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Whether you like them or detest them, you must know that rats are a successful species. Far from being an endangered species, rats survive well even in disastrous conditions. In some ways, rats can be considered as a rival species to humans in "dominance" of the earth. Many beliefs exist about rats, and this helps rats to continue surviving.

You're never more than 20ft from a RAT - not true!

If you corner a rat, it goes for your throat! - not true!

Picture of a Dead Rat - as a yardstick by which to measure what is "objectionable". This was introduced because of an affiliate contract interpretation problem some time ago.

Business idea about Rats - what a good idea! Make a fortune by breeding rats! ... oh, maybe that's not such a good idea after all.

Also see mice

Rats leaving a sinking ship - examination of the idea that a sinking ship is said to be abandoned by its quota of rats before going under.

How to tell if you are infested with mice or rats (practical experiment)

Keep rats as pets? Yes, you can. Here's a Guide to Keeping Pet Rats! - was http://petratguide.com/index.php - sadly lost because of the Clickbank Problem

If you keep rats as pets, you can get rat insurance by Pet Plan.

Further note about rats: Having rats loose in the house has implications further than expected. Besides them helping themselves to your food if you don't keep it in a safe, rats have a habit of skittering about in the night, and although they've no intention of encountering you, there is an imagined fear that they might!

If you are a clutterer or hoarder, you must not have rats nesting in your collection. Besides eating your stuff, they can leave you vulnerable to criticism from the neighbours, and persecution from officialdom. Hoarders are often falsely accused of having rats, in a kind of a witch-trial type of way. However, if you make sure you have no real rats, it's much easier to dispel the false accusations.

Rats and mice, in the context of the British government's failure to do sensible things about them, get a special mention in Terry O'Halloran's book: If only Politicians Had Brains

Rats are edible, and can be cooked and eaten. It's meat that's free range. In Thailand, tourists are keen to try the local delicacy of rat meat, and the Thai Tourist Board has issued some recommendations to tourists. For health reasons, the rat should be well-cooked. Also, it's important to avoid eating rat that's been poisoned by various agricultural stuff. Excellent practical advice by the Thai Tourist Board. Quite a contrast to the "health and safety" syndrome in the UK.

How much does a rat weight? One way to find out is to weigh a dead rat. This dead rat weighed 350 grammes and had a body 21cm long plus a tail that was 20cm long. I have heard reasonably credible stories of rats weighing a kilogramme or more, and sometimes the more outlandish rumours extend beyond this. It becomes like cryptozoology after a while.