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What pet for a flat?

(22 Posts)
Ewe Mon 21-Sep-09 14:49:29

I live in a fairly spacious two bed flat and after an unsuccessful attempt at keeping fish I would like to get a pet for DD - she is only 18months but definitely won't be having any siblings and she adores animals.

We have a large roof terrace but are three floors up so would not be able to let a cat outside. I guess I think it might be cruel have the cat as house pet.

Any thoughts? No little rodents!

TheMightyToosh Mon 21-Sep-09 14:57:00

House rabbit? Like a dog/cat but without needing to be walked/let out all the time? Apparently you can train them to use a litter tray.... Never owned one myself so someone might come along and slate the idea, but a friend has 2 and they don't have a problem in a flat. Might be worth looking into?

alypaly Mon 21-Sep-09 14:57:50


Ewe Mon 21-Sep-09 17:52:23

Budgie not cuddly enough.

House rabbit sounds like it has potential, will google!

TheMightyToosh Tue 22-Sep-09 09:40:20

Great! Just check on how often they do need to go outside - they will prob need to roam on some grass occasionally, so you might need access to outdoor space of some sort.

FernieB Tue 22-Sep-09 15:47:44

Houserabbits don't need to go outside at all. They are perfectly happy indoors providing they are allowed to roam a fair bit. We sometimes take ours outside on its lead but as soon as we put it on the grass, it turns and bolts for the house!

You do, however, need to rabbit-proof your home as they are big chewers. There a loads of houserabbit websites that can give you info.

When we first got ours I read somewhere that it's like having a toddler in the house. The first few weeks were a bit messy until she got into a routine and was toilet trained. I wouldn't be without her now.

degroote78 Tue 22-Sep-09 16:28:52

A cat

Ewe Tue 22-Sep-09 16:59:50

I would love a cat just don't think it would be fair to keep it cooped up in here all the time.

Thanks for that post Fernie, hadn't even thought about the chewing element. Is it hard to potty train them? Maybe I could do DD and rabbit at the same time! I would quite like a little mini lop, they are incredibly cute.

Ewe Tue 22-Sep-09 17:00:25

Would get a rescue cat that was already used to being in all the time or was a bit older and didn't want to be outside much... if such cats exist!

FurryFox Tue 22-Sep-09 17:14:44

Lot's of people have house cats, I've never had one personally but have read about it. Often predigree cats are kept as house cats but there would be no harm in keeping a moggie in doors either. If you were to get a rescue cat then it would certainly already need to be a house cat but you could also get a kitten if that's what you wanted.

We have just got two 8 week old kittens, they are adorable and so much fun. My DD's, 4 years and 21 months are getting a great deal of pleasure from them. I was a bit worried how my 21 month old would be but it's suprising how gentle and caring she is towards them.

Webme1 Wed 23-Sep-09 02:38:21

Guinea pigs are cute, warm and cuddly, kept in a cage and are easy to look after.

They do squeak however.

FernieB Wed 23-Sep-09 08:45:04

I did also think of guinea pigs. They would be less work than bunnies although they would need to be let out to run and cannot be toilet trained.

Toilet training bunnies is not as hard as kids. They lead you as they will choose an area that they deem suitable for pooping and you just stick the toilet in that spot and there you go! They aren't perfect and will leave the odd present around, but generally are clean.

thesunshinesbrightly Wed 23-Sep-09 12:26:10

"house rabbits don't need to go outside, they are pefectly happy indoors"

no i don't agree, i think it's cruel to keep them inside, they belong outside not all the time but so they can have exercise and fresh air.

FernieB Wed 23-Sep-09 12:41:19

House rabbits don't 'need' to go outside. I did a lot of research when we got ours and it was recommended that houserabbits remain inside for their health. If a rabbit is kept mainly inside, it may not build up the necessary immunities to protect itself against viruses etc which may be found outdoors (or something like that - can't remember the words exactly). I agree that rabbits need plenty of exercise and that goes for whether they are inside or outside. There are many outdoor rabbits which are not given enough exercise and spend most of their lives in a cage. Most houserabbits actually get more exercise than outdoor rabbits as they are usually allowed to roam free within the house, whereas outdoor rabbits are often only put in their runs for a short period each day.

Providing the animal has plenty of exercise it is perfectly healthy to stay indoors. After all gerbils and hamsters stay indoors, although in the wild they get plenty of fresh air!

bodeniites Wed 23-Sep-09 12:58:21

i hate any bird in a cage makes me shudder

thesunshinesbrightly Wed 23-Sep-09 13:36:03

i don't agree but each to their own smile

TheMightyToosh Wed 23-Sep-09 16:27:17

Although rabbits might not need to go outside, I can't help thinking that it would be a bit unfair to never take them out to see the sunshine once in a while!

They are just like any other animal - surely they would appreciate a change of scene, some new smells, a bit of fresh air...

Bit like humans, really - I know I do after a long week of working at home, even a trip to tesco is a treat for me LOL grin

sleepysox Wed 23-Sep-09 16:37:06

Our house rabbits were scared of the outside-I guess it's what they get used to though. The smell of other animals on the grass used to freak them out. Our house rabbit is over 100 in bunny years- 9 years old in human years, and the vet was so suprised to have such an old, yet healthy bunny join their books when we moved down here.

Our house rabbits definitely get a better quality of life than being kept in a hutch/ run.

I would recommend a house bunny- although Fernie B is right- they can be destructive little critters. Ours once jumped up and climbed our bookshelf and trashed all DH's books he needed for work, plus all my school planning folders!

Ewe Wed 23-Sep-09 17:01:33

I might get a rabbit and keep it both in and outside - I have a completely secure roof terrace that is fairly big so could let them out on there no problem.

I have seen a three legged kitten that can only be kept indoors on gumtree though...

FernieB Thu 24-Sep-09 08:39:04

Sleepysox - ours is also scared of outside and runs back in if we take her out. She much prefers escaping to the cellar and running around in the dark down there. She disappeared there yesterday and found where I store her hay, chewed her way into the packet (through a box as well) and decorated the floor with what she found.

It's electric cables you need to be careful of though. The first Christmas we had ours, she chewed through the cable for the tree lights (obviously a bit of a grinch).

MightyToosh - if a trip to Tesco's is a treat for you, would you like to do my shopping?

Ewe - roof terrace is ideal. Then at least you (and your bunny) have the option to go outdoors.

TheMightyToosh Thu 24-Sep-09 11:50:57

grin at FernieB

MrsMagnolia Thu 24-Sep-09 12:29:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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