About FHR


    Hello,and Welcome to the online home of Farmhouse Rattery. This site has been provided to help others learn more about rats and their proper care, as well as provide some basic information about the rattery.  If you have any questions or would like to view more detailed health, pedigree, or other information, it can be provided upon request- Just ask!!!  We love to chat rats with other breeders and pet owners alike.  We can be contacted by phone call or text to 862 268 6130.  

        Farmhouse Rats or FHR (our rattery prefix) was officially born in spring of 2008, with the adoption of our foundation doe, PH Ilia of FHR. The first litter was born in August of 2008. I have been a pet rat owner since 1998, and have owned a variety of rats over my years sourced from pet shops, feeder bins, breeders, rescues, and rehome situations. In 2007, I adopted my first pedigreed pet rats from Paper Heart Rattery, in Hope NJ. I was blown away by the amazingly sweet and calm temperaments and shining good health of these rats, and they were a big part of what inspired me to start breeding rats myself. Meghan of PH was instrumental to FHR's start, providing me with quality, well pedigreed animals as foundation stock for the rattery.

    Around here, rats are bred for love and joy. A strong love for rats and other creatures, big and small, and a desire to spread that love to others. To bring joy to owners and rats alike. Certainly, a pet must be sweet to bring joy. Litters are raised here with tons of time, care and individual attention, in order to be sure that babies will be as loving and friendly as possible. Also, rats with only the most outgoing, relaxed, friendly, and gentle temperaments will be bred. The rattery was founded off the idea that temperament most certainly is genetic, and can be improved upon.  We have had many adopters tell us their FHR rats are the friendliest rats they have ever met!

    That pet should also live a happy, healthy life that is as long and stress free as possible. Owning rats for many years, from various sources, much pain was experienced as well as much joy. Breeding is done here with the intention of removing/reducing incidence of, the very common problems that many pet rats experience. This is done by making very careful breeding decisions, which are based off of which animals have the healthiest, friendliest, longest lived ancestors. Retired breeders are beloved pets and remain here for their whole lives.  When they pass away, our vet does necropsies on each of them to be sure of the cause of death and to gain as much knowledge as possible about our lines.

    I personally have a background in livestock breeding. I maintained and showed a herd of American Alpine dairy goats for over 10 years, prior to breeding rats. Breeding goats taught me the importance of proper nutrition, good husbandry, and careful selection in a breeding program. It has exposed me to the hard work, dedication, and emotional stress that comes with breeding any type of creature. It gave me experience on how to create a consistent line of beautiful animals. I am no longer breeding goats now, and I have decided to put all my available time, energy, and money into breeding the rats. I do not breed any other types of animals.

    FHR is now a family run rattery, and everyone in the home is involved in the care and socializing of the rats.  They are a huge part of our everyday life at home. Therefore, they are exposed to children, dogs, cats, and all kinds of situations, people, and other environments in order to help them be friendly, outgoing, and social. I use large, spacious, well decorated cages with lots of hammocks and homemade toys in order to provide the cleanest and most enriching environment possible. Prompt vet care is provided to any rat needing it. We also do serology testing as needed to maintain a healthy colony free of harmful diseases that could cause outbreaks among adopters rats at home. FHR is a closed rattery as well, in order to further be sure that no diseases are brought into the rattery, and that adopters know they are taking home a healthy animal free from infectious diseases. We practice strict quarantine procedures, and always take every possible precaution to prevent illness.

Rattery Goals

    The goal at FHR is to create pet rats that both live enjoyable lives, and are also highly enjoyable to their human owners. Healthy, social, long lived pets that adapt easily to new environments bring such delight to their owners and in turn, live happier lives themselves. Both the pet owner and the rats themselves are considered every step of the way. The most emphasis is put on breeding well tempered, healthy, longer lived pets. This is done by considering not only the chosen breeding animal, but all of its ancestors and relatives as well. There is also a strong secondary focus on correct type, color, and markings. 

    The reason WHY we choose to breed rats, despite all of the hard work, emotional stress, and financial burdens, is so that we, as well as other responsible pet owners, can enjoy wonderful pet rats. We breed for ourselves as well as for others. Now, that does not mean that we breed to fill a demand or that we allow outside opinions to control our breeding program! All it means is that we want to help others to be able to own these amazing, well bred critters! It takes huge amounts of knowledge, effort, expense, energy and dedication to have a breeding program. Not every person can or should do it! Some people are wonderful pet owners to their rats, but could not or do not want to take on their own breeding programs. We strongly believe these people deserve to still be able to adopt a well bred pet! If we bred only for ourselves, we would keep every single baby born and not deal with the public at all (which can sometimes be very time consuming and stressful!) However, we have a strong belief that pet animals should be bred in home situations, by caring, responsible people, and adopted out to screened, prepared applicants. Pet stores, BYBs, and the like, should NOT be the only options! We hope to lead by example and are happy to share our knowledge or mentor others, as the world really does need more caring, loving, responsible rat breeders!

Some of our goals, defined....

Healthy, Hardy, Robust
Rats should live in a state of physical, mental, and social well being.  Their lives should be free from illness and infirmity, as well as contagious diseases.
Friendly, Stable, Outgoing
Rats should be friendly, not fearful, adaptable, flexible and forgiving.  Rats should never, ever bite.  Rats should also be easy to handle, trusting, curious, alert and tolerant.  Rats must also co-exist peacefully with their cagemates.
Longer Lived
 Rats from FHR generally live 2.5-3 years.  Longer lifespan is an important long term goal.  Steps to attain this include registering and tracking the health and longevity of all animals born here, breeding animals with the longest lived ancestors, and using long lived males for breeding purposes whenever possible.
 Proper Type
 Type is another word for the conformation of an animal.  Proper conformation not only makes an animal more attractive, but a well balanced and structured animal also contributes to good health, especially as the animal ages.
Correct Markings
 "Markings" generally refers to the white coloring (or lack thereof) existing on the rats coat.  In a Self line, the goal is to eliminate all markings.  In a marked line, there is a specific pattern of white markings
 Rich, Undiluted Colors
 Produce deep, rich, saturated color by colorbreeding each line.  That means that eventually the recessive traits are removed and only one color is produced in each breeding line. 

Breeding Practices

    The rats' best interest is always put first.  Litters will not be bred unless we have the proper time and resources to care for them.  We always breed a litter knowing we have the resources to keep the entire litter for life, if for some reason we had to.  All litters are carefully planned and are bred with the intention of improving upon current rattery stock.  Breeding rats exemplify the ideals we're working towards in our breeding plans.  We will only breed rats that are healthy, friendly, well built and good sized.  There are specific reasons why two rats are paired.  We look for traits and qualities in each parent that we believe will combine to complement each other and create resulting offspring that are better animals, overall, than their parents.