REQUIREMENTS FOR PETS
This information is provided by
Provet for educational purposes only.
You should seek the advice of your
veterinarian if your pet is ill as only he or she can correctly advise on the
diagnosis and recommend the treatment that is most appropriate for your pet.
Most pets require some form of
Pets require housing
for one of four reasons :
- To protect them from adverse
environmental conditions which occur in their natural geographical
location - eg seasonal variations such as extremes of heat or cold in
summer and winter.
- To maintain artificial
environmental conditions which they need - eg animals from tropical
countries being kept artificially in non-tropical countries
- To confine them to prevent escape
- To provide privacy for sleeping,
Different pets of course have
different housing requirements but the following is a list of possible
- For health reasons the housing
should be easy to clean and disinfect
- The interior of the housing should
be easy to access by the owner - to get at the pet and to clean the
- The housing should be hard
wearing, and not easily destroyed by the pet
- The walls of housing should be
strong enough to withstand escape attempts by the animal
To satisfy most of these
criteria the most commonly used and best materials are metal, plastic, and
glass. Less satisfactory are wood, cardboard and other porous products.
- The housing should be big enough
to accommodate the pet. Animals should have enough space to run around,
stretch, stand and , for smaller pets, exercise.
- The housing should not be too big
for some pets. Snakes for example can suffer stress if they are kept in
large vivaria without places to hide away
- Size is very important for some
pets eg fish, which will grow in proportion to the surface area of water
in which they live. Small tanks will restrict the growth of large fish.
- The housing should be designed to
protect the animal from the elements - eg be draught free and water proof
- The design of the housing should
take into consideration the pets specific requirements
- Inquisitive animals , such as
small rodents, should have areas to explore
- Birds need unobstructed flight
- The design should ensure that the
housing is escape-proof. The public often do not appreciate how many
animals (eg hamsters, snakes) can squeeze through extremely small gaps !
- Although glass is a popular
material to use in the design and construction of housing for pets -
remember that some pets get very nervous if they cannot hide away out of
site, and there should be "private" areas screened off from the
viewer. This can be provided in various forms such as nest box areas,
rocks, branches, partitioned sections.
- Some pets like to perch or climb
above the ground - eg birds and reptiles, so the height of the housing
should accommodate for this .
For most pets it is important that
the housing should be located somewhere that is protected from :
- Adverse weather conditions
- Extremes of heat
- Extremes of cold
- Noxious fumes (eg near boiler
- Loud noises