Dumbo Rat - Origin, Characteristics and Diet

Rat Dumbo: find out what this animal is like, its physical characteristics, character, behavior, etc. Rats have always scared us because they are often associated with their...

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" Rats have always scared us because they are often associated with their reputation as being rather aggressive disease-carrying animals. However, this is not the case with all types of rats, as some are perfectly adapted to cohabitation with other animals and humans, which makes them excellent companions thanks to their great sociability. The so-called domestic rats come from the species Rattus norvegicus, commonly known as the brown rat."

There are several species of rats that have a particular trait that sets them apart from others.This is the case of the dumbo rat, which is easily identifiable by its particular ears. In this information sheet from PlanèteAnimal, we will see together all the characteristics of the dumbo rat, its size, its life expectancy, the care it needs. Read on and find out absolutely everything about the rat Dumbo!


  • America
  • United States

Origins of the Dumbo Rat

The Dumbo rat is native to the United States, California more precisely where it was born in 1991, even if it was only recognized in 1998. Mutations are more frequent than we think so, but they are not always expressed in the phenotype of individuals and most of them are spontaneous. This is what happened with the Dumbo rat, because an individual was born with enlarged ears as a result of an uninduced mutation. With such a notorious characteristic, and in order to preserve this aspect, the first individual who had these particular ears was bred.

Once the Dumbo Rat gained popularity in the United States, it was introduced to other countries. However, in some countries, it has been stated that this gene not only changes the size and arrangement of the ears, but also causes certain complications in the neck, ability to hear, and orientation. This has caused it to be considered in some countries to be a tortured breed.

" As for its name Dumbo, it comes from its resemblance to the Disney elephant capable of flying with its ears."

Dumbo Rat Features

The main characteristic of this species of rat are its large ears positioned on the side. They are usually not folded, as is the case with other types of rats. The arrangement and size of the ears create a kind of triangle between the three facial structures, together with the nose.

Since the ears are on the side, his neck muscles are more pronounced. On the other hand, his ears are described as being more fleshy. Relative to the opening of the ears, these are located in the same position on the skull as in all other breeds of rats.

As for the size of the Dumbo rat, its dimensions are about 30cm and its weight is about 500g. The other characteristics of the Dumbo rat do not differ from those of the brown or common rat, since it also has a long tail and short limbs.

Dumbo rat colors

The Dumbo rat can be in different colors, such as black, white, gray, slate gray or combinations of these hues. As for the coat, it can also be long or short.

Dumbo Rat Character

Unlike the Wild Rat, the Dumbo Rat is a gentle, playful animal that is not aggressive and is even able to learn tricks taught to it by its guardian.In this sense, it is a sociable animal that can calmly rub shoulders with other rats. However, in case of adoption of a male and a female, it will be essential to sterilize them to prevent them from reproducing.

Some people mention that the Dumbo rat is much calmer than other pet rat breeds. However, there are not enough studies to confirm that this is typical behavior of this strain.

Dumbo Rat Care and Feeding

The care of the Dumbo rat is not special and does not differ from that of other domestic rodents. It is important to keep his cage clean and to provide him with certain types of materials to gnaw. Make sure that his cage is ideally placed in the house so that your rat is neither too hot nor too cold.


The rat's original habitat was the forests and grasslands of Asia, but after expanding all over the world, it has managed to colonize many ecosystems around the world.The Dumbo Rat is now a domesticated animal, which means he is completely dependent on the space you prepare for him.

In this sense, if you adopt a rat, it will absolutely have to have a cage so that it can shelter and take refuge there. However, it doesn't have to be just any cage; like all varieties of rats, he needs a spacious cage, consisting of two floors with places where he can hide. Putting games in the cage is also a good idea. Finally, the floor of the cage must also be covered with a suitable substrate to prevent the animal from injuring itself. This substrate can be corn chips or wood, but never pine or cat litter.

On the other hand, your rat should never spend 24 hours a day in its cage. If you can't leave him alone in a room in your home, he should only be locked in his crate when you're not home. As soon as you are at home, the rat must be able to go out, walk, run, explore and play.Don't be like all those people who adopt pet rats and don't take care of them, these little creatures have, like dogs and cats, love and attention.

Dumbo Rat Feeding

Rats are omnivores and you should feed them kibble made for rats to which you will include a small proportion of fruits, vegetables and a little meat. However, with the help of a specialist, it is possible to establish a diet based entirely on natural foods that will provide adequate nutrition for our little companion. It is also important to say that he must always have water available.

Find out in this other post What rats eat.

Enrichment of the environment

As we said, Dumbo rats need to be properly stimulated, and to do this, we recommend that you put them in the cage of wheels, structures of different heights so that they can climbing, tunnels and various toys designed specifically for rats.They are very intelligent animals with which, if they let you, you can even play.

Dumbo Rat He alth

The Dumbo rat is not susceptible to any particular diseases, so if cared for properly, your rat should enjoy excellent he alth throughout its life. However, an occasional check-up with a veterinarian specializing in exotic animals or a direct consultation for any anomaly is always an obligation.

With proper care, the life expectancy of the Dumbo rat is between 3 and 5 years.

Rat Dumbo: curiosities

" The gene responsible for this change in the ears of the dumbo rat has been identified as dmbo and is known to be a recessive gene. That is to say that for it to be expressed in an individual, both parents must be carriers of the gene, indeed, if only one has it, it will not be expressed."

Tell us, did you know all this information about the dumbo rat? Do you live with a dumbo rat?

Pictures of Rat Dumbo

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