Cats and dogs take a lot of time and money to keep healthy. There are other options, however, that your kids may love. No pet is hands-off, but if you have been looking for something that is a bit less space and time intensive you are in the right place. Read on for some great pets with less stringent requirements:
The Betta, or Siamese Fighting Fish, is a beautiful tropical fish. They have an astonishing array of color and fin patterns, plus they can be found at most pet stores easily.
While some of the tanks offered for them are far too small to be comfortable, the average Betta will do just fine in a 5-gallon tank with an aquarium chiller heater and a Duetto submersible power filter. Bonus points if you have enough of a green thumb to keep plants with them.
As a bonus, if you want to expand your keeping, Betta can coexist with snails, shrimp, and even African Dwarf Frogs. The balancing act of keeping an aquarium properly can also be a valuable biology lesson for your child.
Betta represent the best parts of the fish world. They are low-maintenance, beautiful, and do not require a lot of extra equipment. They can even fit in a desk tank!
Finches are hardy little birds that do not like to be handled. These tiny feathery friends come in a wide variety of colors, but they all have a couple of things in common: they are easy to care for and do not require a ton of time and space.
You should still do your research before getting some, but a birdcage and food is pretty much all that is required.
While you should not handle your finches, that does not mean they are just for show. They are smart animals and many people form real relationships with them.
Canaries are another choice, but they are more prone to health problems than finches. In either case, feathered friends are cute and like to sing which makes them a great, low-maintenance pet for your children to enjoy.
Hamsters are another excellent pet that does not require a ton of time and space.
Hamsters will spend most of their lives in their cage environment. The majority of their care is just in making sure you have the right stuff: cages, bedding, and food. As long as they have those? They are free to thrive in a small area.
Hamsters are also friendly if handled regularly.
And, of course, how much fun would a hamster be if you did not get them a ball to cruise around in? They are a great combination between cuddly companion and easily-cared-for pet.
Rabbits are fluffy, friendly, and require surprisingly little care. You will need to make sure they have food, water, and a cage but there is no training involved. You also do not have to worry about them tearing up the house, which is a nice bonus.
Rabbits are social creatures and require a decently sized enclosure. If you are not going to interact with them often, however, it is best to make sure that you have a same-sex pair to keep each other company. Do not keep mixed sexes, they breed like… well, rabbits!
Rabbits are easy-going creatures, but they are not particularly intelligent. They will need to be accompanied outdoors and kept from dangers. If you can commit to that? Rabbits are an excellent friend for your children!
One other thing: rabbits are prey animals for the majority of predators out there. You will need to make sure their enclosure is well-protected if you choose to go the outdoors route.
Not all kids think of rodents and birds as cute. If your child has a bit of a dark side, you might be surprised to know that tarantula are among the easiest pets to care for. The majority of the work is just providing a small enclosure and occasionally feeding them.
Even that often seems a token effort. They only need a cricket every couple of weeks.
They may be creepy to some people, but they can be downright adorable. They are technically not even spiders, but belong to their own group of arthropods. Once you look past the similarities, you will find they are docile creatures that mostly just hide and eat.
For a child, the main consideration is that it is friendly. Many of the more exotic varieties can be aggressive and have bites that hurt a good deal. The Rose-Haired Tarantula has a splash of color and a good reputation for being docile. The best news? They are also among the most commonly available.
They are not for every family, but they can be downright adorable if given a chance.
Keeping It Simple And Fun
When it comes to pets, there are a dizzying array of options. Many are not suitable for kids despite their small size, however, due to specialized requirements. It is just a matter of finding the perfect fit for your family! So, which are you going to bring into your home?