Small pets can be a great way for a family to find out if a pet is right for them. They allow you to see how everyone will behave with pets at home. And they are usually less work than a larger pet.
But what is the best one for you?
Hamsters or Gerbils
Many families will start with hamsters or gerbils. They are small and look cuddly. They can be handled and played with. But they don’t need a lot of attention. They just need a clean cage, food and water, something to chew on, and some toys to keep them stimulated. Their lifespans are relatively short as well. For many reasons these may be the best small pet.
Read more about Hamsters
Pet Rats have become more popular again after the movie Ratatouille came out. After years of working in the pet industry I have seen this again and again. Families see a movie featuring a certain animal and the children beg to get that animal. Well meaning parents then buy the pet for their children. All too often this quick decision results in a family getting a pet that just isn’t right for them. That isn’t good for the family, or the pet.
This isn’t to say that pet rats are not good pets … I just want to stress that it is important to be sure that a pet rat is right for you (or ANY other pet for that matter).
Who doesn’t love a pet rabbit? I love playing with and hold rabbits. A pet rabbit can be a wonderful house pet. They are so soft to touch, adorable, and quiet. But pet rabbits require more care than you might think. Their dietary needs are specific. And they are more delicate than you might imagine. It is important that they are handled with care and picked up properly. And please, make sure they have a big cage and that they get out for exercise every day. Rabbits were made to run
More about Pet Rabbits
Chinchillas as Pets
Perhaps you are thinking about a Chinchilla? They are absolutely adorable. Read about Chincillas as pets before deciding. They are nocturnal, skittish and require a large cage with a few levels. They need stimulation in the form of toys that they can chew and wheels. I would not recommend a Chinchilla as your first pet. Especially for young children. Keep in mind too that they live for 15 – 20 years!
Learn more about Chinchillas as Pets
Pet turtles are very interesting and a popular choice because they appear easy to care for. Properly cared for a turtle can live long enough to be passed through generations! They have specific environmental needs. The right size of tank, the lighting, the amount of shade, a basking lamp, clean water and special diet must all be considered.
Learn more about pet turtles
Pet Birds are very popular. There are hundreds of varieties to choose from. Many live for a very long time so it is important to research them too.
Other Small Pets
The pet mouse is also a popular choice. As is the pet Guinea Pig. Cute and cuddly. Can also be smelly!
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