The Library - Small Mammal Education
Bunny Health Basics
Unlike cats and dogs, rabbits do not require vaccinations. They are "prey" animals and will hide signs of illness as long as possible. Often, when illness is noticed, it is too late to help. Therefore, it is critical to check your rabbit frequently for signs of illness. Unusual bumps, fur loss, abnormally small feces, diarrhea, gas or gurgling in the gut, straining to defecate or urinate, hunched appearance, prolonged sitting in the litter pan, and loud grinding of teeth are all considered signs of illness and should be investigated promptly.
Rabbit Care Guidelines
Rabbits are wonderful house pets. They are highly social and friendly and live an average of 8 to 12 years. They require as much attention as a cat or dog. Because rabbits are bred for appearance and not personality, all breeds can make wonderful companions. Choose a rabbit for his/her individual personality. The information offered here is designed to help you and your rabbit enjoy a happy life together.
All About Hamsters Hamster
Hamsters are members of the rodent family. They are solitary animals that do well with human interaction, but do not like to be kept in the same cage with other hamsters. Hamsters collect their food and carry it in large cheek pouches to hide and bury. There are many different types of hamsters. Some have short hair while others have long.
Sugar Gliders/Sugar BearsSugar Glider
Sugar gliders can make very interesting and loveable pets. However, they are nocturnal animals. They require a specialized diet and can be quite challenging to care for.
Check out the Association of Sugar Glider Veterinarians website for complete information on sugar gliders. Check under the pet owner's section to see if a sugar glider is the right pet for you. This site has lots of valuable information for sugar bear owners/potential owners.
All About Rats
Rats are members of the rodent family. They can make good first pets and require minimal care, compared to other exotic pets. Rats live between 2 to 4 years.
All About Mice
Mice are members of the rodent family. Mice can be difficult to handle at first, because they are naturally timid, very small and very quick. However, a bond with their owner may be formed with daily interaction and regular routine handling.
All About Gerbils
Gerbils are also members of the rodent family. Gerbils are social animals and are best housed in pairs. Breeding pairs tend to be monogamous and maintain lifelong relationships.
All About Guinea Pigs
Guinea Pigs are rodents. They are known for their expressive vocalizations. (We call them "whistle pigs" here at CPAH) They'll whistle and grunt when they are excited and squeak with delight when their favorite human enters the room. Guinea Pigs can not manufacture vitamin C. Fresh sources of vitamin C need to be provided daily.
All About Chinchillas
Chinchillas are rodents. They can live 10+ years, so they require a longer commitment than other rodents. They have extremely soft fur. If grabbed too hard, their fur can be pulled out leaving bald spots. Chinchillas are very susceptible to heat stroke at temperatures 80 degrees plus.
All About Ferrets
Ferrets (unlike the preceding pocket pets) are not rodents. They belong to the family Mustelidae. Some of their relatives include weasels and otters. Ferrets are relatively easy to care for. Some ferrets look like masked bandits, which works for them since they like to steal and hide their loot.
Click on the ferret photograph to learn more about ferrets.