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Rats Vs. Mice?

438 Views 5 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Matt Haslam
Ok guys! Why is it that I see rats with large litters, even from reputed rat breeders, and with mice we are urged to cull? Would it not be beneficial to cull rat litters down as well?
Just wondering!!! ;)
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I would think the babies would be healthier in general but in all honesty when I have bred rats I have not seen nearly the size difference in pups from culled litters vs non-culled litters as I have with mice, maybe that is why?
Having lost a doe to a too-large litter when I was too conflicted to cull, I have to advocate for culling rat litters. One small blue doe cannot handle a dozen very active and large babies. She simply cannot.
I bred rats in the past and it is not the 'done' thing to cull because the rat fancy is very pet orientated. People who cull are seen as cruel and are totally ostracised within the fancy. It's very different to the mouse fancy.

I cull mice mainly because I couldn't possibly find enough homes for them. No one wants mice and timewasters and collectors make up a good 95% of the enquiries I get, so I don't sell pet mice at all any more. I never had a problem finding new owners for the rats I bred as they are very popular pets. In addition, male rats are happy living in a big squishy group, whereas male mice are not. I had one cage for male rats, it was huge and had about 15 in it. Now, I need seperate cages for each breeding male mouse.

It helps to cull mice if you're showing in the under eight weeks classes because the remaining kittens are much bigger and stronger, but the adult size of mice is genetically determined - so providing you feed a good diet, the mice with 12 brothers and sisters will eventually catch up with the mice with only four siblings.
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Yea, I've never been against culling, and honestly if i bred rats and there were runts i would cull them. I see where the differences lie, but I think it's no more "cruel" to cull baby rats than to cull baby mice. I would imagine it would still be beneficial to limit litter size. hmmm.
I cull rat litters. i cull on sex, size and type. Mainly so it ensures i can sell them.
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