Pet rats add life!

Three of my pet rats trying to escape from their cage

If you follow my blog, you’ve probably seen some of my blog posts about my five rats. Yes, five of them! I get lots of surprised looks from people when I tell them I have not one, not two, but five pet rats! (On the left are three of my girls, Georgie, Lucy, and Isabella.)

Many people wonder why I would want to share my apartment with five rats. Most people understand the joy and happiness of having a dog or a cat. But a rat? However, I think pet rats are just as awesome! 🙂

I’ll be collaborating some this summer with the American Pet Products Association’s Pets Add Life (PAL) Campaign. PAL’s mission is to help spread the word about the joy that pets bring to our lives. Even better, PAL tries to promote animal adoption and responsible pet ownership.

To me, this is a great mission. I work with a horse rescue and my local dog / cat shelter. Every week I interact with homeless dogs, cats, horses, and donkeys that are longing to find their furr-ever home. But, I also have the pleasure of getting to see many happy endings when an adopter finds a pet that is the purr-fect match for their family. Because of all of this, I’m really looking forward to helping spread the word about PAL!

But…. now back to the rats! And why rats make great pets. I have 5 rats, Georgie, Lucy, Isabella, Chloe, and Amy. Georgie and Lucy I’ve had almost 2 years. The other three, Isabella, Chloe, and Amy, I adopted in March from our local SPCA.

Now, why would anyone want to share her home with 5 pet rats? Rats are some of the silliest, most fun little animals that you’ll ever meet. My rats are so smart and are also incredibly friendly. They love riding around on my shoulder, cuddling in my lap, or getting a good ear rub, when they’re inclined to sit still for several seconds.

However, they are also quite the adventurers and acrobats! One of my favorite parts about having rats is getting to watch them do what rats do best—go climbing, exploring, jumping, burrowing, and running all around trying to get into as much trouble as possible! My rats love climbing up the blinds, burrowing through the throw blanket, jumping off the side of the desk, and chewing through the boxes that I give them as toys. In short, they are troublemakers! However, they never fail to make me smile.

Also, because they are so smart, they are great at learning tricks. Georgie (and now Amy as well) have really helped me improve my clicker training skills. Georgie knows quite a few tricks, including spinning, jumping, and going through a tunnel.

If you’re still not convinced that rats add life, check out the video below. Amy is one of the rats I got in March from our local SPCA. She is always looking for an adventure and is quite the acrobat! This is a video clip while Amy was exploring some new toys.

Watch on YouTube: Amy goes exploring!

So, time for me to go play some more with my spoiled rotten rats. Meanwhile, I encourage you to check out PAL’s website. You can also follow PAL on twitter and friend PAL on facebook. If an animal has ever made you smile, then I encourage you to help PAL spread the word that pets DO add life. PAL is also currently working on some new videos to help spread the word about the joys of pet ownership so stay tuned! I’ll be sharing some of the videos later in the summer after they are released.

Do you have pets? What kinds? How do your pets make you smile and add to your life?

This post is sponsored by the Pets Add Life campaign and the American Pet Products Association. I am being compensated for helping spread the word about the benefits and joys of pet ownership.

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  • Joyhart

    I agree. Life is much better with pets. And your rats are lively and lovely!

  • Laura

    Love the video Mary!

    • Thanks, Laura! Glad you enjoyed it.

      Amy is 100% trouble, but she’s been a very fun rat to train and to just have around. I have another fun video of her jumping several feet from a chair to the couch that I’m planning to post within the next couple of days.



  • ButtonsAndMisty

    I agree that pets do bring a lot of joy to life, they can relieve stress, treat depression, and soften grief! people don’t know the real difference a pet can make until they have one! i have 2 rats and that are awesome pets i wish people didn’t just see them as creepy and knew how loving they can be. wild rats are often mean and disease but domesticated rats make the best pets! there silly, fun,loving, and easy to care for!

    • Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. 🙂

      Yes, I totally agree with you — I wish more folks did not think of pet rats as creepy and gross. 🙁
      That’s one reason why I blog about my rats — I want folks to see how rats are cute and fun and smart!

      And I totally agree too that pets can be a source of both happiness and healing. I’m actually reading a great book right now that deals a lot with this. (It’s called “A Dog Named Boo.”) Almost done, planning to post a review of the book on my blog next week. If you like dog stories, you would probably enjoy the book.