No matter if you’re a new or experienced rat owner, you might be looking at cage options for your little bundles of joy. Rats need much more space than one might assume.
For instance, something as tiny as a hamster cage is insufficient. They need lots of room to roam and play. Plus, safety and security are a huge deal when you own expert escape artists.
For your convenience, we have rounded up nine of the very best cages that you can buy.
Hopefully, our reviews will help you find the best fit possible for your little furry friends.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2024
|Prevue Pet Products Rat Critter Cage
|Kaytee My First Home Habitat
|MidWest Critter Nation Deluxe Small Animal Cage
|Yaheetech Metal Cage
|ZENY Rat Cage
The 9 Best Rat Cages
1. Prevue Pet Products Rat Critter Cage – Best Overall
Of all the others we looked at, we loved the Prevue Pet Products Rat & Chinchilla Critter Cage the most. We think you will, too. It has just enough space with all the right features—fitting most rats’ needs beautifully.
This cage is made of wrought iron bars with a dusty rose hammer stone finish. The solid ramps and small wire spacing prevent escapes or chewing. There is a bottom shelf for storage, so you can put all of your rat’s belongings in one place.
It has two metal platforms, two ramps, and a grille. The cage is very simple to clean, coming with a pull-out plastic platform that you can easily wipe down. The door is very wide to easily access the cage inside to get your rats out or replenish their food supply.
This product is suitable for up to three rats, as the dimensions are 31” x 20.5” x 40”. But if you have more—you might want a bigger space.
All in all, we think this is the overall best rat cage available this year.
2. Kaytee My First Home Habitat – Best Value
It’s no secret that rat cages can get pretty expensive. If you’re looking to save a little cash, you can check out the Kaytee My First Home Habitat Multi-Level for Small Animals. It’s the best rat cage for the money if you have no more than two adult rats.
The bottom base is deep plastic to prevent bedding from littering your floors. The metal bars fasten tightly into the plastic base to create a tight design that doesn’t come apart or loosen. There is a wire-base locking system that securely keeps the cage closed.
It’s a great starter home, coming with a food dish to cut out some upfront costs. This cage is perfect for young rats, giving them room to grow. If you have a heavy chewer, they might be able to do some real damage to the interior plastic—but if you litter the cage with toys, it shouldn’t be an issue.
3. MidWest Critter Nation Deluxe Small Animal Cage – Premium Choice
If you have quite a few critters and need the extra space, consider the MidWest Critter Nation Deluxe Small Animal Cage. It is perfect for up to six rats and is worth the extra money if you need the space. Plus, there’s additional room for storage on the bottom rack to keep all your supplies.
This cage is incredibly well constructed, made of rigid metal wire with a gray hammertone finish. The bar spacing is half an inch to keep in even very young rats. There are two leak-proof pans to avoid any waste spills. Each level has a padded cover on the ramps to make climbing a breeze.
The latches are critter-proof, meaning there is no way for your rodents to open them. There are four doors total—all of which open fully for maximum reach. Best of all? No tools are required. It’s so easy to set up.
4. Yaheetech Metal Cage
The YAHEETECH Metal Cage is an excellent pick for full-grown rats. Because of the vertical bars, it isn’t a suitable option for rats under 6 months old. They might easily be able to slip through the bars, which is a hazard—so, adults only, please.
There are two double-latch doors for easy entry points, giving access to the rest of the cage. The bottom has a thick plastic litter tray that you can slide out to dump and clean. It comes with its own food dish and water bottle, which can save you money on the extra supplies.
This cage is on wheels that rotate 360 degrees, so you can move it around easily when you need to. The entire exterior is corrosion-free, preventing rust from forming under frequent moisture. It is a perfect place for your adult rats to spend their days—a real home sweet home.
5. ZENY Rat Cage
The ZENY Rat Cage is a great selection for small pets—particularly full-grown rats. This metal cage has an attractive curved design with two doorway entry points. There are simple slide latch locks that prevent any unwanted escapes.
