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Pet Rats/change in behavior


Hello. I have a precious rat named Peach. Usually she is calm and loving. Today, she is running around her cage like crazy and even bit my fiances finger really hard. Is there anything to be concerned about?

Hi Wendy,
As she is running around, does she seem to know where she is going and what she is doing? Does she seem frantic?  Is she running into walls?  One possible cause is a seizure, which would be the most likely reason why she bit you. Usually after a seizure, they will be very tired. Other possible causes are extreme fear or respiratory distress (although then she probably wouldn't have bitten you.) Sometimes a rat will have a fright, although you may never figure out what scared them, and it can take them a couple days to get over it.

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Debbie Ducommun


I can answer any questions about pet rats, but you will probably be able find answers to simple questions more quickly on my website at If you have a life-threatening emergency you can try calling me at 530-899-0605. I am not usually on the computer on the weekend.


I have been "The Rat Lady" since 1985 and am recognized as one of the world's experts on pet rats. I have 3 published books and already answer lots of questions about rats daily.

President of Rat Assistance & Teaching Society

I am a monthly columnist for Pet Business magazine, and my writing has appeared in other magazines. I have 3 published books.

BA in Animal Behavior

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