10 Pets That My Children Will Only Get Over My Dead Body

pigMy kids are way too young to get pets yet since my oldest is only two, but I’m already gathering my facts and creating my arguments for the trial-by-jury that is sure to come.

When I was little, I had tons of pets. All I can say to that is: Thank you, divorce. My mom willingly admits that she got us all kinds of fuckity rodents that tried to escape and eat our faces in the night—all because she felt guilty that we came from a broken home.

So I guess the rodent parade was kind of cool, until our guinea pig got lice, and my sister murdered one of her hamsters, and another tiny mouse died under the refrigerator. It is precisely this chain of events that has brought me where I am today. I hate rodents so very much, and I don’t care who knows. I would rather my kids sleep in a pit of a thousand non-poisonous snakes than ever bring a God-awful guinea pig into our house.

But that’s just me. Sure, I’m biased, but I’m formulating a plan to convince my kids that my husband is allergic to cats and rodents. They can have almost anything else under the sun, I swear!

Here are 10 terrible pets that I will never, ever allow under my roof:

1.    Cat: My husband really is allergic, and I am NOT a cat person. #sorrynotsorry 

 2.    Guinea Pig = LICE!

3.    Hamsters: Aka, sick motherfuckers that eat their young.

4.    Gerbil: Known for dying under the refrigerator.

5.    Mice: Known for escaping and hiding in cereal boxes.

6.    Rat: A species that should not exist.

7.    Ferret: A big, gross rat—no matter how much you try to church it up.

8.    Parakeets: Known to kick shit everywhere and never shut up.

9.    Parrot: Known to outlive you, and that is just creepy.

10. Goldfish = IMMINENT DEATH.

You can reach this post's author, Bethany Ramos, on twitter.
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    • kay

      You’re leaving yourself open to chickens, bunnies, and goats, you realize that right?

      Or am I the only person who begged for bunnies and goats as a child? (We had chickens. I have them now. Still no goat)

      • Lee

        Oh man, my kid will never have a rabbit. My grandma got us one for Easter one year and we weren’t even initially excited about it. That rabbit was a huge asshole who chewed power cords and clawed the crap out of us every time we tried to touch it. The only good thing that came from that rabbit was a story:

        My mom thought the rabbit had a big tumor on it belly so she took it to the vet. Turns out the rabbit wasn’t a female like we had been told and the tumor was actually bunny balls.

      • EmmaFromÉire

        Parents had a rabbit in their first apartment. Bastard got out of it’s cage when they were in work and ate the sofa. Like literally just ate lumps of the sofa, until it was beyond repair.

      • Lee

        Kitty, the cat formerly known as Shitty Kitty clawed out all of the corners on our old couch down to the wood. Worse $15 I ever spent. She 11 now and will probably be one of those freak cats that live to be 30.

      • Jessie

        Well it’s like Lewis Black says: “The good die young, but the PRICKS live FOREVER.” I imagine the same can be applied to cats/animals in general.

      • Paul White

        If that’s true my wife’s cat is immortal.

        Fuck.

      • m

        I used to have two pet bunnies, and their cage was near some cables (yeah, smart I know…). Once our internet totally stopped working and we had already ordered a repair guy before moving the cage and noticing the Internet cable chewed cut (through the cage holes I guess). Those little bastards <3

      • Iwill Findu

        Bunnies are like the worst pet to give children. Not saying bunnies are a bad pet, but they are the wrong pet for kids.

      • Guets

        I think way too many people get bunnies and have no clue what they’re doing. My husband decided as an adult that he wanted to get one and we had to take a bunny class before we could adopt it. He was given up by a family with young kids because they couldn’t give him enough attention. He is awesome though now because he can be outside his cage and mess around with the cat and dogs. Carpet, however, is his weakness which I could see being a massive problem for some people.

      • m

        It’s also so sad when people give bunnies as “Easter gifts”, so irresponsible. Rabbit sanctuary I follow on facebook has commented how they hate Easter :(

      • Bethany Ramos

        WAIT – no bunnies as #11. But chickens… sure.

      • Marianna

        I got a baby chick in a pet fair when I was 5 and I took such great care of it that it grew into a rooster. So we lived with a rooster in an apartment for a while.

      • Bethany Ramos

        That sounds very cute! (And stressful ;))

      • Lady Pool

        We had a duckling and when he grew up he flew away to live at the duck pond near our house.

      • itpainsme2say

        Goats are pretty awesome. I kidsat for my aunt for a month when i was like 10 and i taught them how to do tricks. My mom hated them because we were suppose to feed them every morning and I kept forgetting .

