Have you wondered why some people keep rats as pets? Did you just see a wild rat scurry across your living room floor? Or are you just curious about rats in general? ServiceMarket has prepared a list of amazing facts on rats that will answer all your questions about these mammals.
The Michael Phelps of rodents
Rats are great swimmers. Some species can tread water for three days straight and even hold their breath for three minutes! This means that they can travel through the drainage system to get inside your house and you could find one swimming up through your toilet when you walk in one day.
With a super power
Their front teeth are very sharp and strong and grow up to 5 inches per year if left unmaintained. That is why they are such great chewers – they wear their front teeth down by constant gnawing. Rats can chew through glass, wood, brick, soft concrete, plastic, aluminium sheeting and even lead! A common sign of a rat infestation is holes of about 2 inches in food packaging. 2 inches might not seem like much space, but rats can squeeze through really tiny holes and are limited only by the size of their skull.
Rats can fall as far as 50 feet and land uninjured. So if you thought that the rat you chased out on your balcony took a fatal jump, it is likely that it is finding its way back to your home right now.
Rats, rats everywhere
Female rats are basically baby making machines since they can have about 15 litters per year. Since there are 6 to 20 pups in a litter, your unwanted guests can have around 200 offspring a year. And because rats can live up to 3 years and reach sexual maturity in three weeks, you should take care of the rat problem in your home before you have a swarm on your hands. It is said that there is a wild house rat out there for every human being on the planet!
They forage at night
They can eat just about anything since they are omnivores. They eat about 10% of their weight everyday and store additional food to eat later. Since they can’t see well and are color blind, you will mostly find rats scuttering about in your kitchen at night. They emerge at dusk and feed throughout the night.
They live in communities
Rats are social animals. They stick together in groups called packs and take care of their sick and injured. They like to groom each other and play. And when they play, rats are known to laugh. The sound isn’t similar to human laughter of course, but is more of a high pitched chirp. If a rat is alone, however, it is likely to get depressed and anxious.
Carriers of disease
Wild rats are known to carry disease causing pathogens to which humans and pets are susceptible. Some fatal diseases that rats can transmit to humans through their saliva include viral hemorrhagic fever, plague, Weil’s disease and Q fever. So if you don’t want a rat biting you while you sleep (something they are prone to do), set out a couple of rat traps or call a professional pest control company in Sharjah.
Yet smart little critters
Since they are highly intelligent, rats can be taught tricks. They are smarter than mice, gerbils, rabbits and guinea pigs. Pet rats can even learn to respond to their names. It isn’t recommended that you try training a wild rat though. They have excellent memories and an amazing sense of taste. This means that a rat won’t forget the navigational route to your house or the taste of rat poison that you laid out last year.
Now you know why some people keep them as pets, but no one would ever want to encounter a wild rat in their home or at their workplace. If you are worried about these pesky mammals moving in, read our article on how to rat-proof your home. If you saw a rat in your kitchen and want professionals to deal with the problem, get free quotes from reputable and reviewed pest control companies in Sharjah on ServiceMarket.