Wednesday, September 26, 2012

If You Buy a Rat...

 Then you have to buy his brother, too!

Meet our new rats! They are only about 5 weeks old. They are Dumbo rats- named for the larger ears which are placed more on the side of their heads. They are both boys with HUGE feet. Like puppies, they will grow into them.

The black one is very outgoing and likes to play and be in the middle of everything. The grey (he's actually called an "American Blue") is a little more shy and not as playful, but very sweet and gentle. They make a great combination (except that the black one will push the grey one around). I just picked them up yesterday, but they already seem to be settling in. They are so fun! You can rough house with them and they will bounce and run around and come back for more. Then they get riled up and wrestle with each other. Sometimes they sleep together in a "rat pile," which is sweet. The most precious thing thus far was the grey one washing the black one's face. Adorable!

The only surprise, for me, was how mouthy they are. When we stick our hands in, they just lick and lick and lick our hands. It's very interesting. And they will grab hold of fingers in surprisingly strong grips and just lick away. They nibble on finger nails (but are very careful not to bite) and sometimes they just touch the skin with their teeth. Even when they are riled up they do not bite. Us or one another. So if anyone comes to visit them, be prepared, but know that they won't hurt you. Honestly it took me a bit to get used to that and not be afraid that I would get bitten, but that's just part of how they interact.
Licking away!
At the moment they do not have names. Our favorites so far are Thor and Loki, but we have gotten other suggestions. A couple were for Calvin and Hobbs. I liked Beelzebub and Baal. Castor and Pollux was a great suggestion. Miguel and Tulio I liked a lot. Mario and Luigi would be cute. I like Calo and Galdo (the twins from The Lies of Locke Lamora). Pinky and the Brain was suggested a couple of times, but I don't think I like those as much. Just doesn't fit the boys.

For anyone who is interested, these two came from a local rat breeder. You can go to her page, Camarattery. In addition to breeding and selling rats, she has amazing resources. Lots of info about good cages, beddings/litters, best diets, etc. It is a wonderful resource that I use all the time now. I also am using her food mix and will start making my own in the near future using her recipe. As a breeder she has been able to collect a lot of information, so she is a great authority. If you have rats or are interested in getting any, I recommend her page for info and her animals for adopting.

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