What you need to know

Types of Domestic Rats

Josie F. Turner
By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. Updated: July 20, 2017
Types of Domestic Rats

There are many types of domestic rats across the world. Contrary to popular belief, these animals are as intelligent and sociable as other rodents such as rabbits, hamsters or guinea pigs.

More and more people are deciding to adopt these animals because of the wide range of qualities they offer as a domestic pet - you shouldn't let yourself be swayed by the typical stereotype that goes with them.

This AnimalWised article will talk about the different types of domestic - or fancy - rats which can become great and loving pets for all kinds of owners.

You may also be interested in: Rats as Pets: Guidelines and Tips
  1. Domestic or fancy rat
  2. Manx rat
  3. Bald or hairless rats
  4. Dumbo rat
  5. Rex rat

Domestic or fancy rat

Also known as the common rat because it has not underwent any form of genetic mutation. This breed is recognizable because of its ears, which are just behind its eyes, on the top of its head. Its body is broad, slim and rounded, and its whiskers are smooth and very straight.

The domestic rat usually has a white, black or dark brown coat, and its tail is very long but thin at the same time.

Types of Domestic Rats - Domestic or fancy rat

Manx rat

Manx rats are easy to spot because they're born tailless, or with a very small stub tail. They are considerably smaller than common rats and, in comparison, their bodies are shorter and rounder.

Due to their missing tail, these rats are heavily reliant on their owners being especially attentive to them when at home. A rat's tail is used to regulate its body temperature and balance, and the Manx rat's lack of tail means that it's more prone to suffering all types of diseases.

Types of Domestic Rats - Manx rat

Bald or hairless rats

As its name suggests, this breed of rat is completely bald. However, it may have a thin layer of fur-like fluff all over its body. They have short and wavy whiskers, and their lack of hair means that they're very smooth to the touch.

Types of Domestic Rats - Bald or hairless rats

Dumbo rat

As you'd imagine, this rat was named after Dumbo because of its large and wide ears, similar to the famous elephant from the big screen. In contrast to the common domestic rat, the Dumbo rat's ears are lower down and its body is much stockier.

It has very short, fine fur and it can be found in a variety of colors; the most common of which are white, grey, light grey and light brown.

Types of Domestic Rats - Dumbo rat

Rex rat

The Rex rat is one of the largest domestic rats. They have lots of hair across their whole body, except for the abdomen. However, there is a another variety known as the Double Rex which is practically bald. Its whiskers are short and curly.

Types of Domestic Rats - Rex rat

Besides these types, domestic rats are also classified according to their coat type, color and possible markings. Markings also have particular names, such as "Berkshire" or "Irish". However, these are ways of describing them and not breeds.

If you found this useful you will enjoy, The kangaroo rat as a pet, Bathing a pet rat and My rat's hair is falling out.

If you want to read similar articles to Types of Domestic Rats, we recommend you visit our What you need to know category.

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Types of Domestic Rats