top of page

Rat (Rattus norvegicus)


The domestic rat (Rattus norvegicus) has only recently been enjoying great success as a pet: very intelligent and with an individual personality, they have a rather short life expectancy on the other hand.

The cage should be easy to clean and not allow for escape. The material must be "indestructible" and not be painted, as rats gnawing could ingest fragments with possible consequent intoxication. Hygiene and cage ventilation will be essential as urine can cause pododermatitis and tail lesions, while high levels of ammonia can predispose to respiratory diseases. You can use pellets for stoves or other absorbent materials, which are however not very dusty and not made of coniferous woods.

Being very curious and social animals, environmental enrichment will prove to be of fundamental importance by providing pipes, boxes, objects to be manipulated and gnawed.

It is advisable to keep a group of the same sex, preferably females, a couple or a harem, never placing 2 males together who could compete for domination of the “territory” (the cage).

Being omnivorous animals, a wide range of foods can be administered, without ever lacking vegetables and fruit and without exceeding carbohydrates and fats. An inadequate or excessive diet is commonly associated with obesity. Foods to absolutely avoid will be sweets and chocolate; the latter can be toxic even in modest quantities. Water must always be available.

Another peculiar characteristic of this small rodent is the yellowish color that takes on the hair after a few months of life, especially in males and in elderly specimens.

bottom of page