Owning rats, or as some say, being owned by rats, is a journey. For me it began with being intensely rat-phobic to where I am now, rat-obsessed (ok, i admit it).

 




Cat Toys for Rats

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I have discovered that all attempts to spoil and dote on my rats by buying them "cool" toys have been met with either total disinterest or mild amusement that quickly turns to total disinterest. I don't know why that hasn't disuaded me from purchasing toys. Maybe it is the challenge.

I recently found one that they love! And not just the little ratlets, but the older ones, too. It is called the Cat-Fisher Mouse Mitt. It is an Edward Scissorhands-like glove with little feather and fur bits stuffed with catnip that are attached to elastic (ok, they are actually fake mice, but I prefer to think of them as something more abstract) . I believe the elastic is the key, allowing the rat to think it can spirit the object away. They also seem to like the catnip (discovered on the dismemberment of a previous rat toy). The company that makes it is Bamboo and you can purchase replacement bits if they get chewed off. My rats especially love that one that is wrapped in string.

UPDATE: 5/3/06: Check out the google video of Pez and Peaches playing!

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3GR Bon-Bon 9-7-04 to 6-13-05

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I never really paid tribute to Bon yet.

The little pic is her baby pic and she truly did look like a fat little bon-bon. I never had an adult picture of her but I believe the picture with the dark blue background is very close to how she looked. She was quite a beautiful rat with a tail that was patterned like shifting sand.

Here is something I wrote shortly after she died.

In the little rat kingdom she was Queen. Penelope was her Merlin secretly running things and Dinky, the little Court Jester.

The humans were giant, but benevolent ogres. She had a special fondness for the one called John and even as weak as she was, she still boggled and bruxed when he petted her and fell asleep with him for one final nap. She was fond of me, too, in her way, and every once in awhile she would climb up on my chest and cautiously look me in the eyes like she was trying to bridge the interspecies communication gap.

Always somewhat grumpy, but never mean. A real rat's rat. She liked to be near her humans, but at arm's length. She would come to you when SHE wanted to be petted. She loved being scritched then for long periods of time and would wag her tail and close her eyes in bliss.

She loved her food and until the very last day nothing would keep her away from her Belgian chocolate pudding.

I will miss you my little curmudgeon. I'm glad you are at peace now and Queen of your new surroundings.

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Penelope, AKA 3GR Lioness, came from 3 Girls Rattery in Washington.



I've been meaning to write this for a long time now. It still hurts for me to think about her and to see her pictures. Penelope was my heart of hearts. She was always Penelope Princess to me and always will be. Even as she was dying she still had a little ratlet's spirit.

I originally thought her breeder name of Lioness didn't suit her. As I grew to know her though, I discovered that she did indeed have qualities of a Lioness. She was totally brave. Scared of nothing, curious about everything. She loved to try new things, explore new places, meet new people. She loved people and was my greatest Rattie Ambassador. I used her to work with girls who had intense rat phobias (at the non-profit afterschool program where I work) and she never failed to win them over with her good nature and charming ways.

She adored me, as I adored her. As a little pup, she climbed up my chest one day and looked me in the eyes for a long time and it was as if one being was looking into the soul of another being. Whenever I was near she wanted to be with me. No matter where she was in the cage, she was always first out and last in. She was extremely affectionate. Even though she was ALWAYS busy and always going, she would check in frequently to give kisses and groom and sometimes to snuggle up in the crook of my arm or to lay on my chest and fall asleep bruxing in contentment.

Penelope was an incredibly smart rat. Although the tiniest girl in the cage, she ran it. Without a fight she somehow ruled.

I will miss her all my days and nights.

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The Pez-o-matic 2000

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I cannot describe to you how much I adore these girls. I am babystruck. I love every move they make, every cute look, every sweet kiss. It is too much for words or pictures to adequately convey, but here's a picture, or two. I present for your viewing pleasure my sweet little Pezmerelda, Pezebel, Pez-o-matic 2000...

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all ratties deserve heaven

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I love this pic done by Amalia DuBois (and the title!).

The way the rat was incorporated into the knotwork is wonderful. It is happily oblivious to being all wrapped up because it has its hands on the star it wanted.

update: 4-22-06
If you are interested in seeing how this went from sketch to final drawing, Amalia has posted the process
here.

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Fawn Girl is now Peaches

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Well, I've fallen off schedule a bit again. Been too busy playing with baby rats!

However, I realize I've been remiss and its time to make up for it. Naming, for whatever reason, was much easier this time. I was reading Terry Pratchett's "The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents" when I came across the character of Peaches and I knew immediately that that had to be the name of our little fawn girl. The book is wonderful and the character of Peaches is a charming, intelligent, ethical and sweet rat. The following
review gives a good feel for the book.

update 4-26-06 stumbled across a response byTerry Pratchett to the question of whether or not he has pet rats.

And, of course, I can't leave you without a picture or two of the real thing.


















The pic on the left, is Peaches left standing in shock as the cat toy feather snaps back on its elastic. Unfortunately the flash washes out her color.


The picture on the right is much closer to her true color, which has sort of a blue sheen. Linda, her "breeder-mother", thinks she may be a Platinum. Whatever she is, she's beautiful and sweet.

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Happy World Rat Day!

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Had to post again cuz its World Rat Day! If you want to send a cute postcard created by a ratlover check these out.

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Wonderful World of Rats

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The World Rat Day celebration in San Mateo, CA took place this Sunday and got a nice write-up in the San Jose Mercury.

Check out Stephen Bay's pics of last years event.

If you're in the San Francisco/San Jose area, think about checking it out next year around this same time. There's a website with more information at www.thewonderfulworldofrats.org

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  • Portland, OR, United States
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