      • kay

        YOU CAN TEACH GOATS TRICKS?
        I want one even more now!

      • itpainsme2say

        Well I use tricks loosely when I would climb their little house they would also climb it and if i stood on a cinder block they would stand on the other cinder block. We mainly did copycat and follow the leader type games.

      • http://batman-news.com Bunny Lou

        Not to mention Geese, Chinchillas, Ducks, Dogs, Sugar gliders….

    • Robotic Socks

      #4. How can there be a mention of gerbils without Richard Gere????

      • Valerie

        I wonder if he named him Lemiwinks?

    • Tea

      Ow, my inner bio-nerd. Just, ow. My “that guy” instincts are kicking in.

      But hey, looks like tarantulas are still an option.

      • Bethany Ramos

        YES, I’m cool with that. ;)

      • Tea

        They’re great, a lot like keeping fish in the whole “Nice to look at, quiet, and keep an eye on their environment” or a somewhat demanding house plant.

      • Obladi Oblada

        I would burn my house down before I had a tarantula. *shudder*

      • G.S.

        *shudders* When I was a kid, I used to have a pair of guinea pigs that were kept in a hutch I made with my dad and a good number of kids in the neighbourhood (it was a fun project and a good memory). Since it was giant, it was kept on the floor in a darker part of the mudroom. That thing attracted SO MANY DADDY LONG LEGSES! *shudders again* It was horrible.

      • Obladi Oblada

        Noooooooo…Daddy Long Legs are the worst! Spider Crickets too. Yuck-o!

      • Lackadaisical

        tarantulas are lovely but you can’t let the kids play with them because of the dropping of the itchy spiny hairs when they are stressed. I always wanted one as a kid.

      • Tea

        Not all of them are hair-kickers, it depends on the individual. My golden knee will kick if I so much as give her a cricket, but my tree spider (Avic avic, forgot common name) gave zero fucks ever.

        My Brazilian Black can’t even be arsed to move out of what should feel like danger, she just chills and calls your bluff/has no sense of self preservation.

      • Paul White

        I got so pissed; a large swarm of these ants got into my ornamentals cage a few weeks ago and ate her :( I walked in to see her struggling while being eaten alive. Sucked.

      • Toastlette

        That is the first time I have ever felt sad for a spider. :( Poor thing.

      • Tea

        I am so sorry to hear about your ornamental, that’s pretty brutal.

        I just lost my L. Pary to a bad molt last week and I feel like an idiot because they’re supposed to be bulletproof (She never grew, ever, so I’m wondering if something was going on there).

      • ILoveJellybeans

        I love tarantulas, I have two of them-a Chilean rose (G. Rosea) named Incy Wincy, and a Mexican Red Rump (B. Vagans) that I only got recently and haven’t named yet.
        Great pets. They aren’t noisy, they don’t smell, only need feeding once a week. Theyre also really cool to look at, and come in so many varieties.
        The only down side to tarantulas is crickets, which are annoying to deal with.
        I also have a cat, and would really like a snake :)

    • Chrissy

      “All kinds of fuckity rodents. . .” Lmao

    • Caroline__B

      #7. I always find it funny when people compare ferrets to rats. Ferrets would actually eat rats (although my own ferrets would probably just play with them *sigh*). They are definitely not a good choice for kids though, regardless of whether they can have pets or not.

      • Bethany Ramos

        I would get a ferret if it would eat a rat!

      • Elisa Probert

        Mine eat mice. They’d probably got for a rat if I offered one to them. Though since they are girls a large rat is almost as big as they are…

      • Fondue

        There’s no comparison: Rats smell better. :)

      • Alicia Kiner

        Ferrets are like dogs, bathe them and they don’t stink. They can also be litter box trained.

      • Elisa Probert

        My ferrets don’t stink and they don’t get many baths. Diet plays a HUGE role in that. Sadly, most of the food on the market for them is really horrible for them and makes them smell awful.

      • Alicia Kiner

        My grandma had ferrets, she always fed them Friskies. I have no idea if that was actually GOOD for them, but they certainly liked it. They also went crazy for Pounce. Now that I’m thinking about it, WE had ferrets too when I was really little, but I don’t remember (if I ever knew) what my mom fed them.

