Ground squirrels are fun, social creatures that could easily be taken care of as pets. They are quite mellow creatures that are usually found burrowing in someone’s backyard. In their natural habitat, they are usually hunted by predators, which may cause them to be wary towards you at first. However, as they warm up to you, you will find that they actually enjoy the attention that you could give them.
If you want to keep a pet ground squirrel, you must remember a few things to keep it happy.
- First thing you should remember is that ground squirrels are wild animals. They are not like bunnies that are contented with sitting around in their cage for the rest of the day. When purchasing a cage, look for a big ferret cage, preferably a multi-level one, complete with a solid running wheel. This allows room for them to run around and exercise. Place wood shavings, hay or cloth at the bottom of their cage to serve as nesting ground. Choose the cage with a large door so that you could easily pick them up from inside the cage and play with them. Do not forget to include a food tray and water box. You could also include a litter box to be placed separate from the food tray.
- For their diet, squirrels love nuts, grass, insects, seeds and grains. These are things they usually find in the wild. You can feed them pellets that you buy in pet stores, but it is more advisable to give them organic foods, since they do not contain any preservatives. You will find that they love eating most things that can be found in the garden. Place these on their food tray. You can also feed them treats, such as cheese, out of your hand from time to time. This will help them develop a friendly relationship with you.
- Since squirrels are very active creatures during the day, you can let them out of their cage. However, be sure that they are supervised. Do not leave anything chewable, such as electrical wires, in sight. Taking them out of their cage would help you develop a more personal relationship with your pet. Once they trust you, you will find that they actually like being petted and are very affectionate creatures.
- You may be excited to keep playing with your ground squirrels but do allow them to sleep. They usually take frequent short naps throughout the day, probably out of exhaustion.
- Remember, if your pet ground squirrel tries to avoid you when you want to carry them, back away. They need time to get used to being domesticated, especially if they have just been caught from the wild. Just continue feeding them food, earning their trust.
- Also, it is best to keep pets in pairs. This would ensure that they are never alone and lonely in their cage. Additionally, you can place toys for them to chew if you notice that they are getting bored. Nothing makes your pets happier than having somebody to play with.
Remembering these things would make you the perfect owner for your pet squirrel. Sometimes, pets have unique, individual needs. It is up to you to discover them yourselves. Take good care of your pets. Good luck.