How to Leash & Harness Train a Rat | Pet Rats

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So you may choose, or you may think about, whether it’s possible to harness train or leash train your pet rat. In general, this is not something that is commonly done. This is not something that people should think along the lines of the way you would train your dog. To put a leash and harness on them and expect them to maybe walk in the street, or walk outside, this is not commonly done, and is not recommended.

What you may find though, is you want to harness train them and put a leash on them, as a means of being able to restrain and carry them. Some people will choose to have their rat wear a body harness and put a leash on it. That way they can carry them safely outside, if they live in a safe neighborhood, or safe environment, or they live in a private home. But otherwise, leash training and harness training a rat generally isn’t something that people commonly do.

If you go to the pet store, you will find that they make a number of types of harnesses for a lot of different type of animals. In most cases, it’s something that has to be started when they’re very young. They have to be desensitized to wearing any type of harness. And they’d have to be able to want to walk and move with it.

The majority of the time that I see a rat that’s wearing a leash and harness, it’s simply put on them because that’s how the person chooses to take them out of the home. But they’re not necessarily walking on the ground, or wearing a leash and harness as a means for exercise.

So in general, most of the time it would be discouraged to attempt to try and do that. It’s also important to know going into it you’re not going to plan on putting a leash and harness on your rat and taking it for a walk in the neighborhood. But if you choose to try it, and can get a properly fitted harness and a leash, it may be more of some means of entertainment, some means of having the rat in a controlled environment, or using a leash as an extra means of restraint and control of your rat.

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26 Responses

  1. maddmannmatt
    | Reply

    Not a how-to video. Don't bother with this

  2. shaylen sanders
    | Reply

    Adjustable Pet Hamster Gerbil Rat Mouse Chinchillas Guinea Pig Squirrel Harness with Leashes Hand made

    This is the best harness for rats! I use it on mine. Light weight and easy to use and very adjustable.

  3. Spoodle Productions
    | Reply

    Hey Howcast, you should seriously consider taking this video down. It's misleading, uninformative, and it feels like you're being talked down to by the substitute teacher who doesn't know what subject they're teaching.

    Get an actual expert whose done actual research and has real experience with rats, AND THEN ACTUALLY DO THE THING THE TITLE SAYS!

  4. Shawn Crawford
    | Reply

    Something tells me this guy is more upset people want to harness the rat over himself…

  5. Allie P
    | Reply

    :/ Whoever named this video couldn't have done a worse job. It should be called "Leash and harness training rats generally isn't done" cause that's basically all this guy says. Thanks…that's 2 minutes of my life I'll never get back.

  6. Skiamakhos
    | Reply

    This gives caveats but no how-to information at all.

  7. My name is Cthulu
    | Reply

    Guys, do NOT listen to all these videos. Howcast is barely ever correct on their rat information. If you are going to try to agree with any of their information, look it up and read a couple different sources before actually concluding the fact you agree with them. Also, if the article says "sometimes", "not always", or "maybe" in a negative manner and not to state something positive about what they're saying, it would be best to disagree all together.

  8. Larry D
    | Reply

    Sounds like a DON'T DO and not a HOW TO video.

  9. Animecafe102
    | Reply

    Wow I learned nothing thanks, also you know someone hasn't done their research when they don't give any reasons as to why they're saying you shouldn't do something. This video just repeated the whole time that it's generally not done but can be but you shouldn't with no actual backup research spoken of, and the title claims this video will tell you how but it doesn't. Normally I don't dislike videos as I prefer not to waste my time but I feel the blatant uselessness of this video deserved a dislike.

  10. Jenna Scheponik
    | Reply

    Ummm…This isn't what the video said, it said "how".

  11. NetherMaster
    | Reply

    Thanks for warning me about leash training but it would've been better if you actually told me how to do it.

  12. Derek Fredin
    | Reply

    Why is it not reccomended

  13. Laurie B
    | Reply

    I learned nothing….

  14. TheD4rkSoul
    | Reply

    this didnt help me at all…..thanks alot that random guy…….

  15. CreateWith _Me
    | Reply

    Would it be possible for a rat to be able to rid on your shoulder without be annoyed with their body harness?

  16. Brianna Harter
    | Reply

    why you shouldn't leash train/harness train your rat or any prey animal.they will often flip out and hurt them selfs also shouldn't walk your rat because they can easily be snatched up by something.if your worried about them getting lost in the house train them to come when called.

  17. Rhiannon Roe
    | Reply

    The video tells viewers NOTHING about actually introducing and preparing rats for walking in the harness.

    The guy pretty much repeats "Its not usually done, its not usually done, its not usually done, its not recommended" And he clearly knows nothing about them, he doesn't even handle any during the video to give a proper demonstration on the correct application of a harness. Im surprised if hes ever worked with a rat in all honesty!

    Retitle the video "Crap advice on why its not recommended to harness train a rat" and stop misleading people that may be genuinely interested in learning how to do this with their own pets.

  18. tanya zaki
    | Reply

    Rubbish 2 mins wasted

  19. Naomi Blackburn
    | Reply

    As someone who has owned over 40 rats, this DVM doesn't know what the hell he is talking about. There are better videos out there.

  20. Kevin Grant
    | Reply

    I have to agree with everyone else…this was a misleading video. It taught absolutely nothing.  Thanks for nothing! Oh, and try wiping the nervous sweat off of your forehead before making a crappy video!!

  21. Nushgala
    | Reply

    Thanks for NOT doing what the title of the video said. I learned nothing. You should rename this video so you can stop misleading people. This video is a fail. -__-

  22. andrea wilson
    | Reply

    This video was completely useless. All it did was tell us (who already know), that leash and harness training are rarely done on rats, leash and harness training are rarely done on rats, leash and harness training are rarely done on rats, leash and harness training are rarely done on rats, leash and harness training are rarely done on rats.

    So where does the "HOW TO" part come into the title?

  23. InsaneShows
    | Reply

    I think I'd take a rat out in the yard with a harness.

  24. Boltification
    | Reply

    This would have helped if you actually showed yourself putting a rat in a harness.

  25. janet lovea
    | Reply

    Do something for guinea pigs

  26. Brina Bean
    | Reply

    🙂 do something for hamsters 🙂

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