The bottom tray slides out so you can empty and refill the litter with minimal hassle. The design is equipped with four 360-degree wheels that roll smoothly. There are three separate platforms so your little ones can hang on on different levels, promoting healthy exercise.
In addition to the excellent cage setup, it also comes with a food dish and water bottle. You can start out your rat-owning experience with all the basics. If you aren’t using the cage at some point, it folds down flat for easy storage.
6. Homey Pet Small Animals Cage
Homey Pet Small Animals Cage is a sturdy setup that provides a nice little habitat for all your rat babies. It has sturdy bars for your rats to climb around—plus two separate platforms they can hang out on. There are two main entry points in the front for easy access to your rat and their belongings.
This thick plastic base snaps together, creating a firm foundation—accompanied by plastic wheels for optimal movability. There are also wheel locks to keep it in place when you want it stationary. Even though this is convenient, be careful—they are a bit flimsier than metal rollers.
There is a convenient pull-out in the bottom for simple cleanup. The bottom grill sifts the bedding, allowing your pet’s waste to fall through. The bar spacing is also ideal for both young and adult rats—so you can buy this cage at any stage of life.
7. Little Friends TK51262 Grosvenor Rat Cage
This cage would be perfect if you had a pair of rats. Unfortunately, if you have any more, this is not going to be an adequate amount of space. This cage does have a split-level platform that allows your rat to climb around at their leisure, so your pair can explore anytime.
A food dish comes with the cage, fitting perfectly into the platform. The metal design comes out of the box folding out easily and securing into the plastic base. The base is made of durable plastic that is not easy for rats to chew—plus, it’s high up to prevent any bedding spills or messes.
There are two selections to choose from. One is taller and skinnier, and the other is shorter and wider. You can choose the style that works best for your home. Both cages have narrow bar spacing, so it works for very young rats as well as adults.
8. Ware 00665 Chew Proof Small Animal Critter Cage
This cage is incredibly easy to assemble, so you don’t have to worry about a complicated setup. It has three different levels to provide entertainment and exercise for your ratty buddies. The plastic base keeps the betting inside, preventing it from falling out of the wiring.
The metal bars are incredibly durable, so they hold up well against tough chewing. The bars are perfectly spaced—your rats can enjoy this cage at any age. Each level and accompanying ramps fastens into the design with minimal effort.
There is a metal drop pan that sifts out your rat’s waste to keep the cage fresh. The plastic base doesn’t hold odors, making it easy to wipe down and clean up. The overall design is a bit flimsier than some competing cages, but it is an honorable mention, nonetheless.
9. Ferplast Tower Two-Story Ferret Cage
If you have a whole rat pack, this cage could give you just the amount of space you need for all of your little ones to live comfortably. There’s a lot of room in this cage to hang hammocks and to provide your rights with lots of activities.
This multi-level cage provides lots of platforms and levels for your rights to explore. But because of the spacing, it’s best to allow only adult rats to live inside. This is a sanctuary for big guys and gals—lots of activities, exercise, and fun await.
There is a durable plastic base on both sections of this double-story cage. You can close off the cage to split it in half if you need to. This is a really great feature if you have to clean one section of the cage or you need to separate your rats for any reason.
It is a large cage, so make sure you have the room before purchase.
Buyer’s Guide: Selecting the Best Pet Rat Cage
When you’re prepping to buy all of the supplies necessary to have rats, you might be happy to know that the cage is probably the most expensive thing you’ll buy.
Rats are relatively inexpensive in themselves, and you won’t need very many things to get you started. Just a water bottle, food dish, hideouts, hammocks, and bedding—and you’re good to go.
Types of Rat Cages
You have a variety of cages to choose from, but it will mostly come down to the number of rats you have.
Buying a singular-level cage is fine, as long as the cage has the appropriate amount of height and climbing space necessary. Many singular units also come on wheels or have storage compartments to put your rat’s belongings.
