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Families today are busier than ever juggling jobs and family commitments. You know the importance pets have for kids, but you haven’t got the time for a dog or cat right now. Luckily, there are a lot of small, low-maintenance pets for kids that can teach them responsibility while providing fun and a little companionship. We take a look at some easy pets to take care of that are low maintenance.
Note: While elementary school-age children can provide much of the care for these low-maintenance pets, parental oversight is required to ensure that the pet is adequately fed and watered, and lives in clean conditions.
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What Are Some Easy Pets To Take Care Of That Are Low Maintenance?
The small Budgie bird is one of the most common pet animals. Because of their overall size and how they do in captivity and they often rate high amongst the low-maintenance bird pets.
Such small affectionate birds are inexpensive to purchase, and they are available in all pet shops. What makes them very interesting, when properly educated, is how well they can imitate human speech.
They can be kept in a small birdcage because they are small. When you have only one bird, by default you will become its flock, and you’ll have to spend time with them. A second budgey can solve his problem of isolation, and together, they will do well.
Their diet doesn’t just need to consist of seeds that you buy in pet stores; they will consume much of the vegetables and fruits we consume. To keep these little birds safe and happy, a diet consisting of leafy greens, seeds, vegetables, and fresh fruits are ideal.
The mouse is the smallest domesticated rodent that is regularly kept as low maintenance pets. They’re colony dwellers and has the same genus as a house mouse. An adult mouse is about 3 to 4 inches long, including its tail, weighing between 1⁄3 oz to just under one oz. Males are heavier than females.
Mice have all small pets’ shortest lifespan, usually living around one and two years. Lifespan will be longer with good veterinary care.
Wild males are territorial but live in female colonies. Most mice don’t do well as solitary animals. Many males may consider other males as partners, but this may lead to combat and injury.
A new mouse owner’s best choice is to get at least 3 females. Also, female mice smell-less – male urine has a compelling musky smell that some people find upsetting.
Mice are very active and require somewhat of a large cage in proportion to their limited size, but even a very large mouse cage can be very cheap compared to a rabbit, chinchilla or rodent. Other setup costs may include toys, a solid wheel and a bed (or hammock).
Mice are quite easy pets to take care of that are low maintenance except their bedding, cage litter, and food which are relatively high. You’ll need to foresee some veterinary expenses, however. Male mice may need castration to live with each other or children, and many mice get tumors or respiratory problems.
If you want smart, trainable, interesting and active pets, mice are great, particularly if you don’t have a large cage room. Mice are sociable and enjoy developing a friendship with you.
3. Guinea pigs
Guinea pigs are very favoured by smaller kids, as they are tactile and make noise. These are social animals who enjoy human interaction but are also low-maintenance animals. They just need a pen, some grass, food and water every day.
Guinea pigs love human touch so much that they appear to squeak with joy when they see you, though they’re also notorious for popcorning, jumping up and kicking their heels in the air whenever they feel happy. They are hands down some of the easy pets to take care of that are low maintenance.
Be sure you have enough straw and hay as these small animals like to graze regularly while not napping, which helps them file their teeth because they continue to grow continuously. You can also think about giving your guinea pig some leafy greens like broccoli and kale. They have an expected lifespan of typically 5-6 years.
Goldfish are low maintenance pets which require less maintenance than most other fish. Ensure that their water is clean, refresh it regularly, keep them fed, and relaxed in a lovely spot, and they’re satisfied.
It is also one of the most common and inexpensive types that can be bought from any local pet store. A fishbowl is all it requires to start its life at home, but as the goldfish grows it will need to be put in a tank. Common goldfish can grow up to 10 inches, so it will need an aquarium of about 10 feet with about 30 gallons of water to sustain its growth.
You’re wondering what to feed it? Some decent quality goldfish flakes may suffice, but be careful not to overfeed them, as doing so may have adverse effects.
With proper care and a nice setting, goldfish will live up to a decade.
5. Hermit Crabs
Putting aside their misleading names, hermit crabs really appreciate the service and would be grateful if you give them a playmate. These creatures themselves are inexpensive, and it’s fun — for adults and kids alike — to acquire young ones and watch them grow and are very low maintenance pets.
If they outgrow a shell, you’ll have to buy their next, larger shell — a small expense. During the night, hermit crabs often switch between shells so buy many shells and let them pick their regular outfit. (Painted shells are problematic — there is a chance of using harmful material that could harm the crab.) And you’ll need to note that pet hermit crabs need water to drink, bathe, and replenish their shell water.
A hermit crab alone is can be acquired for cheap, but a tank and decorations will cost around $50-100. Small animals such as the hermit crabs have low day-to-day food prices.
Final Thoughts On Getting Low Maintenance Pets
Are you interested in any of these pets that we mentioned? While these are great options if you’re looking for a low-maintenance pet, please know the difference between low-maintenance and no maintenance. Don’t get one of these top low-maintenance pets unless you can provide them with attention and care.