Rodents like Rabbits, Guinea pigs, White Mice, and Hamsters make adorable indoor pets. They stay clean and are relatively quiet hence, building a friendship may take time. Once you bring your fuzzy rodent home, start with setting up his cage, preferably in a quiet place in your house. One can choose to set it up in a laundry room, bathroom, or a part of a large room sanctioned off using furniture or boxes that he can’t scale or knock over. Make sure to have sufficient space to place his litter-box, water bowl, food bowl, his hay box and to allow him to make multiple hop ins and out during the day. Cover the pull-out tray of the cage with newspaper. Use paper shavings or hay to set his hay box (avoid wood shavings, prefer using organic litter in the litter-box). Like for any other pet, you will have to rodent-proof your house like removing all the hazardous and small items that your rodent might chew in, covering the areas of escape, keeping the valuable items out of reach, setting up the cage away from electric switches, hide all dangling wires, covering the fireplace, etc.
The list of essentials for setting rodents in the house include:
Bedding (Bedsheets & Blankets) depending on his size
Cage (Prefer paint-free ones with wires as a base to avoid conditions like bumblefoot. Size depends on the size of your pet)
Toys (scrap paper or newspapers, straws, soft drink bottles with pebbles inside for noise, cardboard boxes, etc.)
First Aid Kit
Rodents are crepuscular, which means that they generally sleep during the day and the night, but are ready to play at dawn and twilight. So, if you’re at work during the day, they won’t mind so much being in a cage. But they must be let out for at least several hours each day, both to exercise and to have social interaction with you. Bored rodents become naughty and get into things like digging in the carpet, chewing on forbidden objects, or eating your couch. Young rodents are generally the ones who get into this type of mischief. So, even if your rodents start this way, you might check every few months to see if they can earn more freedom as they age.
Do not leave your rodents unattended outside as they can get scared easily and can dig out of a fenced yard. Also, keep them away from poisonous plants and pesticides. You can try an “H style” cat harness and a leash but begin in a safe and familiar area. Also, never hit a rodent. They can become very aggressive and angry if provoked. When you find your rodent doing something that is not allowed, try clapping your hands, thumping your foot, whistling, or talking loudly. Try to caress him with your voice, most rodents enjoy human talking. Hang around him for quite sometime during the day to let him know you are there. Wait for him to hop over to you for treats, take a few get-acquainted sniffs and gentle nibbles, and then hop away again. Only with time, the rodents will become used to their new home and seem more settled.