See How Easily a Rat Can Climb Up Your Toilet
It’s a nightmare scenario – it’s the middle of the night, and you must pee. You take a quick trip to the darkened bathroom, lift the toilet lid and – SURPRISE! – There’s a rat dog-paddling (ok, rat-paddling?) in your toilet bowl. Ewwww! Unfortunately, you still have to pee, and flushing didn’t get rid of the rat – it just made it paddle more vigorously. This heart-stopping incident happened a couple of times to a friend of mine who lived in an apartment in an older section of Baltimore near the waterfront. His story inspired a short, and mediocre, poem from another friend:
I hope I never have to pee,
And find a rat staring back at me!
A National Geographic video answers all the questions you never had about how rats get into toilet bowls. It turns out rats are expert swimmers with incredible stamina. They can tread water up to three days and can hold their breath up to three minutes underwater. If a rat can squeeze its head through a hole (about the size of a quarter), it can get the rest of its body through, thanks to ribs that hinge on its spine and effortlessly collapse as it contorts through the hole. This talent for long-distance swimming and ability to twist through small holes has allowed rats to become global colonizers along with humans – which is why it’s an excellent practice to peek in the toilet before plopping down on it to take care of business.
Read more at nationalgeographic.com.
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