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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking into getting a pair of rats and I've been doing some research and a lot of the fair-priced cages all seem to not be just right. Even really expensive ones seem to have bad reviews because of small things, like wire floors, not enough levels, a level layout that just barely prevents a hammock, etc. I've been looking at PetSmart and PetCo's cages because they're the local companies.

So anyways I was thinking of converting a dog crate that I don't use into a rat cage. That way, it's spacious, the base won't cost me like a cage will, and I have more freedom to design it exactly perfect for rats, by putting in the levels, toys, hammocks, and other accessories exactly how I want, and I can pick the perfect ones. Looking at some of the higher brand rat cages, I think the holes of the crate (it's a basic black dog crate/cage) shouldn't be big enough for a rat to get through. In some research, it seems noone has done it, but there's advice on how to convert a crate, and if the holes are too large I can get wire mesh and wire tie them to the edges of the crate on all the sides, or I could get some spare chicken wire or similar material, but does anyone know anything about converting and would you need to add extra wire over the holes?

Also, what is the best pair of genders to get first? It seems like two girls would be best, but I'm not sure. And is there a significant difference between dumbo and fancy rats, and which do you have/prefer? Also, do you have any other tips about rats, and tips for rat proofing an area? Do you have a playpen for them?

I've been doing research on rats, but I also want to hear straight from those with rat experience because I know this forum has some great, experienced rat owners.
 

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Rhys, that looks like a nice cage. Is it very roomy, and escape-proof with the bar width? And I didn't realize it was that easy to litter train them!

Danakscully, wow those cages are really filled! Do they like a lot of toys? I knew they mostly liked hammocks but I didn't realize they like that many in their cages, i thought they just needed one for each as a bed. And is it okay to give them empty soda boxes, or will they get sick from chewing the cardboard if you don't watch them?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rags. View Post

I don't know anything about the conversion (sorry) but two or three girlies are best! Also, where are you getting yours from & what will you call them?
I don't know yet where I will get them. When I had piggies I got them from PetSmart and they lived to full life spam and never had problems, but I've heard that PetSmart small animals aren't like the cats and dogs because they aren't from shelters and are more like from rat versions of puppy mills, so I'll probably cross my fingers that the local animal shelter takes rats and gets some soon or I'll check pennysavers or something for someone looking to rehome (I got my dog that way and that seems to be a great way because previous owners can tell me about the pets and their needs and everything). I will name them Disney names, so something like Minnie, Suzy or Perla (from the Cinderella mice), or Desiree (the name of Remy's mother in Ratatouille, who isn't shown in the movie but is prominent in concept artwork and story drafts) for females or Mickey, Mortimer, Gus or Jaq (Cinderella), or Remy or Emile (Ratatouille) for boys.
 
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