Feeding and keeping the rat at home
Home pets bring joy, laughter and childish smiles to the house. A house in which at least some living creature does not live, looks dull and lifeless. Thanks to our younger brothers, life becomes more cheerful and kind. Animals require care and attention - it is very important to know when choosing a pet. It should be understood that this is not a toy for a while, but a living being that has certain needs.
A rat is an intelligent and very cunning animal. It refers to rodents. In nature, there are about 64 types of rats. The structure of the body in these animals is very interesting, because the length of the tail is equal to the length of the body, and sometimes exceeds it. Most often, rats are born with a gray color, but you can find red, orange and yellow shades of color. Rats have very moving toes on their paws.
Such animals lead a terrestrial way of life. They can live in one group or in groups. As a refuge from predators and bad weather, they use burrows. These can be actually made "dwellings" or burrows of other animals. Rats are considered omnivores, but each species has its own preference: plant or animal food. Reproduction of animals occurs all year round.
Rats as pets
Many people choose rats as pets. In fact, this is nothing strange, because it's not about the dirty animals living in the basement houses. When you plant a rat, you should understand that it will have to be taken care of, since it is not too clean. Most often these animals are chosen precisely because they are relatively smart.
From the end of the 19th century, specially produced domestic rats began to appear. Often this is a species of gray rat. Such rodents are calm and balanced, their behavior is very different from the behavior of wild ancestors. Also, domestic rats are often bred as live food for residents of domestic zoos and terrariums.
Rat: Care and Content
Choosing a rat as a pet is to understand that this is a big responsibility. Choosing a pet, many mistakenly believe that a large animal requires a more thorough and long-term care than a small one. But this is not so. Caring for rats and small rodents can be more time consuming than caring for a watchdog. The content of the rat in the house has some characteristics that you need to know in order to be ready. It is undesirable to let the rat out for a free walk around the apartment, as it is a rodent. In other words, the animal will look for something that can be gnawed. As such an object can be chosen a leg of the sofa, a bed, a corner of a curbstone or cords. If damage to the furniture simply causes you some damage, then the cable overtight can even lead to a fire. The first rule of keeping rats at home says that she should walk under watchful supervision.
Rats also like to mark territory. The smell of their secretion is quite specific, so you have to get used to it. The content of decorative rats in any case will be accompanied by a certain aroma, so you should pay great attention to the daily cleaning of the cell.
The temperature regime for these animals is very important. They react very badly to drafts and direct sunlight. Be sure to remember this when choosing a place for the animal's cage. The most suitable temperature for a domestic rat is 18-21 ° C.
Comfortable content of the rat is impossible without an equipped cell. To begin with, it should be understood that a large cell will be convenient not only to the animal, but also to the owners. Small inconvenient containers are very inconvenient to clean. It should be remembered that cleaning should be everyday. It is much more convenient to wash a spacious area. In the cage, there must be an entertainment zone for the rat. There are various wheels, stairs, etc. All this can be purchased complete with a cage in a pet store or buy separately. For young rats, movement is very important, so the animal will be delighted with the large number of items on which you can run. More mature individuals do not need such an active pastime. For them, a cage with one running wheel is suitable, on which they will occasionally climb.
As a filler, it is best to use sawdust. It is important that they are not too small, because tiny particles of wood fall into the animal's eyes, nose and ears. This can cause a severe allergic reaction. You can also use paper. At the same time, it should be without inscriptions or drawings. It is not recommended to use cotton wool as a filler for a cell.
The conditions of the rats indicate that only one cleaning per week is sufficient. In such conditions, the animal will be cozy. Cleaning must be comprehensive. It is necessary to carry out complete disinfection in order to avoid the possibility of infecting the rat with various bacteria or fungus. As mentioned above, it is possible to carry out an everyday easy cleaning, which is necessary in order to minimize unpleasant odors from the life of the animal. Do not disinfect every day.
Nutrition of the animal
Decorative rats, whose care and content are already partially examined, have some peculiarities of nutrition. The animal constantly needs clean fresh water. To ensure that water does not spill into the cage, you need to buy a special drinking bowl. Water in it must be changed every day. Feed your pet with grain, fodder, vegetables, dandelion and plantain leaves, nuts and chicken bones. All this must be alternated, focusing on grain forage. Nuts are very useful for rats for grinding teeth, so their inclusion in the diet is mandatory. Meat in the diet of the rat can be added, but not often. Rats especially like the following fruits: apples, cherries, persimmons, apricots, strawberries, raspberries, bananas, grapes and peaches. It is very useful for animals to include in the diet of dried fruits. Adult individuals need two meals a day, the cubs need to be fed up to 4 times a day.
In the cage of the pet should be put a mineral stone, through which the rat can receive the necessary calcium. It is strictly forbidden to give animals salted, smoked, fried, fatty, spicy, cold foods. Also, you should refuse sweets, sausages, rolls, muffins, cabbage, legumes, raw potatoes, unripe or ripe fruits and vegetables, milk, cheese, leaves of ornamental plants, beets and almonds. It should be understood that this is not just a set of junk food. The use of such food by a rat can lead to serious health problems. Adhering to proper nutrition and active lifestyle, the pet will grow healthy and cheerful.
Reproduction of individuals
The content of the rat alone does not threaten the appearance of descendants. In this case, if a couple of individuals live in a cage, the appearance of offspring is possible. This is a very important issue, which is given little attention. These rodents reach sexual maturity in 5 weeks, so if several individuals live in a cage, they must be separated from each other. There is no specific breeding period, so babies can appear at any time.
Communication with an animal
The content of the rat is not limited to care and nutrition. It is very important to communicate with the animal, because the cage becomes actually a prison. In this case, the animal is deprived of any contact with nature, which significantly limits the rat. It is very important to let the pet out for a walk, pick it up and iron it. A small rat quickly gets used to the master. Also these animals are very fond of attention, so often play with them.
Since these are very intelligent animals, one should give them easy logical tasks. Many owners of rats are amazed at how affectionate and kind a small animal can be if treated with patience and tenderness.
The Dangers of Wild Rats
The rat, the content, the feeding of which was discussed above, can cause great trouble for mankind. However, this applies only to certain species of rodents. Synanthropic rats cause great damage to the economy by spoiling any goods. In addition, they can damage the power grid, which leads to fires. In the US, such cases are not uncommon. Some species of rats feed on crops in huge fields, damaging large-scale agriculture. Finding a place rich in food, rats actively reproduce, which leads only to the deterioration of the overall situation. To date, there are many ways to control pests.
Street rats are very dangerous for humans. They are carriers of a variety of zoonotic and anthropozoonotic infections. Rats carry the causative agents of plague, rabies, typhus and other serious diseases.
To summarize, it should be said that the domestic rat, the care and maintenance of which has been examined in detail, needs more attention and affection, like any other pet.