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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, in the intros forum I've been having a discussion with Forensic that has started making me a little concerned about the person I'm getting my two rats from in about a month. This is going ot seem a little long and for that's I'm sorry.

The person I'm getting them from is a an experienced breeder who has only just started breeding again after five years. In between she bred German Shepards. She only has a few rats at this point, and no babies from the breeding rats, but she did rescue three rats, two of which were females pregnant to the male. They both had their litters and all the babies and the moms are super healthy.

This person has told me that she will not be breeding any of the rescue rats, only the rats that she manages to get from other places. Currently she has two males and two females. One of the males, and one fo the females are too young to breed, but the other pair were put together, and the female should have her litter in about two weeks.

The place where my breeder got these rats from did not keep records, they just bred for the sake of breeding, and as such this first litter with these two rats is partially to determine what they carry. Also because this pair both have excellent health and temperament which I've been assuresd are the main concerns in the breeding of these rats.

I have been invited to visit the rattery to check things out, and she has promised to take daily pictures of the babies so that I can see them gorw. Her prices are very reasonable, which is part of the reason I've been working with her. I was trying to narrow down three breeders, one truend out to charge $50 for a pair of rats, the other had NO CLUE what they were doing, and told me they were using cedar chips to limit the smell from the rat's cages, and this one.

Do you guys think that I need to keep looking, or do you think that even though she is just starting up again that this breeder will be ok?

Emy
 

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well, even breeders have to start somewhere. if you can find a better breeder closer to you, it wouldn't hurt to get them from somewhere else, but it sounds like your breeder knows what she's doing, even if she doesn't have the best stock.

the thing that worries me is that the "other place" bred rats without records, which means that they didn't record which rats were prone to disease in older age, short lives, or bad temperament. also, the "other place" may have sold babies as feeders, but i think that's a different story, as wonderful rats make just as good as snake food as bed-genetic rats, so you can't say that a feeder-breeder has bad stock.

if you can, maybe wait for this new breeder to breed her rats for 3-4 generations so they can tell what the babies will carry (could take a year or more), and in the meantime adopt from somewhere else.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
See that's the thing, I've seached high and low for a place close ot me where there are reasonably priced rats, my three options after about a month of pretty vigerous searching has led me to three options:

1. Buy a pair of rats for $50 from a super expensive breeder, who has been very snobby with me in e-mails and such

2. Petco or Petsmart

3. This breeder who has been very helpful, and willing to work with someone who has not had rats before.

Do you think that I should press for more details about the parent's histories? Maybe she knows more then what she has written in the e-mails, and said in our short phone conversation...
 

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would you be willing to adopt some ratties? I'm pretty sure my rat is pregnant (accident due to missexed male) and I will need to find good homes for them. I'm not a breeder, and I got my rats from local pet stores but they are sweet, and their kittens deserve good homes. Anyhoo let me know!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I would love to, but I've only got space for two, and I think that as far as health history goes a pet store couple and a couple from a breeder who didn't keep good records are about the same, and I've been working with this breeder for about two weeks now...so...and she was also able to get more info about the parents of the parents...lol...so yeah, but if I get some space I will let you know!

Emy
 

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sometimes you get what you pay for, 50$ for a pair of healthy rats isn't necessarily a bad deal... this other person who is willing to give you the rescue animals sounds like someone who just breeds animals to make some quick money... if she got her rats from an uneducated breeder to start a breeding program chances are she'll turn out just like they did... and to stop breeding rats to start breeding german sheperds, to go back to breeding rats? something isn't quite making sense here... you know what i think? I think breeding animals for profit is disgusting. And I think this lady is doing exactly that, on the other hand the woman who is charging 50$ is also doing that, yet for that amount of money chances are shes not going to give you a sick and dying rat... and petco really isn't an option unless you're looking for a sick rat lol. anyway long story short, look at it this way, you pay the 50$ for two rats, and you don't have to worry about vet bills that will cost you more.. and maybe the woman seems snotty because she really cares about her animals and wants them to go to good homes...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Got some more information from her, and it turns out that there is more history for the parents then originally thought, the reason I was confused is because I didn't ask the right questions.

