Is Having A Pocket Pet A Good Idea?

Pocket pets, those small pets like rats, hamsters, and sugar gliders, are very cute and can be a lot of fun to raise and play with. But pocket pets are also considered exotic pets and require a lot more care and patience than your average cat or dog might need. It's easy to look at that cute little mouse in the pet store and think it won't cause much trouble or need much care, but that's not the case. Always consider very carefully whether a particular type of small pet is really the right one for you. If you can find the right one, raising the animal will be a rewarding experience.

Companionship and Extra Care

Pocket pets are inquisitive, and they are often very social. Unless you have a lot of free time to spend with your pet, you may have to get a second one so the animals have companions when you're unable to play with them. That means extra care costs and extra space set aside for the pair. The trade-off is that you have two happy, cute pets. But do take that extra cost and care into account.

Supersized Destruction

These may be little pets, but they can still cause some noticeable destruction if left alone. Sugar gliders will leap around, possibly knocking items off shelves; mice, rats, and hamsters will chew through carpeting and other items if given the chance. Always research the best way to contain these animals so they don't escape but still have room to move.

Being Underfoot

A worrisome part of being a pocket-pet owner is that these pets can easily hide. Underfoot, under pillows, under piles of paper -- so you need to be careful about where you step and sit, and what you place on top of other items. It is very easy to hurt the pets if you are not careful.

Short Lifespans

Pocket pets tend to have shorter lifespans than other pets like cats and dogs. For some people, this is an advantage; the shorter lifespan makes it easier to say goodbye even if they love the pet just because they have to deal with it sooner. But others don't like the idea of having to say goodbye to a beloved pet so quickly. Ensure you can handle the idea of this darling pet dying within just a few years.

Specialized Vet Care

Any animal other than a cat or dog will need a specialized vet. If you live near a vet's office that cares for exotic and small pets, that's perfect. If you don't, that could be bad for the pet because it won't get the care it needs as easily as it would if there were an exotic-pet vet nearby.

Close Relationships

One of the advantages of pocket pets is that they are very easy to hold and carry around with you -- especially in a pocket -- which means you and that pet can bond a little more closely. Yes, you can become very close with cats and dogs; of course you can. But having that little rat on your shoulder all the time is kind of special.

Talk to your local veterinarians about pocket pets, care, temperaments, and other issues that influence what type of pet you get. For more information, contact a company like Seattle Emergency Veterinary Hospital.