1) Turtles are my favorite. We bought an Eastern Painted turtle (pictured below) for my toddler son when it was just 2 days old and the size of a penny. It has been amazing to watch it grow. He’s also a hit when we have playmates over, the children love to watch him swim in his tank. Occassionally, we take him out and let my son pet him. Just make sure your child washes his/her hands right after handling the turtle because they can transmit salmonella.
2) Beta Fishes – make great pet for children. Not only are they very pretty and colorful, they’re also much easier to maintain than a goldfish. You only need a 5-10 gallon tank because they don’t require a huge anount of water. You want to keep only one Beta Fish in a tank at a time because they’re carnivores and are best kept alone. Plus you can decorate their tanks with glow in the dark sand and the kids surely love to see that at night.
3) Guinea Pig – I have fond memories of my Guinea Pigs from when I was growing up as a child. Guinea Pigs have great temparements especially if they’re handled correctly early in life.They’re affectionate, docile and very gentle. They make perfect pets for children. If you have small toddlers in the house, you would want to handle the Guinea Pig yourself at first, until it gets used to being picked and carried around.
4) Hamsters – have a lot of energy and therefore require a big sized cage to have enough room to move around. The Syrian hamster is the most popular breed as a pet. They’re docile by nature and easy to handle. They make wonderful pets for children. They’re easy to feed as well because they eat both meats and vegetables.
5) Rabbits – are social animals and they love to interact with others. They tend to have different personalities so before adopting a bunny, just make sure it has the right personality that will fit with your family. It can also be fun to teach them to do tricks and run through obstacle courses. Let your child pet the bunny very gently and a little bit at a time.
6) Dogs – make great pets for children; not only are they loyal but they can be a lot of fun to have around. Just be prepared for all of the extra work that comes along with having a dog especially if you live in a small aparment and not a house. Depending on the breed, your dog may require a lot excercise and extra maintenance but your child will have a great pet and a friend for life.