The parents were bought from a good breeder, and the reason there is some confusion about the possible colors of the babies is because there is a chance that they could be carriers, but because they haven't been bred yet, she doesn't know. The grandparents of the rats I will be getting are known, and the breeder has their records, but there's a chance that the PEW mother of my boys could carry siamese and russian blue, but it's not a for sure thing.

She assured me that she is not breeding rats for money, but for the fact that she loves them, and wants to share the love with other people, and like I said there are very few rat breeders in my area, and so with her starting it's a good thing.

I understand that $50 is not a lot for a well bred pair of rats, but my main problem is the way that the breeder has been treating me because I haven't owned rats before. I have taken care of all kinds of creatures from hermit crabs to horses, but never a rat, and I have done my homework about them, and she still is quite short with me. I just fell as if I can't ever have the type of relationship with her that I can with the other breeder I'm talking to.

I know about Petco, and PetSmart, I'm not planning on getting any from there, I am going to go with the newer breeder and see how it goes. Also the rescue animals are NOT the ones I'm getting, I'm getting two males from a litter where both of the parents are from a breeder.

Thanks for all the input guys, but I have a much better feeling about everything now, and once I see the rattery I will know for sure. Thanks again!

Emy
 

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Oh... Not sure of exactly what they're carrying... understandable. :)
 

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$50! WHAT!?!?! You all Pay around $50 for a PAIR of Rats!?!?!?!?

I can get 150 Breeding Pairs(Adults) for $50!

Thats CRAZY! For a single Large rat I paid $2.75 and he was Very healty.


What i would do is find someone who breeds for food and ask if you can take a look at them and see if they are healthy. then keep it as a pet.
(but dont tell him that)

Feed Breeders Charge WAY Less and are usually in good conditions.
At least mine rats are.

Thats what i would do if i didnt breed them.
 

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Matt, breeder rats are healthier, more socialized, and in general make better pets.
 

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Matt said:
$50! WHAT!?!?! You all Pay around $50 for a PAIR of Rats!?!?!?!?

I can get 150 Breeding Pairs(Adults) for $50!

Thats CRAZY! For a single Large rat I paid $2.75 and he was Very healty.


What i would do is find someone who breeds for food and ask if you can take a look at them and see if they are healthy. then keep it as a pet.
(but dont tell him that)

Feed Breeders Charge WAY Less and are usually in good conditions.
At least mine rats are.

Thats what i would do if i didnt breed them.
I have had 6 feeder rats in the past two years only two of them are alive today and that is because I just got one two months ago or so. where as my bred boys are very very healthy, no sickness at all in them what so ever. I have never paid more than 20 for a rat itsef (vet bills not included) but . . it is the same as getting a mutt dog and a bred siberian husky. a well bred rats life is longer, healthier, and better than what you pick up in the feeder bins (or your garage)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Also, Matt, I hate to say it, but I wouldn't buy from a feeder breeder even if hey were healthy, simply because it would only make the breeder breed more rats. I don't agree with breeding for food, but I understand that some people do it, I however won't support it by buying from them.

Emy
 

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Discussion Starter #14
It's not $50 for one rat, it's $50 for a pair. The breeder won't sell single rats unless there is another rat already owned. I understand this, but again I can't really afford to spend $50 on rats right now, if I want to get them the best cage I can. Being a broke college student really stinks!

Emy
 

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Considering all of the unconditional love and companionship they give you... $50 is a drop in the well compared to what they give you.

I just lost two of my girls, Jazmyne and Sophie. They were both from the feeder bin. Constant URIs, mammory tumors that were inoperable, abdominal tumors, cataracts, etc.

I'd give $50 for them any day. Or each one even, if only I could have them back young, healthy and happy..

Personally, you can't decide an animals worth simply because of what type of animal it is. Rats are worth just as much to me as a dog or a cat. Their worth to me is not monetary, or even tangible. I'm not going to put a stigma on them and think that $50 is outrageous. They are well worth it!
 

