Mice vs. Rats

It’s time for another battle of the pets! Do you know the difference between mice and rats?

Mice and rats are both good choices for pets, especially for the brand new pet owner. However, a mouse is not a rat, and a rat is not a mouse. Mice and rats each have their own unique characteristics and benefits as pets. To save yourself from confusion, we’ve made a list of differences.

  • Size: This is probably one of the biggest differences between a mouse and a rat. Rats can grow up to eight inches long, with a tail that can reach an additional nine inches. Mice are half that size, as most don’t grow past three inches plus a three-inch tail.
  • Color: Rats tend to be more grey-colored with a white belly. As they age, a rat’s coat tends to turn brown. Mice are a brownish color to start with, and have darker bellies.
  • Tails: You can tell a lot about a rodent by what the tail looks like. Along with rats having longer tails, a rat’s tail will be black with rings around it. In contrast, a mouse will have a tan colored tail. A mouse’s tail will also have a smooth appearance.  
  • Personality: Rats and mice are very similar in how they act, but there are some subtle differences. Mice tend to be braver and will investigate new surroundings or new objects. However, mice also tend to be rather clumsy creatures. Rats are very shrewd, and much more cautious. This means that a pet rat will be much more timid than a pet mouse.  

All in all, both rats and mice make great, interesting pets. The choice is up to you!

Do you have a pet rodent? What type? Tell us about it in the comments!

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