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I had rats as pets for about 10 years, even into our marriage! They are very entertaining & loveable, just make sure that the kids play gently with them every day so that they stay tame. She's right about the females being more active, so you've made a good choice there (aesthetics aside) - males have a more 'lap dog' attitude. They live about 3 years or so, and all of mine inevitably died of a tumour, so be prepared. Good luck!

HILARIOUS :-) I loved this. Btw..a good friend of mine has a rat called Eva, a gorgeous little female and she's mega docile and awesome to play with. But we had boy rats growing up and they were pretty chilled too..so i reckon either would be great for Adam and Kate. They're really going to love them. Well done for all your effort!!!

My roommate and I had pet hamsters in college. Male hamsters. Very male. And there is something we discovered with our male hamsters that I suspect will transfer to male rats. If you blow on their rather large balls, they suck up into their body and disappear. Well, temporarily anyway. It is a highly amusing trick for college students.

I laughed so hard while reading this, thank you!!

Thank you for the giant guffaw first thing in the morning! :D

We have had two days of epic meltdowns with our 4 1/2 year old son, the most recent of which was just prior to me reading this entry. I laughed so hard out loud that my husband had to know what I was reading so I read it aloud to him and he laughed out loud, too.

Thank you.

Oh, and I said aloud, "Wow, they're big" and had to editorialize that I was referring to the rats themselves and not their balls. Gosh!

That is hysterical! Certainly a keeper story for the kids 21st, or your 50th.

Thank you so much for writing this. Made my morning.

Thanks for a great chuckle!

I had rats as a teenager, rats are excellent pets, curious and intelligent. Good that you waited until the kids were 7, hopefully they'll be gentle enough with them.

Not sure that I agree with the rat lady that males are better, we found females to be more sociable (I was in the biology club, known as the "rat club", where we bred and looked after the school's rat population that were used for animal-training experiments that they did back then). Males get greasy fur and the whole rat is larger, the balls are pretty large but if you don't have a female rat sitting beside him for comparison, you might not notice, it just makes for a longer and more tapered rat really. I guess they probably are quieter though, I hadn't thought about it. Good luck with them, post photos.

Very funny my friend. And might I add, you are very brave to be getting more animals - ESP rats! Aarrggghhhhh I would not be nearly as brave as you in this new pet acquisition process but Good Luck! Can't wait to hear their names as christened by Kate and Adam and the many adventures they will no doubt have.
P.s. Bet Max will want his own one too soon!

OMG I am DEATHLY AFRAID of rats. I could barely read this post but I am so glad I did because it made me laugh so much. I had to jump through similar hoops to get our dog 7 years ago. I think I still haven't read the 20 attachments the breeder sent!

I can't remember the last time that I laughed so hard. Including real tears.

The things you do for your children! Lucky children they are. And lucky rats of course, balls and all.

Hilarious! Even worse is that when I first read that you were getting rats, my thought was "oh please not males! Those balls are just too much!" Am ashamed of myself now, and bow my head to your greater ball-tolerance.

Stunning post! Had a good laugh... needed it! I will giggle about this ALL DAY!

Rat balls are very visible and very, very big. The photo you have does not do them justice! Be prepared for some interesting conversations!

This made my day. Thank you.

Funniest thing I've read in weeks! Thanks for the lift!

I neutered my male rat. Ball problem solved.

This is a stitch, kudos to you for agreeing to rats. For the record, when I was about age 10 my mum allowed me to get a mated pair of gerbils + their latest litter of offspring, hand-me-downs from a classmate. The plan was to select 1 offspring and its same-sex parent, keep those, and get rid of the rest (er, find them homes, nothing unkind). The very first night we had them, mama gerbil had another litter ... so we removed the older litter, kept 3 girls (fortunately correctly sexed) and allowed mama and papa to raise the new litter, figuring we'd separate them once those were grown. Suffice it to say the creatures were so utterly charming (really) that they were allowed to stay paired and mated, forever -- we would hand the offspring off to the local (decent) pet shop (some probably became snake food, but snakes gotta eat...), as they'd have a new litter monthly. This went on for several years before their fertility ran out, and then they senesced quietly together until one (mama first, I think) and then the other died. They were quite lovely, and a few ill-fated escapees notwithstanding, we generally did quite well with the babies. But be glad you are getting same-sex rats from a qualified breeder, because really, in retrospect, though now a fond memory of my childhood, this was a nutty thing for my poor mum to need to put up with and manage!