      • Elisa Probert

        Probably kitten or cat food of some kind. They need a lot of protein and very few (preferably no) carbs. Most “ferret” foods have way to many carbs and actually causes a disease that acts like diabetes in them. Especially the one made by the company that breeds all the ferrets you find in pet stores. (And yep, most of them come from one farm)

        I have mine on a raw diet., which does take a LOT of research to do right. Mostly chicken, cornish game hen, and pork, with the bones in the poultry and they get liver and other organ meats once a week. They also eat frog legs I found at a local grocer, and will eat pretty much any meat I offer. Sometimes the cat steals their food. (He’s on a very similar diet)

      • Alicia Kiner

        Good to know. Ferrets are something I’m not opposed to. But I definitely want dogs. I figure we’ll get a puppy first and see how training that goes before we add any more pets. ;)

      • Lackadaisical

        My last dog (a small fluffy white thing) was beaten up by a ferret once. Normally she was gentle and got on with all other animals but somehow it offended her little doggy pride so much that the next time she saw an animal in the garden that she could handle (a duck) she barked it into a corner and then strutted away looking cocky. The duck seemed rather bemused.

    • Guest

      You forgot snake :|

      • Fondue

        No, she’s totally cool with her kids in a pit of snakes. Did you miss that part?

    • Fondue

      Rats should not exist? Spoken like someone who’s never been around a well-socialized rat.
      *scratches Bethany off guest list for my rats’ birthday parties*

      • Bethany Ramos

        Dammit! I never knew!

      • Robotic Socks

        This is rattling news!

      • Rachel Sea

        I loved my pet rats, they were as clever as cats, and twice as easy to train. If I hadn’t become violently allergic I’d adopt some now.

    • LiteBrite

      Ha ha… I have two fuckity rodents (guinea pigs) and two cats. My “pet we will get over my dead body” is any kind of reptile. I know there are reptile lovers out there (Paul White), and that’s fine. You can have all of them. Me? I’ll be curing my guinea pig’s lice and curling up with my cat on the couch.

      • EmmaFromÉire

        I’ll happily trade! I love snakes and geckos, but hate guinea pigs, they smella bit funny to me!

      • LiteBrite

        I like *looking* at snakes and geckos, but I don’t want one in my house.

        And I’ll be honest, I’m kind of over guinea pigs. I love them and have no plans on getting rid of them, but once they pass it’s doubtful I’ll get more. They’ve been a lot more work than I planned on.

      • Paul White

        you sound like me and dogs there….I understand my dad’s view on them a LOT better now that I’m 100% responsible for them.

    • Valerie

      Oh God I hate cats. #besties4life

      • Bethany Ramos

        #besties #cathate !

      • Valerie

        Oh, and my hubs is also allergic to kids. #wearethesameperson

      • Bethany Ramos

        Cats or kids or both? ;) #parallellives

      • Valerie

        Bwahahaha. Cats!! Fucking autocorrect.

      • Bethany Ramos

        Hahahah I say BOTH.

      • Valerie

        Totes. Especially at bedtime and bath time.

      • Lackadaisical

        Same here. A handy excuse when the kids try to be cute to get a cat. “Well, cat fur makes daddy stop breathing so it’s daddy or cat”. I did get the cat answer once and when I finally stopped laughing I pointed out that I don’t like cats so it will never happen.

        He may also be allergic to kids, but apparently when you hang them upside down and tickle them their allergy inducing kidness is neutralised.

      • Valerie

        Lol. Exactly. My cousin has cats and she keeps them in the basement when we come over but of course, the fur is still all around and he looks HORRIBLE by the time we leave. Eyes puffed up to slits, watering, sneezing, coughing. Poor dude.

      • Lackadaisical

        That sounds so familiar. Yes, the house can be as bad as the cat when covered in cat. Also when a cat touches him my husband’s skin goes red and swells up. Considering my own lack of interest in cats this means I can sound noble when I refuse to have an unpredictable superiority complex on 4 legs in the house.

      • LiteBrite

        “An unpredictable superiority complex on 4 legs…”

        Yep. That is pretty much a cat in a nutshell. Although that’s also why I like them. I have a lot of admiration for a creature that’s 1/8th the size of me yet has the balls to sit on the table and just stare at me like she’s daring me to tell her to get off.

      • Robotic Socks

        Well, stick to the Mongolian Beef at the Golden Dragon then

      • Iwill Findu

        I can’t stand cats. I really hate the cat that lives across the street, who’s stupid owners let roam free to dig up all my plants and poop in my garden. In fact when I herd lilies make cats sick I thought about replacing all my pansies (I have a whole flower bed of just pansies, were the cat really likes to poo) with lilies, with the hope that if their cat gets sick they’ll start keeping it inside, after the mother of vet bill. Clearly I haven’t pulled up all the pansies to replace with lilies, because I’m not a totally bad person.

      • Valerie

        We have cats in our neighborhood that wander to our yard and then our brainless dog eats their turds. I HATE CATS!

