Great Pets for People Who Don't Like Animals
I know what you're thinking - why would someone who doesn't like animals need or want a pet? Well, there are plenty of reasons why some people don't like animals - they can be messy, expensive, difficult to train and time consuming. So why would any of those reasons undershadow a person's need for a pet?
- Your child really, really, really (did I mention really?) wants a pet of his or her own.
- You're lonely.
- You don't want kids, and this is a close second.
- You're hoping to impress your hot, animal-loving neighbor.
OK, that last one is more of a joke. When considering getting a pet, you need to think about the long term. That pet will probably be with you a lot longer than your neighbor.
Great Pets for the Bestially-Challenged
- Beta Fish - What more could you ask for from a fish? Often touted as a great beginner fish, the beta is beautiful, can live in a small bowl, does not require a filter, produces little waste and are relatively inexpensive. You don't even need a standard fish bowl - if you have a wide-base vase or extra large mug laying around the house, your beta will be just fine. And there is no need for any of that fancy fish bowl adornment since Beta fish are naturally colorful and are their own decoration. Beta fish food is really inexpensive and they only need to eat once or twice a day. All of these conditions make this the ideal pet for people without money, time or patience for pets.
- Guinea Pig - Part of the rodent family of animals, guinea pigs (along with gerbils and hamsters) are very easy to care for. If your child is not sold on the fish or you're looking for something a bit more cuddly, then a rodent is for you. They are pretty inexpensive, although you will need to purchase a cage with an exercise wheel and water bottle. But once you get them home, they spend most of their day in their cage, so the mess can be minimal. They are quiet animals, but beware that some are nocturnal and can be busy getting some exercise while you're busy trying to get some sleep - and I speak from experience that the spinning wheel is the last sound you want to hear at 3am. But I digress...
- Older Cats - I did not mention a specific breed of cat, although some are better suited to families with children or the elderly - like Ragdolls or Tabbys. I mention older cats, because they are usually calmer and easier to take care of than kittens. Older cats are likely house-broken and don't do more than sleep a good part of the day. A visit to your local pound is a great place to start. Be sure to come prepared with questions to ask the staff about the cat to make sure you find a good match for your home. A cat that is trained to go to the bathroom outside is great because it eliminates the need to keep and maintain a litter box. But you will have to be available to let the cat outside from time to time. Cats need to eat twice a day and have clean water available for them throughout the day. If you are looking for a really low maintenance cat, try to find one with short hair that does not shed often, otherwise you will be vacuuming more than you'll like. Cats can make great companions and are very independent at that same time.
No Time, Patience or Money?
Pets to Avoid
- Dogs - messy, loud and can be difficult to train.
- Reptiles - specifically ones that eat live mice, outgrow their cages and have fangs.
- Salt-water fish - tanks can be expensive and difficult to keep clean and maintain.
- Bunnies and chicks - although cute, that is not a reason to get one for your niece, unless she lives on a farm.
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