(Tip: Scroll down for pictures of the listed types)
This list states the colors and types I am currently breeding for in my rat breeding program. All bloodlines originate from other breeders unless stated otherwise.
-Beige line: Dumbo ears & standard fur
-Black Hooded line: Dumbo ears & Standard fur (originates from feeder stock, males will only be available)
-Dwarf line: Dumbo with rex or standard fur
-Fawn Rex line: Dumbo ears with rex or standard fur
-Aussie line: Dumbo ears & standard fur & Silvermanes *Best line*
-Aussie True Hairless line: Dumbo ears, hairless
-Harley line: Dumbo ears, Harley fur (Rarely available)
Overall Goals for Rats:
~Striving for show quality~
All lines are bred for the selection of excellent temperament.
Beige line: Selecting for good head and eyes. Temperament in this line is pretty good, but still needs improvement. This line currently has top ears, but I am out-crossing this line to my Aussie rats. This will be done to incorporate recessive blazing and dumbo ears. This line is currently unavailable.
Black hooded: Perfecting the stripe, improving temperament, and improving health.
Dwarf line: Breeding for dumbo blues that mature around 100 grams. Selecting for American blues.
Aussie line: The Aussie line was imported from Australia (hence the name Aussie). This line carries and produces blacks, blues, blue-agouti, agouti, mink, cinnamon, Russian Blue, Russian Cinnamon, powdered blue, and fawn. Silvermane is very commonly produced in this line. The natural temperaments in this line are excellent. This line is arguably the best bloodline in the country.
Aussie True Hairless line: Hairless runs in my Aussie line and I will now be breeding for the trait as a somewhat separate Aussie line. My hairless rats are TRUE hairless, not double rex! Aussie hairless have all the wonderful qualities of my Aussies, but without the fur. Read more about my Aussie hairless rats lower down.
Blue Rex line: Selecting for american blues. Breeding for both rex and standard fur in this line. This is because rex is dominant and when two rex are bred together you get drex, which are patchy and/or balding.
Fawn Rex Line: Fawn is a very pretty orangey-yellow color. Breeding for nice dumbo ears and a rich orange color. Breeding for both rex and standard fur in this line. This is because rex is dominant and when two rex are bred together you get drex, which are patchy and/or balding. Temperaments in this line are good.
Harley line: This line is new to the rattery. Goals to be determined.
My rats are pedigreed. This means that their bloodlines are tracked and documented. I use my breeding book and the NARR (North American Rat Registry) to document the linage of my animals.
This list states the colors and type I am currently breeding for in my hamster breeding program.
-Short hairs: cream banded, beige banded, black banded, heterzygous silver banded
Overall Goals for Hamsters:
Short hair Line: While improving temperament I will be breeding for like colors such as beige banded, cream banded, and black banded.
The Silvermane Gene (D'Argent)
Silvermane Rats: This fascinating, very new gene (discovered in 2012 by a rattery in North Carolina) is a dominant trait that effects not only the hair color, but also the hair texture. Silvermanes are still rather rare due to how new they are. This pretty mutation causes much softer fur than regular rats. Although it's classified as only a color, it really should be classified as a fur type too. It's no surprise that silvermanes are adored by the rat community for their gorgeous, unique coloration and its silky soft texture.
Other info about the silvermane: This coloration shows best on agouti and black rats as you can see below. The silvermane will have white looking tips that disappear when wet. It's been determined that these white tips are actually clear! Silvermanes often silver from the bum forward and will develop a mask that usually shows between 3-4 weeks old.
The original name for this gene is "Silvermane." It was given this title by the person who discovered it, but the official name given to it by the American Fancy Rat & Mouse Association is "D'Argent."
These little guys are a blast! They are forever babies and have so much to love. Dwarf rats should get no bigger than 150 grams. Many stay below 100 grams. It's possible for them to reach up to 200 grams, but for many breeders this is considered not ideal. 200 grams is very large for a true dwarf rat. They should stay around the size of a 4-6 week old standard rat baby. The gene originated out West where it was discovered by a lab. It was eventually released, but it is still relatively rare. Dwarf rats make excellent pets. Despite their small size, they should still be given a decently big enclosure, but they can do well in medium cages. There is speculation that they may be healthier than standard sized rats regarding tumors, but this claim has not yet been proven. Dwarf rats are just as healthy (possibly healthier) than standard rats. The dwarf gene does not effect their health in a negative way. I am working on creating a dumbo blue dwarf rat line that has both rex and standard fur.
