The mission of Tiny Toes Rat Rescue of New Mexico is to:
Provide a home for domestic rats who are in need of one after all re-homing efforts have been exhausted by their owners or animal shelters.
Evaluate the health of every rat at the time of intake and seek veterinary care from experienced exotics veterinarians as needed for the lifetime of the rat.
Ensure that rats won't breed by having males sterilized when funds are available or housing rats in same sex groups.
Provide rats with clean cages, a wide variety of healthy foods, the companionship of other rats, and human socialization.
Seek a qualified adoptive home for young and healthy rats through careful screening of prospective adopters.
Provide permanent sanctuary for elderly and sickly rats or rats with behavioral issues that make adoption inappropriate. Provide hospice care for rats who are fragile and in need of end of life care.
Teach Pre-Adoption Workshops to all first-time rat owners prior to adoption.
Educate animal shelters in proper rat care and serve the community as a resource.
Assist the community and animal shelters with hoarding cases when possible.
Why Rat Rescue?
Tiny Toes Rat Rescue of New Mexico, a 501(c)(3) non-profit vegan animal rescue, was founded in 2010 because there weren’t any animal rescues in New Mexico dedicated to helping domestic and “fancy” rats. Because these rats are the most popular small pets available, most pet stores sell them and people buy thousands of them each year, but often before they’ve thoroughly researched what’s involved in providing proper care, feeding, and socialization. As with pets like cats and dogs, when people no longer want the responsibility of pet rats, they release them to the custody of animal shelters, rat rescues, or dispose of them by cruel means.
While many rat rescues exist throughout the United States and Canada, there are rat rescues in Australia, South Africa, Europe, and the United Kingdom too. As of August, 2020, Tiny Toes Rat Rescue is still New Mexico’s only legitimate rat rescue. Please beware, as unfortunately, there are some individuals who claim to run a rat rescue when, in fact, they accept rats just so they can make money by selling them as "snake food" to pet stores or using them as breeding stock. Some of these individuals even claim to represent Tiny Toes Rat Rescue. This is unethical and shameful on so many levels! To be sure that you are dealing with Tiny Toes Rat Rescue, please be advised that our primary phone number is (505) 263-2960 and back-up phone number is (505) 250-5920.
Since Tiny Toes Rat Rescue began, we’ve saved over 1,400 rodents. That number usually increases weekly. We collaborate with animal shelters all over New Mexico and some in Texas and Colorado. When requested, we provide shelter staff with education on proper rat care and accept the transfer of rats that they’re unable to care for. We also accept rats from the public, but can only do so as we have space available and the financial resources to care for them.
Because New Mexico is a very poor state, there are far less animal shelters here than in other states and less animal rescues too because they must depend on private funding. Private funding may support some animal rescues, but not animal rescues like Tiny Toes Rat Rescue because we specialize in animals that are widely misunderstood, the subject of many myths, and considered to be disposable. Sadly, even some New Mexico animal shelters consider rats to be disposable and either won't accept them or euthanize them shortly after intake.
Tiny Toes Rat Rescue is a very busy animal rescue and it’s always financially challenging to meet the needs of the animals. We hope you’ll consider helping them by making a tax deductible donation. Simply click on the “Donate” tab above for information. Thank you for your consideration.
If you would like to be added to our mailing list and/or receive our newsletters, please email us at and let us know.