      • Lackadaisical

        Ah yes, our dog is a poo eater (yet perfect in every other way) and we are surrounded by cats. Summer is great because we can leave the back door open all day, which keeps the cat visits down.

      • Rachel Sea

        My asshole neighbors let their cat roam, and he tries to fight my cats through the living room window. He’s mangled the screen, and killed the two big Spanish lavender bushes that were planted below it. I hate those neighbors so much, but I feel bad for the cat, who will probably die young of disease, raccoon, or car tires.

      • Lackadaisical

        Oh yes. Fluffy balls of standoffish attitude and claws who utterly suck at fetching sticks. I find them unpredictable and am usually bored by them or wary of them. Occasionally if I get to know a friend’s cat I might like it and enjoy cuddling it if it is one of the friendlier ones but in general I have zero interest in them. All of my friends seem to be raging cat people and don’t get the awesomeness that are dogs.

      • Rachel Sea

        I have two cats that fetch, but only one of my four dogs will.

      • Lackadaisical

        My dog fetches beautifully … if by fetch you mean she brings the stick back but fails to let go as she wants to show you how amazing it is. I can only get her to drop the stick by turning my back, walking away and pretending I don’t want to play any more, then she worries that I won’t give her attention and agrees to play by my rules.

      • Psych Student

        I love dogs and my wife and I wanted one but needed something a bit more independent. We ended up adopting a cat that still has a fairly dog-like personality. He loves to be around his moms, always wants to know what’s going on, loves attention, loves with other people come over, doesn’t ever run and hide. He doesn’t claw, but he does bit like a little butt face, but he’s such a sweetie. He loves to sleep on us and always wants to know what we’re doing. He’s exactly what we wanted in a cat – a dog that can be free fed, doesn’t need walks, and poops in a box.

    • Katherine Handcock

      My husband hates snakes…my daughter adores them. ADORES them. Like, cries when she’s not allowed to hold 10-foot pythons kind of adores. Spent twenty minutes with her face pressed against the glass talking to the boa constrictor adores. I’m pretty sure he will get her any pet her heart desires as long as she agrees to never ask for a snake.

      • FemelleChevalier

        Try to check if she can actually talk to the boa constrictor. I know a bespectacled kid who set one free because it tells him how it misses home.

      • Katherine Handcock

        You know, the keeper at the reptile zoo WAS commenting on how much more active the snake was than usual…

        Now I’m slightly concerned.

      • Paul White

        My poor dad is terrified of snakes but he never actually let one for years, until well after I’d gotten several pet snakes. He just didn’t ome into my room a lot after the first boa constrictor but I didn’t really notice it

        Then one day I’m walking around downstairs with my large savu python (5-6′) he turns the corner of the study and bumps into me and the snake. Turns ghost white and screams like a 5 year old at the dentist.

    • Alicia Kiner

      My husband and I are allergic to cats too, so no cats for us. I also vote against rodents, birds and fish. I had a gerbil bite my thumb pad to the bone when I was in 5th grade. Never again. Dogs. We will have dogs. And I might be convinced to have small lizards and frogs. But no mice, no rats, none of that.

    • Obladi Oblada

      Cats are the devil.

    • tk88

      I know this is a joke post but the “gerbil” picture was a kangaroo rat and the “mouse” was another hamster.

      • Elisa Probert

        The parakeets are actually parrotlets. LOL I do want one of those…smallest true parrot you can get and when they talk it’s with little helium mickey mouse voices.

      • tk88

        I almost said that too but I wasn’t positive. Not as knowledgable about birds!

      • m

        I’m also side-eyeing the fuck out of the fact that apparently their family managed to kill their gerbil AND hamster… Some people shouldn’t have pets. I had two gerbils when I was a kid and loved those little fuckers.

    • Alene

      No rodents or birds in my house. Ever. I am a crazy cat lady at heart though. I am well controlled by my husband, thankfully. If it wasn’t for him I would have 14 of them by now. I better die before him, is all I have to say.

    • Momma425

      Awww, I LOVE hamsters! We had them when I was a kid and they were great, except that 2 escaped and we never ever found them. Maybe they got outside? Dog had a secret snack? I don’t know, or really want to know.
      We have cats (husband already had one when I met him and Santa brought my daughter a kitten for christmas this year). They are low maintinance and I’m no longer the one in the house with the worst attitude, so they work for me. :)
      I would LOVE to get a hamster, but I think the cats would lose their mind and bust in the cage.