Stackable units come in handy for multiple reasons. Many stackable units have an option to close off each section of the cage. You can separate your rats between males and females, or you can separate rats who aren’t getting along or who might be sick.
If you have the same gender, you can let them all run around together, only separating them if the situation calls for it. It’s also a good idea if you’re cleaning the cage so that you can prevent the rats from coming into space.
Multi-level units are ideal for rats because it gives them so much space to explore. Plus, you can hang hammocks and other fun tunnels around the cage to create quite the exploration area. Multi-level cages also help with exercise in general.
Unsuitable Cage Options for Rats
When you first purchased your little rats from a pet store or a breeder, you might think that they don’t need very much space. After all, they’re probably very small, and they don’t take up a lot of space themselves.
However, the first time you watch them scurry around, it should become very apparent that they are high-energy animals. They need lots of space to climb, jump, and tunnel to keep themselves happy. If they live in a singular level cage with nothing to do, imagine how boring that would be.
Rabbit or Guinea Pig Cages
Unlike rabbits or guinea pigs, rats have the natural desire to climb. Rats also don’t have the same type of body structure, which means that they don’t get as heavy or thick as a rabbit or guinea pig.
Since they are slender and move through objects easily, your rat is more likely to escape the wider bars on a rabbit or guinea pig cage.
Gerbil or Hamster Cages
Rats aren’t a tremendous amount larger than gerbils and hamsters, but that’s only to the naked eye. Rats actually triple most durable sizes. And even a teddy bear hamster is significantly smaller than a full-grown rat.
Rats also have an incredible amount of chewing power which they utilize all the time. Getting plastic gerbil cages can cause your rat to be depressed because of the lack of space and movement they can make. Also, most gerbil or hamster cages have less durable wiring and plastic.
Rats don’t fit into the tunnels well, especially as adults. If you have a pretty hefty right, this can cause your rat to get stuck in the tunnels, which is potentially dangerous. They can also choose through the cage easier, making escape definitely possible.
Why is Bar Spacing Important?
Even the chubbiest of rats might surprise you with just how effortlessly they can squeeze through small spaces. If they do, they can get into all sorts of trouble—which can be hazardous to your belongings and your rat.
Having the correct bar spacing in your cage is absolutely essential to keep your rats inside when you are away. The ideal bar spacing for rats is 0.4 to 0.6 inches.
Rats and Living Space
One single rat needs two cubic feet of space to live comfortably. Each one needs enough space to exercise, play, and sleep. You should double the space for each pet ride that you have. Many rat cages come in singular or stacked designs, but all should have multiple platforms to keep them busy.
Rat and Floor Time
Rats need an adequate amount of time outside of the cage as well. Your cage should be used as a safe space for your rats to do things that any animal would do in their home. But just like humans, rats need to get out of the house sometimes.
Rats need at least an hour out of the cage daily.
Rats Should Always Have a Companion
One important thing to keep in mind is that rats require at least one other companion. These creatures are incredibly social, and they thrive on a partnership with others. If you consider that they need friends, you can understand the need to have a larger cage.
Add-Ons & Cage Accessories
Rats adore tunnels, mazes, hammocks, and hideouts. There are tons of products that you can buy for your rats, and your cage needs to be big enough to fit all of these extras.
We really think you will love having the Prevue Pet Products Rat & Chinchilla Critter Cage. It has all of the things you could want in a rat cage, as long as you only have about three adults. It is an ideal pick for both beginners and seasoned owners alike.
If you’re trying to be thrifty, check out Kaytee My First Home Habitat Multi-Level for Small Animals. It is perfectly suitable for a few rat buddies to hang out and have fun. It’s easy to clean, multi-level, and affordable.
Ultimately, your choice depends on how many rats you have and what their particular needs are. Hopefully, you found the one that’s right for your situation.
Featured Image Credit: sakavichanka, Shutterstock