Not everyone has time to take care of dogs and cats, or other types of large pets. In fact, many working parents struggle to have enough time to relax after work as it is, without animal care and clean up thrown into the mix. If this sounds like you, then you’ll definitely benefit from low maintenance pets. These pets are easy to care for and kid friendly and they don’t have high care needs like larger animals do.
With low maintenance pets, you won’t have to deal with researching what the least smelly dog breeds are or figure out how to fit in a daily dog walk or two into your schedule.
The following pets can be a great choice for any working family with a busy schedule.
So, we’ll start off by going over the top small pets that will make a wonderful addition to your family.
Mice, Gerbils, and Hamsters
These tiny rodents are very affectionate and fun. They’re also pretty easy to care for and require a simple cage change one to two times daily and food. So, you won’t have to worry about long walks and exercise. Since they’re contained in a cage, you also won’t have to worry about them destroying your property while you’re at work.
Birds don’t need quite as much interaction as other family pets, especially smaller breeds such as finches and parakeets. These birds simply need a nice cage and a little room to move around. Most small breeds such as canaries are totally happy just being left alone, while other breeds, such as cockatiels, may need some time out of their cage to strut around the house and socialize. Large exotic birds such as parrots will require more human interaction. In fact, some parrots, such as cockatoos, are known to pull out their feathers when they become lonely and depressed. This is something to think about if you’re considering a large bird.
Who doesn’t love guinea pigs? They’re cute, furry, and sweet, and they’re much bigger than hamsters so they a great choice for younger children. They’re also social animals who love to be held, admired, and petted and are considered pretty low maintenance. Depending on bedding type, you won’t need to clean out their cage several times a day and they eat a very basic diet.
Most species of rabbits are also low maintenance. They need a nice hutch, something to chew on, fresh veggies, bedding, and pellets, and they’re all set. Of course, since they’re very social they also enjoy interacting with their human family and would also appreciate room to run around when you get home from work.
Compared to dogs, cats are pretty low maintenance and definitely more independent. If your cat is litter box trained, you’ll need to scoop it out twice daily, but aside from that and giving them a bowl of fresh water and kibble, most cats are content to be alone.
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These guys fall under the rodent category, but given their outstanding and highly social unique personalities, we felt that they deserved their own special spot on the list. Granted, the rat gets a lot of flak from people who don’t know much about the species, they actually make wonderful pets. Additionally, they are less prone to biting, compared to hamsters, and while they have a relatively short lifespan of just three years, these low maintenance animals can be a true joy to handle and raise. They require a very basic diet and a large cage to run around in, but considering they’re so intelligent, they can easily be trained to come when called and truly enjoy interacting with their human.
Fish can be very low maintenance, but this ultimately depends on the type of fish and your tank setup. Saltwater fish are not recommended for beginners, and even a large freshwater setup can be challenging to care for if you don’t know what you’re doing. A small basic tank or even a goldfish bowl, on the other hand, can be very easy to care for. The goldish just needs their water cleaned regularly and some fish flakes and they’re good to go. Bettas are the same in regard to being able to survive in a glass container without the need of a fancy filter setup. However, since bettas, AKA Chinese fighting fish, do not get along well with their own kind, you can only keep one betta per tank.
These small aquatic creatures live in a saltwater environment. They’re considered extremely low maintenance and need minimal cleaning every now and then. They’re also very fun to watch. In terms of care requirements, these guys only need special sea monkey food.
Insects aren’t exactly the most interactive pet, but they can be fascinating to watch and are relatively low maintenance, depending on the species. Crickets, hissing cockroaches, the praying mantis, and stick insects don’t need much more than regular feeding, some foliage, and a nice warm tank, in order to thrive. Spiders, especially tarantulas, will require slightly more care but can be more interesting to watch and more enjoyable to handle.
Love them or leave them, the snake isn’t for everyone. They have a diet that can either consist of insects or small rodents. They have their own unique personality, but they aren’t exactly as cuddly as a guinea pig. They also don’t need to be fed often and only require a few rocks and some foliage in a nice warm tank. If you don’t mind feeding your snake small animals, then it can be a great addition to your home and an interesting family pet.
Some species of reptiles are also pretty low maintenance however, some just aren’t and can be difficult to care for if you’re a total newbie. Terrapins, geckos, and bearded dragons are all great choices. They just need somewhere safe to sleep, warmth, and good quality pet food. As long as you do your research regarding their care needs and know what you’re in for, before you run out and buy one, they can make a great low maintenance pet.