Pocket pets are what people call small domestic animals such as gerbils, hamsters, ferrets and rabbits. Many people opt to adopt a pocket pet as opposed to a dog or cat because they are easier to take care of, and they dont require as much attention as their canine and feline counterparts. Whether you live in a small space and cannot have a large animal, youre gone all the time and cannot properly care for a more active animal or whether you just want a pet that is low maintenance and relaxed, pocket pets make great companions for the non-dog and non-cat people. With that in mind, this guide is meant to help you decide which pocket pet is ideal for your lifestyle and pet-ownership goals.
Oftentimes, this means investing in a terrarium, tank or cage, and accessories designed with your future pets needs in mind. They might buy a hutch for their rabbit and line it with a thin layer of shavings, or they might invest in a small tank for their gecko and call it a day, but these types of environments are not acceptable.
Many smaller animals still need plenty of space to run around in, foliage to hide beneath, shavings to burrow into and toys to play with. While owning and caring for small animals might be easy and inexpensive, setting up their living environment is often a costly endeavor. Some small animals, such as chinchillas and rabbits , need a companion to remain emotionally happy (which can positively affect their lifespan).
Rabbits are also naturally skittish creatures, so they need plenty of coverage to hide from predators, such as cats and foxes. Mice are interesting animals to watch, as theyre very active and playful and able to climb robes, run around in tunnels and put on a show for children. Rats are hugely fond of social interaction, and they are highly intelligent, making them great pets for children and adults alike.
While a large aquarium might work for a mouse, rats need a cage with multiple levels, similar to a hutch you might buy for a gerbil or hamster. Hermit crabs dont get enough credit as pets, which is a shame, as they are highly active, interesting and social little creatures. While hermit crabs can be great fun for kidsafter all, they get to pick out cool new shells as their little friend outgrows hersthey require more commitment than most children are ready for.
Though reptiles such as snakes, lizards and frogs are relatively low maintenance, setting up the proper environment for them can be a difficult and expensive task. Sea monkeys are ideal for small children who just want to look at things moving but not actual care for a live creature.
What is the easiest small pet to take care of?
We certainly don’t need to list the reasons why owning a pet is a great idea, but we do know that if you have a busy life, owning a pet may be overwhelming. ….Here are our top 7 best low maintenance pets..Taking care of a hamster is easy once they have the proper cage.
What is the cleanest small pet?
Budgies. Budgies are a great pet option as they are very easy to look after. ….Hamsters. The benefit of having a hamster is that they are incredibly easy to look after. ….Guinea pigs. ….Cats. ….Dogs.
What is the easiest animal to take care of as a pet?
Gerbils are popular pets and, like hamsters, are small, inexpensive, and relatively easy to care for. You’ll need a good cage with a bedding area and a nesting box, as well as a solid wheel for exercise. Gerbil diets should consist of formulated gerbil food.
Which pet is low maintenance?
1. Budgie Bird. The little Budgie bird is the most popular pet animal after dogs and cats. They also rank high among low maintenance bird pets due to their size and how well they do in captivity.
Don’t have space for a big pet? Don’t worry. There are still plenty of friendly, palm-sized options your child will love. Here are the best small pets for kids.
If you think they’ll lose interest in caring for the hamster, these years might seem long, but they could also seem too short if the pet dies, giving your child their first exposure to death . Unless your child has experienced the loss of a family member or friend, the experience will undoubtedly be upsetting, though it can also provide the opportunity for an important life lesson.
These cuddly creatures are ideal for a kid who is just learning to take care of a pet because a guinea pig is less likely to get frustrated with its young caretaker. Guinea pigs have a longer life span around five to seven yearsthan hamsters do, and they require more time and effort because of their bigger appetite for lots of hay and vegetables. It’s easy to feed gerbils because they have a standard diet similar to that of rats and hamsters: rodent pellets and food blocks, along with some supplemental seed mixes.
Since rats enjoy interacting with people and things, providing a number of toys and accessories, from ropes to paper-towel rolls, will keep them happy and occupied.
