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7 No-Fuss "Pets" That Kids Love

Atlanta-area veterinarian Will Draper, DVM, tells us these pets don't shed or take up lots of room -- plus they're easy to find sitters for when you go out of town for the weekend.

  • Grow-a-Frog: Watch the metamorphosis from tadpole to frog -- no touching necessary
  • Hamsters, gerbils, even mice: These pocket pets are easy to feed and maintain. Short life span, but inexpensive to replace. (Harsh, but true.)
  • Hairless felines: Sphynx cats (also called "Canadian hairless") are practically bald; without that irritating shedding, cats are very easy to care for.
  • Betta fish: Bowl, water, food. Done.
  • Madagascar hissing cockroaches: Seriously. They hang out in a small tank, eat vegetables (and even dog food), and your kids' friends (hey, their parents too) will love to come by to hear them do their hissing thing. Just make sure their home has a secure screened cover so they can't escape.
  • Cactus: Does it get any easier than that?
  • Pet rock: The one pet that is easier than a cactus or betta fish.



Copyright © 2008. Used with permission from the February 2008 issue of Parents magazine.

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