These cuties get an undeserved bad rap!

Why RATS Make the BEST Pets

Feb 3, 2017 | Dewdney Animal Hospital

Eeek! A rat!

Did you know that domestic (fancy) rats are physiologically and psychologically different from their wild counterparts?
That’s right! We have been selectively breeding rats since the 18th century- much like dogs & cats- to be more docile, companionable and of course pathogen and contagion free!

Fancy rats are quite independent, loyal, affectionate and easily trained. They are also relatively affordable and aren’t a 15-20 year long commitment like cats and dogs.

A Rodent with a Superbrain

Rats are the smartest of the most common domesticated rodents. The Rat Assistance and Teaching Society (yes, that exists!) states that some rats are more intelligent than dogs! They can be trained to a number of tricks (see video), recognize their name and come when called, and even use a litter box!

Studies have shown that rats display many of the same emotions as humans- including empathy, helpfulness, and loneliness.

Check out this beautiful informational guide by wildlife artist Laura Mae Smith!

A Great First Pet

Fancy rats are one of the few pets that are good for kids. Unlike other pocket pets like hamsters, rats rarely bite. They are sturdier than other rodents and they don’t tend to make fast rapid movements.

Since rats sleep for 15 hours a day, they don’t need the same time commitment as a cat or dog. They will wake up to be handled because they love people, but for most of the day they will be fast asleep.

Rats can be amazing, interactive, trainable companions for children- comparable to that of a dog.
You will get attached to them too!

Did we Change your Mind?

Visit The Small Animal Rescue Society of BC on Facebook, or on their website

They recently rescued 32 baby rats right before Christmas 2016 and many are still looking for a home. You can also check your local rescues.


Enriching Indoor Cats

Many, if not all, behavioural problems can be solved by properly enriching a cat’s indoor space. Contrary to popular belief, cats do not need to roam outdoors to be satisfied. It is actually far safer to keep them inside when not supervised. It is our duty as cat owners to create a ‘Catified’ environment to delight their natural instincts. We have a few ideas for you that we think you’ll love!

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Dewdney Diaries is a blog updated every month, recounting the exciting and interesting stories at Dewdney Animal Hospital. There's never a dull day at Dewdney!

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11965 228th St, Maple Ridge, B.C.
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Mon - Sat: 8 AM to 6 PM
Sun: 8 AM to 5 PM


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