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Wednesday, July 28, 2010
The Better Rat Pet: Males Or Females?

By Shellyane Bryan
A rat owner from England shares tales of living with her rats named Mouse, Slinky and Diddy.

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rat
Photo Courtesy Shellyane Bryan

Diddy seems to fit the stereotype for female rats because she's very active, at least when outside the cage.

As I mentioned last week, I’ve been looking into rat shows around the Midlands, and I have found quite a few events that happen in the region. I just missed the last one, but all I need to do to attend the next one is to sign up to the club and become a member.

Judging by the photos, it looks like quite a lot of fun and there is a variety of goodies, bits and bobs on offer for ratties and owners alike. I don’t know too many other rat owners, though I did notice that most of the rats in the photos were male, which got me to thinking — which of the two sexes makes the most popular of pets?

I know there are differences in personalities, but I also know that rat sexes also differ to one another, too. Male rats are known for being very cuddly and liking to sit on someone’s lap to be petted and stroked. Comparatively, female rats are very much always on the go and stop for a fuss far less often than their male counterparts.

All of my pet rats have been female, and they have all had a similar sort of attitude. Though Diddy and Mouse are quite lazy inside the cage (in retrospect, Mouse is lazy outside, too, but that’s because she’s quite old), Diddy never ceases to scamper around outside of it and, not at all surprisingly, Slinky never sits still.

There was only one occasion I can recall when Slinky and Diddy curled up together to sleep, and that was the first weekend I brought them home. That was because they were young and easily tired.

My brother also has female rats who are similar to mine, but a friend of mine — who sadly recently lost one of her rat boys — has always had male rats who are reluctant to leave the safety of the cage, or who love a nice cuddle.

Having never owned male rats, I couldn’t really pass judgement on which makes the better pet, male or female. However, I know I love to watch my rats run around like little, fuzzy lunatics whenever I put them down. On the other hand, a little cuddle from time to time wouldn’t go amiss either ...

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The Better Rat Pet: Males Or Females?

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Reader Comments
My boy doesn't lke to come out for very long and if I give him shis free time he will have a quick hunt for food and then curl up under the cage or in a corner and go to sleep. I think it comes from the lack of work the males do in the wild while thw females are constently looking after babies and need tons of energy. I have always liked the males because of their size, I think there is nothing more impressive then a huge rat with a long scaley tail and big teddy bear head but I think that may be what puts most people off lol.
Hannah, Coppell, TX
Posted: 7/28/2010 6:45:56 AM
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