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Rat Breeding/Rat Babies
(Pregnant rat, baby care info & more)

"Every person should be lucky enough to be owned by Rats!"

The following information is to help Pet rat owners who may experience occasional litters.
The information is not necessarily to help breeders breed.

Male and Female differences and Sexing info:

  • Rats can be sexed from birth. (Tell if it is a male or female) It is much easier after about 3 days when they get a little color pigmentation.
  • Females rats have 12 nipples on their chest -visable from birth. They can be a little harder to find once the rats have a full coat of fur. If your rat has nipples -it is a female. You may need to move the hair around a little bit to find the nipples.
  • Male rats have very large testicles. Pressing lightly on their abdomen will make the testicles protrude a little and be more visable. If you rat has testicles it is a male. Cold weather may make the testicles shrink up into hiding.
  • If you are having trouble telling the sexes apart when you are trying to wean the babies, if possible, put sexes you can identify in one cage, such as females in one cage, males in another and the unknowns in another, until you can determine their sexes accurately.
    Separating at least the sexes you can identify will help so not all of the females will become pregnant. Rats can breed as young as 4 weeks, altho usually won't until 6 weeks.
  • Females babies can live with Mom after weaning and Males can usually live with Daddy.
    (Below is generalizations and is not true in ALL cases.)
  • Female rats tend to be more petite (Smaller) than males.
  • Females tend to be more active and have more energy than males.
  • Male rats tend to be a bit overweight and lazier than females.
  • Female rats tend to have soft silky shiny hair, while male rats hair tends to be more coarse and dull colored.
  • Female rats tend to smell much like grape soda. (a sweet smell)
  • Males tend to smell like tortilla's. Males can also smell musty.
  • Male rats can get rather stinky and dirty while out exploring and may need bath's more frequently then females.
  • Male rats can be a bit messier than girls but that is mostly due to their size being larger.
  • Baby rats no matter what gender are very active.
  • Female rats are often referred to as "Does."
  • Male rats are often referred to as "Bucks".
  • Female rats if bred and then the breeding is stopped are more prone to developing mammary tumors. (Such as a retired breeder)
  • Female rats typically will accept new cage mates at any age, while Males tend to be more aggressive and territorial.

    A female in heat:

  • Rats do not have a breeding season, they will breed all year round, but they do tend to breed more frequently in the spring time.
    Common signs your female may be in heat are:
    She sticks her butt up in the air.
    When you touch her back she arches her back.
    She is overly jumpy or squeaky when you touch her.
    It has been rumored females in heat will wiggle their ears frequently.
    She runs and stops frequently.
    Overall agitated behavior.
    Some Females will jump all over a male and persuade him to chase her when she is ready to mate, frequently sticking her rump in his face.

    Before breeding rats please consider the following:

  • Do you know the background genetic history of both parents, siblings and are you sure they are in good health?
  • Do you have/know of a responsible, reliable Veterinarian who will treat your animal if the need arises?
  • Do you have the money to get vet treatment if birthing complications should arise, such as emergency c-section if Mom dies during labor or if the babies get stuck in the birth canal?
    Are you prepared or do you know what to do if your rat prolapses? A Prolapse is when a female gives birth and then her uterus basically falls out and needs to be put back inside. If a Female prolapses it is unlikely she will nurse her babies.
  • Are you emotionally and physically prepared to deal with complications if they arise? (such as dealing with blood -and possible death.)
  • Do you have money for down the road medical complications, food and cage expenses for up to as many as 20 baby rats as well as your current rats?
  • Do you have plans or homes lined up for the babies?
  • If giving your rat babies to a pet store be aware they may sell your rats for snake food/Feeder rats rather then selling them for pets. You can try posting re homing ads in your local paper, local supermarket or town square, Petfinder, Craigslist.com or on rat email/online communities.
  • If you are thinking about Breeding rats to make money, you should think of a different plan, as the cost of caring, housing, feeding and medical bills for your rats properly is more expensive then the money you'll make off selling them.
  • Letting males and females play together if you are unknowledgeable or unprepared for babies is irresponsible.
  • Think of all the rats in the world that already need homes. The world is filled with many rats that already need homes, please consider taking in rats that already need homes rather than bringing more rats that need homes into the world. (Contact an animal shelter or Rat Rescue organization.)
  • Breeding a pet store rat is not a good idea as you don't know the genetic history.
    Feeder rats are commonly inbred and in poor health and should not be bred.
  • Truth is yes, anyone can throw two rats together and have them breed, that does not make you a breeder.
    A good breeder knows the bloodlines/genetics of their rats and does not breed any rats with health issues, Mycoplasma flair ups, and tumor history in their bloodlines.
    Anyone can be a breeder, not everyone can be a Good breeder.
    Being a good breeder is time consuming hard work.

