Ok so I'm not trying to start another "fish trend" lol but I do need some genuine advice :)
My fiancÚ and I have been considering getting a small pet for our son. Granted, our son is only 16months old, but he is a born animal love and naturally is very good with them :) he can already lead his donkey and snuggles with his kitten every night... He also tells my dog to "sit!" Then gives her treats lol anyways, I have looked into several small furries to get him.
Here's what I've started with:
Ferret, hamster, gerbil, hedgehog, bird
I have had to make the decision against all of those for size, temperament or maintenance reasons. I love in a apartment and can't have anything naturally smelly. I'd keep a cage cleaned every other day but some animals just have a stench...
Anyways, I've landed on a bunny. Now I've had a rabbit before, his name was studly lol ... But sinse that was a while ago, I need a refresher on a few things!
Do you think that getting a bunny would be a good idea in my situation? Why or why not, also, tips and tricks of the trade are welcome!
If we do go they with this, I have a list of potential bunnies locally, my number one pick is 8 was old, mini lop/mini rex mix, mostly white with a little orange around her(or his?) ears... Bred and raised by a 11yr old in the house with two other younger kids. Loves snuggling and playing with everyone and helped unwrap presents this yr with litter mates lol
If yes, do you recommend spaying/neutering even if they won't be with any other rabbits? How does this affect them?
Other than that, I know the basics of bunny care, I just need input on the initial descision!
Thanks ahead of time!
Ps- I will be the one to care for the bunny, so don't take my so s abolity(or lack thereof) into consideration :) the most he will do is hold and kiss it and help feed and clean up :) all of which he loves doing with the bigger animals :)
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Oh and with that breed of bunny, will its ears lol over??? Not a deal maker or breaker but I'm just curious :)
I'll say this. Hamsters SMELL. Gerbils do not. I have four gerbils and I would have 10 more of those before owning one hamster. VERY easy to care for and they love snuggles. Also fun to watch them cuddle and play with each other, as they go best in pairs.
As for bunnies...we have them at work. We use them in out travelling petting zoo. They've caused lots of unintentional scratches to the younger children. And I don't know how you child is with animals, but the more...rambunctious kids HAVE gotten themselves bit at no fault of the poor bunnies.
Make sure that whichever pet you choose, make sure your child knows how to handle it! All these animals...save for the bird, have teeth! And they all have claws! They're a bit different than kitties.
Thanks for your input :)) he has a kitten already lol and we already have a dog, i don't want another until we get our own house... Do you have any suggestions for other smalls animals we could possibly get?? I know you mentioned the rat, personally they creep me out but I've never really been around one either, tell me more??
And to second what Halo said, I was in charge of gathering the bunnies before out petting zoo traveled. The bunnies that didn't want to be taken out of their space DID lunge, growl, bite, all of that. Once they were out they were well behaved and fine. BUT doesn't seem at all safe for a child to be around the rabbit's "home" area.
Rats are AWESOME pets, I've owned and bred many of them as well and have actually never been bitten. They actually like to be picked up and given attention and they love sweet stuff, like yogurt, that would be my 100% recommended rodent of choice for sure. Male rats are very stinky and messy but females are quite the opposite. All my rats have lived about 5-7years :)
Small animals are generally just NOT good choices for small children. Rats are awesome pets. They require lots and lots and lots of attention. They can be trained, too. That's pretty cool. BUT they smell, require lots of space, and regular cleaning.
I've owned several rabbits since I was a young girl (for as long as I can remember actually) and it's hit and miss. For example, the rabbits I had when I was younger, we'd allow them to be in a play pen or the living room floor and they were content being petted here and there but didn't want attention for too long nor did they enjoy being picked up. Now I also had two mini rexs when I showed in 4H. Both didn't like being picked up but the female LOVED attention. She'd lay there and want you to love on her.
