Dogs are the number #1 pet across American households for a number of reasons that go from being one of the most reliable home security systems to being man's best friend. But they are not the only cool pets to own out there. There are several other pets one could have besides a dog and, its runner-up, the cat.
And that’s what this article is all about. Sometimes bringing a dog into your home doesn’t work the way we wanted and you need to search for different pets, so we’ll take a look at some unique pets to own, their specificities, and pros and cons within the home. Shall we?
Fish are probably the third most common house pets. It’s a cool pet to own mostly because of the fish tank. It’s fun to build one with all the castles, lights and ornaments you design for your fish friends’ habitat, and it’s also fun to have it as a distraction; a “live painting” you spend some time admiring.
Fish can be very unique pets to own if you go all out searching for exotic types of fish and, with the creation of automated smart home devices – like automated fish food dispensers and automated fish tank cleaners - they have become less expensive and less high-maintenance than they used to, but for people that are looking for low maintenance pets that like to cuddle… fish are not a good choice. You can’t really interact with fish, right? You can definitely admire them – and it makes for a great soothing and romantic activity with your loved ones – but you can’t cuddle with fish, it won’t lick you, you won’t play fetch, you won’t make it chase after you… the fish just stays there. At best you can take them out of water for a few brief seconds so you can pet them and then return them to the fish tank but it won’t be a pleasant experience as they will be flapping in agony and it might actually turn into a fatal accident. But still, fish are very cool pets to own, very common house pets.
Real Estate wise, the fish tank can have minimal impact to the home when it’s a small tank, or used in a creative way that can impact the property as a whole when it’s big. For instance, the fish tank can create a division in the living room, turning the living room into one dining room and one TV room.
A Tarantula spider is one unique pet to own that rose to fame by way of Buzz McCallister, Kevin’s older brother from “Home Alone”. The Tarantula plays a central role in freaking us out every time it seems to be coming to get Kevin and then saving the day by neutralizing the “Wet Bandits” trying to invade the McCallister home.
Like the fish, Tarantulas are to be kept in an enclosed space - in fact, the McCallister Tarantula lived in an emptied fish tank, remember? – and that is because not only Tarantulas can hurt people but they are themselves fragile. If you step or sit on them, you might break or kill them. Contrary to what many people think due to its hairy menacing figure, Tarantulas bites are not fatal. They are venomous and some species have urticating hair that will cause skin rash and irritation but no bite has been reported to cause a human fatality.
This unique pet to own is for fearless people. In fact, arachnophobia is real and if you’re thinking about bringing this pet home, you should consider that many people will be uneasy at the sight of it, even if it’s inside a closed glass tank. Like the fish, Tarantulas are not to be played with. They are to be handled with caution as they are very fast and can either bite you or run away causing a ruckus for you to find it again. Not to mention that a fall from 3 feet will likely prove fatal for the Tarantula so it’s one animal to admire and not to play with.
Now, if all of this is throwing you off, let’s give you the good news: Tarantulas are number #1 when it comes to cool pets that are easy to take care of. All they need to feed is one or two crickets a week! Moreover, the Tarantula will feed according to its needs, so if you’re going away for more than a week, you can leave some alive crickets or other insects in the tank and the Tarantula will do the rest whenever it needs. Plus, some go through periods of fasting that can take months. And if you have a problem with insects in your home, Tarantulas can take care of it.
Ownership of Parrots is restricted in many states. Actually, as a rule of thumb, find out if any of the animals we mention here in this article are allowed not only in your state but your city! Ferrets, for instance, are allowed in Texas but not in Dallas. Go figure… And if that wasn’t enough, it’s possible to live in a state and a city that do allow some type of pet but being inside a homeowners association that does not. Yes, homeowners association can impose pet restrictions and since they do that for dogs and cats, so the chances of doing for unique pets like some in this list is even bigger.
Anyways, we have so many reasons to include Parrots in our cool pets to own list.
