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The Australian Rat Fanciers Society is based in Melbourne and is a club for owners of domesticated pet rats (Rattus norvegicus).


We are a very active, social and family orientated club. Members come from all walks of life, backgrounds and age groups, but share a common passion – RATTIES.


The AusRFS offers educational and support services to  the public and club members and their rats enjoy a range of activities.



The Australian Rat Fanciers Society was formed in Melbourne in 1996  and became an Incorporated Association in 2003.

The AusRFS is the largest and oldest rodent club in Australia.


The word “fancy” is an old English term meaning “hobby”.  So a Fancy Rat is a rat that is kept as a pet or hobby, and a Rat Fancier is a person who keeps rats as a pet or hobby.

This name was chosen for our society to convey a sense of the history of rat keeping. Rats have been kept as pets for hundreds of years.

Activities & Services

Please see individual pages for more information about each activity.

Advice Service 

Boarding Service

Community Visit Team - Visiting nursing homes and community groups

Education Team -  Conducting classes in schools/colleges

Events for AusRFS Members

Displays at public events such as pet expos

Merchandise - Handmade hammocks

Nebuliser Hire Service


Registered Ratties (no breeders are active at the moment)

Rat Shows - Championship shows and Fun Shows


Aims & Objectives

To show the public what wonderful pets rats can be.

  • To educate & provide information about how to care for pet rats.

  • To promote responsible pet ownership and breeding practices.

  • To raise awareness of the differences between domesticated pet rats and wild rats.

  • To provide social opportunities for rat owners.

  • To operate a rescue service to take in and rehome abandoned or surrendered pet rats.

  • To run a boarding service for pet rats.

  • To discourage purchasing any animal, and rats in particular from pet shops and mass breeding facilities.

  • To maintain a register of reputable ratteries.

  • To encourage purchasing of rats from AusRFS Registered Breeders or our Rescue Service.

  • To offer opportunities for owners to show their rats.


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