Hooooooo. Rat Balls. Bwahahahahahahaaaaa!

My best friend had a number of rats. I never noticed the balls on the males, so maybe they were neutered as one of the commenters suggested? (Might be a good option, if they really get that big.) Although the males are larger and really look like rats when grown (as opposed to females which still are kinda oversize-mouse cute), I liked the personalities of all her male rats better. So probably a good choice. Except for not being the most visually appealing (which is really just the naked tail, because with a long bushy tail they would look like squirrels), they are my favorite rodent pet.

LOL I love it!!! Hi. I've been reading through your site for the past 20 minutes and love everything about it!! I'm fairly new to the blog world, but if you have a minute and want to check it out, I'd appreciate it. But I do love your site and will definitely be back to finish my reading! :)


This is why I LOVE your blog...so freakin funny!

Hi my name is Missy and I am a loser. Because I suspect that I am secretly less interesting / kind / nice than most others, I spend my time trawling the internet looking for places to spew my unhappiness.

Instead of doing good for others (thereby upping the chances that the same might be done for me), I read blogs that upset me and leave comments that will hurt others. I make personal attacks on people I don't know. This makes me feel better about myself.

I wish I was a nicer person, envy is a terrible thing to have to live with.

I would def go with males if you arent a huge rat fan, the rat lady is right, they're much calmer. We had 10 girls and 4 boys at one point (kept totally seperate!) and the boys were much more cuddly and slow. The girls were awesome and fun, but very hard to catch in case of escape!

Sooo funny! And I'm with you on the animals thing. Not an animal person, but I don't hate them, although my friends seem to think I do. *Sigh*

Oh my goodness... Times have changed! Back when I had them as a kid it was as easy as going into the shop and picking up however many you wanted.

So what happened to all the dogs you've mentioned in the past?

I also agree that having pets (ha! I just typed pest by mistake. hmmm) is good for kids. But I had 2 dogs when my twins were born and after 8 months I couldn't keep up with all four's food and poop. So I sold the babies on the black market and...

Ok no. I gave the dogs to my hair dresser and her grandmother, who share a duplex home with a pool (where one of the dogs loves to swim apparently).

Rats as pets. I don't get it. The diseases they spread alone (Hantavirus for one) would stop me... not to mention this rat-bite disease that's apparently common. Yikes.

You are a brave woman. Keep us posted. :o)

rats are amazing pets, my 25 year old vet daughter had two pairs as a kid, and loved them so much - i am sure they helped feed her passion for becoming a vet. she had to have the last two put down when one got cancer - hardest day of her life handing the over to be euthanased. my fondest memory is of a tricolour male rat named Chocolate Eclair (who was the mate of a HUGE white male rat with balls the size of uranus) nestling up to our tricolour cat named Banana Split, while we all watched tv. i had to overcome my aversion for them, but learned to like them very much. good luck xox

Bwahahahaha! This is very funny, because I once got myself a rat... or at least my ex got the rat, and I tried my best to live with it. It was a white rat, and we named him Billy, but we soon realised that he had absolutely GINORMOUS balls!! We called the pet shop in consternation, thinking something must be seriously wrong with poor old Billy... ball cancer? But no, the nice lady on the other side of the phone assured us that this breed of rat (white with brown patches) actually have to grow into their balls, just like kids have to grow into their adult teeth. But, I mean this rat was really, really well endowed. Those balls would actually drag behind him as he walked around. Sometimes they would trip him up. I kid you not...

Eventually poor old Billy grew into his balls, as promised by the nice lady at the pet shop, but he never grew out of his nickname, which stuck with him until the neighbour's cat finally hunted him down and had him for lunch. RIP, Billy Thunderballs, you were a great rat. Even if you did piddle all over everything.

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