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I've been meaning to write one of these for a while now. As a new owner (Just under two months of owning my pair) I have learned and felt so much from my two. I got my rats at a point in time when I needed them. My best friends will be leaving to college next year and I'll still be in high school, and that leaves me with few people to talk to. As I am getting older I will be getting a job and I will no longer be able to see my mother as much (My parents are divorced and my mom lives away from me). So, I needed a different kind of love and affection than my dog and my lovebird can supply me with. My rats have outdone any hope and idea that I had for how they would help me.

I am much, much calmer now. My mom noticed it and I can feel it. My rats will wake up and crawl out of their hammocks to see me when I come in the room. I adore both of them with everything in me and, even with as little time as I've had with them, I find it hard to see life without them. Both of their personalities mixed give me exactly what I needed at this time in my life. Dela gives me the joy, freedom and general love that I need and Neera gives me such sweet, gentle affection despite her fear of being held or petted.

I couldn't have asked for anything better. My parents think I was ridiculous for asking for a pair of rats for my sixteenth birthday instead of a car but I don't see the slightest hint of a mistake. I adore my rats, even when they scratch my arms and even when they refuse to stop getting into mischief. I worry about them often and they've turned me into an absolute softie. Even just reading about the passing of any rat on here will make me break out into tears when previously I could count on my fingers how many times I remembered crying. They've broken me and I couldn't be happier.

I wanted to share and I would love to hear how your lives have been changed by your rats... I am sincerely greatful to all of the members here who have helped me as I came into the world of rat ownership. I hope one day I can help inspire others to seek out their own long-tailed bundles of joy.
 

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Wow, it sounds like we have very similar stories involving our first rat experience!
I was 15 when I got my first rat(yes, singular. I didn't know they need a cagemate until after he was too old to get along with another), and he was everything I needed at that point in my life. My world went through a lot of changes, moving, my mom remarrying, getting my first job and finishing school, and he was with me for all of it. I treasure every precious memory I have of him, his antics, his intelligence, and the way he molded me as a person, just by being fluffy, adoring, and sweet.
Welcome to the wonderful and never-ending adventure that is rat-keeping!
 
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