Saturday, January 18, 2014

Weekly Rat Facts: Losing A Pet

As you probably know by now, Bandit the little guy pictured above died earlier this month. He was almost 4 years old and that's pretty old for a rat. The average life span for a rat is 2-3 years. So we knew that his time was probably nearing but it doesn't make it any easier. 

No matter what type of pet you have, you have to think about what your going to do after a pet dies. What will you do with the body? Ect..

I have a credit card that I keep just for pet emergencies and thankfully, have only had to use it one time when I had to take my pet hamster in to be euthanized. Most of my animals have passed away at home but if you have a pet euthanized at a vet's office you can either have them cremated and have their ashes put in a small box or urn or you can bring them home and bury them yourself. That's what we usually do. I have rats and hamsters buried up in the mountains, at parks, in my apartment complex's yard and one little dwarf hamster is buried right in front of my apartment door.

When my mom's dog passed away a few years ago, I found a mobile pet service that came out the same day and picked her dog up, cremated him and brought him back in a little box. When my mom passed away I put the box in the coffin with her because I thought she would have wanted him with her.

When one of my rats passes away and they have cage mates, I let the cage mate sniff the body because I think rats are very smart animals and know when one of their cage mates is sick or is gone so I let them say goodbye. 

If you want to keep a little bit of your pet with you, there are lockets and jewelry that you can buy that hold little bits of ashes or hair from your pet that you can wear as a necklace or bracelet. I haven't personally done this but I can see how that would help keep your pets memories alive and feel closer to them.

I realize this isn't something you want to think about, but it is something that pet owner's should know.


  1. Yeah I've had many pass throughout my life, 5 dogs, 5 cats, a rabbit and a bunch of peasants, so have been through it a time or two.

  2. Yeah it's never easy.

  3. It really never is easy even when you know it's coming. We lost our 12 year old dog last year and for his size (140 pounds) we had him for many more years than expected.

    My mom and I have all of ours cremated these days. There are some companies you can contact that will actually turn the ashes into gem stones (human or pet) for rings/necklaces etc. I also found one that will make blown glass creations using the ashes. So far we just have them all together in their different urns/boxes.

  4. Anna- Some people like to cremate, I like to find a nice place in the earth and bury them. I didn't know about turning ashes into gemstones or blown glass, that's very interesting.

  5. When we had to put our dog down, the vet asked if we wanted to leave her there. I couldn't get over this. Obviously a lot of people don't care and just leave their pet at the vets for them to dispose of.
    We brought Scotty home and she's buried in our garden.

  6. Shelley- My vet did the same thing and we brought the hamsters and rats home to bury them. Some people just don't know what to do with their deceased pet or can't emotionally deal with it.


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