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They may be small but they have big personalities. Small snimals can often be a great starter pet for any family they are small, loveable, and generally easy to care for.

Getting the right small animal starts with gathering information on the different types. From hamsters to rabbits, guinea pigs and even rats. There are too many species to be included here, so we’ve featured only some basic care-and-feeding information.

Learn all you can about the type of animal you are getting. Equipped with knowledge and understanding, you will have a better idea of what to expect. You'll then be able to provide your pet care it needs and find out what fits best with your family

After that, go to the individual animal you are interested in to learn about it. If you know about the type of animal you are getting, then you will know what to expect. Knowledge and understanding will make living with your pet a wonderful experience for you, and it will be great for your pet too!

Nutrition

Choosing a well balanced diet and healthy treats is essential to the quality of your little friends life. A well balanced diet ensures your pal will live a full life, maintains skin and coat and sometimes dental hygiene. Some small pets also require timothy or alfalfa hay, as well as nutritional supplements to maintain quality of life.


Cage/Tank

“Should I use a cage or a tank? How big should it be?” These can be difficult questions. An animal that likes to climb or is more tolerant of climate changes should use a cage. Animals that are more sensitive to climate changes should use a tank. Whatever you use, your animal’s housing should be adequate size for proper exercise and comfort.


Exercise Wheel and Ball

Many small animals use a wheel as a means of exercise, stress relief and as a substitute for exploration. Your wheel should be solid or mesh to prevent injury. If your pet is arching his back while running in the wheel or ball, you may need a larger one.


Chew Toys

Providing proper chew toys is essential for many small pets. Many small pets have teeth that grow like fingernails. If they don’t gnaw, their teeth may overgrow and cause injury, possibly even death. Chewing also helps curb boredom. If you do not provide proper chew toys they may chew on items they are not supposed to or they may escape in an effort to find something.


Bedding

In the past, wood shavings have been bedding of choice. They are inexpensive and have a natural, clean aroma. However, they contain high concentrations of dust particles which may cause respiratory distress in small animals. We recommend using paper based beddings. Most are virtually dust free, have no aroma, and are more absorbent than shavings.


Litter Boxes & Litter

Many small pets can be trained to use a litter box. Litter training your small pal allows you to go longer without changing his bedding and gives you the ability to “spot clean.” The litter box should be large enough to fit the whole animal and should fit into a corner. A paper based pellet should be used to line the litter box.


Food and Water Bowls

It is extremely important that your small pet receives fresh food and water on a daily basis. Bowls should be large enough to accommodate all their food for the day. Some animals prefer water bowls rather than a water bottle, so you may have to figure out your individual pet’s preference.


Books

It is very important to know about the animal you are purchasing. Every breed has different characteristics, needs and genetic health concerns. There are also a variety of books to help you with training, nutrition, and overall health.

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