Moving into your first place is a GREAT excuse to get a new pet…but are you really ready? Instead of going for an animal that requires significant time and effort to care for, consider choosing one of these easy, unique apartment pets to fulfill your need for a friend while being fair to both you and your animal!
The key? Look for a pet that doesn’t require much “maintenance,” although you must always be prepared to pay for a health problem and pet-sitting expenses when you go out of town. Dogs are fun apartment pets, but they’re not included in this list because they’re anything but easy, requiring significant attention and care!
While cats will require special care arrangements for long weekends away, they are an AWESOME easy apartment pet. They don’t require much care or stimulation in most cases, and can be snuggly like their canine counterparts without the excess energy. Be sure to do your research on cats (and your apartment’s pet policy!) because they can cause some damage if they aren’t litter-box trained or if they tend to scratch furniture instead of their own toys.
Fish are easy! Aside from cleaning out their tank (which can be tricky, not going to lie to you), they require minimal care. Look for some tanks that require less maintenance or invest in plants and animals (called algae eaters) who will help keep the tank clean for you. Whether you choose one fish or a few that get along well together, talk to your pet store representative to be sure they get what they need from their environment.
If you’re comfortable with your pet being a little slimy or creepy-crawly, check out amphibians like frogs, turtles, and snakes. Again, they don’t take too much care to thrive and can be a fun and unique pet. Be sure your apartment doesn’t have rules against specific pets (like snakes!) and that you do your research before investing in an amphibian. Remember, they may need space for a large tank and lighting setup.
Small furry animals like hamsters, rabbits, guinea pigs, and other small rodents can make great apartment pets. The only issue? Sometimes they can STINK, especially if you aren’t extremely careful about cleaning out their cage frequently. However, they can be tons of fun to play with and let roam around in a secure environment. These little pets will require care for a weekend away, but could be totally worth it!
Birds are a ton of fun and make great apartment pets. Be sure to choose a bird that does not make ear-piercingly loud noise when they chirp and one that requires low maintenance. Again, these are fun pets for apartments because they are unique, easy to care for, and can stay contained in their cage for the most part. Birds can be a big investment and do require stimulation to keep occupied, so they’re not a great bet if you’re away a lot.
If you’re not quite sure that a pet is for you, start with plants! It sounds silly, but taking charge of something’s well-being is a lot of fun and the responsibility for another feels nice, especially when living alone. If your plants never make it more than a week, perhaps a pet isn’t for you (yet)!