My kind of love rat


I’ve never been a rat kinda girl, whether they be the furry or love variety … but Riff Ratt has almost turned me.

This little guy was rescued from a reptile store where he was about to be fed to the snakes and is best friends with a three-year-old Dutch shepherd called Osiris.

The adorable pair even have their own Instagram page –  Osiris and Riff Ratt.

(Sadly, the owners have been forced to put this note on the Instagram page (what is WRONG with some people?): “Yes, rats are good pets. They are smart, affectionate, and clean. They are not gross. Please stop leaving nasty comments telling us to kill or torture Riff Ratt, the world does not need more negativity.”)

Curious about their unusual friendship? I was, so I did a bit of research.

Owner Alice Kwapis told CBS Chicago: “Osiris is trained to … be very gentle and help keep orphaned baby animals warm because heating pads can actually cook them to death,” Kwapis explained. “I do a lot of foster care and wildlife rehab (I am licensed to do so, it is illegal and dangerous without training) and Osiris helps us with all the little guys.”

“He’s been the sweetest guy since we found him abandoned in a parking lot as a tiny puppy almost three years ago,” Kwapis went on. “Since then, he’s helped us with rehabilitating mice, Riff Ratt (whose eyes weren’t even open when we rescued him), squirrels, kittens, raccoons and puppies.”

Case in point …


“This is super typical. Riff Ratt really likes licking the inside of Osiris’ mouth. I’m sure you all are wondering if we’re afraid Osiris will eat Riff – NOPE! Osiris has helped foster and care for dozens of animals and he is the gentlest dog I’ve ever met.”

There is part of me that thinks maybe Osiris will have a momentary lapse one day … there’s a small animal sitting in his mouth … but I hope not for Riff Ratt’s sake.

Here are a few more adorable pics …

rat-5 rat-4


What’s the most unusual pet you’ve ever owned?

My parents weren’t into pets, but my grandmother had a menagerie of creatures that we enjoyed during school holidays – ducklings (that turned out to be geese), guinea pigs, a cockatoo, Choo Choo the dog, magpies they fed every morning and evening … Loved it … then I ended up with six chooks, two fish, two rabbits and a dog at one point …

Song of the day: Savage Garden “Truly, madly, deeply”


6 thoughts on “My kind of love rat

  1. Not really unusual but Matilda, the duck, would cruise around in our swimming pool chasing away the flies as we floated on our air mattresses. She used to tease the dogs, Willoughby, the Cocker Spaniel, and Rolf, a German Short-haired Pointer, by sitting on the edge of the pool while they stalked her, plopping into the water just as they were about to grab her. Sadly, they got her about 2 years later. 😦
    Then there was the pair of white rabbits, Snowflake and Tinkerbell, who were supposed to be both females until we had a “snowstorm” of baby white rabbits one day…Tinkerbell was flying incognito!
    There was also Ferdinand the Bull who was bought for meat but we fell in love with him and he got a stay of execution…you can’t eat animals that have a name!

  2. My aunt had a rainbow lorikeet who would lay on his back on the polished floor and you could push/slide him 5 metres along the hallway floor and he’d get up and run back so you’d do it again. He was the most intelligent animal I’ve ever known.

  3. How beautiful is that friendship?! We used to have a rat and she was real sweetie but we never thought to socialise her with the dog. Nice to see two unusual species getting on so well together.

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