Rats are generally very clean animals, and like cats, they clean themselves. Everyonce in a while your rat may be in need of a bath though. If you feel your rat needs a bath, be sure not to use a human shampoo, for this can be harmful to your rat. Use dish soap, or puppy or kitten shampoo. Also avoid flea shampoo, this can also harm your rat. Be sure to keep the soap away from the rat's face as the soap can make it sick if swallowed, and can hurt the rat's eyes. Only use a pea-sized amount of soap on the rat's back and lather, then rinse. If you accidently get soap in the rat's eyes, gently rinse then with cool water. Use warm water while bathing the rat. If the soap gets in the rats mouth, encourage the rat to drink lots of water, and watch your rat for a few days to be sure it has no signs of sickness. Some rats do not clean their tails very well. To clean the rats tail, you can use a little soap during the bath, or scrub the tail with an old, wet toothbrush. Some rats will enjoy the bath, others will not, if your rat does not seem to like the bath, try to avoid bathing unless you feel it is absolutely nessacary. Be sure thew water isn't too hot or too cold for you rat. Never bathe a baby rat, they may have very irritable skin.