WHICH PET WILL YOU CHOOSE FOR YOUR FAMILY?
In the following article on best pets for kids we will look at which pet might be best to join your family. Choosing another family member to join you should not be taken lightly.
Your decision should be based upon the following:
The best pets for kids will be those that fit into your lifestyle the best without adding unnecessary stress to mum and dad.
As with all animals don't get a pet if you think your child will hurt it.Check out our essential reality check on our pets for kids page
So which will you choose, from one of the following best pets for kids?
Rats make great pets for kids, they are very curious and make really good companions.
Life span is between 2-5 years
Fancy rats are generally kept indoors and need a very large cage. They are very sociable animals who need need to be handled a lot.
They are best kept in a busy room in the house so they can be part of the family.
Male rats are better for younger children as they are more laid back, and bigger making them easier to handle than the female rat who is fast and inquisitive.
Best pets for kids - Guinea Pigs
Guinea Pigs live for around 4 to 7 years
They are very friendly and seem to enjoy being handled
Guinea Pigs are tamed easily.
They need to be handled very carefully as they will be hurt if dropped. Our guinea pigs live indoors and go into a pen outdoors during the day.
Guinea pigs can live outdoors in a hutch In cold weather they need to be moved into an indoor area or porch area.Read more about Guinea Pigs
Dogs can live for 12 years or more.
You need to be careful on the breed of dog you choose.
If you are careful with the type of breed that you pick dogs are suitable for children from a young age. We had a Sheltie who used to hold our sons wrist gently in her mouth and walk with him (so sweet)
Dogs should never be left unattended with your babies or young kids.
This pet will need daily walking, they love company and can be a very loyal pet.Read more about dogs for kids
Rabbits live for between 5 and 10 years so it is quite a commitment. Rabbits need careful handling as they can kick out when stressed. Rabbits may bite.
Ideally this is a pet for an older child, who can behave quietly and calmly around it. They do like to be with people or a pet mate.
These days people keep rabbits either in a hutch outside or even indoors. Rabbits need large hutches and plenty of space for exercise which they need every day.Read more about rabbits care for kids here.
Hamsters can live up to 2 years
Hamsters can enjoy being with their young owners. They may bite until they are tamed by handling regularly
Hamsters are awake mainly at night as they are nocturnal
Syrian hamsters like to live on their own; Dwarf hamsters tend to like living in pairs.
Ferrets can live around 7 years
Ferrets like to live with another ferret
They can be very tame if handled a lot.
Ferrets need a lot of space.
Ferrets can give nasty bites and give off a musky odor that is quite strong.Read more about a pet ferret for kids
Best pets for kids - Stick Insects
Live for about 1 year after hatching
They are great pets for those who are allergic to hair, fur, feathers and dust
Clean and easy to keep and clean out.
Stick insects can bite so wear gloves when handling
They need to be handled carefully as their legs can break very easily
They feed on bramble leaves
Not really a pet but something to think about.
Great for small homes. Ants in an ant farm are fascinating to watch as they create tunnels and eat
It is interesting watching them forage for food and water
Ants live for around 2 to 4 weeks in an ant farm.
Cats can live up to 15 or so years
Cats are independent
They are easy to care for and are clean.
Cats are better for older children who can handle the cat gently.If you are looking for a cat research breeds first as some are more sociable than others. Take your children with you when choosing and see how the cat responds to the children.
Best pets for kids - Goldfish
Goldfish can live up to 40 years or more.
They should be kept with other Goldfish Goldfish need to be kept in a tank not a bowl
They are easy to look after
Goldfish don't cost much to keep.
You can find out more about keeping goldfish at firsttankguide.net
Don't rush in to making a decision.
If the kids are badgering you for a pet suggest that you will chat about it again in a months time. If the kids are still keen can you borrow a friends pet for a few days.
The kids need to understand that a pet takes time and needs companionship.
Get the kids to do some research They should find all the information they can on their choice of pet. The kids should come back with a good idea of the care the pet will need