Over 60 percent of American households own pets as of 2012, and this number keeps climbing due to the ease of getting a pet, the enjoyment they bring to their families, and well, human curiosity. Unfortunately, this also means that many pets are getting matched with the wrong families, and these pets are being prematurely put to sleep, given away, or worse, abused. To avoid matching yourself with a pet that is not ideal, reconsider getting any one of these types of pets that may seem cool but can be a real unexpected responsibility in more ways than one.
These cute little critters may look like a ton of fun, but let’s face it- they are not only expensive, but can be destructive if they are not handled often, given lots of room to run, or are ignored.Without proper diet (they need at least 25% of their diet to be fresh fruits and veggies), handling and attention, these little flyers can become overweight and very depressed. Added to that, these little bug-eyed cuties can also live up to 15 years in captivity, which makes them a long-term commitment.
If you are up to getting them the cage, toys, fresh food, and attention they need, then a sugar glider may make a wonderful and unique companion for you. If not, consider a guinea pig instead, as they live up to 7 years, require less toys and attention (if you get 2 of them together, you are all set), and don’t need as diverse a diet as a sugar glider does. Of course, a guinea pig also needs love and attention, but isn’t as demanding (nor as pricey) as a sugar glider.
Salt water fish
Yes, these fish are exotic and beautiful, but extremely hard to care for. Not only is a salt water tank expensive to own and maintain, but the fish themselves require a lot of balance, cleaning, and food. While experienced fish owners can take on the salt water swimmers, if you aren’t used to housing anything more than a goldfish, then a salt water fish is likely not your best choice. You will most likely experience a lot of heartache in dying or ill fish, and lose a lot of money in the process as you learn how to care for these tender fish.
Consider instead a freshwater fish that is easy to care for and hardy (sorry, goldfish). A betta fish is a beautiful fish that thrives in fresh water tanks so long as you clean them often and provide at least a gallon of water per fish (do not put 2 bettas in one tank together, as they will fight). Oscars are another fine choice, and these fish are known to enjoy being petted. However, they are also very aggressive, so make sure to pair these fish with compatible swimmers, or else you will have a tank of carnage before long.
You may be attracted to the creepy and crawly, but a scorpion is a bit much for many pet owners. Despite their cheap and easy care, they are not pets that can be easily handled, and their sting can be painful and even potentially dangerous. If you want to handle your pet a lot, a scorpion may not be the best choice for you.
However, a tarantula is fair game, and just as easy to care for. These big spiders can be handled fairly easily and don’t often bite. If you want a creepy pet that is easy to care for and fun to play with (within limits), a tarantula fits the bill, and will give you years of shuddering enjoyment.
Before getting a pet, do your research to make sure the critter you are considering is right for you. In making a responsible decision with your new pet, you are sure to have a compatible companion that you can love and care for its entire happy life long.