When you think of rats, you don't normally get that warm and cuddly feeling. However, some respect these rodents and believe that they should be treated better.

Let's get into it.

The city of Portland is addressing a large rat infestation at Harbor View Memorial Park, according to WGME. What they have set out to do is post traps and rat poison to kill the rats. This is following the clearing the homeless camp that was stationed there. It is reported that the homeless people were domesticating the rats and treating them as pets.

The controversy has arose when rat rescuers has disagreed with the cities methods of clearing the rodents out of that area by killing them.

Some people are opposing and advocating for humane alternatives. They believe, according to the article, that over half of the rats were domesticated pets that escaped that homeless camp.

Furthermore, they believe that these traps and poison could harm the environment and hurt other animals. The rat rescuers, like Brittney Smith, have spoken out and argued to save the rats. She talked about their potential as pets.

Brittney even took in a rat as a pet and named her Sheila, saying in part,

If she was a wild rat that wasn't domesticated, she would not be sitting in my arms like this. She's not a biter, she has no interest in biting. That's their only defense is to bite. She doesn't have that defense mechanism, she doesn't understand. She’s pretty scared, but she's a very good girl, she's very sweet, she has so much potential...

The rat rescuers are arguing against extermination by saying that these are not wild rats, but pets that need to be saved and cared for.

As the article states, the Animal Refuge League and the city are stressing that this could cause health risks, and that the extermination is a necessity.

The exterminations are expected to continue for another week.

The rat rescuers have now created a GoFundMe page to help save the rats. As of today, they have raised $1,400, and their goal is to get to $3,000.  As they go out into the cold to try and trap and save these rats, they are asking for financial help to "cover adequate care, transportation costs, supplies and media coverage, medical and legal counsel and more," according to GoFundMe.

What do you think? Should the rats be saved or exterminated?

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