I've Actually Written Non Fiction! lol.
November 3, 2007 10:09am CST
I need this articles grammer, spelling, structure (everything) to be perfect! Well..I AM NOT perfect! lol. But I'm thinking with some help it could get pretty dang close! =P Please read and let me know what you think. Please, any editing you could give me is appreciated it! I just went over it once, so hopely there won't be TOO much! Thanks! Many people think that rats are disgusting creatures, and the fact that people own them as pets is just shocking! Many people don't know that rats make great pets! Fancy Rats and Dumbo Rats would be the best first pets to get your child, to teach them the responsibility of taking care of another living thing. You should never start your child off with a dog, cat, bird or lizards. All those animals have specific needs to be kept happy, healthy and alive. But rats are very easy pets to care for, and they can be very loving! Despite some myths revolving around rats, they rarely bite, they tend to be extremely docile if they are cared for properly. Rats are usually nocturnal, but pet rats can be raised to be more active during the day time. Even though rats are relatively easy to care for, but they do need a lot of attention and exercise time outside their cages. So when you buy a rat for your child you have to make sure that they spend time with them everyday, multiple times if possible. Rats are very social animals, and it would be best to have at least two rats living in the same cage. Make sure that you get both rats at the same time, from the same cage at the pet store so you already know they get along, and make sure you have a cage that can comfortably fit two rats. And if you do have two rats, usually it is best to have 2 males or 2 females together. If you are only able to have one pet rat, really push your child into spending time with it, and during the day, if you're home, you could even take the rat out and spend some time with it yourself. When you do have a rat outside it's cage you have to watch it the whole time. Rats are very curious and like to hide in any space they can find! You can build a small "playpen" for a rat using all kind of things found in your house. Piles of books, boxes (game boxes, storage boxes-whatever you have around), toys, pillows (although they might be able to find a way over the pillows-so still watch them!) And there are tons of things you can put inside this play area to keep them entertained. Rolling balls (like for cats), toilet paper rolls or paper towel rolls, running wheels, maybe some crackers for snacks. But even when rats are in these play pens make sure that you keep an eye on them! Rats are very smart, sneaky critters! When you are picking out a rat in a pet store, make sure that the person you have asked to help you is knowledgeable about the animals. The animals cages should look clean and have clean water and food. Try to buy them from a store that only sells males or females. That way you won't go home with a pregnant female! When picking a rat out of a group, don't get the rats that seem scared and fidgety. And stay away from rats that seem over relaxed and sluggish, this is a sign that they are ill. Rats that will make good pets will usually calm down after being held for a second, this shows that they are used to being handled and accept it. Make sure that a rat you buy is clean everywhere; clean fur, eyes, nose, ears, tails. When rats are sick, they will not groom themselves, and become dirty looking, so sometimes it is easy to spot the sick ones from a healthy group. If you ever suspect a pet in a store is sick, you should alert a staff member immediately, so that the sick pet can be removed and properly looked at. The skin on a rats tail, ears and feet should not be red and flakey, they should have a nice pink tone to them, and appear smooth. If you notice a rat drooling, they may have problems inside their mouth, so best to steer clear of those ones. After buying a rat, you have to make sure you have the right cage for them. A wire cage would be the best thing for them. Rats prefer horizontal bars because this allows them to climb. A one level cage is not the best idea for a rat, a tall cage with ramps is better, because rats like climbing. Do not get a cage that has a wired flooring (only the walls and top). A wire bottom causes many dangers to rats; one major thing is broken legs, which usually is deadly to rats. Ramps and platforms should not be wired either, covering them with thin wood or another solid material will help the problem. A cage should always have two feet of floor space, plus the other levels. The best bedding for a rat is Aspen or other hardwood shavings. Avoid using cedar or pinewood as bedding for your rats. But when you purchase a rat, you can always talk to the pet stores associate and get some great advice from them. Rats will generally pick a certain area in their cage they go to the bathroom. Make sure to clean that spot everyday so your rat can stay healthy. Scoop out the dirty bedding and replace it with fresh bedding. Rats love to have 'nests' provided in their cages. A small cardboard box would be perfect, but they do need to be changed and replaced regularly. Try to avoid a plastic nesting box, it will get chewed up pretty fast. Make sure to add some bedding to your rats nest box. Rats love toys! Any toy that a rat can climb (ladders, ropes, etc) are great! Like I mentioned earlier, rats love to climb. Also make sure they have something to chew on in their cages, wooden cubes are very good! You can also get rats toys that are for ferrets and parrots, they love them just as much! Some rats love to use an exercise wheel, while others don't. But if you do get an exercise wheel, NEVER get a wired one, make sure it is solid based. The most important thin I have mentioned is to make sure no matter who you buy the rat for (a child or yourself) the rat gets a lot of attention. Rats will get angrier and meaner if they are not given proper exercise and love. When rats are cared for properly, biting will most likely never occur, but if a rat is only taken out of their cages every once in a while, eventually they will start biting. Make sure you have the time to care for a rat!
• United States
4 Nov 07
"You should never start your child off with a dog, cat or lizards." Article "a" takes singular for each. So take the "s" off the lizards. "Despite some myths. . .." sentence, you either need "and" where the comma is or a semi-colon. I think the conjunction would work better there (so use "and"). The "animals cages" should be "animals' cages" since they belong to more than one animal. "After buying a rat, you have to make sure you have the right cage for them." Either singular or plural. Either drop the "a" and add an "s" onto rat or change "them" to "it" or "him/her" one or the other. Same problem with pet store's assocciate, get advice from them, either all plural or all singular. (I have the same problem and it all sounds fine to me until I put it away for a day or two or three or a week). The skin on a "rats tail" should be "rat's tail." "Any toy. . .are great!" Any toy . . . 'is' great." "The most important thin" should of course be "thing," you just forgot the "g." "but if a rat is only taken out of their cages. . . they will start biting." Change "a rat" to "rats" because the rest of the sentence is plural. Basically, since you want people to buy two rats at a time, making sure that each sentence stays plural would be good or if you are talking about one rat, then stick to singular, but then you have to indicate him, her or it. Plural is usually easier. Same with people, either associates or singular with the him/her/it problem. Also 's is singular possessive (one person has something) and s' is plural possessive (more than one person, they have something). Take care and I hope this will be closer to perfict with these changes.
• United States
4 Nov 07
You're welcome. I haven't had a chance to edit anything except my own stuff in a long time. I used to correct hundreds of papers a week for a Prison class I taught and then for a few college classes. I would like to find a website where they would pay me for editing. 50 cents to a dollar a page would be nice. I can do this fairly quickly and efficiently. Looked into it years ago, but they wanted all kinds of equipment extra and all kinds of conditions. Also, editting for business isn't as much fun as your stuff. I'm not a fan of rats, but you wrote an interesting and informative piece. I like it. Take care