Showing posts with label hairless. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hairless. Show all posts

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The ONE Product Every Rat Owner NEEDS to Have!

There is very few products out there that get me as excited as this one does because this one does soooo much! This one product is a rat shampoo, massage oil for hairless ratties, a laundry detergent for your rat's bedding, a produce rinse to rid your ratties' fresh fruits and veggies from harmful pesticides, a natural and safe general cleaner for the entire cage, and also is a great way to keep pests away from your homegrown herbs and plants you might keep for your ratties' dig boxes and so much more!  AND if that wasn't awesome enough already, its also certified organic, fair trade and 100% vegan, not tested on animals, packaged using 100% post-consumer recycled plastic. It just doesn't get any better than this!!

It's Dr Bronner's Magic Soaps brand Pure Castile Soap! It comes in eight fragrances- Peppermint, Eucalyptus, Almond, Rose, Baby Mild (unscented), Citrus, Lavender, and Tea Tree. I personally LOVE the smell of the Almond variety! It comes in 2oz, 4oz, 8oz, 16oz, 32oz, 1/2 gallon, and 1 gallon sizes. Unsure of whether or not you will like it? Try the 2oz size, a little still goes a very long way! I got my little 2oz Lavender bottle at Target for about $2 in with the travel sized toiletries section.

So what is Castile Soap? In earlier centuries, an all-vegetable based soap was made in the Castile region of Spain from local olive oil. By the turn of this century, “Castile” had come to mean any vegetable oil-based soap, versus animal (tallow) fat-based soap.“Pure-Castile” is now also your guarantee that what you are using is a real ecological and simple soap, not a complex blend of detergents with a higher ecological impact due to the waste stream during manufacture and slower biodegradability. Unfortunately, many synthetic detergent blends are deceptively labeled as “Liquid Soap” even when they contain absolutely no soap whatsoever. Dr Bronner’s soaps are 100% true pure-castile soaps. The high foaming lather of these soaps is from their high coconut oil content, which makes a more luxurious and rich lather than any detergent can ever create.

To use as a shampoo: Wet the coat of your ratty thoroughly first then apply the liquid castile soap by massaging a small amount in your hands first until a lather is formed, then washing the fur and rinsing well afterwards. If you bathe your rats in your sink, you can add a squirt to the water. Always use less than what you think you will need- a little does go a long way. Peppermint might be a bit too tingly for ratties- save that one for your own hair! Obviously, be sure to keep it out of their eyes as it is not tear free!

To use as a massage oil for hairless rats to keep their skin soft and supple: Add a dash of liquid castile soap in whichever fragrance you like (almond is my personal fave) on a washcloth in sink of warm water. Wring the washcloth out and place it over the body of your ratty,like a blanket. Massage with your fingertips on one hand while using your other to hold your ratty in place. Repeat on each area of the body until the arms, legs & entire body have been massaged (using light strokes towards the heart.) Rinse the towel in plain warm water and massage again. 

To wash rat laundry (such as hammocks, liners, etc): For the laundry, use 1/4 cup for top-loading machines (1/8 cup for front loaders); adjust as needed depending on hardness of water. Adding a dash of baking soda may also help. Any scent works well, or unscented if you prefer.

To wash your ratties' fresh produce:  Fill the sink with water and add a squirt of liquid castile soap to remove most chemical residues from fruit and vegetables. Baby Mild (unscented) is the best choice.

To clean cages/ toys/ etc (general cleanser):  Dilute from one part soap into 40 parts water for light cleaning, to 1:1 or full strength for heavy-duty grease-dissolving jobs. Lavender, Citrus, Peppermint, Eucalyptus, Tea Tree work well – although Almond, Rose and Baby Mild are also great choices if you prefer those scents in your house. Baking soda can be added if you need to make a scrub. Be sure to hand dry any metal items to prevent rusting. I have read other reviews that say that a gallon of Dr Bronners castile soap lasts about a year.

