Ratapalooza Logo
May 18th, 2024 - 10am - 4pm - Thurston County Fairground

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What to Expect

The Standards Show

The standards show portion of the event is a lot like a cat show. While it would be absolutely adorable and hilarious for rats to be running around on tiny leashes in a show ring like at a dog show, it would also be stressful and unsafe for them, so they are instead placed in well ventilated clear plastic show boxes with bedding to await their time on the judging bench.

RatsPacNW trained and certified rat judges assess each rat individually, judging them against a list of standards developed over the years by the club. There are health and appearance standards for things like overall body conformation, ear shape, tail length, eye appearance, color, and markings.

Rats are not required to have a pedigree or be registered with the club, like at a dog or cat show. Score sheets with specific point allotments for various aspects of the standards are used to calculate how closely an individual rat conforms to the ideal of overall shape, color, and marking. The rats with the highest points are awarded ribbons in various colors.

Judges typically work in pairs to assess the rats and one will handle the rat while the other writes down their agreed upon scores. Judges verbally discuss their assessments with each other and will often also demonstrate to the audience aspects of a given rat that are particularly ideal. Rats are divided into solids (no white markings) and marked classes and rats who are the overall winners for each section within those classes go head to head at the end of the show to determine an overall Best of Show and Reserve of Show for both the Solid and Marked classes.

The Pet Show

The pet show is the more relaxed, less serious companion to the standards show with classes such as Best Costume, Longest Tail, Squishiest and Best Rescue Story. It’s less a competition than a celebration of all the things that make us love our rat companions.

Judging is typically done by audience applause and we often invite kids in the audience up to participate in the judgment. Everyone gets a participation ribbon because every rat and every rat lover is a winner at the pet show!

Aside from the shows...

There are lots of other fun things to do at Ratapalooza besides watching the show portion of the event!

  • We have a craft and activity table for kids (and kids at heart) to make your own souvenir of the event.
  • Rat art will be on display - because you can’t spell art without rat!
  • You can shop til you drop with some of the vendors who will be selling a wide variety of rat related items.
  • Local area rat rescue groups will be on hand to help you find rat companionship if you are looking to add to your mischief.

    And there will be plenty of fellow rat lovers to socialize with and, best of all, a ton of really cute rats to meet!

    Hope to see you there!