      • Katherine Handcock

        My parents got my sister and me gerbils when we already had four cats. It was definitely entertaining for the cats! Surprisingly, even though the cats did know how to hunt, and they did get into the cage a couple of times, they never hurt the gerbils. My theory is that the cats found them worth more as entertainment value than as food.

    • SarahJesness

      Is that gerbil actually a kangaroo rat? I’m not too familiar with gerbils so I don’t know, but it looks a lot like a kangaroo rat.

      • Elisa Probert

        Yeah, that is not a gerbil. Too lean and long legged, ears way too big.

      • SarahJesness

        And the tail is different. I really like kangaroo rats. Wonder if they make good pets?

      • m

        I don’t know if it was the author who chose the pictures here, but seems she really didn’t give a shit about those poor rodents they had. I had gerbils long time ago and I still damn well remember how they looked like.

      • SarahJesness

        I’m more familiar with kangaroo rats. (they’re in my top 10 favorite animals list) And the animal in the picture looks a lot like one…

    • Dee

      Never, ever, ever will my son ever have a spider or any form of arachnid as a pet. Should said pet escape from its nasty little cage, I will set my own home on fire.

    • Garavriel

      I was allowed to own pretty much anything my mom and I weren’t allergic to and some things that we were. We had cats for when I was a baby through elementary school, then a dog through high school, and now another cat. I always had fish and helped care for them as soon as I was old enough. I had a hedgehog in 5th grade who was fabulous but unfortunately when she got sick our exotic vet couldn’t figure out what was wrong. Then I got rats, started with two and ended up getting a third. Then I got one leopard gecko, then another, then inherited the neighbor’s pair of mali uromastyx. One uro had to be put down due to cancer and now the three reptiles live with me and the cat lives with my dad.

    • Denisse

      But… but… they’re all so cute…

    • Elisa Probert

      Bethany, I love you but you are WRONG about ferrets. They are much closer to bizarrely deformed cats than to rats, being carnivores and all. Also they think rats are deeee-licious. I’m training mine to hunt mice since my useless cat won’t.

      Or otters. They are actually pretty close relatives with otters and so nyah nyah I have tiny colorful pet otters and youuuuu don’t!

      I kind of agree about the large parrots. A pet that has the brain of a 3-4 year old child, can hold actual conversations, and that you will have to make extensive plans for dealing with when you die? AND it could break off your finger during a tantrum? No thank you.

      Best conversation I’ve ever had with a parrot – large sulfur crested cockatoo, female, belonged to the owner of a shop my family stopped in while driving cross country. I has 15, wearing a gold watch with a diamond on the face. Bird caught sight of it and wanted it.

      Bird: “I want your sparkly.”
      Me: “Sorry, no.”
      Bird: I want your sparkly PLEASE.”
      Me: “Still no.”
      Bird (Screaming at the top of her lungs): “MOM!!!! I said PLEASE! I want the sparkly!!”
      Owner: “You can’t have sparklies.”
      Bird: “But I said please…”

      I was laughing my ass off when we left. But seriously, I can’t think of something that can hold an actual conversation as a pet.

      • Ro

        Now I want a parrot…

      • Elisa Probert

        In all seriousness, though, whatever pet you get “for the kids” should be something YOU want to have and take care of, because even responsible kids are still learning and shouldn’t be totally in charge of another creature’s life.

      • Katherine Handcock

        Oh, I want to like this a thousand times. Yes, so much this. You can certainly give a kid some responsibility for the pet, and increase that responsibility over time, but no animal should ever be a tactic for teaching a kid.

      • LiteBrite

        Like I’ve told my son, “We’re not getting anything that Mom isn’t willing to take care of herself.”

      • RW

        Best conversation with a parrot. Ever.

      • keelhaulrose

        So my parrot story is the first time I visited my boyfriend (now husband)’s friend. Their family had this old parrot they had gotten from a couple in their church after neither one was willing to keep the bird after their divorce. Apparently they weren’t very church-like in their shouting, because the parrot could best a sailor in a cussing competition.
        The first time I walked into the room and sat next to it it looked at me and said “get the fuck out of here, you cheating whore!”
        My defense? “I haven’t cheated!”
        After that whenever I saw it that thing called me a whore. And, of course, my boyfriend and his friends thought that was hilarious.
        At least I wasn’t the friend’s girlfriend, who was ‘twitty twat’. This bird sided with men.

      • Elisa Probert

        ROFL!!! Parrots are so weird.

        The one that wanted my watch was super cute. I swear she was batting her eyes at me when she said please.

        Cussing parrots are kind of hilarious…

      • Lackadaisical

        Sounds like the kind of parrot where you desperately want to know who the previous owners were because you now have all the gossip.

