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You can reprint any information (excluding photos and artwork) on this site as long as you give proper credit to the author of the article and to The Rat Fan Club. All the images on this website are the sole property of their creator and are protected by copy-right. You may not use any image from this website without specific written permission.



The Rat Fan Club is not registered as a non-profit organization so donations are not tax-deductible, but you are still welcome to send donations to help support the education of rat owners, the rescue of rats, and research into the best treatments for rat diseases. Thanks for your support!   If you would rather donate to a non-profit organization, you can donate to our sister organization, the Rat Assistance & Teaching Society (RATS) at  The goal of RATS is to educate pet care professionals about the proper care and treatment of pet rats.


The Rat Fan Club


Debbie Ducommun, the Ratlady, unexpectedly died on March 4, 2018. Her husband, Larry (with the help of many other people) will continue the work of Rat Fan Club and RATS in her memory. They love and cared for her, and Debbie's passion, merchandise, and information about pet rats will continue to be available.

Click here for RATS, our non-profit sister organization, the Rat Assistance & Teaching Society.

To raise funds for RATS for free, sign up here


For a brochure called Are Your Pet Rats All They Could Be? click here

The Rat Fan Club, founded in 1992, focuses on rats as companion animals. Our goal is to share our love of rats, promote them as companion animals, and spread information about their proper care.  Membership in The Rat Fan Club is free!  To join The Rat Fan Club just join our Facebook group.  Click on the “Online Forum” button at left. (For more on the history of the Rat Fan Club, click the Meet the Ratlady button at left.) Click here to see the TV shows that Debbie has appeared on.

Attention Pet Retailers and Veterinary Hospitals!  See the info at the bottom of the page.

You can save money on prescriptions at the website


You can now get major medical health insurance for your rats!  Their website is but you will need to call 888-899-4874 to get a quote on “exotic” animals.

Rat Care Info 

(You can also find info at


We highly recommend that you order Debbie’s Rat Health Care booklet. If it saves you just one visit to the vet, it will more than pay for itself. Order one today! Check out the info at Rat Books

Emergency Care

Rat First Aid  (including respiratory distress)

Problems with Birth, Nursing or Infants

Raising Orphan Rats

Poisonous Plants

Bloating & Megacolon

Finding & Catching a Lost Rat

Human Health Issues

Coping with Allergies to Rats

Rat-Bite Fever

Human Blister Skin Fungus  (Includes a photo)

Removing Wild Rats from your Home

General Rat Care

An Introduction to Pet Rats

A Rat Care Sheet

Cage Hygiene

Keeping your Rats Cool or Warm

Trimming Toenails

The Toxicity of Pine and Cedar and Safe Litter Products

Respiratory toxicity of cedar and pine wood

A List of Available Back Issues of the Rat Report

Understanding Grief when a Rat Dies

Do Rats Go to Heaven?

Other Info

Shipping Rats via Airline

How to Say “Rat” in Other Languages

How to Make a Rat Presentation


Introducing a New Rat

Trust Training for Frightened Rats

The Case Against Single Rats

Teaching Your Rat to Come When Called

Rat Behavior in Relation to Health



Chromium Extends Life Span

Nutritional Requirements of Rats


Cages & Toys

Building Plans for a Wire Cage

Building Plans for a Cement Mixing Tray Cage

Building Plans for Round Cages  


Rat Reproduction

Breeding Ethics

Choosing a Rat Breeder

A List of Rat Breeders

Rat Health Care

Breathing Problems

Respiratory & Heart Disease in Rats  with links to pages with photos

Treating Rats with a Nebulizer

Heart Measurement Statistics

Skin Problems

Skin Problems and Hair Loss (including scabs and parasites)


Abscesses and Cysts (Includes photos)


Tumors  (Includes photos, and links to other pages of photos)

Spaying Helps Prevent Tumors

Tamoxifen to Prevent and Treat Tumors

Nitroxoline: A Possible New Treatment for Cancer

References Showing Soybean Protein Helps to Prevent Mammary Tumors

A Successful Case Treating Cancer with CBC Salve

Other Problems

Head Tilt (inner ear infection) See article on Respiratory Disease above.

Weak Hind Legs & Paraplegia

Bloating and Megacolon

Overgrown Teeth  (Includes photos)

Seizures in Rats


Other Information

Surgery in Rats

Homeopathy for Surgery

Giving Medications: See article on Respiratory Disease above.

Taking Blood for a Blood Test

Standard Blood and Urinalysis Values


How to Do a Rat Autopsy  (Includes photos)


Vet Referral ListWestern U.S. & Other Countries

Vet Referral ListMidwest & Eastern U.S.

How to Find A Good Rat Vet

If you have a question that hasn’t been answered somewhere on this site or in the Rat Health Care booklet or book RATS, try the Rat Fan Club Facebook group.

You can also send your question to one of the following addresses (please note that these groups are not affiliated with The Rat Fan Club in any way):
for general questions:
for health questions:
Or you can ask general questions on our Online Forum. (See button above.)

If you have a rat medical emergency, check the section on First Aid above. If you still need help, try the Rat Fan Club Facebook group.

Attention Pet Retailers and Veterinary Hospitals! 

We have a brochure about rats designed to be given out at pet shops, veterinary hospitals, etc. The tri-fold brochure includes information on why rats make good pets, tips to help purchasers decide if rats are the right pets for them and what supplies and accessories need to be purchased when getting pet rats. It also includes information about The Rat Fan Club and publications written by the club’s founder, Debbie “The Rat Lady” Ducommun. The brochure includes Debbie’s phone number and website address which rat owners can contact for advice.

You can see and print out a pdf of the brochure here. Brochures will also be sent free to any retailer or hospital who requests them.  Please indicate if you would also like a sturdy plastic brochure holder featuring a bright yellow sticker of the club’s logo. A single brochure can also be requested for review. Call the club at (530) 899-0605 or send an email to to request brochures.

We also wholesale the Rat Health Care booklet, which is an inexpensive guide to rat medical care. Please contact us for more information about selling this booklet in your store or hospital!


The Rat Fan Club
857 Lindo Lane
Chico, CA 95973


Copyright 1999-2018