ello! asked in PetsRodents · 8 years ago

Difference between feeder rats and pet rats?

I know pet Rats are suppose to be bred better and have better health but is there really that big of a difference. Feeder rats are bred in mass quantities but so are rats sold at stores like petsmart and petco. Is there really a difference between the two or is it just an excuse to add a higher price?

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  • 8 years ago
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    Quite simply, pet rats are (or rather "should be") bred for better health, temperament, longevity, colours, hair types and ear types.

    Feeder rats are bred just for the sake of getting more rats; they are likely more prone to health and behavioural problems than well bred pets.

    Source(s): Rat & snake owner
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  • 4 years ago

    There is not a difference in personality or them making a good pet. I have one rat from a breeder and one feeder rat. Feeder rats do have health problems. My rat has respitory disease and since feeder rats are breed all the time because they are just used for food they are more likely to get tumors and cancer. Rats that are breed right are only supposed to be breed once a year to help avoid health problems. But honestly you should save a feeder rat if you want because my feeder rat makes a great pet even though later down the road she will probably get a tumor (pet rats can also get tumors) If you are getting your rat at petco or petsmart they might as well be feeder rats anyways because they are breed so often. If you do save the rat, make sure you save 2 because rats are very sociable and become depressed without another rat.

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  • 8 years ago

    From a pet store there is no difference except for maybe looks. It has nothing to do with how well they were bred or anything. All rats sold at pet stores come from mills.

    If your talking about rats from a responsible, ethical breeder they will be healthier, better bred etc while feeders are usually not taken care of as well, not as much/no thought goes into genetics etc.

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  • 8 years ago

    you know when you see that feeder rats are older? well if you see a older male in a bag with more older males he would of been used to breed for more feeder rats.. but as they get older the more infertile they get not to mention he could of had illnesses and all sorts females in the big frozen bags with other females would of been the breeders but because they will hit menopause at 18 months there no good no more or they too would have illnesses like many people have said on here the difference is there behavior and they are prone to more serious illnesses :( i feel sorry for those poor rats but then i feel sorry for those snakes..

    Source(s): I don't have feeder rats but i do have 21 pet rats :) my rat had babies today i think shes had about 12 of them :)
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  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    Feeder rats, or pet rats, I don't care. I know there are alot of rat lovers and kids who love their pet rats & if they have to get rid of them are hoping their dear beloved rats will go to new beloved homes.

    Did you know that because the big chain stores like petco no longer sell rats that many otherwise honest people are deceiving rat lovers just to make sure their beloved snakes are being fed?

    Do you understand that these aren't the pitbull fighters out to use the pitbulls for the sake of vain human amusement and these are'nt psychopaths who are just out to enjoy the pain & suffering of small animals. Honest people are seeking honest food for their beloved pets just like anyone else who loves their pet. Furry, scaly, otherwise.

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  • 8 years ago

    No besides the chance of them being a little more prone to getting sick but if you are thinking of getting a feeder rat instead i would do it your saving a little critters life

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  • 8 years ago

    sometimes health, because they might not be as healthy. but if you can choose it , you should be able to see if is a healthy rat, the other is many feeders are not handles much, so it might be not so social with you. but you find a nice feeder rat that doesn't bite, get it, because they are pretty much the same

    Source(s): ratownwer
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  • Anonymous
    8 years ago

    The difference is completely artificial and designed to make pet store owners money.

    Almost without exception, most rats sold in the above mentioned pet stores come from mass breeding rat mills. They breed for looks or quantity, and only for money. Temperament is not bred for, nor is health. Even with the best and most ethical of mill breeders, there will be problems. Their stock is not socialized or kept in healthy, low stress conditions. Nor is there any quarantine to prevent spread of illness between rats. Their females are over bred, and often bred too young to produce healthy, socialized rats.

    When they create a few litters of rats, they look them over, separate the prettier ones into one cage and the plain looking ones in another cage. This may occur with the mill breeder, or it may occur in the pet store once the rats have been shipped to them. The prettier ones are sold for a higher price and kept in cleaner cages in view of the public. The plainer rats, often from the same litter as the pretty/flashy colored ones, are thrown into a bin and sold cheaply as snake food.

    Because of the high stress and overcrowded conditions, the feeder rats tend to be more terrified, and traumatized-the stress of which means they are open to illness- and may be dirtier or suffer more injuries.

    However, pretty rats sold as pets may suffer just as much stress which also leads to sickness. They have certainly been exposed to the same sicknesses as the so called feeder rats.

    They may label the pet sale 'pretty' rats as 'fancy'. This is misleading. The name fancy has nothing to do with how special one rat is over another. All domesticated rats be they feeder rats or pet rats are Fancy Rats. The word fancy refers to the fact that domesticated rats were bred for Rat Fanciers, or rats of the Rat Fancy.

    Ethical hobby breeders will breed for health and temperament first, and looks next. They will produce few litters and track the health and temperament history of all of their rats. They will socialize their babies from birth. They will never sell their babies to pet stores, or to reptile owners. With ethical breeders, there will never be a difference in price between a 'pretty' rat and a 'plain' rat, as they both make good pets.

    So, in a nut shell, if you take the time to test the temperament before you buy, and look for healthy looking rats, it doesn't matter if you pay 15.00 for a fancy dumbo, or 2.00 for a feeder rat. They are generally from the genetic line, and with work and patience will offer a similar pet experiences.

    Better yet, look for ethical hobby breeders (not back yard breeders) who will support you throughout your entire pet ownership experience and stand by their babies. Best yet, look for opportunities to adopt pets through places like pet finder, or rat rescues if it's possible (not always possible) since they don't put money in the pockets of mill breeders or the pet stores who support them. :)

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