Do Rat and Mice Eat Cockroaches? Surprising Facts

Are you looking for the answer to this question: Do rats eat cockroaches? If it is so, then, you are at the right place, so you don’t need to go anywhere else.

Rats are living organisms and compete for survival, so in this blog, I will tell you about what rats eat for a living and whether they eat roaches or not.

You have often heard about the enemies of cockroaches, so here in this essay, I will raise the curtain and provide details about these predators.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s get started without future delay, as there is much more to discover.

Do Rats Eat Cockroaches?

Yes, rats eat cockroaches for survival; if you do not provide them food for one week, they will find other sources, and roaches are one of these. Whether the cockroach is living or not, they can eat it. However, research has shown that if you provide them with two roaches, one male and the other female, they will go for a female one.

Rats have biting solid structures and are the competitors of roaches in terms of running; they can chase cockroaches very well and can prey on them.

The notable point is that rats are also flexible insects and can feed on seeds, fish, and other food, so cockroaches are not their priority.

Introduction to Rats

Rats belong to the group of mammals, which means they have hairy bodies, and if we talk about their further classification, they are rodents.

Some mammals, like rats, are also included in the group of rodents, and this is because of the structure and growth of their distinctive and unique teeth.

Rats are known as remarkable stalkers, and the reason behind this is their running speed. So they can easily prey on insects by running behind them.

Rats are also known as the enemy of roaches, which means that if they get a chance to prey on a roach, especially in starving conditions, they will never miss it.

Moreover, rats prefer a diet high in nutritional value, and cockroaches can fulfill their need for protein, fats, and other nutrients.

Characteristics of Different Rats

Rats are also known as experimental animals as they are extensively used by scientists and biologists for their experiments. I have also done some experiments using rats.

Before discussing them, let’s look at some rats and their characteristics in the table below.

1General size of a rat5 inches 12 cm
2Size of Bosavi woolly rat32.2 inches
3Weight of Bosavi woolly rat3.3 lbs
4Size of Osgood’s Vietnamese rat5-7 inches

Is it Harmful to Rats to Eat Cockroaches?

The physiology or the internal system of rats is similar to humans; therefore, they are also used in some experiments, such as to check the effect of decaying food on the human body, rats are used.

Roaches serve as food for rats, but some roaches can cause health problems in rats. First of all, let’s see which type of roaches are healthy for rats.

1. Healthy Cockroaches For Rats

Cockroaches that are specifically used to feed rats are safe for them. If you keep cockroaches in a clean environment and feed them nutritious and clean food, they are healthy for rats.

  • If you feed your roach a diet rich in protein, it will affect the defense system of rats and make it strong enough to combat diseases.
  • Moreover, cockroaches that are fed and bred at home are more healthy and as compared to one from outside.
  • Hissing roaches are considered to be a good meal choice for rats, and this is because of the large number of proteins present in them.
  • Dubia roaches are also one of the best feeders of some reptiles and most mammals like rats because they don’t carry harmful pathogens.

2. Harmful Cockroaches For Rats

I experimented to select the best cockroach for my pet rat. I fed it different types of roaches every day and observed the results.

On the first day, I captured a cockroach from the trash box of my kitchen and served it to my pet rat. After a few hours, the rat got diarrhea and had stomach problems.

On the second day, I got a cockroach bathing in the rain and served it to my pet rat. The results were not good as my pet rat got some infections.

On the third day, I tried a dead cockroach that died due to exposure to a pesticide. You will be surprised to know the results as my pet rat got severe stomach pains for two to three days.

I continued feeding it dead roaches, and the rat ultimately died. Now you will definitely want to know why, so let me explain.

Normal cockroaches that are found in our kitchens, trash boxes, and bathroom pipes carry a lot of germs, so they are dirty and can upset the rat’s stomach.

Similarly, they also carry some harmful bacterias that cause both infections in humans and animals. Moreover, a dead cockroach can be worse for rats, especially if the reason for its death is a pesticide.

Pesticides contain harmful chemicals that become absorbed in the cockroach body and cause death. The poison can also be transferred to a rat if it feeds on it.

Why are Rats Attracted to Cockroaches?

To explain its answer, I want to ask which food is your favorite and why? I am sure that the ingredients in the food will be the reason for choosing any food.

So the same as in the case of rats. Actually, cockroaches contain proteins and fats, and these nutrients are tasty for rats. 

If you serve a clean cockroach-like dubia roach to your rat, they will find it even tastier. A rat’s reaction to such a cockroach would be similar to yours when you see any fried, boiled, or salty food.

Moreover, rats like meat, so they prefer a cockroach with more meat. So if you want to trap a rat by feeding it a cockroach, choose one that is healthy.

Baby roaches are small and contain fewer nutrients and meat; therefore, rats prefer adult roaches over small ones. In addition, rats are also attracted to female cockroaches.

Female cockroaches entertain rats with small amounts of milk in their stomachs. This milk is sugary and fatty, and rats love the sweet taste.

