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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
Anne04/17/15101010Debbie has a very fast response time .....
Anne04/17/15101010Hi Debbie, Thank you very much for .....
lu04/01/15101010Great response! Really helpful!
Jalyn03/25/15101010Thanks so much! I checked, and I .....
Vipi03/09/151010Thanku so much. I feel like helped .....

Recent Answers from Debbie Ducommun

2015-04-16 Old male rat health:

Hi Marissa,  It can be normal for the penis to have some black or brown pigment in a ring. It would probably be good for you to check him frequently to see if he is keeping himself clean.    Gradually

2015-04-12 my Precious Pet Rat is sick...:

Hi Sherry,  I'm so sorry your boy is sick. The good news is that the right antibiotics can start working immediately, and often you see significant improvement in just a day or two. I'm very glad to see

2015-04-10 Sisters-female rats-aggression onset:

Hi Anne,  Unfortunately, I think spaying would be the best thing to do, although I understand your reluctance. It could be she has an ovarian cyst that is causes her hormone change. But, I see you live

2015-04-01 My pet rat has tumors:

Hi Lu,  Mammary tumors do not seem to cause any discomfort, so there is no need to euthanize her at this point. You can actually let the tumors get huge, so big that she can't even move around any more

2015-03-25 Early signs of labor?:

She should be spending most of her time on the nest, crouched over them, keeping them warm. If she isn't, you might need to put her in a small carrier so she can't really get away from them. Could be her


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