The basic idea behind a code is to give other rat lovers an idea of you and your rats and how you view them, as well as some things about yourself in general. The code is usually added to an email .sig file. The Rat Code consists of letters, numbers, and symbols that describe you and your rats. Go through the code and pick out the code that best fits you. Don't worry if it's not a perfect match.
Do you have suggestions? Please, email them to me! These codes always go through changes, and the changes are up to the people who use them. The Rat Code is designed to be modified over time.
I struggled for a while with adapting the Rat Code for each individual rat. That would work fine for me... I only have four rats. But I know there are other people with oodles of rats... It would be a lot of work to figure out the code for each rat, and it would make the code extremely long if you listed every rat. So I decided to just start with how many rats you have. This will likely change in the future, but it will have to do for now.
Start with a capital RC for "Rat Code" and add in parentheses the version number. (This is version 0.1). Then write the code for the number of rats that you have:
Add a number for the number of males you own, followed by an m (m is for male). Then add a number for the number of females that you own, followed by an f (f is for female). Then add a number for how many rats you have owned that have passed away, followed by an r (r is for Rainbow Bridge). For example, someone with 4 male rats, 3 female rats and 1 rat that has died would put:
If you don't actually own any rats and never have, use the code RC!.
B - Breeding
How often and to the extent that you breed your rats.
C - Clubs
How many rat clubs are you in?
D - Diet
Many of us spoil our ratties with treats and such. How badly do you spoil yours?
F - Freedom
We've all heard of free-range rats. Some of us might even have some. Where do you fit into this scale?
N - Rat Nut Factor
How much are you into rats?
S - Shows
Rat and mouse shows are held all over the world. How many have you been to?
O - Other Pets
Do you have any pets other than your beloved rats? This part of the code will provide a shorthand for what other pets you have.
Start with O. This section will be much like the abbreviation for how many rats you have. After the O, put down the number of each pet, followed by the abbreviation for the type of pet. For example, someone with one cat and three fish would be
O1c3fHere are the abbreviations for each type of pet:
If you have no other pets, use the code O!.
We have to support our little companions somehow... This code shows what you do to buy the lab blocks. (This section was shamelessly stolen from the Furry Code.)
a - Age
Your age (in human years). If you want to be exact, you can use your age after the a (Ex: If you're 30, you would use a30.) Or, you can use the codified version:
So for a full example, here is my Rat Code:
RC(0.1)4f B-- C++ D+ F- N S! O1c OCTI a
This code is by no means final. Please, if anyone has any suggestions, problems, questions, flames, breakdowns, or other stuff, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.