We all want a pet. A little soul to take care of, one to help us relax after a hard day at work, and one to listen to us when we need the company of a living creature. But at the same time, many of us lead complicated lives that don’t allow us to take proper care of a conventional pet like a dog or cat. What is to be done, then? Turn to other types of pets that require less effort on our part, such as guinea pigs or fish.
But although they are easier to care for and don’t require the same attention as a dog or a cat, guinea pigs and fish need specific accessories and specially designed food to meet their nutritional needs. And that can present a challenge for the average pet lover.
For example, do you know the ideal composition of high-quality guinea pig food? Do you know what factors to consider before buying fish food? All these questions need to be answered in detail. So, in the next few minutes, we will try to answer your queries and present why guinea pigs and fish can be excellent pets for the average Australian household.
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Why Get a Pet Fish or a Guinea Pig?
Fish are the most diverse vertebrates on our planet, and the aquatic selection available for pet owners is truly impressive. From tropical fish that can attract the attention of your guests with their vivid colours to freshwater specimens that can enhance the look of any room, fish are exciting animals that can help you feel closer to nature. Guinea pigs, on the other hand, are clever and funny rodents that can be the ideal pet for families with young children.
Guinea pigs have a unique personality among rodents, being less skittish than rabbits and easier to care for. In addition, compared to small animals, guinea pigs live quite a long time, and it’s not unusual to find guinea pigs over eight years old. Moreover, both fish and guinea pigs are easier to care for than dogs or cats.
While a dog needs to be walked daily and a cat needs constant attention to keep it from becoming destructive, guinea pigs only need a mate, a spacious cage, plenty of food and an exercise wheel to be happy. On the other hand, fish need a more significant initial investment, as you will need to buy the aquarium and accessories required for their well-being. But after that, fish don’t need your direct intervention and can be a real natural ornament that enhances the look of your house.
What to Keep in Mind When Looking at Food for Guinea Pigs?
Guinea pigs are animals that evolved in the Andes Mountains region of South America, and their diet in the wild generally consists of hay and various vegetables. The guinea pig food found in Australian pet shops is composed of multiple ingredients pressed together in a pellet form.
However, for the most part, what is in them does not differ much from the natural diet of their wild counterparts. High-quality guinea pig food comprises Timothy Hay, wheat, and added vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C is particularly important because they can’t synthesise it independently, so they have to get it from the diet.
What should the ideal guinea pig diet look like? First and foremost, it should be made up predominantly of Timothy Hay or other grasses. As herbivorous animals, guinea pigs need a high amount of fibre to benefit from healthy digestion. But these generally do not offer a high-calorie intake, nor can they offer their needed vitamins and minerals, so at least 15% of what they eat should consist of vegetables such as spinach or carrots.
Fruit is also acceptable, but only in small quantities, as it contains natural sugars, which, if consumed in excess, can cause digestive problems for your small furry friend. Finally, you should offer your furry friend guinea pig food in the form of compressed pellets. These can provide him with his daily nutritional intake in a controlled way, but you must be careful not to overfeed him.
What to Keep in Mind When Searching for Fish Food?
The species of fish that can be found in Australian homes are diverse, as are their nutritional requirements. Herbivorous fish such as plecos need a diet based mainly on algae and occasional vegetables. In contrast, carnivorous fish such as bettas need protein-rich pellets or live fish food consisting of krill or bloodworms. However, most fish in our tanks are omnivores and need a balance of protein and plant fibre.
Fish food for omnivorous specimens comes either as flakes or as pallets and must contain a known source of protein, such as one from shredded shrimp and added nutrients from algae such as spirulina or from vegetables. A good idea would be to look at well-known Australian brands with experience in the production of fish pellets. And here, we can list manufacturers such as Spectrum. Tetra, Sera or Cichlids. It is essential to avoid fish food containing synthetic vitamins or food colouring and instead focus on flakes composed of squid, shrimp, or fish meal.
Form Unbreakable Bonds
Do you want to form unforgettable memories alongside a funny little animal that can delight the little ones? Then a guinea pig could be the perfect pet for your family. Do you want to feel closer to nature and build an aquarium that will serve as the centrepiece of your household? Then you should buy some pet fish. But there are many things to consider before you purchase your future pet.
Guinea pigs need spacious cages, companionship, and high-quality guinea pig food to grow healthy. Fish need well-oxygenated aquariums, carefully selected companions, efficient filtration systems and premium fish food to thrive. But all these efforts will be worth it.
Both fish and guinea pigs are animals that can bring you closer to nature and can be viable alternatives to dogs and cats. You’re hard-working and probably don’t have time to care for your pet correctly. Guinea pigs and fish require significantly less maintenance than other types of pets, cost substantially less per month, and can be an excellent way for your children to take responsibility for their actions. Last but not least, these little pets can distract you from everyday life and be a source of joy whenever you return home.