We love our dogs and cats, of course, but what about our rats, hedgehogs, and ferrets?
In animal shelters around the country, there are thousands of small mammals up for adoption. These domesticated creatures’ original homes didn’t work out—whether because their humans developed allergies or just hadn’t understood the time commitment—leaving the animals in a challenging position. Since they were raised with humans, they need a second chance at a safe, healthy home with a new human.
As with any animal, be sure you do your research before adopting a small furry animal; for the animal’s sake, it’s vital that you know how much of a time commitment you’re making, whether the animal needs a companion animal, etc. In addition, before adopting, make sure that it’s legal to keep that species of animal in your state and county.
Here are ten wonderful small mammals who are looking for homes, from shelters in the U.S. and Canada. Don’t you wish you could take them all home?
(Don’t forget: if you’re looking for a new animal companion, you can use Care2′s Adoptable Pets page to find your perfect match!)
3-year-old female ferret. Oregon Ferret Shelter, Oregon City, OR.
Unfortunately, Kaz’s parents couldn’t take her with them when they moved away. She wants to be adopted into the same home as her ferret buddy Loa.
Adult male mouse. EARPS Exotic Animal Rescue, Brownsburg, IN.
According to his foster home, he’s a very sweet little man! He loves to hang upside-down from your fingers, and he’s very gentle. His favorite foods are carrots and watermelon.
3. Lucretia, A.K.A. Lettie
Adult female sugar glider. All Creatures Rescue + Sanctuary, Charlotte, NC.
When she was young, Lucretia was purchased from a mall kiosk and never got socialized properly. Her foster home is slowly managing to rehabilitate her, and as long as you approach her slowly, she is friendly and curious, and will even take treats from your hand!
She must be adopted with her partner Ezra. In addition, sugar gliders need an informed caretaker, as they are nocturnal and have a very specific diet.
Young male rat. T. Russell Reitz Regional Animal Shelter, Manhattan, KS.
Gismo must be adopted with his companion Boots. They are both shy, but very friendly.
4-year-old female guinea pig. LA Guinea Pig Rescue, Chatsworth, CA.
6. Female Skunk
4-month-old female skunk. Skunk Haven Inc, North Ridgeville, OH.
The skunk sanctuary will only adopt her out to someone who has access to a vet who can help care for her, and who lives in a skunk-legal state. She is a nice girl who “may or may not go in the litter box.”
Adult female hamster. Hop A Long Hollow Rabbit Rescue, Norwalk, CT.
Poor Trillium! After she was rescued from a hoarder, she was covered in mites and had only three legs. She’s doing better now, and she loves to run, never fazed by her missing foot.
Senior female chinchilla. Center Valley Animal Rescue, Quilcene, WA.
Adult male gerbil. All the Same Wild and Tame, Las Vegas, NV.
The shelter says that he is fun, loving, and curious. He especially loves to chew up newspaper, run on a wheel, and burrow—and he even gets along with other animals!
Adult male hedgehog. Small Animal Rescue Society of BC, Burnaby, BC, Canada.
After living with stressful small children, Quillson needs a peaceful new place to call home! He seeks a human who is calm and has some prior experience with hedgehogs.