proofing a room or, simply don't have one. There are easy solutions to rat proof and to also make safe smaller area's where you can spend some quality free range time with your ratties.

Rat proofing, although simple, can be time consuming, unless done in bits at a time.

Rat proof Room

1. It's a good idea to clean said room out all the way, empty the whole thing as much as you can. Then clean everything down. Nothing like a Rat with a dust bunny jammed in it's nasal cavity.

2. Put items back in room, away from the floor, now that the shelves cabinets and dressers have been cleaned down and nothing is on them, do some organizing. Chewable's go up high, Wires get tucked behind furniture. ext.

3. Old sheets are your friends. Any hole or nook you don't want your fur butts in. Cover with a sheet or end tail of card board.

4. Covering the floor with an old blanket or sheet can help reduce the mess made by curious ratties, i.e. tipped drinks, food crumbs, or stray poo's left by non-litter trained ratties. (It's hard to get them to poo in a box. I know.)

5. Make sure area's like under the bed and cabinets with chemicals are blocked. A cheap way to do this is asking for free cardboard boxes from the local grocery store and unfolding them into long sheets or card board. They will get chewed, but hey, it was free.

6. Exposed wires can be covered with a piece of duct tape. Not only will it delay them from getting through said wire, but it also leaves a bit of sticky residue on their teeth, which they don't enjoy at all; Rats are fast learners, They'll pick up that chewing that wire makes their mouth get icky.

7. Add rats, this is a test run, so see what they get into. Anything unblocked will be a hot spot so keep a very close eye. Cover these spots the same way as number 5.

Free range in un-proofed area's

This is a lot more simple, but can also be a little less fulfilling, becuase of the lack of space.

1. Clear a relatively large area.

2. Put down a sheet

3. Using boxes from the grocery store, or those children's three fold poster boards make a circle and snap together with Bulldog clips.

4. Add rats and yourself.

For anything with cardboard, you'll want to check it before use to make sure no one has made an escape route.

Happy ranging.

Originally Written by: KenRakuu--Thanks!

tall sheets of coroplast work well as barriers as well but they are hard to find and sometimes expensive. I had to call everyone under the sun to find some in Rochester that would sell individual sheets (otherwise you have to buy 100$ worth) Anyhoo just throwing it out there!
Added By: MopyDream44

For those in the UK (not sure if you guys over the pond have this) but sheets of MDF from homebase are great for making a pen. I bought 4 this week (need another two) of thin boards 1220mm x 610mm for £5 a sheet and it gives the rats room and although some can jump it ... you just need to supervise. It seems to be working really well for me so far
Edit: I just tape it together with duck tape btw
Added By: Ration1802

I should add that anyone considering free-ranging in a room with cabinets, like a bathroom or kitchen, take a really close look under the cabinets -- There are usually plenty of rat-sized openings that lead to otherwise dead space between the cabinet inside bottom and the floor, from which it would be hard to extract a napping rat who wasn't hungry.

There also may or may not be electrical wiring back in there (My bathroom cabinet has an electric heater installed in part of that space, so there are wires and possibly openings into the heater itself -- It would not be a good thing to have a cooked rat burn one's house down!).

Reclining chairs can be death traps for ranging rats if they happen to be exploring the mechanism when the chair is moved...
Added By: BronzeRat

I was just at the pet store buying a water bottle for by girls and I saw they now have premade pens you can buy. They are made of the same type wire most of the cages are made of and they fold up nicely. I would personally go with DIY for free ideas though, but if you don't have the time or a DIY streak then there ya go!
Added By: descartes

Don't forget those child proof outlet covers. I put them in every unused outlet in the house in case a rat might escape & explore.
Added By: lunamoon
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