      • Katherine Handcock

        I’m surprised you’ve recovered from the laughter! That’s awesome.

        My favourite bird encounter was a scarlet macaw from the pet store in the mall where I grew up. He said “hello” and “aw, man!” Not so funny alone, but he also liked to run away from the store down the mall – his wings were clipped, so he just walked, with a total, “You lookin’ at me?” kind of expression on his face. Watching the startled looks of tourists as he walked past, looked at them, and said, “Hello!” was awesome. So was hearing him yell “Aw, man!” when the pet store employee finally caught up with him.

      • Kaili

        We had a green wing that would look at a customer all sweetly and say “come here”. When the customer would he’d lower his head for a scratch. During the scratch he’d sigh and say, “I love you” typically getting more scratches. Then he’d turn his head, bite the hand scratching him, and then laugh at the howls of pain. It was a maniacal and evil laugh too. Mwah hah hahahah….

      • Lee

        My grandma had a yellow nate that would yell “Here kitty, kitty, meow, meow” until the cat came over to the cage. Then the parrot would bite the cat usually in the nose.

      • Elisa Probert

        My lovebird, Peanut, used to do that. “Kitty kitty kitty” and to coax the cat over, “Good kitty, pretty kitty.” When the cat got close enough, she’d yell “CAT!” and latch onto their toes until someone came to free them. All the cats were afraid of her but they never did stop answering when she’d call.

      • Paul White

        I’ll work with my reticulated pythons any givne day of the week.
        Parrots? I stay away from those bastards.

      • Elisa Probert

        Yep, my ass totally grew back after laughing it off.

        Mall parrot sounds like a little badass! Lol The way they walk always cracks me up.

      • LaBella

        My fav bird encounter was also with a scarlet macaw. I went to a conure breeder’s house, and I was wearing all red. The macaw took one look at me and fell in love. I was getting courtship bobs, wolf whistles, and hey baby, come here and give me a kiss comments from the bird, lol.

      • Bethany Ramos

        I love you too!! Hahah “bizarrely deformed cats” are equally scary to me. ;)

      • Elisa Probert

        Guess I can understand that. My husband wont handle my ferrets (which sounds somehow dirty) because he thinks they’ll bite him and he thinks he’ll squish them. He won’t handle my sister’s guinea pigs, either, and sometimes he even worries about squishing Pumpkin the Chiwhatsit.

        Personally, I’ve wanted ferrets ever since I saw “The Beastmaster” as a child. Forget Mark Singer, Kodo and Podo were the real stars of that movie.

    • Ro

      Dogs can get lice too, and fleas! ;)

    • RW

      So snakes/reptiles totally an option? They make great pets! Who wouldn’t love a bearded dragon, or a ball python?

      • Paul White

        see, I think beardeds are overhyped as an easy care pet. If you do them well they require a fairly spacious cage, UV lights, and a varied diet consisting of both greens and insects. They’re a lot better than iguanas or monitors, but they’re a lot more effort than something like a crested gecko or blue tongue skink too.

      • RW

        True, but they’re also a lot more sociable and happy to hang out with you!

    • Williwaw

      Since when do guinea pigs have lice? I raised guinea pigs throughout my childhood and they (and I) never got lice.

      • Katherine Handcock

        I’m a big believer that, if the kid and the animal will have direct interaction (as opposed to through glass/in a cage), you should wait until the kid is at least three or four, and has proven they understand they can hurt an animal. Instinct is a powerful thing, and when a toddler scares or hurts an animal by accident, animals will do what they do when they’re scared or hurt. Even if parents supervise really carefully, stuff can happen fast.

      • Elisa Probert

        Even if they don’t mean to, ferrets and little ones can be a mutual pain society. Most ferret play is kind of rough and based off various wild weasel hunting techniques. (Kind of like dogs and their chasing things, or cats and that crazy butt wiggle) Hunting games get rough pretty easy and even though neither of my girls bite, they do use their teeth in play and what is painless to an adult is a lot harder on soft baby skin. Add in the instinct to clamp down and hold on to “prey” that tries to escape, and what was harmless fun is now very bad.

        And of course, since they are so small, an uncoordinated squeeze from little hands can do serious harm to their little slinky backs and then they can lash out from pain or fear. Definitely a “when you’re older” kind of pet.

      • Angie

        This is an urban legend, that ferrets go out attacking babies. Any sort of animal can attack if provoked, but ferrets are no more prone to it than any other animal. I own four ferrets, and they are the sweetest pets, full of personality and ready to play. They’re actually great pets for kids (as long as there are parents around to do the dirty work like cage cleaning and whatnot, and to make sure that little children aren’t rough-handling the ferrets), because their energy level is a good match for a young child.
        Please don’t perpetuate this myth, it’s something we ferret owners try very hard to dispel.

