Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Rat and Mouse

ratRat vs Mouse

Rat and mouse look alike and it can be difficult to make out a difference between the two. As it is believed that the rat and the mouse come from the same ancestor, they have many similarities. Even then one can come across many differences between rats and mice.

First of all looking at the size, a rat is much larger than a mouse. While an adult rat may weigh about 13 to 23 ounces, a mouse will only have a weight of about one to 2 ounces. In length also, the rat is much longer than the mouse. When an adult rat has a length of about 9 to 11 inch, the mouse will only have a length of 3 to 4 inches.

Coming to the physical features, the rat and mouse have very significant difference. When talking about the tail, rat has a thick and heavy tail. On the other hand, a mouse has only a very thin tail. The mouse has a pointed face when compared to the rat. When comparing the chromosomes, the rat has a higher pair of chromosomes, ie it has 22 pairs. On the contrary, the mouse has only a 20 pair chromosome.

Coming to the gestation period, the rats have a longer gestation period than the mice. When the gestation period of rats is about 20 to 24 days, it is about 20 days for mice. While the rat lactate for almost three weeks, the mouse lactates for two weeks. Though both rats and mice are born blind, the mouse opens its eyes in about 3 days when compared to 6 days for a rat. The fur starts to come up in rats in about 15 days. But in mice the fur starts to appear in about ten days.

Another difference that can be seen between rats and mice is in their food search. When the rats go far away from their homes in search of food, the mouse never venture very far away in search of food.

When digging a burrow, the rats dig deep and long burrows. On the other hand, the mice do not dig deep and even if they do so, they may dig only to about a foot. Well, talking about the characteristics, a rat is more aggressive than a mouse.


1. The rat and mouse are different in their physical characteristics including size and length.

2. The rats and mice also differ in their natural instincts like food search and digging burrows.

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