    Breeding Tips:

    What to know and look for before breeding:

  • Anyone can throw 2 rats together and have babies. That is not what a responsible breeder does.
    A Responsible breeder knows the genetics/background of their ratties and does not breed any with tumors, Mycoplasma flair ups or any illness in their background.
    Anyone can be a breeder, just not everyone can be a good breeder!
    I keep track of every rats parents, Grandparents or any relationship to others. I also keep track of every color baby they have ever had, how many babies they have in every litter and track best i can their health throughout their lives.
    If a rat becomes ill or i hear of one of my rats (that have been adopted out) becoming ill or developing a tumor i retire the lines immediately and will no longer breed any from that line.
  • Hairless rats breeding Warning! A lot of female hairless rats have trouble lactating and/or producing enough milk. Sometimes they will produce some milk but not enough to sustain all the babies and the babies will start dying off. There are not always breeding issues with hairless but ALOT of times there are. It is best to only breed a hairless male. If you want hairless babies breed a hairless to a Rex and you will likely get some hairless babies, but don't expect all hairless, it is almost guaranteed you will get some furred rats as well. Breeding a Rex to a Rex can also produce some hairless rats in the litter. Be aware just because you breed a Rex or hairless does not guarantee you will get any hairless babies, it all depends on how the genes mesh together.
  • When breeding for the most variety in the babies patterns and colors, breed two rats that are not the same color and have different markings. Such as if you breed a hooded to a hooded you will likely get all hooded babies, or if you breed Siamese to Siamese you will likely get all Siamese.
  • Breeding should be done with caution as breeding ill rats or rats with illness in their backgrounds can have devastating consequences to the parents and/or the babies.
  • Some health problems are not noticed until the rat reaches old age, so just because the rat is young and appears healthy doesn't necessarily mean they don't have tumors, respiratory problems or even Mega colon in their blood lines.
  • Do not breed rats with Megacolon, Mycoplasma flair ups, Pneumonia or tumors in their background.
  • Do not breed rats who have Pneumonia, Pneumonia can be passed on to the babies. This includes both the male and the female. Most often it would be spread by the infected rat sneezing on or around the non infected rat.
    If a rat is infected with Pneumonia as a baby, they usually don't express symptoms until they are 3 months old.
  • Do not breed rats that are temperamental or bite often, the traits can be passed onto the babies. (Temperament is not always genetic as it can be caused by poor treatment or care for the animal earlier in life but it is best to avoid breeding rats with temperament issues.)
  • Not Breeding temperamental rats can be a bit difficult as in some instances people have noticed that they don't become aggressive until adults (8 months to around 1 year) and most commonly, rats will be bred before they reach this age, so it can be tricky to avoid.
  • Do not breed females who are under 4 months old, as their bodies are to small and giving birth *could* cause internal complications that could be life threatening or they may be to young and not care for their babies.
    Petite or very young mother's babies, on occasion can have babies get stuck in the birth canal if they are to large and cause serious complications.
  • Young Mothers sometimes tend not to have any mothering instincts and will not nurse or care for their babies, Sometimes they will not care for the babies for the first few hours or even days but then they will come around and take over their mothering duties. (you will have to hand fed the babies if the mother does not take care of them but the best solution if applicable is find another nursing female to foster the babies.)
  • It is best not to breed females who are over a year old -and especially who are over 2 years old. Taking care of babies is stressful on a young and healthy Mom and on an already elderly rat it can strain them immensely and in the long run could decrease their life span or hinder the Mom's care of the babies.
  • Only Breed Females who are strong and eating well, and who do not have any health problems. (This includes health problems currently, in the past and the parents, grandparents and other siblings history of illnesses.)
  • Rats can mate/breed in a matter of seconds -a blink of the eye, so you should never let females and males play together unless you want babies. (Unless one is spayed or neutered) Even if you think you can monitor them, they are very fast! Rats have been known to mate through cage bars!