Then most recently I had a Flemish Giant x Rex mix named Naomi that I purchased when she was a baby and she was the BIGGEST lover imaginable. She'd want to pop up in your lap, snug up on the couch, follow you around and even played with my dog. But she was a mess. It didn't matter how we kept her cage, there would always be a mess on the floor and walls and if you didn't clean it up on a daily basis, it would smell horrible.
I'd probably say that a rabbit wouldn't be a first choice as an indoor pet (in my opinion) just do to the messy factor and they're hit and miss with the affection.
^Those are my experiences though.
*cough* Chinchillas *cough* they're relatively priced and are supposed to be very clean and smell-free. :3 Just an option.
I wouldn't get a rabbit. Me and my brother owned two rabbits before. Sure, one was sweet and gentle. Though, I got the rabbit from hell. Would always try to attack and bite your hand when you tried to clean the cage or give her fresh food and water. I don't know. Maybe she didn't like me or my mother.I would get something else other than a rabbit.D:
Luckily Calvin, my son, knows rules about our animals pretty well. My dog is a complete grump and while she wouldn't hurt him, she also doesn't put up with any crap, therefore ever since he was tiny, he's had to learn to refrain from bothering her at all unless I'm there and supervising. They've come to an agreement- he gives her food and throws her ball but other than kissing her head, he doesn't touch her lol his kitten follows him everywhere and has all his claws but isk how Calvin hasn't been scratched at all because he picks him up, throws him over his shoulder and walks around like that, with the kitten over his shoulder lol they have a mutual agreement that anything goes as long as they snuggle every time Calvin takes a nap or goes to bed... Calvin follows pretty much any rule that I set for him about animals so far... When he's brushing his donkey, he knows to stay on one side and when he wants to go around, he comes to me and I help him move the donkey over... He just loves his animals lol and I'll admit this bunny would probably be more for me than him for the next year or so lol
Why not something like a pretty fish, just for him to look at? You do the cleaning part, and let him do the feeding part. No one gets bit or scratched and he gets to watch his buddy. It would also be fun to let him pick out the decor, like sand, plants, ect.
Studly, my old rabbit was a black and white Dutch, he was sooo snuggly... And litter trained... He would hop only lap and I'd lay him on his back and he'd fall asleep while I rubbed his belly lol he was a character.. I bred him once to my friends female but she wasn't a good mom and killed her babies :( I never had the opportunity after that :/
I'll take everyone's opinions into consideration! I think my final deciding factor wil be to go see this bunny and bring Calvin and see if it's even doable :) if she(or he!) is lovey and snuggly and Calvin is descent with him/her then well move forward and if worse comes to worse, well only get it out to play after Calvin's gone to sleep. If it's obvious it won't work when we go for a visit then well keep researching other ideas :)
Again, thanks so much! Any other ideas are welcome :) links are awesome too! I like learning all I can about something before I get into it, especially animals, I don't give them up once I have them :)
^ I didn't know that about laying them on they're backs lol he seemed to seek it though, he just went limp and fell asleep xD tell me more about chinchillas! I've seen them in the pet store but other than knowing what they look like, I don't know a thing about them
I had a guinea pig when I was younger and just loved her! But the poor thing got pneumonia and died at a very young age. Guinea pigs are great small animals to have. Most are sweet and loved to be cuddled with, well Cuddles did (haha hence the name XD). Just one thing you need to watch out for with them is that if your sick, don't be around them because they can catch the sickness from you. That's what we think happened to Cuddles. It was devastating cause she died in my arms.
But I recommend looking into a guinea pig for your son! They're fun and not that hard to care for! (:
We had one at the pet store I worked at... he could jump like 4ft out of his enclosure. As far as I know they are really busy animals but are pretty cuddly and like attention, don't know too much more about them though... they need dust baths o.o
....note to self-no more belly rubs lol phew I'm glad I didn't actually kill him! I never heard that before but it makes sense! He really 'loved' my dog... Hence his name studly lol is out him in his play pen outside and my dog would jump in with him and lay down and wouldn't leave his side, especially when there was a hawk around... I was always there too but I think my dog felt it was her responsibility to protect him lol wow me and my tangents xD