If you saw Michael Moore's film "Roger and Me".(1989)
This question will be ingrained in your mind " for pet or Meat". Rhonda Britton a Flint resident who sells rabbits for pets as well as meat.In the film it is shown how the rabbits sold for meat are skinned and hung on a hook.Quite disgusting if you have never seen such a scene.The same scene it was when turkeys were slaughtered in Alaska by Gov Sarah Palin friends for Thanks giving no reprieve or commutation for those turkey's or Rhonda Britton's Rabbits for meat.It was strictly business for the poor desperate people of Flint Michigan once home to GM (general motors) largest corporation for the second half of the 20 th century.When they moved employment to Mexico from Flynt it became a desperate town .This saga of selling rabbits for meat showed its poverty ,hopelessness and desperation.
Ah subject has changed i was talking about rats .One of those nice winter day i was working in my store .When a young woman came and spent quite a bit of time in my coffee/ convenience store.On enquiry i found out she was in a unique business.She was in business of supplying mice and rats to pet stores for food for reptiles.I had not known then that their are some people in Bihar who's job/profession is to catch field rats and they eat them and find them nutritious and tasty.
She told me that she was raising mice and rats in old trailers and made a living doing that .It was first time i had heard any body doing that.I asked her if she was successful what her hopes and aspirations for the business were. She said she wanted to add couple of more old trailers on the property to increase the supply of rodents for the market.She new how to breed these critters .She was hoping to raise some rodents as pets. Currently she was selling them as food for snakes .She sold rats as food for bigger snakes like pythons.
On further enquiry i was made aware that raising mice and rats was a big business .She also told me that if she was more successful she would raise rats for science.Rats for science are raised for that purpose .I wondered how it could be .She said that those rats are raised in much more controlled environment and they have to mostly disease free.Those are the sterile rats which sell for ten times the food rats.
What a great business it would be to make ten times the money for same work and food to breed and raise the rats !!
They breed every 4 to six weeks .You have anew brood every other month.with exponential math if unchecked by circumstances with in five years whole world would be overrun with rats .At times it seems that it is .In India rat is the transportation of Lord Ganesh .the lord of knowledge and remover of all obstacles. No wonder in billions of years of in spite of effort by man rat survives and now with medical rat it is contributing to human health.
These rats could be precious commodity.To test drugs rats with accelerated metabolism and shorter life cycle which mimics the human life cycle and physiognomy are excellent candidates .Rats get most of the human disease and now rats with diabetes ,cancer ,eye problems and other disease have become very valuable as in early trials we can get data worth many life cycle in couple of years.
Because of rats we know that rats who are active and eat half the food of sedentary rats live 20 percent more than sedentary rats.
We all would live longer only if we could be put on a tread mill and fed half the food.Then we would become just rats with much longer life cycle.