Be wary of fake dwarf rats. Backyard breeders have been caught claiming to have dwarf rats when they are just selling very young mislabeled standard - sized babies or selling sickly runt rats as dwarf rats. I say backyard breeder because this is extremely unethical.
Examples shown above. Aussies are a bloodline of rats which have imported Australian blood in their distant genetic background. The term "Aussie" is a bloodline title. The original Aussie rats were imported by "Rat Genesis" from an Australian breeder. I acquired Aussies from a breeder out West who had obtained decedents of this line. Aussies were crossed into American lines which is where the dumbo ears and silvermane gene were introduced. My Aussies have very good temperaments. The history of this line is estimated to be 20-30+ years strong. This means pet breeders have been working on this line for a very long time! They have a nice stream-line structure and elegant features. They are naturally very friendly and passive. They also have big bright eyes and long gorgeous fur. Aussies are arguably the best bloodline in the country. It's by far my favorite line!
Aussie True Hairless
My Aussies carry the true hairless gene, which has recently popped up for me in the line. I will be breeding for the trait as a somewhat separate goal from my furred Aussies. As you read above, Aussies are an imported Australian bloodline that have excellent type, health, and temperament. Hairless rats require a little more protection from the cold and they can have sensitive skin, but other than that they are just like their furry counterparts. A true hairless rat is a hairless made from the actual hairless gene and not by crossing two rex rats together. Two copies of the rex gene will make a fuzzy hairless which just makes them look like poor examples of true hairless. The term "hairless" simply put means "less hair," not no hair, but the least amount of hair is desirable for hairless rats. The true hairless gene often gives the BEST examples of hairless with generally very limited to no hair present. Very neat gene! True hairless can have lactation issues and because of this they are often difficult to breed.
Black hooded dumbo female baby with strong show-quality potential.
Black Hooded Line
This line is currently the oldest line to my rattery's breeding history. I have been working on it for years. Even though I have been working with them the longest, they are not of the same quality my other lines are - which came from other reputable breeders, who got them from other reputable breeders and so on. The start of this line began in a local feeder bin when I personally discovered two well marked hooded rats and decided to work with them. It's been a LONG process of improving and thankfully they have come a long way. I foolishly sold some rats from this line a long while ago thinking they were ready for pet placement. I was wrong! While working on them I have outcrossed to my high quality lines to improve the temperaments and genetic health while also trying to keep a very nice dorsal stripe. It has not been easy. Perfecting the hooded rat's stripe is one of the most difficult goals in rat breeding. On top of this, I am selecting for mycoplasma resistance, proper head shape, and tumor resistance. I'm very hard on this line because of its background. If a rat from this line is not perfect, I will not sell him/her. Working with rats from feeder/petstore stock is commonly considered "starting from scratch" because they need an incredible amount of improvement before any reputable breeder is willing to place them in pet homes. I aim for bomb proof, friendly, and healthy rats. If you want properly raised animals from a reputable rattery, with decent genetics, and good temperaments, but don't have much to spend - this may be the line for you. Their pricing will be lower than all of my other bloodlines. This line is the only line that is not NARR registered. They have both standard and dumbo ears in the line.
Photo coming soon. This unique gene causes extra long fur on rats. They are beautiful! There are some down sides to Harleys such as how they are very difficult to breed. Harley babies tend to be weak as newborns which can hinder their survival. Harley mothers also don't usually produce milk so unless I have another mother with a small litter of newborns, I will lose all of the babies. I would only be able to safely breed a harley male to a carrier female. Harley rats look amazing with their long luscious fur, but as they age their fur tends to thin. I will be working on trying to improve the quality of the gene, but it will be a long process. I will not have available Harley rats for a while.