The Best Pet You Never Had

The Best Pet You Never Had

As an avid animal lover, I can not imagine not sharing my life with a pet. Most people have had a dog or cat at some point in their life, maybe even a hamster or guinea pig.

However, one of my favorite pets is slightly less conventional -Rats.

The word Rat is enough to make some people cringe. Those people just don’t know enough about them.

5 Reasons Rats Are Amazing Pets


5. Rats Are Super Intelligent

Baby Rat on Cabbage leaf

Don’t let their tiny size fool you, there is a lot going on inside that adorable head of theirs.  Rats are highly intelligent and naturally curious, which makes them easily trainable.

Rats are very food motivated, so it doesn’t take much to get them to catch on to something new. They will respond to their name –just like a dog, and can even be taught to play fetch.

My Rats are pretty boring compared to some smarties’ that I have seen. They are litter trained, know their names, will come when called and my Peanut will spin in a circle for a treat. That is about the extent of the training I have time for.

Between raising 2 energetic little men, 1 needy Pit Bull, a husband and a full-time job, I just don’t have time train my rats to play basketball… But I seriously love watching videos of those of you that do!


4. They Love Spending Time With You

Rat looking at Pinterest

This is Peanut. Peanut and I love Pinterest. When we let “The Girls” out of their cage, they explore the house for a hot minute, and then they come right back to us. Rats love to be with their humans. Whether it’s playtime, or snuggletime, or in our case Pinterest-time.

I was worried at first when I brought Peanut and Pumpkin home. Worried about how they would withstand my –five and three-year old, who were not exactly gentle. But the girls love their energy! They play hide-and-go-seek and other such come and get me kind of games.

Rats want to be a part of whatever is happening in their humans life, period.


3. Rats Are Very Affectionate

Rat snuggling teddy bear

They snuggle you, they snuggle each other, they even snuggle little rat-sized teddy bears. And nothing tickles like a tiny rattie kiss.

Need I say more?




2. They Are Fastidiously Clean

russian blue rat face

Banish the images of plague infested vermin roaming the sewers. Pet –or Fancy Rats have absolutely nothing in common with them.

Rats are constant groomers. They groom themselves just as much, if not more than cats do!

Now, I know what you’re thinking. Yes, I know, you still have to clean a cage. But they make that easy on you too. Rats typically designate one spot within their cage as their “bathroom”. Easy peasy. Plus they do not smell, unlike other small rodents–ahem, hamsters and ferrets I’m lookin’ at you.





1. Rats Have Personality

Rat Eating Milano Cookie

All that intelligence adds up to huge personality. Ratties are fun and natural entertainers!

While typically males are more relaxed, and females are ready for adventure –it’s not necessarily a rule. Rats are just as unique as the people who keep them. They all have their own quirks, likes and dislikes. Which makes them really fun to get to know.

I was lucky enough to have a rat as a pet growing up, and I was so grateful to be able to share the experience with my own children. Our rats Peanut and Pumpkin have also served as ambassadors, showcasing their wit and charm and scurrying  their way into the hearts of many would-be haters.

They have taught my children to keep an open mind, and not judge before you get to know something or someone. A lesson I am proud to say that they have bestowed upon on to others on their pets behalf, and that makes this Mama’s heart happy.



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