If you feel that you would love to have a pet in your life, but don’t necessarily have the time to invest in a high-energy Goldendoodle or delicate Yorkie, there are tons of other low-maintenance pets that are just as adorable. With requirements as low as simply some feeding time and playtime, there are many pets you might not be thinking about that can fit right into your busy work life and commitments. Even then, they’ll still add a special magic to your life like only a pet can, and accompany you in both the good and bad times. These are the most adorable low-maintenance pets you can get prepare for some serious cuteness.
We certainly dont need to list the reasons why owning a pet is a great idea, but we do know that if you have a busy life, owning a pet may be overwhelming. Luckily, there are many low maintenance pets if you are still looking to cuddle up with, look at, or adore a cute animal.
While it is a myth that goldfish can survive long-term in a small tank without a filter, they can handle a normal fishbowl while youre getting set up. The sea monkey, created in 1957 as a hybrid of the brine shrimp is a great low maintenance pet that you can actually grow yourself!
All they need is a warm tank, some foliage, and some mice or rats to feast on every few weeks, depending on their size and breed.
While hamsters are fun and active pets, they are nocturnal, which means that they can be a disappointing pet for small children. However, if you work long days and are home alone only at night, a hamster might be ideal for you, as a hamster is great company in the evening hours.Hamsters are relatively low maintenance and can entertain themselves with a hamster wheel, tubes and toys. They need a wire cage with a solid bottom to live in that is nicely padded with shavings.
Guinea pigs and hamsters are often lumped into the same category, but the truth is that they are very different animals. Guinea pigs are much more active than hamsters, and have a much more expressive personality. Once you get to know your piglet, you’ll be able to tell when he’s happy, sad, mad or excited. Unlike hamsters, which can spend a great deal of time in their own little space and be happy, guinea pigs prefer a large open space where they can run around, graze freely and be safe from predators. Guinea pigs also need to be with others of their species, as loneliness tends to set in with these animals, which contributes to depression.
Many people think that rabbits make great pets for small children, but in actuality, rabbits are difficult to care for and temperamental. That is not to say that they don’t make great pets—they do!—they are just not the “easy animal” everyone assumes them to be. Rabbits are extremely complex creatures, and they need a very specific environment to be happy. For starters, rabbits cannot be placed in an enclosed hutch and left alone. They need an enclosed space for sleeping and resting, but that space needs to be attached to an outdoor area where they can run around and play safely. Rabbits are also naturally skittish creatures, so they need plenty of coverage to hide from predators, such as cats and foxes.Finally, rabbits need a companion of their own kind in order to thrive both physically and emotionally.
Chinchillas are cute, cuddly little creatures that tend to make people think of a little puppy, kitten and hamster all at once. These animals are extremely intelligent creatures with a happy disposition. Once you get to know them and them you, you will find that you can even teach them basic tricks for the right treats.Like hamsters, chinchillas are nocturnal animals and so might not be the best animal for small children who go to bed early. If you are buying a chinchilla for your children, consider their average lifespan of 15 years. That is a long time to own a small pet, so really consider if your child will continue to love and nurture this pet when they’re 12, 16 or 18 years old.Chinchillas don’t require much maintenance, but they do need a fairly large cage with a dust bath in it. Chinchillas are very enthusiastic about their dust baths, so if you’re going to adopt one of these creatures, you need to be prepared to sweep up and clean up dust on a frequent basis.Chinchillas, like guinea pigs and rabbits, need a companion to live with.
Mice and Rats
Mice are interesting animals to watch, as they’re very active and playful and able to climb robes, run around in tunnels and put on a show for children. However, they are very squeamish and not easy to hold. If you want to buy a small animal for your child to hold and cuddle, you may want to consider buying them a rat.Rats are hugely fond of social interaction, and they are highly intelligent, making them great pets for children and adults alike. Without attention, rats can become very depressed, thereby shortening their lifespan.Rats and mice both need ample space, though rats need more than mice. While a large aquarium might work for a mouse, rats need a cage with multiple levels, similar to a hutch you might buy for a gerbil or hamster.
Parrots are wonderful, human like pets, as they’re playful, lively and intelligent. However, like humans, parrots have the potential to live for up to 80 years. For this reason, it is not recommended that a parent buy their small child a parrot. If you’re going to invest in a parrot, you should be old enough and at a stage in your life to make that type of long-term commitment, especially considering that parrots become very attached to their humans over time.Parrots cannot be placed in a small birdcage—they need an area the size of a small room (at the very least) to fly around in. Their cage should be cleaned every other day and lined with a thin layer of gravel.