    Inbreeding/Line breeding:

  • Inbreeding is not a good idea as it can cause genetic problems if problem traits are passed on.
  • On occasion some breeders will inbreed which they refer to as line breeding in order to get a rat of a specific color or pattern. Such as breeding fathers to daughters or other family members together.
    Line breeding is mainly done if the parents are becoming to old to breed any longer and no other rats with that color or pattern are available to breed.
    However Line breeding should not really be necessary as you can just find another rat with the same pattern or color as desired and get the desired color babies with a new mate.
  • Some studies are proving that inbreeding in wild rats is causing rats life span's to decrease -so it is suspected inbreeding in domestic rats would cause the same result. The decrease in life span is slowly taking place -not rapidly. (Note: I did have a link to a study about inbreeding decreasing lifespan but unfortunately the page no longer exists -if anyone finds it -please let me know.)
  • A lot of inbreeding occurs in the business of feeder rats as they just have big pens were mass amount of rats live and breed without any re guard for who is related. Or they don't keep track of illnesses or heritage.
  • Typically, all feeder rats are inbred. Inbred rats or mass bred feeder rats tend to have a much shorter lifespans then rats bred by responsible breeders who breed for health and temperament. Feeder rats are bred for food for other animals, so they are not meant to be healthy or live a long time.

    Rat Pregnancy Info:
    Tips to know during pregnancy:
  • Rats are pregnant for 21 to 23 days, they can have them as early as 21 days and as late as 25 days.
  • Having babies at 21 days can pose an issue if they already have a litter as the litter should stay for 28 days and having 2 litters to care for usually means some of the younger ones will not make it.
    Breeding, fertilization and Gestation always depends on the females cycle and not all have the same cycle and it can vary by a couple of days.
  • Pet stores make a lot of mistakes and it is very common for you to bring home a "female" that is actually a male or bring home a "male" who is actually a female.
    Do not rely on what the pet store tells you -check for yourself or you just may find a surprise of babies soon after getting your ratties.
  • It is also common if you get a girl pet store rat that she is more than likely pregnant.
    Some Pet stores don't separate the sexes, or they think they have, but in reality haven't separated all of them.
    Sometimes males and females are mixed in the same transporter on their way to the Pet store -so they could be pregnant.
  • When handling a pregnant female carry her comfortably, don't pick her up with pressure on her belly, you could upset her or the babies inside.
  • It is suggested to restrict a pregnant females climbing, as she may not be able to jump like she used to and could fall causing injury or complications.
  • It is recommended to put the pregnant female in a cage of her own a week before she is to give birth.
    Aquariums make the safest place for a rat to give birth. If you have a wire bottom or sided cage the babies could fall through or out of the cage, causing them injury or possibly death if they get stuck, are unable to free themselves or fall to the floor below where other animals can get them, or they can get lost.
    Safe cages for babies are ones with a flat bottom and 1/4 inch cage bar spacing or less.
  • Some pregnant females can live with other females without any problems, but some pregnant females get very protective and may attack their other cage mates.
    It is best to house a nursing Mom separate from others.
  • A pregnant female rat's stomach will gradually start getting larger the farther along in her pregnancy she gets. She will look the largest the last week, especially the last 3 days of pregnancy. Sometimes you can't even notice the rat is pregnant until the last few days.
  • Pregnant rats will eat a lot more frequently than usual -but not necessarily more than usual. Make sure Mom has plenty of healthy foods and is getting plenty to eat and drink.
  • Pregnant rats tend to groom their hairs away from their nipples in preparation for nursing -some rats will do this before the babies are born and some will only do this after the babies are born. If the female uncovers her nipples before giving birth that is a very good sign that she is prepared to take care of them.
  • Some pregnant female's will begin making their nests almost immediately after realizing she is pregnant, others will wait until the last week to make a nest, or sometimes they will make a nest when the babies are born or some do not make any nest at all.
  • It is best to provide pregnant mothers a house, igloo, or box to hide in, as they are more comfortable if they have a darker area to rest in, than if they are left in an open empty cage.
  • Some pregnant rats or new mothers can become selectively aggressive to other rats and/or humans while pregnant and while nursing their babies. They may allow some rats to see or visit with them while others they chase away and try to fight with. Also, one day they might be comfortable with you handling the babies, while the next day they may get upset when you come near their babies.
  • Do not introduce new rats to pregnant Females, they may react violently and hurt themselves and/or the other rats.
  • If pregnant rats are kept together in the same cage, they will likely mix up the litters. On rare occasions the females may start a tug of war for the babies, injuring them, if this happens separate the females. It is good for multiple mothers to have multiple nests, this can help prevent fighting. A lot of mothers enjoy having another mother around as they can take turns nursing them.
  • Most females will reach Menopause at around 18 months. (If you think the female has hit menopause you shouldn't let her play with males, as she still could get pregnant which could be fatal to her.)
  • Most Mothers and Fathers are great parents and will not hurt their babies. Daddy's actually help out keeping the babies warm and playing with them.
    Leaving Daddy in with Mom to help with the babies is ok, most Dad's will take care of the babies cleaning them, wrestling and letting the babies sleep on his back. Mom can actually get a break when Daddy is left in because they can play with him. Leaving the male in may result in back to back litters.
  • Very Rarely Some rats can become aggressive to the babies and hurt them -this most commonly will happen if there are many rats living in a small space and they have to compete for food.
  • Rats shouldn't have wheels but if a wheel is in it's cage make sure that it is off the ground high enough so that no babies will get stuck under it or in it. I would suggest removing the wheel from the cage if possible until the babies are weaned and/or large enough not to get injured under or on the wheel.
  • Non Pregnant females who live with pregnant females on occasion have been known to start lactating and taking care of the babies -this is especially helpful to large litters, so all the babies can be properly fed.
  • It is all right to let the mother out to play when pregnant but make sure to keep an eye on her so she doesn't get injured or go into labor in a space where you can't get to her. (such as inside a couch or under furniture where it is hard to reach.)
  • It is also O.K. to let Mom out to play after giving birth but make sure she is not out longer than an hour for at least the first 2 weeks, as the babies may get cold and hungry. (After two weeks you can let the mom play a little longer than an hour but don't let her be away from the babies to long.)
    If you do let Mom out to play after giving birth make sure the cage door is closed or she may grab the babies one by one and transport them to somewhere else.

