Responsible Pocket Pet Ownership

Did you know that February is Responsible Pet Ownership Month? Of course, we think every month is Responsible Pet Ownership Month, but that’s beside the point. Little animals need great care, too! If you have a tiny furball, like a hamster, gerbil, or Guinea pigs, this is a great time to revisit your pet’s care, and see if there is any room for improvement. A Poway, CA vet discusses responsible pocket pet ownership below.


All of our furry friends have unique temperaments and care requirements. Do some basic research on your tiny buddy, so you can ensure that you are taking good care of the little guy. Hamsters, for instance, can get very sick from being cold for even just a few hours. Look into signs of sickness, foods to avoid, and household dangers. Don’t be afraid to ask your vet for recommendations, either. That’s what we’re here for!


A clean, comfy cage is crucial to your tiny furball’s health and happiness. Make sure that your pet’s home offers plenty of room to run and play. Little mazes and tunnels will not be unappreciated! A suitable substrate is also very important. Aspen is a good choice. Avoid pine or cedar substrates, which are toxic to small animals. These little ones get frightened easily, so be sure your furry pal has a hidey-hole to retreat to if he gets scared or wants to take a nap.


Many pocket pets have open-rooted teeth, which means that those itty-bitty choppers will never stop growing. Therefore, providing your pet with proper chew toys is very important. Many household items, such as the cardboard tubes from toilet paper rolls, can easily be upcycled into great chew toys. Avoid items with small parts or sharp edges, and anything coated in varnish, paint, or dye.


Most pets love treats, and these little ones are no exception. Ask your vet to recommend a suitable diet, including safe snacks. Never give your furbaby anything new without first researching it to be sure it is safe. Some common foods to avoid are chocolate; caffeine; junk food; garlic and onion; products containing xylitol; and raw potato or tomato leaves. Be careful not to overindulge your pet: animals that are overweight or obese face serious health risks!

Do you have questions about your pocket pet’s care? Call us, your Poway, CA animal hospital, today!

Website Designed & Developed by DVMelite | All Rights Reserved | Login