Housing and Environment

The best housing and environments for any small animal are those that incorporate your pet’s natural behavior in the design. For example, hamsters are very active and therefore require a housing environment with enough room to run inside an exercise wheel. In contrast, guinea pigs require little exercise; however, they like to look at what’s going on around them. Therefore, housing environments with a shelf are ideal for guinea pigs, as they can take a look around and then scurry back down to the bottom of the cage if they feel frightened.

Ferrets, pet rats and chinchillas have a natural instinct to climb. Therefore, when selecting the ideal housing for this natural instinct it is best to choose a tall cage which allows for plenty of vertical space. For pet rats, take special note to select a cage with half-inch wire spacing, as they are able to squeeze between very small spaces and escape.

For pet rabbit, the bigger the cage is the better! Cages do not need to be vertically tall, but instead, should offer plenty of length. Rabbits are very active and energetic animals that need enough space to live comfortably. Also essential to a pet rabbit’s housing is a deep base with high sides to minimize scattered bedding and food outside the cage.

In addition to picking the right housing environment, it’s also important to include toys and accessories that meet the natural instincts of small animals. For example, most small animals have teeth that continually grow. Therefore, it is very important to purchase chews that allow your pet to gnaw and keep its teeth short, healthy and trim.

Like chews, toys are very important to keep your small pet from boredom, which can often lead to destructive and aggressive behaviors. For example, ferrets and rabbits are very playful by nature. Toys should be especially designed for all small animal species, to be constructed of non-toxic material and large enough to prevent choking or blockage if swallowed. With a high level of natural curiosity, ferrets and rabbits are easily intrigued by toys that make noise, can tackle, toss and easily handle. Kaytee provides many specially designed small animal toys to include inside your pet’s housing environment.

All small animals requiring a housing environment with designated food and water stations. Food bowls should be heavy enough to prevent your pet from tipping the food over and spilling it throughout their cage. Kaytee offers a variety of food possibilities to meet the nutritional needs of your particular furry friend. Water bottles should be large enough to provide your pet with enough water throughout the day, with sipper tubes that prevent leakage. Ideally, pet owners should provide a clean, fresh water supply daily to prevent the growth of bacteria. Kaytee offers numerous sizes, styles and designs of water bottles and food dishes to meet your small animal’s needs.

Finally, position your small animals housing environment in your home where your pet can receive daily attention and care easily. Like people, small animals need companionship and want to socialize with their family. Place your critter's home in a place where you can enjoy your pet and give it the special attention it deserves.