No, I haven't trained them to do any special tricks- though they are highly trainable I hear. They are so social and active I'm sure it wouldn't be hard if I tried.
They are in a ferret cage and they are right outside the kitchen so they get lots of goodies. Their cage is in the same room as some of my parrots, I just keep the birds off their cage.
Rats are awesome pets. If I were going to have children I would definitely get them a pet rat over a grumpy hamster or gerbil.
About 10 years ago I used to do a good bit of volunteer work at the zoo. We trained some rats to be a part of the Bird of Prey show. Sometimes when I wasn't busy, I'd take one of those rats, put him on my shoulder and walk around the zoo with him. Of course I drew a lot of attention. :biggrin: He would crawl over my shoulder, around behind my neck to the other shoulder. If I raised my arm to a horizontal position, he would walk out my arm. Some times he would craw across my chest. I wore a wide brim had and I'd put him on the brim and let him walk around that. Hehe.
If some of the children showed interest, I'd put him on their shoulder and let them feel the rat walk around on them. It was a great crowd pleaser. :biggrin:
The zoo officials finally made me stop doing that. I asked why and they told me the rat MIGHT excape. I explained to them that we had hundreds of rats in the commisary and if he ran away (which he never even tried to do), I'd just go up there and get another one and have him trained in a day. Then they said, he would get into one of the habitats and I explained that we didn't have a habitat without rats in it already. They still made me stop. I really had fun with it while I was doing it.
I had rats as pets when I was a kid. I trained them to come when called, to fetch and to sit on my shoulder. They were wonderful to have, really sweet and fun to play with. People were always really scared to be around them...most were grossed out by their tails but I think their tails are cool :wink:
I have rats. They've lost a lot of their luster since my favorite rat, Nosie, died, though. Nosie was the most awesomest rat ever... and totally way too smart for her own good. haha. I didn't even have to teach her to come. She was such a lover that I'd call her and she'd come running to see what I wanted. She'd scamper up my pants and would hang out on my shoulder, just like RFD's zoo rat. XD She'd get so excited when I came into their room. Well, I don't know what happened, but one day she was healthy, the next I came into the room and she had...keeled. *cries*
I always wanted to get a rat, but never got around to it. I mostly had hamsters growing up, though I was very attached to my guinea pig that I got when I was 12, he would follow me around and squieak very loudly, he'd also come when called. I think a lot of people dont give enough credit to small animals because they think theyre too dumb to respond, which is not the case.