      • Williwaw

        I’m not perpetuating a myth. I didn’t say “ferrets go out attacking babies”. I said I had read of several ferret attacks on babies. I believe they were cases in which both ferret and baby were neglected. It does happen, just as dog and cat attacks happen. (I have no idea which animal attacks most often because I don’t know the ratio of attacks to pets; obviously, we hear about dog attacks a lot, because many more people own dogs.) This is a ferret attack case I have read of recently, and it appears in a large number of well-known media sources, but I have read of others:

        http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/baby-boy-attacked-ferret-tennessee-article-1.1732162

        I also would not leave a dog, cat, constrictor/poisonous snake, iguana, or rat (or anything larger and more aggressive than a guinea pigalone with a helpless infant. I think a ferret is fine with a child who is old enough and mature enough not to mistreat it. I suspect a toddler is large enough not to be seriously harmed by a ferret but they may not be mature enough to treat it well (and I suspect the ferret would be at more risk than the toddler). I would be slightly more nervous having a ferret in a house with a child, compared to a dog or cat, because a ferret is much smaller, more agile, and probably harder to contain (and, for that matter, I think the ferret would be more at risk of injury because it is small and could get stepped on or otherwise squished).)

    • brebay

      reptiles, pitbulls., bugs of any kind, small yappy dogs, large drooling dogs, birds, generally…

      • Paul White

        lol. When I was in high school, my mom’s sister sent me a colony of hissing roaches for a Christmas gift. I think mom’s still sore about that.

      • brebay

        I wouldn’t have a sister anymore after that.

      • Paul White

        she sent Kathy’s kid some glass packs and a playboy the following year so it evened out

      • Williwaw

        I should do that for my niece. I love that pepper smell the hissing roaches give off when frightened.

    • Jesus Christ

      So the author says they’re all terrible pets to have, yet they put the cutest pictures on the article

    • Lackadaisical

      Dogs aren’t on your list and cat’s are? You are so my kind of people. Or did the dogs not make it to the list as an oversight? My husband is also very allergic to cats and chronically so to kitty litter so I have an excuse every time a child asks for a cat, but honestly they don’t interest me. I especially like to refer to them as not-dogs to my cat mad friends, particularly the one who breeds them and shows them. My husband is also mildly allergic to dogs, which we hadn’t realised until too late as all our previous dogs had the woolly, allergy friendly type of hair, but it’s only mild and he likes dogs so he happily puts up with it. The next mutt will have to be an allergy friendly one though.

      • Bethany Ramos

        LOL – No, I love dogs and hate cats! We do have Chihuahuas, which barely count as dogs. :) They also HATE our kids.

      • Lackadaisical

        I had an elderly bichon frise when our first kid was born. The poor dog was less than impressed but grew to love the kid eventually. When she died we bought something equally gentle but far more robust to cope with babies and toddlers. Our Labrador/springer spaniel was a puppy when our second was born so by the time our third and final kid came along and decided the dog was her slave and plaything our dog took it in her stride and enjoyed the toddler attention. My husband is a small dog person at heart so now the kids are older and capable of being gentle to a smaller dog our next dog will probably be a tiny lap dog again.

    • val97

      Growing up, my best friend gave me a pair of mice for my birthday (as an adult, all I can think is WTF did her parents hate my parents?) and told me they were both boys. They were not both boys! I ended up with over 20 mice by the time my dad dropped them all off at the pet store – snake food, I guess. I didn’t even care.

      I hate all pets EXCEPT cats. I have a dog, but we are not friends. She belongs to my husband and kids.

    • Joy

      When I was a kid I had a guinea pig and got a second one to keep the first one company. We were told the second one was also male, but then- Surprise! Woke up one morning to find a bunch of baby guinea pigs in the cage with the original two, and some of the had their heads chewed off. My little sister and I were so traumatized. They are smelly and noisy and they bite, too. My kids can be satisfied with having a dog because that’s all the pets we will ever have. I refuse to deal with rodents or reptiles and my husband won’t even let me get a cat because he hates them, so our kid/kids won’t be getting anywhere with that battle if I still have no cat after 10 years.

    • TwentiSomething Mom

      That gerbil is the scariest thing ever. I fucking hate mice and rats why would I want to get a “pet version” of something so gross? Ughhh

      • m

        It’s not actually a gerbil though…It’s a kangaroo rat.

