Wednesday, July 6, 2011

rat hammock

Jasper turned nine yesterday and his dearest birthday wish for some time has been some pet hopping mice.

Very cute little Australian natives, hopping mice are however quite nocturnal and unable to be handled a lot.
After some research, I swayed him in the direction of rats.
Soon he and Charlie were jumping out of their skins about the idea and had it all planned out how they would have one each and share the related chores.
(Jasper would do just about anything - even share his birthday present excitement - in order to minimise his chores.)
apologies to any of you reading whose skin is crawling right now

Long story short, Clem couldn't quite understand why he wasn't getting one as well and now we have three pet rats. Three brothers, named Hiccup, Asterix and Zac.

Now, don't think I'm some sort of martyr parent here. Because, confession time: I had a burning desire for a pet mouse as a kid, but I was never allowed. So I'm partly living out an unfulfilled childhood dream of my own.

Rats don't really smell. They're quite intelligent. They can be reasonably well litter-trained. They like to eat breakfast cereal and popcorn and hang out in boxes.
Charlie took this photo, which I love, look at that tiny hand on that tail!

They're very friendly. They'll happily ride around on shoulders, in pockets, up sleeves and in hoods.

There's a lot to like about them. I just wish they weren't called 'rats'. I feel like I have to apologise every time I say it.
I like them so much, I made them a warm winter hammock out of an old woollen top of mine, and some cotton twill tape.
Yup, I sewed a rat hammock. It ties onto some wooden rods that go across their cage, which is kind of a large palace. After I took this picture I tried it out then added some pleats on the end edges to help it form a more cosy shape. A pleated woollen rat hammock. That's got to be one of my proudest sewing achievements, no?

- Jane x


  1. Yep...Im one of those ones who's skin is crawling. But, nice job on the hammock, Im sure they will love it...if they dont eat it!!

  2. Eww. I'm not a fan either. Pet rats are right up there with pet snakes in my book.

  3. My husband and I still miss our pet rat, Sweet Pea, may she rest in peace, dreadfully. She was the smartest, cutest little rat you ever saw! She lived to the very old rat-age of 2 and a half. Aw. Sweet Pea! She was awesome.

    She never had anything as swanky as a hammock, though! (She did live in an old flea market couch in my husband's art studio for a while, though, and tunneled through all of the stuffing, and basically destroyed it, but it was fun!)

  4. I knew this would be a polarising subject! Gillian I'm with you on the snakes. That would be a "sure you can! when you grow up and leave home!' answer. Inder, I'm glad someone understands how cute these little animals can be :-)

  5. You're probably the only blogger that has sewed a rat hammock :) what fun

  6. That may have been your childhood dream but I'm still going to say that you are the nicest mother every!! (three rats? eek!)

  7. I was just reading the other comments and had to chime in...I actually had a pet snake that my dad brought home from his job (at a sewage treatment plant)...perhaps it's my mother who was the nicest mother/wife ever :)


Hey, I would really love to know what you think. Go on!

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