9 min read

5 Unusual Animals to Have as Pets

Naturally, when we hear the word "pet", we visualize a cat or a dog; maybe even something more exotic like a snake, a lizard and the aquatic fishes and turtles. It's a common practice in our society for one species to be considered as pets with unique feelings and characters, while others are deemed as food products or pests. While this ideology has been condemned by different communities, it's difficult for the normal meat and potato kind of citizen to grasp why that's totally illogical and wrong. With this article I'm going to make a little baby step by showing you that all animals can be our comrades, can experience love and pain; can be loyal and most importantly – they are all sentinent beings. In these examples you'll see that for animals, the species doesn't matter, they're all equals. This is the time we learn from them.

Raccoons are awesome. Not only do they look like the bandits of nature, but they actually are – sneaking into houses stealing food and doing all kinds of mischief. That's also the reason why some people hate these furry creatures. While others, no matter what the damage, try to befriend them. As we know, raccoons are wild animals, so domesticating them is not easy and sometimes near impossible. However, there are a lot of exceptions and as with any other creature, the success rate depends on the animals character and yours. You can find a lot of people on the internet who have pet raccoons, even videos on how to take care and feed a baby raccoon. I mean, look at this well mannered rascal:

Squirrels have been considered 'pests' for a while. For instance, you can check any pest control company in London and UK in general, they all have the availability of 'squirrel control'. Companies explain that the control consist of simply relocating the animals, but let's not be naïve. Often it's simply killing off the animals. While some might understand the need for squirrel control, others pick a more unconventional approach. Like this couple from Mississippi, whose cat adopted a baby squirrel which fell off a tree in their yard. That's not even the best part – the baby squirrel actually acquired the skill of purring. Just like a cat.

Rats are lovable furry balls with tails longer than their bodies. While some people might cringe at the idea and get their traps ready, these "pests" make incredible pets. They genuinely enjoy interacting with people, can be litter box trained and giggle when they're tickled. Clean, fun-loving, sensitive, affectionate and intelligent is what they are. These rodents are so sociable, they develop a connection with their humans, enjoying playing and snuggling on daily basis. Many owners compare their companionship to that of dogs. Rats will completely outshine any other small animal with their intelligence, because they can be taught simple tricks and often learn their names. I doubt your hamster can do that.

Cows, lambs, sheep - they're all intelligent, sociable and loving, hence amazing pets. Pigs for example are way smarter than mainstream pets altogether. Considered by our Western society primarily as "products", but for some people who see beyond - they are friends, pets and loyal allies. Most of the farm animals who end up being pets are usually saved from dairy or meat farms. Bullfighters become docile pets. Many of them live with other species, thus develop some uncharacteristic habits. Like this cow that thinks its a dog. And that's so cool! There are plenty of people changing genders, faces, names, everything. If a cow/sheep/lamb wants to be a dog, let it be a dog.

Only 1% of cockroaches are actual pests. The Madagascar hissing cockroaches are very friendly, clean, don't smell, don't bite, have a natural non-fear of humans and they like to cuddle up together. You don't even have to worry about them reproducing because they need very high temperature and specific conditions. These roaches are very simple to care for, they eat fruit and vegetable scraps; or cat/dog food. Their life span is from 3 to 5 years. Great pets for kids who love insects.

Hedgehogs are complicated beings, suitable not just for anyone. You have to have a knack for animals, because they will depend on you a 100%. They are prickly, so you can't cuddle with them. In the beginning it will be more like handling a cactus critter.

They're naturally shy and nervous; won't come when you call them, display outward affection or perform tricks. Hedgehogs are nocturnal in nature and need some time to get accustomed to their humans. However, they don't have dander like cats and dogs, which makes them suitable for people with allergies. They won't damage any of your possession or smell bad. Plus, these prickly fellas are hella cute.