    Tips to know about the birth:
  • Rats are pregnant for 21 to 23 days, they can have them as early as 21 days and as late as 25 days.
  • Rats will give birth to an average size litter of 6-12 babies. They can have as many as 24 babies.
    Rats have 12 nipples so any number of babies over 12 can sometimes be difficult for Mom to feed them all and rotate them.
  • A pregnant rat's water will break before giving birth. The rats water can break several hours or even 24 hours before she goes into labor. The breaking water will look like water with a slight reddish/blood tint. (Most of the time us humans don't notice the water has broken, unless it happens in our presence.)
  • The pregnant Mom will start bleeding lightly before giving birth.
  • Signs your rat may be going into labor is stretching and moving herself around in sort of odd positions.
  • Try not to watch the Female give birth to closely, she may get nervous which could cause complications or make the birthing take longer.
  • Mom will use her hands and feet to help deliver the babies.
  • Mom will lick clean each baby, chew through the umbilical cords and eat the afterbirth.
  • Birthing usually lasts 1-2 hours. If your rat is in labor longer than 2 hours but is still continually giving birth i would not be overly worried, but do keep an eye on Mom. (if your rat is in labor for longer then an hour without continuing to deliver babies, call a vet immediately, there may be a problem.)
  • Baby rats are very vocal and will squeak continuously -often this is the first sign to us humans that the babies have been born, the unmistakable squeaks from little rat babies.
  • Mothers on rare occasions may eat the babies that have died during birth.
    This is because in the wild, dead babies can attract predators so she cleans up to try to protect the rest of the family from predators. On very rare occasions the mom may eat the live babies if the mom is not properly fed or if she thinks they are sick.

