Can rats swim underwater?

If you’ve just brought a pet rat home or have been raising them for a long, the thought of taking them swimming may come to you. Some owners claim that their pet rats are terrified of water and hate it. On the other hand, there are several videos on the internet of pet rats swimming and playing in water.

Can rats swim underwater?

Rats can swim underwater and hold their breath for up to three minutes, which is surprising. Wild rats, in particular, are excellent swimmers, diving for food or swimming through pipes to gain access to dwellings. Some kinds of rats find critical sources of food in the water in their native habitat, and some rats have been recorded swimming for miles or more. Other rats have the ability to tread water for three days.

Rats of some breeds are better swimmers than rats of other breeds. The brown rat, which is now the most frequently domesticated rat, was designed to swim naturally.

Some rats, for example, can swim a mile or more in open water. However, I strongly advise against your pet rat attempting this.

Water and Rats:

Because the majority of pet rats are descended from brown rats, and we now know that brown rats swim in their natural habitat, you’re likely to come across a swimming pet rat.

However, we must remember that rats, like humans, have various personalities, and one rat may enjoy water while another may despise it. Some pet rats, on the other hand, will enjoy playing in the water, but this does not mean they will want to swim in it.

Just because your rat is playing in some shallow water doesn’t indicate he or she wants to swim. If your pet rat appears to be interested in water, though, it’s a good idea to let it to swim.

It’s advisable to introduce your rat to such a large amount of water slowly and carefully if they’ve never been around before. If he has a positive experience drawing water from bats, he will come to appreciate it, much like most things in life.

It’s vital to keep in mind that just because rats enjoy playing in the water doesn’t indicate they’ll enjoy swimming in it. “Forced swimming” has been demonstrated in studies to be exceedingly stressful for rats.

A rat is forced to swim by being placed in a filled tub or pool where it is unable to touch the bottom and must swim to find its way out. This is harmful and can make your pet rat anxious and stressed.

Pressure and forced swimming can result in drowning in extreme circumstances. Allow your rat to enter the water at his own rate and to depart quickly if necessary.

Is swimming safe for rats?

Swimming is perfectly safe for rats if they are introduced to it in a safe and controlled manner. Before allowing your rat to swim in deep water, introduce it to the water. Even if your rat dislikes swimming, they should have innate talents that will keep them safe.

Despite this, you should never leave your rat alone, especially at first, because if it becomes very anxious, its natural abilities may be rendered useless.  You can relax if they wish to swim for longer because rats can hold their breath longer than you.

Can a pet rat swim for an extended period of time?

Your pet rat may be able to swim for hours and still be fine, but he or she will likely tire out faster than rats who have grown up swimming in the wild. You can let your rat swim until he or she is able to get out of the water, as long as they know how to do so.

A rat understands its own boundaries better than anyone else. If your rat is a new swimmer and doesn’t know how to get out on its own, you shouldn’t let it swim for more than a few hours. It’s preferable to begin swimming for a shorter period of time and never let your rats alone.

How can you tell if a rat can swim?

If you want to know if your rat enjoys swimming, pay attention to his or her expressions and body language. Your pet’s rats’ ears are telling evidence that they enjoy swimming. Your rat is happy if their ears get pink and relax around them. If your rat enjoys being in the water, they will most likely enjoy swimming. You can watch how they react to water beyond the ears. They may be enjoying fun if they swim happily and play in the water.

Rats are excellent swimmers:

Rats are natural swimmers, and some are so skilled that they prefer to spend their time in the water rather than on land. This is correct for a number of reasons.

  • Rats, for example, can hold their breath for up to three minutes without exerting any effort. Swimming is far more stressful than being able to hold their breath comfortably.
  • Furthermore, their bodies are flexible, allowing them to easily glide through the water.
  • Finally, they have the ability to move their legs and claws very quickly, allowing them to paddle quickly through any body of water.

Rats are capable of not just holding their breath for three minutes, but also treading water for three days. These abilities come naturally to rats for survival reasons. If a rat falls into a body of water or has to move from one island to another, it will require these talents to get about, but because it already possesses them, a rat might swim for fun as well as survival.


Rats Swimming appears to be a natural ability for them, but not all domesticated rats enjoy it. The truth is that you’ll need patience as well as trial and error to determine whether or not your rat appreciates water.

Remember that rats are intelligent, complicated creatures with exceptional emotional intelligence, despite their small size. They can easily become stressed, yet they can also have fun. Pay attention to your rat, be patient and careful with it while exposing it to water, and you’ll probably be able to tell whether or not it enjoys swimming.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *