American Fancy Rat & Mouse Association

This article is from the WSSF 2015 AFRMA Rat & Mouse Tales news-magazine.

Colors & Coats

Platinum Dumbo?; Is This A Platinum or Dove Rat?; Gray Rats: Russian Platinum or ??; Russian Dove, Pearl, or ??

By Karen Robbins

Platinum Dumbo?

Clarinda MacLean, e-mail
Q I am a Southern California rat enthusiast. Can you please help me to determine what color my rat is and how much the asking price should be? I attached a picture of the litter she came out of, and two pictures I took of her today. She is a very light colored Dumbo Berkshire with dark ruby eyes. She is about 2 months old as of now. Mom is a Dumbo Blue Berkshire, dad is Dumbo Agouti Berkshire. All of my rats are fed a mix of lab blocks and grain mix, and none have mites or respiratory disease. I have only bred my rats one time and both parents are still very healthy. I am not going to breed again in the future though. Any information you can give me would be extremely helpful. Thanks for your time.

A My best guess from one of the photos, is it looks like a Platinum (the other photo it looks like a Beige). Platinum rats are a plain gray color with no blue tones in them; Beige is a light tan color with dark ruby eyes. In the one photo it looks like she has dark ruby eyes. Of course seeing the rat in person would be better to give a more accurate description.

In the photo of the litter, it looks like Agouti, Black, Fawn, Blue, Beige?, and Platinum? You could also possibly have ruby-eyed Blue (would look like a very pale washed-out Beige). The one Hooded has a fairly nice spine marking and the babies look healthy and well fed.

As far as price, that is your choice. Everyone has their own prices for their rats.

If you have other questions on breeding, you can see the AFRMA Breeding Book or the many articles on our web site.

Is This A Platinum or Dove Rat?

Lauren Holtzclaw, Legends Of Rock Rattery (LORR), GA, Facebook
Q Once again I’m questioning this color . . . apparently I had Lilac confused with Dove and what not. Out of every litter I’ve had in the past almost 4 years from this line there have been only two with this color, every other baby has been Mink, Blue, Lilac, and Black. There have only been three Blues in the past almost 4 years...unless I’m wrong. Russian Blues are very new to me so maybe I got it confused. But if they are Russian, I guess this color would make sense. I’ve always thought she was Dove, some people say Russian Silver.

When they were first born, I called them Platinum. Then other breeders gave me a million different opinions and I got confused. I know my colors, except this one little turd. This line changes color when they molt their baby coat like crazy.

She does have ticking—can you see the ticking in the second photo? I’ve had a Russian Dove come through here (a rescue) but she doesn’t look like one. She is odd-eyed.

Platinum? rat
Platinum? rat in question.
Platinum? rat
...and the same rat showing the ticking. Photos from Lauren Holtzclaw.

A If your rat is gray (like gray paint), I would say it is Platinum (Lilac/Mink mm + Blue gg) which gives ruby eyes. The other way to make Platinum is Chocolate bb + Blue gg and that gives black eyes. For Russian Dove, that color looks brownish and is made from Russian Blue dd + Mink mm. For Silver Blue (a.k.a. N.F.R.S. Russian Silver) they are Russian Blue dd + Blue gg and look similar to Sky Blue but brighter in color and with the Russian ticking. Russian Blue looks like the Russian Blue cats or Blue seen in dogs, rabbits, mice, etc. Lilac rats can range from really brown-gray to very dark gray to the ideal pastel dove-gray. On the monitors here the first photo looks more like a Platinum rat. Our Rat Color Standards Book has photos of each color of rat with each standard and may help you ID your rat (also check out the Rat Varieties & Colors posters for photos). Also, the Rat Standards pages has photos of the various colors. She has a nice blaze!

In the second photo it looks more like she has the Russian ticking. If the rat looks brown, then it would be Russian Dove. If she is gray with the Russian ticking, she could be Russian Platinum.

Gray Rats: Russian Platinum or ??

Mayumi Anderson, Bii Rattery, CA, e-mail
Q I’ve been getting this gray color is some of my rats for the last year. I only have Russian Blue, Mink, and Pearl in their background that I know of. At first I thought it was Silver Mink. What color is it? Do you know the name of this color?

Russian Platinum rat
Russian Platinum owned and bred by Mayumi Anderson, Bii Rattery. Photo ©2011 Karen Robbins.

A In the photos when they were only a few days old, they look like Russian Blue but in the photos when they are a couple weeks and have fur, they do look gray rather than Russian Blue. Having seen them in person now, they are gray rats, not brown, and not just Russian Blue—there is something else causing the color but they are ticked like the Russian colors. They look like possibly Russian Platinum but the few Russian Platinums I’ve seen in the past are a little different/darker than yours. Try test breeding this color with Russian Blue and another with Mink to verify that this is indeed Russian Blue and to see if they are also Mink. Normally Russian Blue plus Mink makes Russian Dove—a brownish rat with the Russian ticking. To make regular Platinum it is Blue plus either Mink/Lilac (makes ruby eyes) or Chocolate (to make black-eyed). But since you aren’t getting Chocolate or Blue, it’s hard to say if there is a third color involved. If yours are just Russian Blue + Mink, then obviously yours are a different color than what we have seen in the past with most RB + Mink (Russian Dove). It is very different and since you are getting the color consistently, keep working on them and let us know the outcome of the test breedings.

Russian Dove, Pearl, or ??

Meli Ann, Facebook
Q Would you say this guy is a Russian Dove, Pearl, or something else? He was a rescue so I have no clue what the siblings and parents looked like.

Russian Dove, Pearl, or ??

A Looks too gray on the monitor here to be Russian Dove (they are normally more brown) and doesn’t look like Pearl (are an off white/pale gray at this age). Perhaps Russian Platinum? Would need more photos to be able to tell better. *

Back to top

January 2, 2019