Check out our pet-friendly cabin Dancing Bear!It’s time for unique pet number 5- the squirrel! The squirrel is a very common animal, I know… probably more common that any of the other exotic pets we’ve reviewed! But it isn’t so common to have a squirrel as a pet! And because we think of squirrels as wild animals, and because of that one that looked straight at me and really freaked me out, you might not think a squirrel would make a very good pet. Others argue differently, though!

If you are considering getting a squirrel as a pet, it is better to get one that was born in captivity, such as from a breeder or a pet store. It’s generally not a great idea to trap one from your back yard and keep it as a pet! It’s also better to get one that was hand-raised, or taken from its mother right at weaning time. This will ensure that your squirrel adjusts to you more easily! Also, before you make the jump to having a pet squirrel, make sure you are ready for the commitment of caring for it!

Check out our pet-friendly cabin Starry Nights!There are three basic types of squirrels available in North America as pets: American Red Squirrels, Grey Squirrels, and Southern Flying Squirrels. Since most squirrels are naturally wild animals, it is generally pretty hard to find most of them as pets, the Southern Flying Squirrel being the easiest to find. It reaches 6 to 12 inches in body length and 4 to 10 inches in tail length, and a weight of 4 to 8 ounces. They can generally live up to about 10 years in ideal conditions!

Before you even bring home your new pet, make sure you have a spacious wire mesh cage, at least 3 cubic feet per squirrel, ideally much larger. You will need to provide a nesting box for your squirrel, attached to the outside of the wall of the cage, with an entrance through a hole in the cage directly into the box. Make sure and provide plenty of material for your squirrel to build his nest out of, such as twigs, leaves, grass, and bark. If you are planning to have more than one squirrel, it is better to house them Check out our pet-friendly cabin Running Bear!separately, as they are fairly solitary animals. If, however, you do house them together, make sure they each have plenty of space and separate nesting boxes. Also, in your squirrel’s cage, provide various sticks and branches for your unique pet to climb around on and get his exercise! If you are able, it’s great for your pet to allow him to roam around a closed off room occasionally for limited amounts of time, and with close supervision! This will help keep him healthy and happy!

The cage will also need to have a heavy metal bowl for your squirrel’s food, and for his water, either another heavy metal bowl, or a water bottle attached to the side of the cage! These you should clean carefully with hot water every day to ensure a healthy environment for your pet! It is also ideal to have a cage with a removable tray at the bottom for easy cleaning. In the bottom of the cage you should keep pine chips for your pet to do his business in. You will need to clean the entire cage with hot water at least once a week, and change out any material in the cage that gets feces on it or has rotted.

Check out our pet-friendly cabin Eagle's Landing!Make sure you provide your pet squirrel with a healthy diet! They need a mixture of vegetables (such as celery, carrots, green beans, and romaine lettuce), and some fruits(such as apples and bananas), and also enjoy some insects and mealworms. Most squirrels also enjoy many of the seeds in parrot food. It is also important to provide a calcium supplement, which you can find at most pet stores. A squirrel’s teeth will grow continuously throughout its lifetime, so it is essential to provide chewing material such as hard bark and large bones.

For more detailed information on getting or owning a pet squirrel, consult your local vet!

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