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which first pet for DD?

(10 Posts)
AddamsflimFlamily Mon 17-Oct-11 09:38:29

Important note: we live in the tropics with no garden of our own

I was thinking of a couple of mice. Maybe not a hamster because of the nocturnal thing. What are gerbils like? Guinea pigs I think would take up too much space as they would need to be indoors. I doubt I could buy a rat here, it would probably not be considered acceptable as a pet. I don't like snakes smile I suppose turtles is another option (not super furry I know...).

All I know can be summed up as: mice = can be smelly; hamsters = need handling to be friendly, nocturnal; gerbils ? ; guinea pigs = nice but need a big cage, yes?

AddamsflimFlamily Mon 17-Oct-11 16:08:56

Come on MN, don't fail me now. smile

LordOfTheFlies Mon 17-Oct-11 18:52:25

I've had guinea-pigs and they are the best rodents IMO grin But I don't think they cope with heat well and they do need space.

Boy mice stink to high heaven- I had 2 male mice for a weekend, and they had to go back. Female mice don't smell. but they do need space for their acrobatics ( and 1 was pregnant when I bought her, so we had 6 babies to rehome) And they are quick on their paws, ours escaped from their cage for a weekend in my room.Had to be tempted out with food.
How old is your DD? Smaller rodents tend to be less easy to handle (which is why I love the guinea-pigs)

I've never had hampsters/rabbits or gerbils so can't say how they are.

What about fish?? grin

feedthegoat Mon 17-Oct-11 18:59:03

I had gerbils as a child and they are very quick and were impossible for me to handle and I was about 10 at the time.

We have just got a hamster a couple of months ago. He was friendly from off set and hasn't bitten once. He is a syrian and ds adores him and his loopy antics. He isn't smelly but is really noisy in his wheel. I think males are generally friendlier.

AddamsflimFlamily Tue 18-Oct-11 06:08:05

Thanks both of you. DD is about to be 4, DS is 6. Ho hum, not decided then, maybe hamster. If guinea pigs don't like heat then they would hate it here.

Rollersara Sat 22-Oct-11 09:08:57

If you can find rats they are what I'd recommend - very friendly if handled properly and will bond with people, they are very responsive and girls aren't that smelly. Hamsters are ok but don't bond with you as well - they tend to be something to watch rather than play with. Guinea pigs are brilliant but do take up more space and are a bigger commitment (5-7 year life span).

Re: hamsters though, don't let the nocturnal thing put you off. Technically yes, they are nocturnal, but like rats are very nosy and will wake up if there is a chance of food/play!

Conundrumish Sun 23-Oct-11 20:23:51

Aren't guinea pigs from South America? Can't imagine they would be adverse to a bit of heat. I would ask at the pet shop. They are lovely - very calm and ideal for children.

strandednomore Mon 24-Oct-11 11:15:34

I might be too late to this but we have gerbils and they have been excellent pets. Not smelly and only need cleaning out once a fortnight, not nocturnal, reasonably sociable, can be handled by our dd's (nearly 4 and 6)....Oh yes and they chew all our cardboard so cuts down on the amount we need to recycle!

LordOfTheFlies Mon 24-Oct-11 17:57:32

pinkpanettone yes originally GPs are from S.America, but they have been so bred out to make them pets that they,ve gone a bit Namby-Pamby.
The OP lives in the tropics so I reckon they'd find the humidity wearing.They are not the most athletic to start!grin

I searched alot on here before we got our two rescue boys (it's been years since I had my pet GP as a child)I wanted to know if owners kept them outside (their natural Peruvian climate can get cold at night too).
They don't like draughts,damp or extreme heat. And I suppose the wild ones can run a damn site quicker too, to avoid being lunch!

Indith Mon 24-Oct-11 18:04:52

I had gerbils when I was young. I adored them, they were very easy to handle and so tame. They loved to sit and eat out of my hand. If you keep them in a big glass tank with a peat/woodshavings mix then they only need cleaning out every 3 months or so and just make their own tunnels. You just have to give thema few loo roll tubes to shred up for bedding. If they happen to make a tunnel against the side then it is great viewing.

I had hamsters before that and used to find them really boring as they were just asleep all teh time.

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