Rattie Shopping List!

1. You will need a big cage with enough space for the number of rats living in it. The cage should have bar spacing no greater than 1 inch by 1/2 inch for babies. Check out the rat cage calculator to see if your cage is big enough.

2. Rats love to hide. Rats love to sleep. If they can do both at the same time it is a win-win situation. I usually like to give my rats a combination of hammocks and boxes(like capri-sun boxes). I buy my hammocks here , but you can make them yourself! Just google homemade rat hammock( or ferret hammock) and you will find hundreds of great ideas. The general rule for rattie cage furniture is one piece per rat. Like if I had 3 rats in a cage I could use 2 hammocks and a box or 2 boxes and hammock. 

3. Bowls that can not be tipped. Heavy ceramic bowls work, so do bowls that lock on to the side of the cage

4. Water bottle. You will want to buy 2 water bottles, so you will also have a clean one, as water bottles should be cleaned daily. Most water bottles these days are machine washable. If you use a dishwasher, make sure you rinse the bottle 2-3 times before giving it to your rats. If you use soap and water, or bleach and water make sure you THOROUGHLY rinse the bottle. With plain soap at least 5-7 times and with bleach 10 is the minimum. For one rat I use an 8 ounce bottle, for 2 rats i use a 16 ounce bottle, and for 4 or more rats I use a 32 ounce bottle. 

5. Bedding/litter. I use aspen or carefresh as the bedding in the bottom of the cage. For the litter boxes I use unscented, non clumping, plain clay cat litter. You can also use yesterdays news or swheat scoop. Just make sure the litter is different than the bedding( like don't use aspen for both the litter box and the cage

6. Food! See the diet and housing page for more info.

7. Toys! rats love toys. Toliet paper tubes, bird toys, ropes, cat balls with bells( no catnip please). Be creative! Google rat toys for more ideas

8. Litter tray. Litter training your rats makes your life much easier. Females are easier to train than males, but that doesn't mean you can't train males. For the first couple of days, I usually just leave the litter tray in the cage and put  poops I see in the cage into the tray. Eventually your rats will get the idea.