chinchilla

11 Low Maintenance Pets for Apartments and Small Homes

The bond between humans and pets has always been strong. But often there are times when we have to give up or let go of our favorite family pets. Maybe you’re moving into a small apartment or home and simply don’t have the room for a larger pet. Or your new landlord simply won’t allow one.

Maybe you work long hours and don’t have the time to invest in a maintenance pet like a dog.

In this article we’ll show you 11 low-maintenance pets which are perfect for small apartments.

Granted, not all of them are as cute and fun as a dog but they can still bring you hours of enjoyment.


11 Low Maintenance Pets for Small Apartments

11. Praying mantises

Praying mantises are not the first thought that comes to mind when choosing a new pet. However, these pets are becoming more and more popular due to their minimal maintenance and unusual looks and behaviors.

Keeping these small pets is as simple as providing a small vivarium with heating and decorated with plants and rocks. But remember to keep a tight lid on the vivarium so they don’t escape!

Praying mantises are carnivores and will require live food that can be purchased at your local pet store and kept in sealed tubs for days.

One of the main factors to consider when keeping a Praying Mantis as a pet is their need for water which is different from most pets. Praying Mantises drink water from droplets from leaves and plants and will not drink from a bowl or water feeder like Guinea Pigs or Rabbits.

10. Hamsters

Okay, so now we’re talking! A cute, small, and easy to care for pet, perfect for that busy working family. Hamsters come in lots of assorted colors and sizes but the biggest is only a few inches long and will be perfect for a small home or even bedroom.

Easy to feed, these cute little creatures will show you lots of love and affection if you play with them carefully in a calm environment.

Inexpensive to buy, they only need a cage, toys, bedding, and suitable diet (which is especially important) and you’re set.

9. Exotic Spiders

Spiders are definitely not a pet I would have myself. But many people love them, and they are certainly minimal maintenance and rewarding to keep. Plus, you can scare the life out of anyone who comes to visit. That’s a bonus!

There are hundreds of spiders to choose from and the most popular has to be the tarantulas. Not the cuddliest pet I can think of and some of them will not take kindly to being handled and much as some other spiders. But remarkably interesting and unusual pets to keep.

Easy to feed and care for, make exotic spiders one to consider – even if the thought of owning one is a little scary. Push yourself and go hold one at your local pet store. You’ll instantly be hooked or put off.

8. Betta Fish

The betta fish is one of the most instantly recognizable pet fish in the world. The fact that they come in many colors is a bonus. They are one of the only fish suitable for being kept in smaller aquariums and even bowls. (Which we don’t recommend)

The labyrinth organ allows this fish to take oxygen from the surface of the water. Not many fish can do this, and this is one of the reasons they can live in such small spaces.

Betta fish are often called Siamese Fighting Fish because the males are very territorial and will fight, often to the death, if they come into close contact with each other. In years gone by, people would bet money on which fish would survive.

7. Guinea Pig

Okay, now the Guinea pig is a pet I would definitely go for over a spider… Any day of the week. They are not the lowest maintenance pets we have on this list and they need lots of play and time to run around and have fun.

If you have room in your small apartment to allow these pets to run, hop and play then I would consider adding one to your short-list.

Easy to feed and house makes the Guinea pig a popular choice. Also being extremely cute also helps.

With dozens of varieties to choose from there’s always a guinea pig that will just capture your heart and will have to come home with you.

6. Geckos

Geckos have an exceptionally long lifespan compared to some of the pets on this list and come in a vast range of species and colors. As long as you provide them with a suitable environment fit for their needs, you will see how easy they are to keep.

Heating, lighting, and feeding them will be fine if you get it right from the start. Make sure you take advice from your local supplier which will prevent any issues further down the line.

They love to be handled, although cuddling is probably not on the cards, and love to roam around your (secure) home or apartment.

5. Ant farms

Now, these are fun! We had to add this to our list of low-maintenance pets because they take hardly any care at all. Plus, watching them through a glass ant house is fascinating and I can spend hours just sitting there watching them.

There are many species of ant, believe it or not. Not all ants are the same. Keeping ants that are local to your area is always advisable.

Setting up an ant colony which is called a formicarium, can be difficult to get right but can also be amazing to watch. You can buy ant starter kits which makes it easier for you to setup and run.

Feeding them is relative to the species but most will be happy with water and sugar and a few dead insects to eat.

4. Shrimp Tanks

Shrimps are fascinating and watching them feed and clean themselves can provide hours of fun. Children especially love them as they are strange and unusual pets to keep.

They only require a small aquarium and can be either freshwater or saltwater, depending on the species you wish to keep. Freshwater shrimps are much easier to care for and clean.

Feeding them is simple as they will accept most live or meaty food and often scavenge on the bottom of their home for left over foods. This helps to keep the aquarium clean and tidy and makes your life easier.

3. Pet Mice

Pet mice are another pet that you’re either going to love or hate! Most moms hate them, and most children and dads love them.

Care must be taken when handling them and picking them up by their tail, as often seen, is not recommended and can cause harm. Educating yourself on how to keep pet mice and their basic needs, will ensure that you don’t have too much to do when it comes to their maintenance.

You can have fun creating a fun environment for it to live in. Often, within a glass aquarium filled with sawdust or suitable bedding. You can let your mind go wild and create a wonderful, fun, and cheerful home for them to live in.

2. Chinchillas

These must be the cutest pet we have featured in this article. The chinchilla is soft, cute, and very adorable. They are not as low maintenance as the ants we just featured, but far cuter to look at and hold.

Care should be taken when feeding these pet as they do require a healthy and balanced diet. They also need more room than some of the other pets featured and will need to be cleaned daily.

They can also be easily harmed if handled roughly so care must be taken when children are around or caring for them.

1. Snake

It’s easy to see why snakes can strike fear into the heart of many people. Mostly due to film and stories hyped up to make them look scarier. In fact, snakes often like to be handled more than many of the pets in this list.

Feeding may be an issue for many keepers as they need dead mice and other foods that may not be to your liking.

Keeping dead and frozen feeding-mice in your freezer may not go down well with the wife!

There are many species and assorted sizes of snake to consider and if you’re looking for an unusual low maintenance pet this could be the one for you.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are a lot of options for you to consider when you’re thinking of purchasing a new pet for a small apartment.

To be considered as a low maintenance pet will depend on the amount of time you’ll need to spend caring for it as well as the amount of time playing and having fun with your new pet.

One thing is for sure, we have found some unusual pets for you to consider and we hope one of them will find its way into your home and bring you hours of enjoyment.

Hutch and Cage.com does not provide veterinary advice. Our aim is to provide the reader with information to enable them to make a good decision when making a purchase or caring for their pet. All content is therefore for informational purposes only. If you're concerned about the health of your pet you should seek medical advice from a vet.