Teaching Rats English

It is probably no surprise that rats learn to recognize their own names. One day the four brothers were relaxing in their giant pink checked “beehive” (an abhorrent choice of rat decor – I admit), when I decided to test out the theory that they had learned their own names. I called Stripe first, and he emerged all bright-eyed and enthusiastic (probably thought there was food being offered), then one at a time I beckoned the others out of the beehive and each answered to his own name.

stripe ears

“I know there’s scrambled egg around here somewhere”

Learning names is one thing – but last week Shy-Shy learned the phrase “Do you want to play on the floor?” Every day their play-time begins on the table, as this is the easiest place to let them get used to us, but after a short time they get agitated and want to explore. As soon as I say “Do you want to play on the floor?” Shy-Shy belts over to me like a caffeine-induced whippet, and launches himself onto my person (he knows I will place him gently on to the floor).

pink pip

“Are you looking at me?”

I am convinced that the ratties also know the words “out to play”, “scrambled egg” and most definitely: “eggy custard”!

Rocky

“I’m lost”

My daughter is actively encouraging this penchant for human speech in the rats, and she is teaching them more useful words from the English language like “Happy Birthday Daddy”!

Shy Shy

“Mmm.. time for escape plan B”

Today my rats have been mostly eating mashed banana in milk and popcorn pieces.

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2 Responses to “Teaching Rats English”

  1. Your picture captions are always so adorable! My rats in their prime generally will jump down from a hight of about 120 cm. Or up, about 60 cm, for that matter.

    When they jump down I used to get worried the landing could hurt them, but they just go about their business like nothing happened!

  2. Yeah they are amazing. Mine wouldn’t jump off the table if they couldn’t judge the height though. Some are probably more daredevils than others!

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