Rats or Ferrets as pets
Youngest stepdaughter has had two lots of rats as pets:
They are very friendly and sociable if you put the time and effort in. Will happily sit on shoulders/crawl around inside your clothing 😯 or happily play around you once used to their environment.
Distinct personalities, very rewarding and extremely intelligent creatures – a pleasure to be around.
Never taken one outside though – too scared of having to explain how I lost a favourite pet.
The big downside is the smell, unfortunately. They aren’t continent and wee all over you, your house and your clothing as you handle them.
It’s quite a pungent aroma too, so probably best to go and visit someone who keeps them as pets before commiting.
Just started working for a new client who has a Senegal Parrot as a pet.
Raised from a captive chick (as they all are these days) so very socialised and used to people – never thought of keeping a bird before due to the ethical issues, but must admit they are quite tempting –
more info here.
How about a house rabbit?Posted 5 years ago
Had one for years and they really are wonderful pets.
House trainable, sociable, continent, intelligent and loads of fun.
Will chew cables and strip wallpaper, but very rewarding.CountZeroMember
My brother and sister-in-law have several ferrets, along with three cats, a golden lab and Pyrennean Mountain dog, and they all co-exist quite happily, although when they first got Mac, the Pyrennean, the ferrets used to bully him mercilessly, the little sods! I know someone else with a couple of ferrets, and a rat, and she adores the ferrets. Provided you keep their accommodation clean, they don’t seem to be too wiffy, I’ve known dogs that smelled more. Tremendous fun, very intelligent, and they really respond to being played with.Posted 5 years agofinishthatSubscriber
We have a fancy rat – they prefer to live in pairs for company – nice pet , you can get a harness – but they prefer to be away from open spaces so will always run too the edge of a room so not much good to walk, but definitely in your pocket shoulder will not run away .Posted 5 years ago
just make sure you let them have enough time to make their nest/space – then they will always go back to it- we often forget the cage door – he is always in there when we check.
Do not live that long either – saying that he is a charming little thing , follows us around and likes a cuddle – much much more interactive that any of the hampster type things.brukSubscriber
I love Ferrets but even with my terrible sense of smell I wouldn’t have one unless it lived outside. Rats are similar in character but yes the weeping would be an issue. Know a lot of people go for walks with them indie their jackets etc which I wouldn’t risk with a ferret as they will run off.
Prefer guinea pigs to rabbits as they are easier to handle and make great noises.Posted 5 years agoKarinofnineMember
I’m going mad here without animal company. I can’t really get another dog for the foreseeable so am considering rats or ferrets. Can anyone share some thoughts or advice please?
Can you take a rat for a walk? (I mean in your pocket/on your shoulder – not on a lead.)Posted 5 years ago
Or would it just run away?LeeWSubscriber
Male rats tend to be a little calmer happier sitting on your shoulder whilst you walk around with them, females tend to be more active/adventurous. The only downside is that male rats can smell more than females.
The other problem with rats is they don’t last very long, you’re lucky to get two years out of them. They do make great pets though.Posted 5 years ago
Ferrets last about 7 years, best in pairs or more, can be litter box trained (most of the time) and will go for walks on a lead (no homing instinct so be careful). Be prepared to give inquisitive dogs a good boot in the face as well.
Also homes require ferret proofing (think curious toddler with claws). A large cage to put them in for when you are out or sleeping is a must.
Ferrets respond well to attention and love, the more time you put in the better pet they are. Watching a group (collective noun – a business) go bonkers when you let them out of the cage when you get home is great, also the stealing and moving of treats and toys is hilarious as various ferrets “secret” caches of goodies get moved around the lounge by the others. Oh and sock stealing from the laundry pile as socks are evil and must be punished (usually by a death bite and removal of the heel).Posted 5 years agobigblackshedSubscriber
My eldest has had rats. 1 male on his own. Very sociable. Loved the hood or pocket on his sweat shirt. Did pee a bit but not overly smelly. Then he had 2 females. Very adventurous but not so social. Guess they had each other. Didn’t pee or smell. Very nice pets, but they do chew everything.
Youngest has got a rabbit and a guinea pig. He called the rabbit Lola. It’s not Lola any more. It’s Larry! He’s been humping the poor guinea pig endlessly for 2 weeks. “He’s” off to the vets this week. Both make nice pets, but I wouldn’t want them as house pets. They chew everything and then some.Posted 5 years agoprojectMember
Rats absolutely fantastic creatures handle them as much as possible, and theyll soon be tamed, beaware tghat if they ever chew therough a cable and die the cable /rat may still be live with current, electric shock.
HAD loads of them, all with seperate personalities, they like to live in groups so get more than 2, but not males and females together, as even the kids breed with each other a few weeks after being born.
Oh and they love problem solving either climbing up or down things, or just being nosey.Posted 5 years agoCammerMember
Had two rats when I was younger, great pets. In the end we didn’t need to keep the cage closed all the time, they just roamed the living room freely, and they actually made a second home in the back of the sofa 😕
Not once did they bite, and they were quite happy to climb from the floor to your shoulder. They learn their surroundings and try to use it to their advantage. ie. They started to realise the fridge was were all the food was!!! (they never actually got in, but made a dash for it as soon as they heard it opening)Posted 5 years ago
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