Hermit crabs don’t get enough credit as pets, which is a shame, as they are highly active, interesting and social little creatures. While hermit crabs can be great fun for kids—after all, they get to pick out cool new shells as their little friend outgrows hers—they require more commitment than most children are ready for. Hermit crabs can live for up to 30 years when taken care of properly. Proper care includes providing them with an environment with a continuous temperature of 75 degrees. They love humidity, so daily misting is encouraged. They also need sand to dig in, rocks to climb and places to hide out in.
Ferrets are a lot like cats: independent, curious and mischievous. However, they make great pets, as they’re highly energetic and intelligent. Children especially love ferrets, and if trained properly, they can be the loyal and low-maintenance companion you desire. Keep in mind though that because of their curiosity, your home should be ferret-proofed, with all things that could potentially harm or trap your pet put up and out of reach.
Though reptiles such as snakes, lizards and frogs are relatively low maintenance, setting up the proper environment for them can be a difficult and expensive task. Reptiles need a just right environment to thrive, which should be moderated with a heat lamp. They also need plenty of foliage (preferably foliage similar to their native habitat), hiding spots and ground covering.Reptiles eat live prey, which can make some people squeamish. If you’re not into feeding live mice or bugs to a creature, a reptile may not be the best pet for you.
Assuming that you’re buying a gold fish or some other non-tropical fish, a fish may be the ideal low-maintenance small pet you’re looking for. While you would still need to invest in a nice tank, filters, rocks or pebbles and foliage, beyond that, caring for a fish requires very little investment of your time. You just need to feed them daily, make sure that the pH balance of their water is good and clean their tank weekly.However, if you invest in tropical or exotic fish, your time and money investment could skyrocket, as many fish require a precise environment to thrive.
If each of the above animals requires more work than you’re willing to invest, you may do well to buy a pack of sea monkeys. Sea monkeys are ideal for small children who just want to look at things moving but not actual care for a live creature. They require hardly any maintenance, and only need to be fed growth food every five to seven days. If the water starts to get too cloudy though, you can negate the food for awhile longer. Sea monkeys live up to two years, the ideal lifespan for small children that want a pet but that don’t firmly grasp what owning a pet entails.
This classic small pet is easy to care for and can even be trained to use litter. That said, hamsters can be rather nippy, and small breeds (females in particular) can be quite aggressive, warns Katherine Quesenberry, DVM, MPH, DABVP, an exotic-pets expert at New York City’s Animal Medical Center. This makes some hamsters difficult to handle. Dr. Graham recommends getting a larger breed such as the Syrian hamster, which is more likely to adapt to home care.A hamster should be kept in a roomy cage, with tunnels and nesting areas for sleeping—but make sure you can clean the cage easily. Hamsters will also typically live for about three years, so consider how much your child will want to interact with it. If you think they’ll lose interest in caring for the hamster, these years might seem long, but they could also seem too short if the pet dies, giving your child their first exposure to death. Unless your child has experienced the loss of a family member or friend, the experience will undoubtedly be upsetting, though it can also provide the opportunity for an important life lesson. “It can be sad but also a way to introduce the idea that everything dies,” says Dr. Graham. “You can be there as your child goes through the experience.”
While guinea pigs are in the same rodent family as hamsters, their demeanor couldn’t be more different. These rodents are gentle and have a sweet disposition, which makes them less likely to bite. Plus, they can be sociable, which means they won’t mind being handled—as long as they’re held properly—and they won’t mind if young kids want to interact with them.These cuddly creatures are ideal for a kid who is just learning to take care of a pet because a guinea pig is less likely to get frustrated with its young caretaker. Consider getting another guinea pig as a companion, however, so they won’t get lonely.Guinea pigs have a longer life span—around five to seven years—than hamsters do, and they require more time and effort because of their bigger appetite for lots of hay and vegetables. This appetite can make guinea pigs messier than other small mammals, so you might have to clean their cage more frequently as well.