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Taru said:
Also, Matt, I hate to say it, but I wouldn't buy from a feeder breeder even if hey were healthy, simply because it would only make the breeder breed more rats. I don't agree with breeding for food, but I understand that some people do it, I however won't support it by buying from them.

Emy
more people should think the way you do! You've never owned rats and you seem pretty knowledgeable, maybe you should call this breeder out ask her why shes acting the way she is, shes probably pushing you around because she knows she can. its like the 4th graders picking on the kindergarten kid, they do it because they can. There is no reason for her to be acting snotty towards you because you've never owned a rat, my first assumption was that she was concerned and wanted her rats to go to good homes, as all breeders should be. But now i'm starting to wonder. Breeders should be eager to educate people about rats, this woman does seem like shes just in it for the money...
 

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Discussion Starter #17
There is no phone number on the website. That's part of the reason I was wary about them in the first place, all the other ratteries that I could find, but not close enough to get to had a phone number and an address so that contacting them was easier. I understand if they want to have a closed rattery, and they do a lot of showing, so I can see why they don't want people bringing in new diseases. Not answering e-mails for months at a time is not good business any way that you look at it. I understand again, they can't answer in a day, but I think that four weeks is more then enough time to give them to answer an e-mail. I am not a 12 year old kid trying to find a nice pet that I will only care for until I'm bored. I'm a huge animal lover, and being at college has made me really unhappy because we can only keep small animals and fish, and I didn't know about how wonderful rats could be.

Once I did know about rats I learned all I could, that's just the way that I am. I need to know everything before I jump into a new thing, like owning a new kind of pet. My mom finds it annoying because she calls it an "obsession" but I'm a journalism major, and it's just part of who I am. I have fallen rather quickly in love with rats, and this breeder was acting as if I was a clueless 10 year old. I understand that they want the best for their rats, but I don't see how someone who is a responsible adult, has had all kinds of pets in the past, and willing to learn more would make a bad owner.

I don't know, it feels like there are two factions of the rat owners, the kind who want to educate more people and get more people to love rats, and the kind who are a very exclusive group and don't believe that people who have not owned rats in the past could possibly be good rat owners. I much prefer this first group, which I have found to be the people here. I'm really glad that I found this site, and that you are all so helpful with all my newbie questions, and don't judge me for the fact that I have never had rats before.

Sorry for the essay, like I said I'm a journalism major, and I tend to write a lot...lol. And thanks again for all your wonderful advice! This is truly a great forum!

Emy
 

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Not wanting to hijack the thread in any way, but I currently charge $50 for a pet pair of my pups and have not once had an adopter blink an eye at my fee. The amount I make from adoption fees doesn't even come close to covering the amount I put into caging, vet care, diet and enrichment items. Even If I charged $50 PER pup I wouldn't make my money back! (and I have had adopters misread the contracts and pull out $100 for 2 pups). Due to supply and demand in my area plus the lines I work with as well as the immense amount (I refuse to figure it out!) I invest in my rats, I am considering a small increase in my fees in the near future.

Again, no one is forced onto my waiting list :)
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I've seen your webpage, and your breeding lines are amazing, however, you are a little too far for me to travel. I would LOVE to get on a waiting list for your rattery, but the rattery I have been in contact with is snobby with me when they do reply to e-mails, like saying that they should charge even more for people who haven't had rats before, because we don't know what the heck we're doing, and that people who haven't owned rats before will go to the back of their waiting lists, and things like that.

I have seen your beautiful rats and wow...would love two, but the drive from where I am in Jersey is a bit far :( Do you do meetings half way?

Emy
 

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Emy,

See, that doesn't make sense to me at all! In fact, I love first time adopters because I feel I can make the biggest impression on them about the kind of care they should be providing their new pups! I am able to educate them about housing, diet, daily interaction, etc. Whenever they fill out my application I always tell them "If you don't know the answers, just tell me and we can discuss what is best for your rats."

I'm sorry you're having the kind of experience you are having. If you'd like to send me an email we can talk further. I do have quite an extensive waiting list and I don't meet half way, unless I am headed somewhere (however I am making some road trips this summer).

Any way you look at it, we can discuss what is going on and I may be able to help you a bit more.

-Dan
 
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