One of the biggest realisations of my adult life has been that rats have got an incredibly bad, and undeserved, negative reputation. Like, sure, they did help spread a plague once, but now we have a new plague (that is not spread by rats, so wear a mask folks!) so I feel like we should move on from blaming rats.
This rat sanctuary, hilariously named Rachie's Ratirement Home, takes care of rats of all shapes, sizes, and ages is located in Brisbane, Australia. They use their Facebook page to name the best and worst rat of the week and it will bring you joy!
In an interview with Bored Panda, the owner, Rachel, said:
"The rat community is a lot bigger than people think, but because of stigma around rats, there isn't much support for them. Our city alone had several huge, established guinea pig rescues, but not a single specialist rat rescue active in the whole state.
So when people found out I was helping here and there (despite being a broke uni student), the demand was overwhelming. We've grown constantly since then just to meet demand, we assisted over 300 rats the first year, over 700 in the second, and this year we're not even through February yet and have helped nearly 200!
I've put my career in genetic engineering aside for now to focus on this, the volunteers laugh because I'm allergic to rats, but someone's gotta do it!"
"Because rats get depressed when kept alone, we do a lot of palliative care for "last man standing" rats for those who don't intend on getting more rats, or foster out companions to keep them company in their last days,"
These posts really show the duality of rats!
"I saw a photoset from a zoo that had done the same thing with their penguins and it was such a good fit for a regular piece, to make people laugh and show them how unique and hilarious rats can be!"
"Usually it's someone who's made us laugh, pulled some silly stunt or really touched our hearts. Often it's our one-eyed brat Button causing some kind of chaos. Sometimes we add in a rat who's passed away as a tribute for the team to have a smile about. And sometimes you've just gotta have a picture of Spoon!"
"People follow us on Facebook from all over, we've had people doing everything from making memes about the rats to drawing art of them, and so much love from the wider rat community". "We're really grateful for all the love, and to be able to show our ratties and what we do to the world! Rats really do deserve so much more than they get, and we're hoping to reach more and more people who feel the same way and want to lend support."