    • Angela

      Yep, when I was a kid my parents forbid any pets whatsoever. When I was 12 they finally let me get a fish which are pretty much the lamest pets ever. We have a dog but we will never, ever get any other kind of pet. I wouldn’t mind a cat so much but my mom’s so allergic that she could never come over if we had one, and rodents/reptiles are just never, ever going to happen. Not birds either. Plus our dog which is already an awesome companion and plenty of responsibility. My kids already have it so much better than I did so any begging will fall on deaf ears.

    • Paul White

      So snakes are still OK? I’d say a sand boa would be a good choice, if you can get a well established one…

      Actually, I *like* rodents as children’s pets, at least for older kids that understand that you can’t be rough with them. They’re fairly easy to care for, and they don’t live for frigging ever. Seriously, most live less than 5 years. So by the time they go to college, no more pet. I know that sounds morbid, but look, I turn 30 this year and I have a boa constrictor my parents bought me when I was like 13 or 14.

      • Bethany Ramos

        I am very cool with reptiles! Snakes, whatevs. :) I just hate rodents that escape and die SO MUCH.

    • Guets

      Guinea pigs have lice?? They’re the only ones that I think are cute but I’m just not so sure. Ferrets are cute but give me the heebie jeebies because they’re like a furry snake. The ones ones just no.

      • TashaB

        Lice are not common in guinea pigs, but it is not rare either, especially if they came from a breeding mill. It is easily and cheaply treated with 2-3 rounds of ivermectin.

      • Williwaw

        Euh, I guess we got lucky all those years we raised guinea pigs when I was a kid. No lice. Lots of baby guinea pigs, though.

    • Lauren

      I stopped reading at “I am NOT a cat person”.

    • http://ultimatemamacat.tumblr.com/ Hana Graham

      BIG SAD ANGRYFACE >:(

    • m

      My husband and I currently have a cat (and no kids), but I dream of getting bunnies again ;;__;; I used to have two bunnies, but then I had to give them when I moved together with my now-husband who had the cat. #stillnotoverit

    • scooby23

      NO. You do not insult the beautiful, totally awesome world of hamsters. *whispers to hamster*Tonight, oh Professor Dumbledore, you shall have a feast. A FEAST ON BETHANY’S PANTRY. * laughs maniacally *

      • Bethany Ramos

        Noooooooo!

      • scooby23

        Yessssss! And I’ll make sure that he gets to the dinner you were going to eat tonight. Mwahahaha

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    • LaBella

      Number 4 is a Jerboa, not a gerbil.
      Number 5 is a hamster, not a mouse.
      No, you should not get any animal for your kid. Not even a dog.

    • Hamsterlover

      Not all hamsters eat there young my hamster had babies a few weeks ago and they grew up to be perfectly happy and now I have 3 hamsters!!!! (She had 5 babies but I had to give 3 away)

    • Stephanie

      Children going to school=Lice…. fact is your guinea pig 99% likely got the lice because you kids tracked it into the house. Lice is easily prevented with piggy safe topical monthly drops. In fact, scientists use guinea pigs because of their similarity to humans, and their cleanliness.
      Ferrets are not at all rodents, they are in the weasel family, they eat nothing but meat, and things made of meat (carnivores) so much so they don’t have the taste receptors for sweet tastes.
      Yes parrots live a long time, that’s not creepy, that’s just a fact… and sounds like you are just a commitment phobe that cannot handle the responsibility of a long life span pet.
      As for parakeets, Kids make constant noise and kick things around… maybe you should ban them too!
      Rats make excellent pets! They are smart, trainable like a dog, and very soft and cuddly! Domestic pet rats, are in a whole different world than sewer rats/wild rats… Domestic rats spend upwards of 80% of their day grooming. If their cages are kept clean, then they are extremely hygienic pets, with studies showing that rats carry the least amount of germs, *Dogs and cats are five times more germ ridden than domestic pet rats.*
      Hamsters and Gerbils make perfectly wonderful pets for children, if those children are trained how to properly handle, care for, and house their tiny rodents…. y’all apparently were NOT taught how to do that.

      With all that said, why should your children be limited in the choice of their pet… when YOU had a bad experience? You were not taught how to properly care for small pets, or given correct information about them either.

      How about educating yourself about the pet your child chooses, so you can make sure to take excellent care of said animal? When I was training as a vet tech, you are the type of person my professor called “Throw away people” you see pets as expendable commodities that if they don’t please you, you can either ignore the pet, care for them incorrectly in willful ignorance *there are a bazillion books on pet care*, or blame the pet, for your shortcomings.

      I am allergic to cats…. I have a cat…. I take allergy medicine…. problem SOLVED.