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Discussion Starter #1
My vet told me that my buddies need to chew more because their teeth are getting a little long. I have a whole box full of chew toys that they've never touched. Wood chews, apple sticks, lava stones, etc. They have no interest. They just aren't big chewers.

I was looking on Chewy and found these: OXBOW Enriched Life Apple Timothy Lollipop Small Pet Chew Toy - Chewy.com

It says they're safe for rats and my guys love them. They super hard and they'll sit and gnaw on them for a long time.

Unfortunately, I fell down the internet rabbit hole and some people say that the hay can be harmful. Does anyone know if the timothy hay will hurt them?

Thanks in advance!
 

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I use a variety of chews for my girls .... they seem to enjoy nylabones (yes, they're dog treats). Also real chicken bones once in a while won't hurt them either. There are some edible hides and bowls, but you do have to check the ingredients. When checking the ingrediants on Google, remember to specify "pet rat", in your search. For ex: "is timothy hay ok for my pet rat?" It helps avoid getting upsetting results in your searches.
I did find this blurb on the Chewy site:

"Timothy hay is ok for rats, but even that you need to feed in moderation! ... Yes, it's true, the "poking their eyes out" is, indeed, a myth, however hay isn't actually good for Rats. It isn't beneficial at all to them and they cannot digest any type of hay except Timothy hay."

Given that, I might use them for a last resort, once in a while, exception.

Also, it's worth mentioning that I find rats tend to act a bit closer to toddlers about toys, chews, hides, etc. Just because they didn't go crazy for them the first time - doesn't mean they don't like them. Sometimes, re-introducing something suddenly inspires a completely different reaction. The first time I offered my girls apple sticks, they couldn't be bothered. Now they love them.
 

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Lilac, Comet, and Spark
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Have you tried the EcoTrition cheese chews? I've never tried them, but I've heard rats go crazy for them. (you might want to give them sparingly, though, as they aren't the healthiest)
 

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Rats cannot digest hay as Ifraser06 said. I don't think your vet understands rats very well, if they told you they need to grind their teeth down by chewing. So I'd take anything that vet says with a grain of salt from now on lol.
 

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Have you tried the EcoTrition cheese chews? I've never tried them, but I've heard rats go crazy for them. (you might want to give them sparingly, though, as they aren't the healthiest)
I did a while ago. One of my girls loved it. What surprised me about them was the size - I thought to break them in half and that was a no go. So Susie loved it, Turvy not so much, so I think Gigi had a whole one to herself as well as Susie.
 

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Timothy hay is ok for rats, but even that you need to feed in moderation! ... Yes, it's true, the "poking their eyes out" is, indeed, a myth, however hay isn't actually good for Rats. It isn't beneficial at all to them and they cannot digest any type of hay except Timothy hay.
 

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Rats cannot digest hay as Ifraser06 said. I don't think your vet understands rats very well, if they told you they need to grind their teeth down by chewing. So I'd take anything that vet says with a grain of salt from now on lol.
I hear you, but my boys are old and lazy. One is also extremely overweight (likely hormone issues), so we have to limit food and I try not to offer extra calories. She explained how they grind down their teeth by bruxing, but their teeth are getting a little long now, so she told me that maybe offering them more things to chew would help. I'd like to avoid having them cut or filed down if I can. I'm honestly more worried about it than she is.

I should have added more context to my original post. Sorry about that!
 
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