Rattie Rascals Rattery
Port Orchard, WA
Est. 1998
(360) 876-0236 day - (360) 874-9085 evening
Rattie@boardmanweb.com
Owned and operated by
LeAnn & Beth Boardman


Product Reviews
By Rattie Rascals Rattery
These are our observations, what we like and don't like

CAGES & Products

Our Rating & Notes:

Martin's Cages

***** Very nice cages at good prices.  Our pick for our colony cages.  Ample room for toys, hammocks, and rats! (We prefer the R690 powder coated cages but also have had the R695 and we use some of the smaller cages)
Super Pet Ferret Cage ***  Ok cage.  These cage is just too big for us.  Not a good cage for girl rats that like to chew.  It also has wide bar spacing so not good for young or smaller rats.  This was an ok cage for big boys...but not too many of them.  The boys tend to be messy at the top levels and can be hard to clean.
Quality Cages Wheels ***** 11" powder coated galvanized wheels.  Easy to clean and last a long time.

Bedding/Litter

Our Rating & Notes:

Alfalfa Pellets Yuck.  Poor odor control, not too absorbent.  This is ok for a temporary use when out of anything else.
Aspen *** Not bad.  Nice smell, soft and fairly absorbent but not top odor control.
CareFresh **    This product is too dusty, my allergies can't handle it.  Great absorbency, moderate odor control and soft.
Cell-u-sorb ***** Excellent absorbency & odor control, just not soft.  Pricey, can't find it cheap enough around here.
Eco-Bedding **** Great product for bedding.  This is a paper product that is dust free and absorbent.  Our rats like to play in it and carry it to their beds.  Since it is tightly crinkled, a little goes a long way in the cage.
Good Mews *** Moderate odor control, has a slight pine sent that is not overly pleasant but goes away fairly quickly.  Rats tail become gray when they get damp.  We have started using these most often as we can get a 30# bag for less than $5.
Healthy Pet Fiber Litter -dust free ***** EXCELLENT odor control and priced right.  Not dusty.  This is a litter, not a bedding.  We now use it exclusively in our rats litter boxes.  Note, this product absorbs very well, do not use it with moms and babies as it may cause ringtail due to excessive drying out of the skin.
NestPak by Eco-Bedding *** For rats this product is ok.  There are several types of "paks" that are intended for the animals to chew through and then use the bedding in their nests.  The object is to provide an environmental enhancement / activity.  The Beta-chip pak was liked the most by our rats and the odor control was fantastic.  They didn't really care for the Alpha-Dri I'm guessing the small squares of material were not comfortable on their feet.  The Bed O'Cob & Alpha-Dri/Cob blend, I pulled out of the cages as I had a rat sample the cob and began to choke.  I know there are many folks who use cob litter without problems but I didn't want to take the chance with a choking hazard as I've had a favorite rat die in my hands after such an event.
Pets Preference Soft **** Moderate odor control, this makes a better bedding then litter.  Soft gray paper, low dust.  Has a slight funky odor out of the bag.
Wheat pellets ** Some odor control breaks down far too fast from pellet form to dust.
Woodstove Pellets *** These are compressed sawdust made for high heat in a wood pellet stove.  Amazingly the absorb urine and hold the smell... they break down to sawdust so clean frequently.  Excellent odor control but can turn dusty if not changed quickly.  Spot cleaning may be necessary between cleanings.
Yesterday's News **** Great odor control.  No dust.  Rats tail may tend to gray if they get damp.

Room Odor & Dust Control

Our Rating & Notes:

Hepa or similar Filter ***** A must have for a rattery especially if you have allergies.  Helps to keep the dust down.

Cleaning & Disinfectant

Our Rating & Notes:

Nolvasan **** This is a product for disinfecting cages and anything that your rats will touch.  Kills many viruses.  Good for use at shows - tables, etc.
Pressure Washer ***** I don't know what we would do without one!  For about $100-150 a inexpensive pressure washer is wonderful for high-pressure spraying of cages.  A steam cleaner is even better but far too pricey.  Think of all the other things you can clean too!  Great for powder coated and galvanized cages.
Shop Vac ***** Another indispensable tool for cleaning cages.  If you look for one, find one that has a flexible narrow (1 1/2") hose compared to the large 3-4" hose diameter.
OxyClean *** Not bad for cleaning galvanized cages.  Will work off some of the built up deposits on the bars...better yet, buy powder coated cages.
Virkon S ***** Broad spectrum disinfectant that is effective against many microorganisms affecting animals, including viruses, gram positive and gram-negative bacteria, fungi (molds and yeasts), and Mycoplasma.   Will kill parvo-virus.  Great for use at shows and cage cleaning.

Treats / Chews

Our Rating & Notes:

Nylabones *****  Most any flavor will do.  Our rats like carrot, strawberry, banana and watermelon.  Hint - buy the 8" size carrot and they are just soft enough to break in half to last longer or split between cages.  I like to buy ours though Omaha Vaccine as the price is pretty good. 
Booda Velvets *** These are good bones but to expensive.  We've tried the cheese burger blimpies & the groovy peanut butter.  The cheese burger was a huge hit, easier to chew than the round cylinder of the groovy...but this doubles as a toy.  Haven't found these as cheap as the Nylabones yet.  
Greenies ***** A bit pricey but the rats love them.
Old Mother Hubbard's
mini dog bones
***** Nice healthy treats.  Our rats always look forward to these.
Dried Fruit **** This is a ok treat used in moderation.  The rats love dried mango, papaya, pineapple and banana.  I like to keep some around to dip into powder meds when an individual needs treatment.

Foods

Our Rating & Notes:

Mazuri Rodent Diet ***** Great product, our rats do eat them. 
Bob's Red Mill
5 grain rolled cereal
**  We have been mixing our own cereal grains to a similar ratio as this mix.  We'll continue to do so, this mix was too powdery.  
Rolled grain Mix ***** Our own mix.  2 parts Oatmeal, thick flakes; 1 part wheat flakes; 1 part barley flakes; 1 part triticale flakes;  .25 part pasta/soup mix (with no spices).
This mix is approx. 14% protein, 4% fat.  This is intended only as a supplement to a quality lab block or dry dog food such as Nutro Lite or Diamond Lite.

Other

Our Rating & Notes:

Pampered Chef Food Chopper ***** These are GREAT for chopping veggies for serving, especially if you mix them together or with rice, etc.  This chopper is quick to use on a cutting board and cleans up swiftly.
Shop / Painters Rags ***** For hammocks.  These can be purchased all most anyplace...Find the dye free ones sold as painters rags.  Hang them and just throw them away after they get tattered.
Microfiber Shop Towels ***** Great for cleaning cages.  I like buying a big bag of them from Costco and use them for many household chores including dish rags.

 

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