To keep pests off your homegrown herbs and plants, such as those used within your dig boxes: ix 1 tablespoons of Dr. Bronner's peppermint soap to 1/2 gallon of water. Spray the solution to the underside of the leaves.

Where to get it? I got mine at Target. Walmart, Vitamin Shoppe, and many health food stores carry it. Or for even greater savings, order it online on sites like

What's in it you might ask? 
Ingredients: Water, Saponified Organic Coconut and Olive Oils (retaining natural glycerin content), Organic Hemp Seed Oil, Organic Jojoba Seed Oil, Citric Acid, Vitamin E, may also contain organic essential oils.

Ingredient Sample (from the Hemp Lavender fragrance):Water, Organic Coconut Oil*, Potassium Hydroxide**, Lavandin Extract, Organic Olive Oil*, Organic Hemp Oil, Organic Jojoba Oil, Lavender Extract, Citric Acid, Tocopherol
** None remains after saponifying oils into soap and glycerin

Oh and LOL at the super uber religious writings all over the labels....

Monday, April 16, 2012

Hairless Rat Skin Care

Hairless rats need a bit more special care than your typical furred ratty. For more info on their special needs, you can check out this great post about Hairless Rat Care.
Cassius, another hairless cutie
owned by A.ngelF.eathers on

Two of the main ailments of hairless rats are dry skin and eye irritations. Both can cost you a pretty penny in vet bills so to avoid that, I do two things with my hairless, Scarlett No-Haira, that I think have drastically helped- wipe her eyes daily and give her a EVOO massage once a week.

I wipe her eyes daily using a damp cosmetic sponge. Because hairless rats...well...have no hair, they also have little to no lashes to keep dust and other debris from getting into the eye and irritating it. I use a cosmetic sponge because unlike cloth or tissues, it doesn't leave anything else behind, which would defeat my purpose all together! Just a little warm water, squeeze out the excess, and gently wipe their eyes. You may see a little tint of red left behind on the sponge. That is porphyrin and in small amounts is normal. Its only when you can see excess staining around the eyes and nostrils that it can indicate a problem such as stress or illness. This helps wipe away any dust or debris that might otherwise irritate your naked ratties' eyes. I suggest taking a good look at what type of litter or bedding you use if eye irritation continues to be an issue. I had a horrible time with Carefresh bedding. While it was one of the best for odor absorption, it was incredibly dusty. I found Yesterdays News and Planet Petco paper pellet cat litters were the best for odor as well as being very low in dust particles. Another alternative would be to use fleece or flannel material to line your cages.
owned by Babs on

The other issue hairless rats face is dry, flaky skin. Without fur, they are also more susceptible to scratches and nicks. By massaging olive oil into the skin, you can help moisturize it as well as make it soft and supple. Soft skin is more resilient to nicks. Some people suggest using baby lotion or oil, but I don't think they realize that the rat is going to lick itself during grooming! Olive oil is not only more natural, but a lot safer too. It's completely edible! I usually pour the tiniest bit in a shot glass then just dip my fingertips in it, rub them together a bit, then massage the oil into the skin of my hairless ratty. Most rats won't sit still for this, so you could try rubbing the oil in as if you were simply petting them. What I like to do then is go back over the ratty with that damp cosmetic sponge again. I found it helps spread the oil over the rat a bit more evenly,especially if they are wiggly. You can do this massage once a week or as often as needed. Then rub your hands together and enjoy the fact that you too just got a moisturizing hand treatment in the process!

Dobby, meditating
owned by Babs on
And remember that hairless rats need a bit more protein than their furry cage mates, so reward them at the end of their treatment with a high protein snack, such as a bit of hard boiled egg, a piece of meat such as chicken, turkey, or beef, or a small cube of low sodium Parmesan cheese (ranked #1 in the 10 foods highest in protein).

Here is a video I got with my Scarlett No-Haira, getting her weekly massage. She is quite feisty in the video as I normally let her run around a bit before wiping her down, but since it was getting late, I went right to the massage. Whoops!