rats as pets
Image by photographer Diane Özdamar


Rats. For most people that’s all you have to say before they start withdrawing from the conversation. There’s just no two ways about the revulsion the word inspires. Now, a Canadian photographer is trying to change that mindset by taking adorable pictures of rats that may help alter the public’s general impression of the much-maligned creatures. The question is, will it sway you?

Rats as Pets

So, you’re completely creeped out at the thought of even coming into contact with a rat much less owning one as a pet. Not surprisingly, that’s not everyone’s feeling on the subject. Rats as pets have grown considerably over the last decade or so with those that choose to keep pets of the not so ordinary. Let’s face it, a lot of people just have to get on board with the latest craze, whether it involve animal, mineral or vegetable. Because of these trends, a lot of animals are given up relatively quickly.

Animal Photography

Meet Diane Özdamar, a 32-year-old photographer from Montréal, Canada, who takes admittedly cute photos of rescue rats. Beginning back in 2008, Özdamar began snapping images of the furry little devils for a good cause. “I began taking photos of rats I fostered to help find them homes,” Özdamar told the HuffPost. “I soon found out that cute pictures displaying their personalities not only helped them find good families but also allowed some people to get over their phobia and prejudices.”


rescue rat photography
Image by photographer Diane Özdamar

Pet Trends

While most of us might pass, Özdamar says rats actually have many great qualities. “To me, they are very similar to tiny dogs mixed with cats,” she’s said. “They are very smart, affectionate and loyal. They are quite playful, too, chasing strings like a cat.” The drawbacks besides the obvious? Don’t get too attached to them, because they have a very short lifespan in comparison to other domesticated animals. How short is very short? According to various studies on the subject, domestic rats only live about two to three years.

Animal Rescue & Adoptions

While a lot of you will say amen to that, regardless of how cute Özdamar’s pix are, others will be inspired to adopt. If you’re one of them, tell us your experience with pet rats in the comment section below.