Getting a new rat *I have a question!*

For anything to do with rat care that doesn't fit into any of the sections above!

Is it true?

Yes
8
17%
No
33
72%
Maybe
2
4%
I don't know
3
7%
 
Total votes: 46

ratgoddess
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Getting a new rat *I have a question!*

Post by ratgoddess » Wed Jan 18, 2006 8:45 pm

I really want to get a rat becuase my dear gerbil just died last night :cry:

My mom has no objection except to the fact that they stink! She claims that they're cages need to changed every single day or they will reak something horrible. I know myself that rats are very clean creatures but there is the possiblity that they might release an unpleasent odour too often.

Is this true?

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Jembean
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Post by Jembean » Wed Jan 18, 2006 8:52 pm

I haven't noticed a smell from my boys and their cage gets a thorough cleanout once a week. If you clean out the whole cage every day they're more likely to smell because they'll scent mark everything all over again.
Also you should seriously think about getting more than one!

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ali67
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Post by ali67 » Wed Jan 18, 2006 8:57 pm

I disagree totally with your mum! I've got 8 rats in my bedroom (11 until recently), all boys, and they don't stink! They certainly smell FAR less than mice. Not sure about gerbils, but I'm sure someone who's had both (like racingrat) will be able to tell you). It's true that, like any animal, they have their own special scent, but it's not nasty. My bedroom smells a bit different to my living room, but it's not a stinky, uriney smell. Certainly better than wet dog!!

I think that most people here tend to spot clean every day - ie change the bedding in boxes, wipe down shelves, clean out litter trays etc - and clean out the whole thing (including the base substrate) every week or two. You can then give the whole cage a good spray down every couple of months.

Rats will only smell if you don't keep on top of the cleaning, especially in the summer, and let the smell of pee/ammonia build up (no different to any other animal). Spot cleaning my cages and changing the bedding takes less than 10 minutes a night.

good luck, I hope your mum agrees to let you get rats.

By the way, PLEASE get at least two rats. Rats are social animals and do very badly living alone.
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Post by squeaky » Wed Jan 18, 2006 9:16 pm

Rats don't stink, but they do smell more than gerbils who seem to have no smell whatsoever. :wink:

Having had various rodents - hamsters have the worst smell to me (although male mice smell more, I don't find the smell as intolerable).

If you do decide to get a pair of rats, please don't assume you can use the housing that you had your gerbil in - unless your gerbil was lucky enough to live in a super enormous cage.
Tanks aren't great for rats as they have quite delicate respiratory systems, and most cages designed for gerbils will be far too small for rats, especially if there are any tubes involved.
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Post by neep_neep » Wed Jan 18, 2006 9:22 pm

I agree with everything said above - particularly about getting 2 rats (or more :wink: )

If it's the smell in particular that you're more concerned about, i'd opt for female rats.
I've kept both males and females, and found that my males gave off a stronger smell than the females (I personally didn't find it particularly nasty - tis just the 'boy' smell - human males would have it too if they didn't cover it up with oodles of Lynx spray :wink: )

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Post by MyDearSam » Wed Jan 18, 2006 9:41 pm

neep_neep wrote:tis just the 'boy' smell - human males would have it too if they didn't cover it up with oodles of Lynx spray :wink: )


:lol: How true!
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Post by Sweetpea » Wed Jan 18, 2006 10:25 pm

MyDearSam wrote:
neep_neep wrote:tis just the 'boy' smell - human males would have it too if they didn't cover it up with oodles of Lynx spray :wink: )


:lol: How true!


Definately - my 13 year old would pong worse then the rats if he wasn't forced into the shower every morning and then gases the whole family with Lynx! :lol:
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Post by ajdesq » Wed Jan 18, 2006 11:11 pm

Apparently females scent-mark less than males. I always have female rats, and no problems with smell at all.
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Post by ratgoddess » Sat Sep 30, 2006 3:12 pm

1) Thanks for the advice
2) Don't worry - I'd be sure to get at least two rats since they're very social and provide the correct housing. Thanks for the advice and help! I've been doing tons of research and may be closing to persuading my mom to allow me to have rats.

Thanks again

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Post by ratoonratz » Sat Sep 30, 2006 3:22 pm

If you have a mum with a nose like mine and you need to avoid her moaning I say every 3 days :lol: (though I don't do it as often as this!!)
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Post by Karniji » Sat Sep 30, 2006 3:24 pm

good to hear you'll be getting two (at least...) :)

i have 3 girls and they don't smell very much. they've been a bit smellier this week because i didn't have any litter but if you wipe the shlves and stuff everyday they normally don't smelly.

p.s. don't know whether this has already been mentioned but since you're new to having rats thought i'd mention a)sawdust and shavings (except aspen) and wood or clay-based cat litter aren't suitable for rats and b) get rats from a breeder or rescue, not from a petshop.
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Post by Razz » Sat Sep 30, 2006 6:34 pm

As a recent first time rat owner (3 boys) I'd say that I do find they have a scent that's different from hamsters/gerbils and is slightly stronger, but I don't find it a problem.
I wipe down all the cage shelving every day and spot clean every other day, removing poo and any bedding/litter that's obviously been wee'd on. They get a full scrub out once a week, which takes an hour or so.

I do find that they'll go and mark the shelves again within about 15 minutes of my cleaning them, but I just dab up any obvious pools with a tissue and leave them to it.

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Post by fudge7000 » Sat Sep 30, 2006 10:01 pm

i have 2 boys and my mum always moans that they smell when theyre with her. i don't find it too bad, they always pee on the shelves so i just wipe them down daily and clean out once a week. you can also get treats that stop their wee smelling so much, and something called 'tap-a-drop' i htink that helps (click on the rat warehouse banner, they sell both). good luck in persuading your mum!

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Post by purple_fluffy_panther » Sat Sep 30, 2006 10:12 pm

Melodys cage smells like wee when your really close to it (ie looking in real close) i might clean her out fully twice a week not just once cos she seems to have got the cage messy real fast.

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Post by Fat_Rat » Sat Sep 30, 2006 10:15 pm

well done for doing all the research first, i'm sure you'll be a great ratty owner. And you won't regret getting rats as pets....once you#ve had rats you'll never look back!
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