“Gerbils are easy to take care of but not very hands-on,” Dr. Quesenberry says. “They’re fine for kids who don’t want to be that involved.” Unlike hamsters and guinea pigs, gerbils have a relatively short lifespan—about two years. It’s easy to feed gerbils because they have a standard diet similar to that of rats and hamsters: rodent pellets and food blocks, along with some supplemental seed mixes.Gerbils are not usually aggressive, so they can also be held, but they are very fast, so it won’t be easy to hold them for long. This quickness means a lot of activity in the cage, which could pique your child’s curiosity. Gerbils are more sensitive to their environment than other small animals, however, and humidity can give them respiratory and fur problems. If you are concerned that your environment might be too humid for a gerbil, consult a veterinarian.
A rat might not be the first pet on your list, but “they make some of the best pets for small children,” says Dr. Graham. “Rats can be calm, laid-back, not as nippy as other small mammals, and they can be handled a lot.”They make ideal pets if you want your child to develop a strong bond with a pet, because they’re interactive and able to learn tricks, such as retrieving objects and navigating mazes or obstacle courses. Since rats enjoy interacting with people and things, providing a number of toys and accessories, from ropes to paper-towel rolls, will keep them happy and occupied. Rats are also easy to care for and require a standard rodent diet of food blocks. However, like gerbils, rats have a short lifespan ranging from two to three years.
You can consider these popular small pets for kids as long as there’s adult supervision. Like guinea pigs, rabbits are good for younger kids because they usually have a gentle and sociable nature. While larger breeds can be especially gentle, Dr. Quesenberry advises that all rabbits should be spayed or neutered to prevent any aggression (and to prevent uterine cancer in females). This is especially important if you want to keep more than one rabbit in the same space.A rabbit can live from 8 to 12 years. They can also be litter-trained, and they’re easy to care for. Dr. Quesenberry notes that a proper diet is important to ensure the animal’s health and happiness: grass hay, rabbit pellets, and vegetables.
Chinchillas are a more exotic option for kids who want to watch their pet rather than directly interact with it. Although they’re gentle, chinchillas can be very agile and quick, and they may not be appropriate for young children who aren’t able to handle them, Dr. Quesenberry says. They need a diet of chinchilla pellets and hay, with vegetables as a treat.Unlike their small-pet counterparts, chinchillas should be provided with a dust bath instead of a water bath. Buy chinchilla dust (specially formulated to mimic the dust in their native habitat) and place it in a sturdy bowl or deep dish, or purchase a dust house. A chinchilla needs a dust bath two to three times a week, given outside of its cage; the cage should be multilevel so it can climb up and down.With a lifespan of around 12 to 15 years, chinchillas tend to live much longer than guinea pigs and other rodents.
Taking care of a hamster is easy once they have the proper cage. Hamsters are generally loving and docile animals but are very curious making them fun to watch. Putting down bedding, such as paper bedding which absorbs urine will ensure that you won’t need to worry about their bathroom needs as routinely as you would with a dog. The best part? Hamsters are sold at almost all pet stores!
If you claim that you are not a “cat person”, have you ever tried owning a cat? Cats are actually pretty independent and self-sufficient creatures. While they tend to go off exploring and enjoy their alone time, don’t leave your kitty for too long. Cats still
Ahh, the goldfish. Generally, the most low maintenance pet of all. Makes sense why it is usually a child’s first pet, right? Taking care of a goldfish is incredibly easy. While it is a myth that goldfish can survive
If you are looking for a pet that will be as happy to see you as you are to see them, a guinea pig is a great option. They are known for “popcorning”, where they jump in the air from excitement- cute, right? Also, guinea pigs are relatively easy to take care of. Similar to hamsters and mice, they do not require much more than a proper cage with straw, food, and water.
Ever heard of them? The sea monkey, created in 1957 as a hybrid of the brine shrimp is a great low maintenance pet that you can actually grow yourself! They must be fed about once a week, making them very easy to take care of.
Although a snake may sound like a scary pet to own to some, they are a very good option if you are looking for a low maintenance pet. All they need is a warm tank, some foliage, and some mice or rats to feast on every few weeks, depending on their size and breed. (So maybe don’t have both a snake and a mouse as your choice of low maintenance pets… sounds a bit contradicting)