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It's no easy decision to own a pocket pet. Pocket pets are small animals, especially mammals, kept as household pets which commonly include rodents like hamsters, gerbils, mice, guinea pigs and rats. So you walk into a pet store and decide to buy one of these small pets as you watch them cheerfully scuttling around their cages. But which of these playful small creatures is best suited to your needs? How much care and attention are you willing to confer on them? There are many factors that go into choosing the perfect pet for oneself. Let's take time to discuss a few of these.
While rodents like mice, hamsters and gerbils tend to be smaller in size, rats and cavies (guinea pigs) tend to be larger. Cavies as pets require a lot of gentle attention and care with regular grooming of their long furs. Hamsters and mice do not easily interact with humans and tend to be nervous around them. On the other hand, cavies and rats are more interactive and thrive with companionship. Thus, when purchasing gerbils, guinea pigs and rats, it is better to buy them in same sex pairs. Avoid numbers and stick to one when purchasing hamsters and mice.
Though most rodents tend to be nocturnal, gerbils, guinea pigs and mice can easily adapt to your day time schedule. This might be a lot harder for the hamster and rat as they are primarily nocturnal and have difficulty adapting to day routines.
Gerbils as pets are exceedingly active and like to hole in their litter and climb about anything in their locale. You may find your gerbil taking several naps throughout the day. It is better to watch them than hold them if they are not used to being handled frequently. The average lifespan of a gerbil is two to four years.
Cavies make excellent pets and are a total delight. Good natured, social, active and friendly, cavies have no objection to being cuddled. Unlike other rodents, cavies will whistle at you in greeting and reciprocate to your love and care more enthusiastically. Cavies thrive well with companionship and so you might consider buying a pair. Make sure they are kept in spacious, ventilated habitats as cavies are extremely active and prefer having a lot of room to play around.
Hamsters make good pets but are less fond of being cuddled. Your hamster is likely to sleep the entire day and become extremely active at night. Keep around a lot of chew toys. Also hamsters prefer living alone and it is better to avoid buying them in numbers.
Not fond of being handled, mice make entertaining pets that are best watched from a distance. Female mice make great companions but males tend to fight unless they have introduced before turning five weeks old. You need to gain the trust of this pet to earn the right to fondle them as they are very careful around humans.
Rats are curious, social, active and intelligent pets that are mainly nocturnal. Though not widely preferred as pets, rats can make excellent companions as they can keep themselves busy and are extremely social.
Hobbylancer and You
At Hobbylancer, find pet stores in your locality, interact with other pocket pet owners and network with experts to learn how to take care of your little pet. Encourage amateurs, organize pet shows and workshops and discover the uniqueness of owning rodents as pets only at Hobbylancer.