That's just wrong. Why would you give your rats back to pet stores ever? That's horribly sick to me.
Some pet stores raise their own rats but are obliged to offer them to snake owners as well. Realizing that snakes need to eat too... These rats typically aren't given the extra handling care.
And the rats always look happy, playful, and healthy. I know pet store rats aren't the best, but would anyone else agree that this place does at least semi-decent job with their rats?
Pet Rats - Paws and Claws Pet Store
Rats at the pet store - YouTube
anita1216: I got my first two rats from a pet store. Buster never did quite warm up to humans, but he never bit me. He just wasnt fond of being touched. He was close to a year old when I got him and lived to just past his 3rd birthday (guesstimated, I had him for over two years). Henry was never happy being held, but he was sweet and liked to be petted. I think he learned to enjoy the sound of my voice because he always came over to listen to me talk. He didnt live quite as long as Buster, but he never had any major health problems. They were both well loved, just not sterling examples of temperment.
My two new boys are from a breeder. The difference in temperment and behavior is just WOW. Both Fergus and Wembley live to be picked up and cuddled, they hand out kisses and run to the cage door whenever they see my daughter or I. They brux like mad when we pet them and sit happily on a shoulder for the longest.
I guess the point here is that pet store rats can quite likely be wondeful pets, many of them are. Its just better to get a rescue or a rattie from a breeder. Although if the pet store is your only option, by all means get your rattie a brother. He will be much happier and healthier with a companion. MirandaRat: All but one of my nine rats have been from a pet store. ALL of them have been excellent pets. Two were more timid (but still sweet girls), the other 6 were and are the most cuddly, sweet little beggars ever. I don't regret getting them from a pet store. The one I didn't get from a pet store was a rescue. He was already a big guy. Sadly, he never warmed up to us. He had just not been given a very good life.
I do understand all the reasons not to buy from pet stores. Three of the eight pet store rats ended up with sicknesses that took their lives. But I still don't regret it. (i've also heard of rats dying mysteriously or of bad sicknesses from good breeders) I feel like I gave them a chance at a happy life that they otherwise probably wouldn't have been given. And they gave me a lot of happiness too.
Right now pet stores are my only options. And I just can't go without rats. :) Topaz: All 5 of my gals are pet stores rats. I've had 3 in the past, 1 died of respitory problems, the other 2 of tumors. The ones I have now are pretty healthy, but my "mock" hairless has a on and off respitory problem. My most affectionate rat was from a pet store that breeds them specifically for breeders, and she was the scaredest little rat I had seen when I brought her home (she was 6 weeks.) Her sister is still scared of me, but handleable. I've only been bitten by pet stores rats twice, and that was my first rat (also a feeder) and the day I was looking for my first rat I stuck my hand in a tank of feeders and one ran right up and took a chunk out of my finger. My first encounter with a rat I got bitten! :doh: I agree with pet store rats being a gamble, you can win (getting a healthy, lovable rat) or lose (getting a not so healthy and/or aggressive/frightened rat) "By buying that rat you are letting another rat take its place". Where do they think these rats come from? It sure isn't a happy place. Honestly, the feeder bin at a pet store is not a downgrade from a breeding rack (which is what mills keep their rats in).