Are you thinking of adopting a pocket pet? Do you want to find out more about which pets might work out well for you? Have you ever wondered which small animals might be the best companion for your lifestyle?
Types of Pocket Pets
In this article, we’ll explore some of the most common pocket pets and help you figure out whether or not you may be suited to keeping these pets as well. Read through this information and consider which, if any, of these pets may meet your needs as well as your preferences for tiny furry friends.
Hamsters are cute and can be friendly, but a startled or intimidated hamster’s first instinct is to bite. Therefore, they are not great choices for families with young kids or any children who will handle the pet roughly. Older kids or very responsible younger kids may do well with hamsters.
It’s best not to keep multiple hamsters at once, as they will usually fight with each other regardless of the sex of the hamsters kept together. They also breed quickly, so do not keep a male and female hamster together unless you are prepared for babies.
Many people are put off by the idea of keeping a rat as a pet, but rats are one of the most widely recommended and beloved pocket pets. They are very smart and can be trained to do tricks, and they also learn to recognize their human family members quickly. They do best when kept with at least one other rat and should be housed only with the same sex.
Rats like to be handled by their humans and are naturally very curious. If you’re looking for a pocket pet who will sit with you, stay in your shirt pocket, or play on your desk while you work, a rat may be best for you.
Hedgehogs don’t require a lot of one-on-one interaction, but with time and effort, they will relax around their human family members and tolerate some gentle holding. Until this point, however, they may prick your skin with their sharp spines, especially if they get startled.
You will need a spacious cage for your hedgehog and will need to feed your pet hay, insects, and vegetables. Most hedgehogs are fine as solo pets, but some may be happier when kept with a second hedgehog. If you have more than one hedgehog, you will need to prepare accordingly in terms of cage space.
Although guinea pigs don’t need a lot of one-on-one interaction with their human family, they do need to be kept in multiples. One guinea pig alone is likely to be unhappy and will require the company of at least one more; however, they do best when kept in odd-numbered groups.
Guinea pigs require a lot of cage space that must be all on one level. They cannot climb and can become seriously injured if they fall from even a short height. They also require a specialized diet that is high in vitamin C. Despite their reputation, they aren’t ideal for beginners or kids.
Chinchillas do not do well when kept alone, so it’s important to plan for at least two of them if you’re thinking of adopting chinchillas. Do not keep a breeding pair together, however, unless you’re ready to deal with babies and capable of handling this responsibility as well.
Chinchillas are shy and do not interact much with humans. They are also nocturnal, so unless you are a night owl yourself, you may not see much of your chinchilla. They are great pets for adults who work at night and may be awake at times when the chinchillas are also up and moving around.
Okay, so reptiles aren’t exactly pocket pets. However, many people who start their search for the perfect small animal pet eventually realize reptiles meet their needs more than a small and fluffy pocket pet might.
If you’re looking for an animal that is visually appealing but doesn’t require a lot of daily interaction, a reptile may be right for you. Of course, you should still consider the needs of the individual species before choosing any reptile to bring home too.
Choose the Right Pocket Pet for You
There are plenty of different types of pocket pets for you to choose from, and we’ve really only scratched the surface of the available options in this article. However, this information should give you a good starting point that may make it easier for you to figure out which pet is right for your needs.
Remember that, no matter how small the pet may be, you should always make sure you can provide the right care and husbandry for any animal you choose to bring home. Don’t adopt a pet just because you think it’s cute, but make sure it works well for your lifestyle and your abilities as well. If you are looking for a pocket pet vet call 412-373-8580 to talk with the Northern Pike Veterinary Hospital team!