• Got Urine?

    Posted on May 20, 2016 by in Behavior, Intelligence, Litter Box Training, Training

    Your Questions | About Pet Rats Answers

    QUESTION: Do your rats pee on you? What can be done about this?

    ABOUT PET RATS ANSWERS: Here are two types of situations in which your rats might urinate on you along with possible solutions:

    SCENARIO #1:

    Your rat is on your shoulder, on your lap or maybe even inside your shirt and he or she really does need to urinate.

    SOLUTION:

    First, learn the signs your rats display when they’re with you and they need to urinate. My rats get “antsy”. They move around a lot and even try frantically to get off of me. Until I finally realized they needed to urinate, I just thought my rats weren’t happy being with me!

    Every rat is different, so pay close attention to how your rats act right before they’re about to urinate on you.

    If you aren’t able to detect any signals, then every 20-30 minutes or so, place your rats onto paper towels that you keep close by for them to use as a “litter box”. When doing so, say aloud “Litter Box” or “Paper Towels” to help them understand what you want them to do.

    Here’s an article on Litter Box Lessons for You & Your Pet Rat that explains this type of training in more detail.

    Rats are smart. They can learn that it’s not okay to urinate on you. Once you identify your rats’ signals and show your rats the appropriate place for them to urinate, both you and your rats will become a lot more comfortable with one another.

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    Not every rat makes it as easy as Henderson does: I can always tell when he’s about to urinate.

    SCENARIO #2:

    You’re sitting on the floor playing with your rats. One of your rats walks across your hand or arm and dribbles a few drops or even a small stream of urine onto your skin. Most often, but not always, it’s male rats who exhibit this type of marking behavior.

    SOLUTION:

    If it is a male rat who’s marking you with urine, neutering often solves this problem. If neutering isn’t an option, (such as when it’s a female,) training can help. I’d even suggest training before deciding to neuter a male rat (if marking is the only reason you’re thinking of neutering).

    Similar to the solution for Scenario #1, place your rat on a paper towel or in a litter box the moment s/he begins to mark you with urine.

    Even better, observe your rat’s PRE-marking behavior closely so you can place him or her on a paper towel or in a litter box before he dribbles any urine on you. By doing so, your rat will learn that urine belongs in a litter box or on paper towels and not on you.

    Both of these solutions will help you and your pet rats better understand one another and to develop an even closer bond.


    If you have any questions about your pet rats, feel free to respond below or to ask your question on the Contact Me page. I’m here for you and your rats!

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2 Responses so far.

  1. Kevin R says:

    Males (unless neutered) do it more than females. My rats let me know when they need to pee or poop by getting as close to their cage as they can and looking toward it.
    My neutered male NEVER pee marks anything. I suspect that spaying females would decrease that behavior too, however I never researched it.

    Potty training does take awhile sometimes, especially if your rats are young. It took me…3-4 months or so to get the point across to my rats about potty training. Starting early is a good thing for them. Just be persistent about it.

    • Hi Kevin,

      Thanks for sharing your experiences with training your rats where to urinate and defecate.

      It’s always helpful to hear varying points of view. Reading what you wrote will give other rat owners both hope and a different perspective.

      Thanks Again!

      Jasmine | About Pet Rats