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Ferrets vs Rats – What Is The Best Pet For You!

As the popularity of both ferrets and rats continues to increase we have noticed more and more people reaching out and looking for advice on what one of these two great small pets they should add to their home.

Both really are great options and both have had their reputation tarnished by the media in the past but thankfully, due to cute clips of both animals going viral on social media, their reputation is starting to change.

Now, we would never recommend that you add a pet to your home simply because you saw a video on social media of them acting cute.

You have to realize that those viral videos or rats or ferrets playing show a tiny snapshot of their day and the majority of the time, they will be doing regular activities with both animals tending to sleep large amounts too.

Still, we see so many people reaching out to ask questions each month based on if they should get a pet rat or if they should get a pet ferret that we have decided to publish our own little ferret vs rat comparison article.

Our hope is that we will be able to help as many of our readers better understand the advantages and disadvantages of both animals and help you make a more informed decision for the pet that you want moving forward.

The Advantage Of A Pet Rat!

Pet rats are one of the fastest-growing pet types in North America with their popularity as pets seeing almost fifty percent growth per year for the last five years.

This is largely due to the efforts of a number of social media influencers in the per space who have put a huge amount of work in to convince the wider mainstream population that domesticated rats are cute, clean animals that make great pets.

The majority of rats are very easy to keep and will do well as a pet for anyone with a busy lifestyle that is unable to commit to a dog.

Rats really do require minimal attention but if the rat will be alone for the majority of the day then we would highly recommend that you get multiple rats so they are able to keep each other company.

When it comes to feeding your pet rat, they will eat almost anything due to being omnivores and having a very wide spread diet.

Our article going over 23 unique rat treats shows just how versatile the diet of a rat is and although the main staple of their diet should be a high-quality, balanced rat food you are able to supplement their diet with a wide range of common household foods that most people will have in their home.

The Advantages Of A Pet Ferrit!

The reputation of pet ferrets as vicious animals that smell bad has changed drastically over the last twenty years and each week there is a new viral video of ferrets playing, hopping around, and dooking showing the world that they are very cute.

This has resulted in a massive spike in the popularity of ferrets recently and with the long coat angola ferrets going viral all the time on Instagram, we only expect their popularity to increase.

Ferrets are very loving and will form a strong bond with their owner with most people describing them as a great mix between the loving attention-seeking dog and the strong, independent cat.

This coupled with the fact that ferrets will sleep for the majority of the day make them great pets for anyone who works long hours and is unable to commit to the time requirements of having a pet dog.

Unlike rats, ferrets are obligate carnivores meaning that they have a similar diet to cats that is based around meat.

We would always recommend that you use a high quality ferret food as the main meal of your ferrets as although cat food can work, their protein to fat ratios are not ideal for ferrets.

When it comes to snacks, they will eat pretty much anything that is meat or fish based so think of them as a pet that is permanently on the keto diet.

Ferrets Vs Rats As Pets!

Ferrets and rats really do make great pets and both can equally make a great addition to a home.

Ferrets do tend to be a little more cuddly and loving but they also need more maintenance and a strict diet.

Rats can do very well without getting much attention from you and have a much wider range of suitable foods making them slightly easier to care for.

This can help make your decision for you as if you work long hours and you want something to play with and cuddle you when you get home then a pet ferret really is an excellent option that will suit you well.

They are very loving and will play with you and cuddle you but they do tend to randomly go a little crazy and just hop around the house while they burn off some energy and this “war dance” is not a sign of aggression, it is usually just the ferret being excited or happy while burning off energy.

If you need a pet that doesn’t really care much if you play with it for long when you get home after a long day and you need something that will eat a huge range of foods then a pet rat has the be the pet you go with.

Some people will only feed their pet rats fresh kitchen scraps from their own meals without issue rather than get a commercial rat food but rats can still be cuddled but their version of cuddling is more like cuddling up on you and then falling asleep rather than playing with you as a ferret would.


That brings our article going over our ferrets vs rat comparison to an end. Both really are great pets and we definitely see why both options are seeing a large spike in their popularity right now but both animals have their own unique personalities that fit different owners. We have tried to offer a breakdown of who each animal will fit best above to try and help you make the best choice possible for your new pet to fit it with your needs but either can work well in most situations.