Rats like a constant temperature – 21 degrees is ideal. Excessive cold or heat can cause or exacerbate respiratory problems
Keep their cage away from draughts and direct sunlight. If their cage is on the floor, raise it up from the floor
Put draught excluders on the bottom of the door of the room they are in
If their cage is near a window, watch out for draughts coming through and move the cage if necessary
In the winter, central heating can dry out a rats lungs exacerbating respiratory problems – put a bowl of water in the room near to their cage to humidify the room or buy one of those containers that you can hang over the radiator and keep topped up with water
In cold room, put a towel over half the cage at night time to keep your ratty warm
In the Summer, fans and dry air can dry out a rats lungs exacerbating respiratory problems – put a bowl of water in the room near to their cage to humidify the room or buy one of those containers that you can hang over the radiator and keep topped up with water
Wash hammocks and beds at least once a week. (Keep tow sets so that your rat always has a clean, dry bed). Urine soaked beds release ammonia which can cause or exacerbate respiratory problems
Do not spray air fresheners in the room where the ratty is kept, nor smoke or use the plug in air fresheners. These can cause or exacerbate respiratory problems. If you want to freshen up the room, buy a product called Tap-a-drop which is animal friendly.
Always give your rat a ‘hidey-hole’ in his cage when he can sleep or retreat to when he wants a bit of privacy. Fill this with clean fresh bedding every day such as ‘Safebed’ made by Petlife international. Or use unbleached, white kitchen towel. Remember to change it every day
Clean their cage out as often as it needs it. If it starts to smell, you have left it too long. Don’t forget to clean the bars as well as the base as these can get dirty
Do not use sawdust or wood chip to line the cage as this can cause or exacerbate respiratory problems. Use cardboard bedding such as EcoPetbed or Finacard or paper based cat litter such as Biocatolet
If your vet gives you medicine for your rat, always make sure that you finish the course.