One of the saddest things about house pets is that you bond with them, create this whole relationship making it part of your family, but their life-span is much shorter than ours. Sure, it can be a great lesson for kids learning to deal with death. But sometimes you need less drama, right? So, Parrots have a life-span of 50 to 90(!) years! Ain’t that amazing? A companion for a lifetime, the parrot can grow up with you. And it can interact with you in a way that other pets can’t: by speaking! Well, “speaking”. Parrots only mimic the sounds we make, but they are considered one of the most intelligent birds, being able to even solve logical colored puzzles.
And you can pet them! Yes, Parrots are relatively low maintenance pets that like to cuddle. You can put them on your shoulder, have them dance, caress their feathered head and they close their eyes enjoying it; might even sing a bit – adorable!
However, to get all of this, it’s important that the Parrot gets the correct stimuli in its early ages, interacting with siblings and having his little brain stimulated. Otherwise, harmful behaviors like self-plucking can occur. And more, when they age, if badly trained, Parrots can become less affectionate. And a Parrot’s bite really hurts! So, it’s important to understand that while it’s an amazingly intelligent animal it is also a wild animal. It’s definitely not a low maintenance pet; it demands a lot of attention, care, and intellectual stimulation. Not to mention the veterinary care, grooming, feeding… People tend to compare it with three-year-old children – which is a problem because children grow up from it but Parrots don’t; they constantly require that attention. But with all of that, they are still very cool pets to own; one of the most common house pets there is.
Like Parrots, Turtles can live for decades if well taken care of. And they make for cool pets to own.
Really! The cultural representation of the turtle is that of a slow, mobility impaired, neurotic, old geezer, but did you know that turtles have the ability to recognize its owners by sight and smell? It’s true. They even swim up to the surface to greet their owners once they enter the room. It’s cute. And while you can pet them – its head, chin, and cheeks! – there’s an appropriate way to do so; otherwise, they are likely to bite you, as they are not as fond of petting like other animals.
One thing to look out for when getting this unique house pet is regarding hygiene. All turtles carry salmonella. It’s adamant that after taking care of the turtle, its excrements and whatever other objects in their tank, you thoroughly wash your hands. Because of that – and other reasons like them being slower animals – turtles are more recommended for older people, as kids tend to put their hands in their mouth a lot. So, just in case, have a bottle of hand disinfectant right next to the turtle tank at all times.
Feeding them is easy. They love them veggies! However, you could have a turtle at your apartment, but they couldn’t be considered a low maintenance pet for apartment, as it requires a lot of veterinary care. Be aware of that! And last, but not least, if you find out turtles are not for you do not release them into the wild. House turtles are usually not cut for that. Even if they don’t die, they can release diseases for wild turtles, so, please, look for a turtle shelter.
Talk about a unique pet to own…
Listen, to each his own, but snakes can be deadly to humans. Depending on the one you choose, via venom or just its strength by strangling you. And it’s a high maintenance house pet that will require dead animals (like rats) to feed – yikes! – and a lot of free space on your freezer to store them. Not to mention that snakes are pretty sneaky so you will have to build a safe enclosed space from which they can’t escape and that usually costs a little bit too. And then there is the skin shedding… listen, snakes are cool pets to own but very very time-consuming. If you’re thinking of Snakes to act as a safety system; you’re better off getting a guard dog or a home alarm.
Maybe think more on it and read A LOT about it before making this commitment as snakes can also live for about 20 years.
Rabbits are so cute. They follow you around anywhere you go, and while they will twitch 24/7, you can pet them on the forehead and cheeks. They prefer to be on the floor but you can try to have them sit on your lap. They usually looove a good back rub but are not fond of anyone touching their ears, feet, stomach, and tail. But in the end, it’s all about the way you build a relationship with the bunny.
The problem with rabbits is you need to rabbit-proof the house and they poop all over the place. It’s a nightmare!
What do you think about our cool pets to own? Have you ever had any of these? How was it like? Tell us in the comments!