In the Hindu religion, rats represent foresight and prudence, and white ones are very lucky. Mooshika is the name of the steed that Ganesh - god of new beginnings and of fire, knowledge, wisdom, literature and worldly success - rides upon. The steed, of course, is the intelligent and gentle rat. "Mooshika" means "little hoarder."
For a humane but clear-eyed and comprehensive look at the rat, go here.
Read this important note:
Feeding live animals to another animal is NOT natural and healthy, but a serious act of cruelty. There are many humane alternatives that veterinarians recommend. You can substitute humanely pre-killed, frozen (not frozen-to-death, as some pet stores do) prey - but I do not love this idea because it is still a waste of a life, when there are other meat by-products such as poultry necks or packaged diets. A supply of meal worms, eggs in the shell, and other supplemented alternatives is just as available as live mice and rats. Avail people of this information!