Yes, Phuket is full of rats. Big black rats, not cute mice. I traveled to many places in South East Asia, yet this is the first time I had rats running under my chair and table while having diner or drinks, or seeing them on the sidewalk while waiting at the traffic light. One rat once in a while is ok, but 5 rats in less than 10 minutes while trying to eat a noodle soup is not nice at all. But seeing the amount of rubbish that is left on the side of the roads, this comes as no surprise.
One more reason why it is important to choose a clean, well-maintained hotel. I wouldn’t like it too much to share the room with some of these !