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I can answer any questions about pet rats, but you will probably be able find answers to simple questions more quickly on my website at If you have a life-threatening emergency you can try calling me at 530-899-0605. I am not usually on the computer on the weekend.

Experience in the area

I have been "The Rat Lady" since 1985 and am recognized as one of the world's experts on pet rats. I have 3 published books and already answer lots of questions about rats daily.


President of Rat Assistance & Teaching Society


I am a monthly columnist for Pet Business magazine, and my writing has appeared in other magazines. I have 3 published books.


BA in Animal Behavior

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    K = Knowledgeability    C = Clarity of Response    P = Politeness
Cara04/13/14101010Calvin was okay, he bit me the .....
Joanne04/09/14101010Thank you Debbie. My thoughts about neutering .....

Recent Answers from Debbie Ducommun

2014-04-19 male rats:

Hi Carla,  You can't really judge the age of a rat by the size of his testicles. They can be huge even at a young age, and they can also be smaller at any age. They can also retract them into their abdomen

2014-04-18 my female pet rat is in pain and dying:

Hi Brittnee,  I'm so sorry to hear your rat is so sick. You have done a great job getting her to almost 4 years of age!  If you think it is time to euthanize her, and it sounds like it might be, you will

2014-04-18 New rat shaky on feet:

Hi Kaylee,  With a female of this age a pituitary tumor must be considered, but usually the symptoms would progress rapidly, so if she has been like this for 3 months, it's probably not a pituitary tumor

2014-04-10 A strange case:

Hi Erin,  I recommend you get her on amoxicillin for a secondary infection. This is almost always the first treatment I recommend trying. See more info below.  Deb    For a rat who is sick, no matter the

2014-04-08 Male rattie still bleeding from penis:

ADDITIONAL NOTE: I do not think neutering would help with penile cancer. So, at this point, since you don't know the cause, I do not recommend neutering him.  Deb    I don't think I would ever describe


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