In addition, the milk of cockroaches acts the same way as that of mammals. It helps to enhance growth and assist development; therefore, rats love to feed on female cockroaches.

We all love to eat chicken, but some of us like chess pieces, and some of us love to eat leg pieces, the same as rats. Rats love to eat the mid and the central part, which is the abdomen.

If you have ever served a cockroach to your rat, you must have noticed that it leaves the legs, wings, and head of the cockroach because of the complex structure of these parts.

Are Roaches Afraid of Rats?

Roaches are afraid of their predators, those who feed on them, and unfortunately, rats are one of them. So, yes, they are afraid of rats and hide to avoid them.

But if you are experiencing severe cockroach infestation and thinking of keeping a rat, then it is not a good choice. A rat will eat cockroaches only when there is nothing to eat.

Rats like cockroaches because of their taste and nutritious value but have not yet added roaches to their preferred foods list.

Actually, rats have to choose between a wide variety of foods before coming toward cockroaches, so they can use cockroaches as an option.

Do Cockroaches and Rats Share the Same House?

You will be surprised if I tell you that cockroaches and rats can share the same house. Yes, this is true because their preferences are the same. So let’s have a look at some of their similarities.

  • Both cockroaches and rats have the same goal in life, which is survival.
  • They both compete with their fellows for food and shelter.
  • Both cockroaches and rats use dark places as their shelter.
  • They both prefer a place where there is a variety of food, such as fruits, vegetables, and meats.
  • Both cockroaches and rats use dirty places as their habitat so that they can get enough material to feed on.
  • They hide from predators and usually come out of their shelters at night to get food.
  • They both can use dead bodies and decaying matter as their last choice of survival.

Can a Rat Eat Cockroach Bait?

To explain its answer, I would like to provide a small introduction to roach bait. Actually, roach bait is used to kill a cockroach smartly.

A roach bait contains sugar and fats that attract cockroaches. Cockroaches are in love with sweet and fatty foods, so, therefore, these nutrients are used to trap cockroaches.

Along with these favorite foods of cockroaches, it also contains a small amount of poison that helps to kill cockroaches.

As I have discussed above, cockroaches and rats have the same taste in terms of food. Rats can eat the favorite foods of cockroaches.

So rats are also attracted to roach baits, and they can eat them. So now the question arises what will be the effect of the poison on rats?

The effect of poison depends upon its amount in the bait, as there is a well-known saying that the amount of poison selects its result.

If your pet rat has eaten roach bait, don’t worry, as the amount of poison in the bait is too low to kill a rat. However, your rat may experience some stomach problems.

Methods to Get Rid of Rats and Cockroaches

As I have mentioned above, cockroaches and rats prefer a home with the same conditions. So if you have rats in your house, you are at risk of developing cockroach infestation and vice versa.

Don’t need to panic, as I have provided some methods which you can use to keep both cockroaches and rats away from your residence.

  • You can use different traps for rats and bait for roaches available in the market. Buy these traps and bait and place them in expected areas.
  • They both choose a place from where they can quickly get water and food, so always consider emptying your trash box when it becomes filled.
  • Keep your food covered and away from the reach of rats and cockroaches.
  • If you want to get rid of rats, keeping a cat may work, as cats are famous hunters of mice.
  • Rats and roaches enter your house through sanitary pipes, bathroom holes, and other small places, so if you block or cover these routers permanently, you can avoid their entrance.

What is More Threatening, Having Cockroaches or Rats?

Both cockroaches and rats are known as pets. They both are proven to spread diseases by carrying pathogens like bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

Both like dirty places because of the presence of food, but they also pick pathogens with them from such places.

As both can spread diseases, we can decide on the basis of diseases. So as the diseases spread by rats are proven to be more dangerous than those spread by cockroaches, therefore rats win this battle.

But if we talk about the efficiency of spreading disease, then cockroaches are dominant. So, if you have any of these two pests in your house, it is an alarming sign, so be careful.

Concluding Lines:

If you want to get rid of roaches, a question may have arisen in your mind: Do rats eat cockroaches?

Rats eat roaches, but they don’t prefer roaches because they can eat a variety of food. They can eat cockroaches, but they will do so only in a competing environment or unfavorable conditions.

Moreover, cockroaches and rats have many things in common and can even live in the same house. Therefore, I have listed some methods above which you can follow to avoid both of these pests.

I hope you find this blog helpful.


What Animal Likes to Eat Cockroaches?

Cockroaches can serve as a food source for mammals, reptiles, and even birds. For example, Dubai cockroaches are a good food source for reptiles like lizards and turtles.

Are Roaches Afraid of Dogs?

Cockroaches are tiny insects, and they are afraid of anything that is bigger in size, so on seeing dogs, their brain generates signals, and they feel danger.

Do Cockroaches Go Away in Winter?

Cockroaches prefer a warm shelter, so during the winter season, they consider remaining in their dark shelters, while some cockroaches also migrate in search of suitable shelters.

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