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Happy Year of the Rat!

Written by PETA | February 7, 2008

That’s right. It’s officially the Year of the Rat today, and in honor of the new year’s murine mascots, PETA is asking people to, um, be a bit nicer to them. For regular folk, doing that could be as simple as looking into humane options for dealing with rats who may end up in their home. And for people like the executives at Mars Candy, it would probably mean discontinuing those experiments where they torture and kill the little guys. This recent demonstration outside a Mars factory in Chicago helped to drive that point home (at the expense of some completely frozen protesters):


Meanwhile, the folks in PETA Asia Pacific have been busy as hell bringing in the New Year with demonstrations aimed at encouraging people to stop buying glue traps. You can see some pics from those demos here.

So, a very happy Year of the Rat to everyone! Hopefully it’ll be a good year for rats, too. It’s about time they caught a break.

PETA’s ‘Year of the Rat’ Pack

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  • sarah says:

    i just spent 400 euro rewiring my car cos rats had got in an chewed all wiring behind the dash board does any one have any humane solutions i dont want to kill the ratties but i do want them to go live somewhere else

  • Judith, Freedom Fighter for Animals says:

    Dolly You are a beautiful Mommy. And a lucky one to have all those wonderful rat companions. I envy you you are an amazing woman. I can hardly wait to adopt 2 or 3 rats for my grandson and myself. Peace!!!

  • Judith, Freedom Fighter for Animals says:

    Thank you Mike.

  • Dolly says:

    I was very happy to read this article! I am so excited that it’s year of the rat! They are my FAVORITE animals. I currently have 13 of them all rescues! and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve kept rats and mice all my life and they are the MOST AMAZING animals. It’s heartbreaking to acknowledge the cruelty they face everyday. Every time I think about it I have to go cuddle them all and feed them some yummy snacks. People really don’t know what they are missing…My little ones are all potty trained they know their names and come when they’re called they are so smart and such wonderful friends. Yippee for rats!!! Dorothy Proud vegetarian mommy of 13 rats 4 rabbits 2 dogs 8 cats 4 mice and 7 fish.

  • caitlin says:

    aaaaaurgggghhh! If they keep testing everything on animals what on earth are we going to eat? not that i eat candy bars anyway They test like everything on animals! Are people really THAT greedy? I mean how could you do that to the adorable little rats. If someone ever even tried to do that to one of my rats they would so be booted to the moon!

  • Mike Quinoa says:

    Judith Bless your Mom. She was also a Freedom Fighter for Animals.

  • K says:

    lol Jack! Happy Year of the Rat to you too.

  • Judith, Freedom Fighter for Animals says:

    Hi Mike and Maya You are right Maya adopting animal companions from a shelter is the right thing to do. Mike yes I had my Mom that instilled the love and protection of animals in me from a very early age. If she were still living she would have been a force all on her own. When some people took her to a slaughterhouse when she was young she went nuts it was awful. That forever changed her life. But very few people understood over 70 or 80 years ago. But she lives on in me. I miss them both they understood.

  • Maya, C.V.T. says:

    Judith good for you for rescuing those poor critters. Can you imagine the kind of torture they would have endured otherwise? They were blessed to have you. That reminds me of a high school experience I had. Not with rats but I think it’s relevant. Our high school offered an animal behavior class and the teacher who we trusted ordered a bunch of desert lizards for us to observe. At the end of the school year she told us that we could take them as pets or she could send them back to the company. One student asked “what will the company do with them?” The teacher said “I can’t guarantee anything.” Of course all the students immediately grabbed a lizard I grabbed 2 and kept them as pets. Well no one in my family knew how to care for them no vets in the area would even see them back woods you know and despite buying books and all on lizards they died within a year. All the more reason to only get animals from shelters.

  • Mike Quinoa says:

    Hey Judith great story about your rat rescue. Your compassion obviously manifested itself at a very early age.

  • Judith, Freedom Fighter for Animals says:

    Rat King That is so neat. Rats like all animals love human companions and rats are just like that. The minute my head would hit the pillow they were with me along with my dog who accepted them at once she had no choice. They were so smart. I named them Ernie 1 and Ernie 2. My mom and dad would come in to say goodnight and they would just shake their heads and say goodnight to all of us. About a month later my parents were at a store and they heard this bird saying hello hello my dad asked where was the bird? The guy said I keep him in the back and cover him up so he doesn’t bother people. Mom and dad said we have someone that wants him. So we added a Myna bird to the mix. What a riot that was. I really enjoy your posts. Peace!

  • Rat King says:

    Hi Judith i appreciate your comment so much! i have a rat in my garden! once i opened the window and she was out of her hole! first she wanted to disappear then she came back and looked up at me to the window and i told her good morning! from that time we are friends and when i have a walk in the garden she accepts me in a distance of about 10 meters without running away! it’s so lovely!

  • Judith, Freedom Fighter for Animals says:

    Rat King You are so right. I had my first brush with the law when I broke into my high school Biology class and took two rats that they were going to feed to a snake. Thank goodness my dad was the contractor on the school he was able to keep me out of trouble but told them that the rats were mine. We had both boys for almost 7 years. They were so much fun and they had the run of my bedroom. They both ended up with cancer on their feet and had to be put to sleep. Still miss both boys. We are getting ready to adopt one for my grandson he is a gentle little boy and needs a buddy. Peace!

  • Rat King says:

    Rats are among my favorite animals and among the most abused! Ignorant stupid people don’t know that they are very intelligent and true friends! A long life to the rats!

  • Peace to You says:

    Year of the Rat in today’s news. Rats destroy crops in Bangladesh BBC News Dhaka The rat plague is expected twice a century A plague of rats has destroyed the crops of tens of thousands of people living in Bangladesh’s remote Chittagong Hill Tracts. The rats are fat and happy. The people face famine death and starvation.

  • Maya, C.V.T. says:

    Poor rats. I petsat for a friend’s rat one time he was the most social critter I’ve ever seen! And well behaved!

  • charity says:

    mars needs to stop testing on all animals…i think rats are the ones that get hurt the most…they dont even have the same genetic makeup…its ludicris…anyway i adopted a rat the other day shes albino with red beady eyes ..her name is angel she is so cute …especially when she is exploring my room..go rats

  • Sarah says:

    I can feel it…this will be a great year for the rats!

  • Peace to You says:

    I have taken in Rats abandoned by children who did not take care of their pet rats over the years. I have only one now which is sort of sad for him but we have two dogs in the house that he loves to play with. He grooms the dogs and they groom him. They play with the same toys too. He enjoys fresh air but not sun shine. He runs free most of the evening romping with the dogs and loves a good brushing. He chatters away with joy. What wonderful smart animals they are! In the spring and summer months when I take the rats I had 5 out side for a romp after the sun goes down I am reminded “A mouse rat is not happy unless he is free”

  • Jack says:

    You know I’m looking at that protest pic now that I’ve posted it and it’s just really clearly a bunny rabbit. Not a rat. But Mars’ experiments do use rats so the point still stands. It’s been a long day.