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Small Pet (Rattus Norvegicus)

Experience Level: Beginner

Nutrition and Maintenance

Nutrition & Maintenance
• Rats are herbivores and the largest portion of the diet should be pelleted food.

• Seeds like millet and sunflower can be added to pellets but are higher in fat than pellets. For optimum nutrition, seeds should be an additive or treat, not the primary food.

• Food should always be placed in a bowl and not directly on the bedding to avoid accidental ingestion of the bedding.

• Fresh fruits and vegetables should be removed after four hours to prevent spoilage.

• Mineral wheels should be provided in the habitat.

• Water must be available in the cage at all times.

• Food and water bowls/bottles should be cleaned once daily.

Dietary Options
  Examples Feeding Frequency
Prepared Diets* Pelleted diets Refresh food daily keeping the bowl approximately ¾ full.
Vegetables Dark, leafy greens (kale, collard, mustard, dandelion, escarole) and vegetables (zucchini, broccoli, squash,
shredded carrots)
Every other day; should
constitute 20% of diet.
Offer only enough to be
consumed in four hours.
Fruits Papaya, Banana, Melon Once weekly; should only constitute 5% of diet. Offer only enough to be
consumed in four hours.
* Pelleted diets are fortified with optimal levels of vitamins and
minerals like calcium and vitamin D3 for the health of your pet.
Pellet diets may also have additives to support digestive health.


Safety and Cleanliness
Use caution when handling pets as all pets may bite or scratch when stressed. Fancy Rats have
limited vision and rely on their keen senses of smell and hearing to perceive their world. Never lift your rat by the tail. Place your open hand on the floor and let your rat run onto it. Slowly raise your hand. Be sure to support and not to hold your rat too tightly. Supervise children around pets.
Pets may transmit disease to humans; be sure to wash your hands before and after handling your
pet or cleaning their home.