    Tips about Mom and handling the babies:
  • Humans handling pet rat babies will not cause the mother to kill them.
    The babies can be handled from birth but as a precaution make sure to touch every single baby and Mom so that they all smell the same. On occasion if only one baby is touched it can smell different and Mom will put it outside of the nest.
  • On occasion the mother may refuse to care for babies she feels are ill or not going to survive. She may push them off into a corner by themselves or hide them under bedding. (To try to prevent mom from loosing babies in the cage or pushing them aside, you should count the babies when they are born and on occasion do a baby head count to make sure they are all still there.
  • Remove any dead babies upon discovering them.
  • First time or old mothers are more likely to have a baby or two die before weaning.
  • If a baby is born ill it is common they may die on the first night. If the babies make it through the first night they are likely to survive.
  • Be careful when handling the babies around mom, she may become aggressive, by grabbing the babies and not letting go, or she may bite.
  • Be observant when handling the babies if mom is out for free range time and the babies are with you out of the cage, she may come around grab some of the babies and run off with them.
  • It is best to lure mom away from the babies with a snack and put her in another room or cage while you handle the babies if she is acting skittish.
  • Do not handle the babies for extended periods of time, such as several hours, they need to be with mom so they can nurse.
  • The mother can become pregnant immediately after birth, so if you don't want more babies you should separate the male and female right after realizing she is pregnant.
    It is recommended to wait a few weeks between litters to allow mom to properly take care of her babies, recover and heal.
  • Young Mothers sometimes will not care for the babies because they don't know what to do.
    If the female is hurting the babies or isn't nursing them you will need to try to locate another nursing female.
    When adding babies to another Mothers litter, pick up all the babies and rub them in the surrogate mom's bedding and mix them up, this will help all the babies smell the same, make sure to pet mom as well.
    If another nursing mother is unavailable you can try separating the babies for small periods of time to see if giving mom a few small breaks will help relieve her stress and allow her to calm down and nurse the babies.
    if the Mother refuses to nurse the babies after several hours after giving birth you and you can not locate a surrogate mom you will need to hand feed them.
  • Females have 12 nipples so if they have more than 12 babies it can be hard to properly feed all of them, so you may need to rotate the babies if there is more than 12 to ensure they all get properly fed.
  • If one mother has a large litter and is unable to properly nurse due to lack of nipples (they only have 12) or milk, you can try to place the babies with another nursing mother if available and if the surrogate mother accepts the babies.
    Things to know about rat babies:

  • Baby rats are very vocal, and tend to squeak a lot, especially because Mom carries them, lays on them or tries to run away with nursing babies still attached to her.
  • The Mother rat will carry around her babies with her teeth (in her mouth), this does not hurt them.
  • The babies mostly just roll around for the first week, but will attempt to crawl.
  • Before fur growth begins baby rats are often referred to as "Pinkies."
  • Baby rat stages are Pinkies, Fuzzies, Crawlers, Hoppers and then at weaning age i call them littles.
  • Many people call baby rats, kittens, puppies, Rittens or ratlettes.
  • Some babies will start trying to drink the Mothers milk, even while she is still giving birth.
  • Try not to disturb the babies much for at least a day, unless you sense a problem, the babies need to be with their mother -and mom may become protective of the babies and try to bite. You can look at the babies but keep the visits short.
  • Look at the babies stomach for a "milk band" this will be a white/cream line across their stomachs, this will show that the baby is eating and it's belly is full of milk. (you can only see the milk band for the first few days)
  • Rats are born without fur and are pink for about 3 days.
  • On day 3 you can start seeing hints of the babies markings, and some light fur growth, gradually getting easier to see the markings with each passing day.
  • Rats are born with their eyes and ears closed.
  • Rats ears are bent towards their heads appearing to almost be fully attached to the head when born and gradually will open and spread out.
    Their ears will be fully opened at about 9 days old.
  • It will take about 10-14 days before the rat has a full light coat of fur.
  • It takes 10-14 days for rats to open their eyes (Sometimes the whole litter will not open their eyes on the same day.)
  • The babies will become very active once they open their eyes, and become very curious and begin exploring.
  • Baby rats hair is very, very soft, unlike older rats hair which is usually more coarse.
  • Babies will start nibbling on food at about 2 weeks of age -usually right after opening their eyes.
  • The babies should not be separated from their mother any earlier than 3 weeks. 4 Weeks is the recommended weaning age. Babies should not be left in longer then 5 weeks or the females may become pregnant by daddy if he is in the cage or her siblings.
    Females can stay with Mom and Males with Dad after weaning.
  • Be very careful with what bedding you are using around babies, some bedding is really dusty and can clog up the babies noses, some bedding can get wrapped around or stuck onto the babies which could cause injury or other complications Especially DO NOT USE cotton fluff bedding! This bedding can and will get wrapped around the babies cutting off circulation, which could result in amputation or death. The cotton fibers are very small and can be very hard to see without examining closely.
    *I recommend laying down newspaper on the bottom of the cage and then covering the bottom with strips of blankets, fleece or paper towels -make sure the fabric does not have holes or strings -the babies and even mom could get wrapped up, stuck or injured.
  • The babies should be left with the mother for 4 weeks/28 days. The babies will gradually wean themselves off of Mother's milk and start eating on their own. You can separate the babies on weaning day just by taking them out of the cage.
    Some people prefer to do a gradual weaning process where they separate the babies from mom for a few hours (1-3 hours) a day the 4th week and then put them back in with mom, everyday separating them for a little longer than the day before. This can be done by letting mom out to play and run around on her own while the babies stay in the cage.
  • Remove the babies from Mom no earlier then 3 weeks and before they are 5 weeks old. if the babies are left in with siblings and parents longer then 5 weeks they can breed/become pregnant.
    Separate the males and females and put them in separate cages.
    The Females can live with their Mother and the males can live with Daddy.
  • If you leave the males in with mom and their sisters longer than 5 weeks they can and WILL become pregnant.
  • Weaning rats to early can make their health decline and cause them to be unhealthy or more prone to illness.
    Hand feeding babies:

