So far we are LOVING our rats. Growing up I had numerous hamsters and even a guinea pig. Our rats BY FAR surpass our expectations for a small pet and they are SO much more fun, personable and entertaining than a hamster or guinea pig.
Porter especially is loving them. He calls himself "Grandpa" to them HAHA! I've caught him numerous times saying "Come on little guy, come to grandpa." HAHAHA! It cracks me up. He calls Atticus "Fatticus" because he's the largest (males are larger than females) and Polly (who he named) "Pollister". He says Polly is his favorite (because he named her).
Whenever we go near their cage and they are awake, the rats are scrambling to come near us and climbing all around to get our attention. We just recently started letting them out of their cage to roam/play. I'd read online that most rats need some "exploration" time and we decided the playroom was probably our best place to keep them contained. Originally I thought they'd for sure jet right out of the cage and run from us.... but I've found exactly the opposite. We put their cage on the floor and opened the doors. They were all extremely curious to get to the door and climbed outside onto the top of their cage but they were very very cautious about exploring the ground and surrounding room. They would scamper over to us and climb into our laps and then go back to their cage. They seem to view their cage and us as their "safe places". Today Atticus was getting a little more adventurous. He roamed around more and explored near the bookshelf but for the most part he stayed near me, Porter or his cage. Polly has surprised us with a bit of a personality shift. Originally she was the shy one and Cricket was the bouncy, active, curious one. Cricket still is a little more active than tiny Polly but Polly has become a little braver than Cricket as far as exploring outside the cage.
I can't say enough about rats as pets. They are entertaining us so much! Porter spent about an hour in the playroom with them this afternoon, just playing with them and letting them climb around their cage. They really do have little personalities and are very interactive with you. They want to be near you and exploring and climbing on you, totally opposite of hamsters which seem to want nothing to do with humans. If you can get past their kinda creepy tail, they really are so adorable!
Porter and Polly:
Atticus getting brave.
Porter and Polly
Atticus checking out the puppets
Atticus giving Porter a kiss
Atticus checking out Porter. Polly is next to them.