At what age can a child take a rodent?

Hamster, mouse, rat, guinea pig, rabbit, chinchilla, gerbil… There are often rodents first pets adopted by family. And not in vain: their cute head and small size give kids more confidence and drive them crazy! Indeed, nmany children accept a hamster or a rabbit! Then, it must be admitted, a rodent that sits in a cage is still less demanding than a dog that requires walks and can also take up a lot of space in the house (even if we all love them so much)! But At what age can he be adopted? We give you an update with Marianne Bertelearly childhood professional for 20 years.

Good reasons to get a rodent for your child

Your child asks you for a hamster or a rabbit, and you hesitate to take it for him? Did you know that rodents bring a lot of things to children! Indeed, a pet has many benefits, especially for toddlers. They allow children to develop some of their abilities, clike empathy, listening, observation, but also learn to respect the welfare of others. “The concept of consent can also be affected,” points out child specialist Marianne. Bertel. Indeed, when an animal refuses to leave its cage, we can explain to the child the reasons why it is absolutely necessary to respect the choices and wishes of others. An approach that ultimately teaches kids to behave well in society. Some early childhood institutions even offer animal clearing times for toddlers.

How old is it to get a rodent?

According to the expert, a child can take care of a rodent from the age of 2. Before this age, she advises not let the child take care of the rodentespecially for the welfare of the animal: babies up to 24 months do not yet control their strength and can inadvertently injure him. However, nothing prevents the baby from stroking the rodent of his older brother or older sister. Just remember to wash your hands afterwards to avoid any risk.

When they are 2 years old, the baby can already begin to fill the bottle with water and feed his little rodent. However, he must always be accompanied by a parent or adult when taking care of him. And this at least 6 years. “Until about 6 years old, a child cannot yet open the cage alone and be alone with a rodent.”, says the specialist. After all, even if the rodents are small, they can sometimes bite when they are afraid. In addition, a child does not have such a concept of danger as an adult, and may harm his animal without paying attention. About 6-7 years old, small May take care of your animal alone and even change its cage.

What rodent to take for a child

What the best rodent for your child ? Guinea pig, hamster, mouse, dwarf hamster, rabbit, gerbil, rat, chinchilla… Which to choose? “Be careful not to choose a rodent that is too fragile or fearful.”, warns Marianne Brethel. Indeed, many rodents do not allow themselves to be stroked and prefer solitude. For children, it is better to opt for a rodent that loves contact! As a dwarf hamster, guinea pig, rabbit, or domestic rat: they are more docile, sociable and almost never bite. Conversely, a gerbil or golden hamsterfor example, rodents that tend to bite when they are afraid. It is best to always seek the advice of an expert before adopting an animal to ensure the safety of not only your child, but the animal as well.

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