if you’re vegan and want a vegan pet, try roaches!! they’re very happy on an all-plant diet and unlike most of the mammals commonly kept as pets that can be kept wholly on vegetable matter (like chinchillas, rabbits and guinea pigs) they do not need big enclosures, and their care is very straightforwards, so they are excellent beginner pets. there are many, many species in the hobby, ranging from tiny shimmering ones to the familiar big hissing roaches to round roaches dotted with white to yellow ones and rich red ones. of all the animals I keep, my roaches relax me the most. watching them slowly trickle out of hiding to come eat brings me so much peace.
(fyi, most other small common mammalian pets often thought of as herbivores are actually opportunist omnivores. rats, mice, gerbils, and hamsters will all take some animal protein in the form of insects. it’s not strictly necessary, but they enjoy a little as treats. pregnant and nursing mothers do need extra protein in their diets, though, and as insects are the natural source, they should have some. non-breeding females and males can do without if the rest of the diet is balanced. of course, rodent diets are in general a pain to put together, so if you don’t enjoy sorting seeds … please give roaches some thought!)
(some bird species and a few reptiles are also 100% herbivores but I’m not even going to get into how difficult most of them can be. even with the easiest of them, you’re still dealing with having to DIY some of the diet.)
Coworker: “Awesome, how do you know much about these little guys?”
Customer: “We know enough. We had a chinchilla before.”
Customer’s child: “We only had it for six months.”
Coworker: *increasingly skeptical* “Oh, no, what happened to your last chinchilla?”
Customer: “I don’t know. We came back one afternoon this summer and he was just dead.”
Coworker: “Was the temperature maybe above 70 degrees in the room he was in?”
Customer: “Yeah we turn the air conditioning off during the summer.”
Coworker: “Sir, I don’t want you to feel bad, but chinchillas cannot tolerate temperatures above 70 degrees. They are native to cool mountainous regions. I’m not sure a chinchilla is the best fit for your lifestyle.”
Customer: “What do you mean they can’t live above 70 degrees? That can’t be true, they’re related to rabbits!”
Coworker: “I think it would be best if we looked at something else.”
I’ve been seeing more and more posts about people getting birds or thinking about getting a bird, and their seeming lack of knowledge scares me. I fear for these birds.
In the birblr community, it may seem like living with a bird is all grins and giggles because, let’s face it, they are adorable. But what we hide behind all the photos and videos of floofiness is all the painstaking effort we put into giving them a decent life.
These are some of the things you need to seriously consider before you buy a bird:
NUMBER 1: VERY IMPORTANT. Do you want your bird to fly? If the answer is no, you should probably rule out birds as a potential pet. Seriously, do you really want to take away a natural ability from an animal that is so beneficial for their health for the sake of your entertainment? Perhaps you should consider a rabbit, a chinchilla, snakes, I don’t know. Something you can provide the best life for. If you are not willing to alter your life to fully provide for your pet, you’re looking at the wrong pet.
Oh, oh, could you do Cath and Levi for the relationship meme? <3
Drinks all of the coffee: Levi works at Starbucks. Cath hangs out there sometimes, and Levi’s always bringing drinks home to her. They both drink a lot of coffee. (Once Levi graduates and doesn’t work there anymore, his coffee consumption decreases slightly…but only slightly.)
Brings up adopting a pet: Levi. If he had his way, they’d have pet alpacas and cats and dogs and rabbits and chinchillas and hamsters and…Levi just really likes cute animals, okay? Cath is amused, and fine with having a cat and a dog.
Kills the bugs: Levi. He grew up on a ranch, he’s not bothered about killing bugs at all, and Cath would rather not.
Cooks the meals: Both of them. They tend to cook together a lot, actually. Whoever’s home first will start dinner, and the other one will act as sous chef. On weekends, they take turns making breakfast.
Starts getting into holidays way before they should: Levi. His full name is Levi Enthusiasm Stewart. (Okay, it’s probably not, but you catch my drift.)
Initiates the couple selfies: Levi, at first. Cath doesn’t like the way she looks in photos, but Levi tells her she’s cute and gorgeous and hot and adorable and beautiful and eventually, she kind of starts to believe him–especially when she sees herself in photos with Levi. She looks happy, and it’s a good look on her.
Forgets the birthdays and anniversaries: They both remember them. Levi drags Cath on a lot of fun, weird dates; Cath writes M-rated autobiographical RPF for Levi. She’s nearly too embarrassed to give it to him the first time, but he’s absolutely delighted, and persuades her to read it to him, and they end up…well. She starts planning the next story almost immediately.
Always ends up with too much junk food after grocery shopping: They both have their weaknesses when it comes to junk food.
Nicknames the other: One of Levi’s hobbies is coming up with ever more ridiculous schmoopy nicknames for Cath. She rolls her eyes at most of them, and tries really hard not to laugh, because that only encourages him. But she doesn’t mind at all when he calls her ‘sweetheart’ or ‘baby’ or various other endearments, because he means them so sincerely.
If it’s so morbid to even consider skinning a cat or dog (which does happen) and making a coat out of their fur, why the hell do we do it to beavers, chinchillas, foxes, minks, rabbits, and raccoon regularly?