    If your female refuses to care for and feed her babies you will need to step in or all of the babies will die.
    On occasion some females, especially hairless females have problems lactating and are unable to produce milk or are unable to produce enough milk to sustain all the babies.
    If possible try to find another lactating female that could nurse the babies, if one is not available then you will need to hand feed the babies.
    Babies can be nursed with puppy milk, goats milk, kittens milk, baby formula and soy milk.
    Baby formula should contain the least amount of iron you can find.
    Fill a needle-less syringe or eye dropper with the milk and insert the syringe into the babies mouth -they will wiggle and squeak and probably drool some milk out of their mouths. Slowly feed the baby the milk.
    After the baby has had some milk make sure to rub the babies belly/abdomen to help the baby digest the milk and go to the bathroom.
    Babies should be fed every two hours for the first week, after the first week feeding can take place with a little more time in between feedings, such as every 3-4 hours.
    The babies need their bellies rubbed after every feeding -to help digestion and to help them go to the bathroom. If you are hand feeding babies leave food out at all times, to encourage them to eat dry food.
    After the babies open their eyes they will start eating a lot more dry food and you can put a small dish of milk in the cage and let them drink that way rather than syringe feeding them. (Be sure to have water available as well.)
    It can be extremely difficult to hand feed baby rats and get them to survive. Sometimes they will die off one by one. Don't be surprised if not all of the babies make it. If you keep up with feedings regularly they can survive but hand feeding takes a lot of time and work.
    The hand fed babies will need to be kept someplace warm were they can't escape and can stay cuddled up and warm, if they get to cold this can slow circulation and they may not make it.

    How to breed:

  • Put the selected Female and the selected male together and watch them closely to make sure they get along and will not fight.
  • If they are friendly watch and see if they mate, if you witness mating, simply wait the 21-28 days for babies. :)
  • You can put the male and female in a cage together for several weeks, if they get along, separating them the last week of pregnancy if you don't want more babies. Or you can just put them together once for a few hours, it depends on what you want to do. The female can get pregnant again immediately after giving birth which can be a strain on her so if you don't want a second litter separate the male and female the last week of pregnancy.
  • If after 21-28 days there are no babies and you think/realize the female was not pregnant after all then you can put the selected couple together and try again.
  • Rats can mate in under a second, they are very fast, so you might miss the actually mating.

    Telling identical rats apart:

    If you happen to have two (Or more) rats that have similar markings and you are having trouble telling them apart here are a few ideas to help:
  • Put a dab of hair dye on one of the rats. Make sure to only use a small amount and be sure to rinse the hair dye off completely and quickly after application, to make rats do not ingest any of it.
  • Draw stripes or markings on one of the rats tails with permanent marker. Some permanent markers may contain harmful chemicals so use with caution.
  • Using a Children's washable marker is a safer option than a permanent marker, but may need to be re-applied often.
  • Dab a bit of food coloring on to the rat.
  • You could also try using cooked beet root and rub that onto the rat. (The rat or other rats may eat it off quickly.)
  • Another possibility would be to snip a small patch of hair off of one of the identical rats so you could tell them apart more easily. (Hair takes a while to grow back so this would last quite some time.)
    Here is the twins Punker & Felix, Notice Punker's green patch of hair.


    In some instances people like to keep males and females together so spaying or neutering may be done to prevent pregnancy.
    Neutering is some instances can help aggressive males calm down and be less aggressive.
    If you have an option to spay or neuter -neutering the male is usually a safer option as a spay is a more difficult process.
    Spayed or neutered rats should be kept away from the opposite sex after surgery for at least two weeks (one month is better) to ensure they have recovered and healed from surgery.
    It can be difficult to find a willing Vet and rather expensive to spay or neuter a rat, but it can be worth it if you want to have both males and females play together.

    Email me if you have rat questions or more rat info.!!!

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