Pocket pets prove that good things come in small packages

When many potential pet-parents start their search for a furry friend, most people think their options are restricted to cats and dogs. But pocket pets such as ferrets, guinea pigs, rabbits, rats, and mice make ideal companions for people in smaller dwellings, or those without a yard.

Pocket pets may be small, but they are just as loving as their larger counterparts. Pets like Horton, a delightful rabbit awaiting adoption at our Sydney Shelter, are content to sit on your lap and adore you as you brush their fluffy coats.

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Rabbits like Horton, a bundle of joy currently residing at Sydney Shelter, need a constant supply of grass or grass hay to chew on throughout the day. 


Across NSW, there are over 50 pocket pets like Horton patiently waiting to find a home.

Bec Bochtler, Head of Operations at RSPCA NSW, encourages prospective pet owners to give smaller animals some consideration.

“Though often overlooked, pocket pets can be wonderful companions too. They may be tiny, but they come with huge hearts, and can make for excellent pets for people living in smaller accommodation.”

Due to their unique lifestyles and needs, it is important to note that pocket pets require just as much care and responsibility as their larger-sized animal friends.

“There is a common misconception that because these animals are small, they are easier to care for, compared to a dog or cat. The reality is that pocket pets are highly intellectual, and often come with complex needs,” Bochtler adds. “This is why when you adopt a pocket pet from RSPCA NSW, our staff will take the time to ensure you understand everything about your adorable new companion – from feeding and socialisation to housing and general care.”

Pocket pets can be nervous about being scooped up or left alone, but they will still likely melt your heart from the moment that you meet.

Popeye is a guinea pig living with our Eurobodalla Branch. Aside from his obviously awesome hairdo, there are things his future parents should know. Popeye is a ball of fun who becomes quite shy when away from his son, Buddha. He also only has one eye and needs to be spoken to before being held. However, when cared for properly, Popeye is a cute and sociable friend, sure to make a charming pinch-sized companion and fantastic pocket pet.

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Popeye, pictured above, with his son Buddha, are guinea pigs looking for a home.

Over the last few weeks, select animals from our shelters have had their adoption fees reduced, in an effort to help them find the loving homes they deserve. So far, 401 animals have been united with their forever families, but there are still plenty of pint-sized animals patiently waiting to find a home.

“If you feel as though your lifestyle is suited to a pocket-sized companion, please consider adopting a smaller pet from RSPCA NSW. There are so many little personalities waiting to meet you.” Bochtler concludes.

Those wishing to find out more about how to care for pocket pets can visit the RSPCA NSW website. All animals available for adoption from RSPCA NSW can be viewed here.

For those unsure if they are ready to commit to adopting a forever friend, you can still lend a helping hand by fostering a pocket pet through RSPCA NSW. Becoming an RSPCA NSW foster carer is an incredibly rewarding experience. Find out how you can foster a pocket pet by visiting our website here.

“Why not consider giving one of these quirky characters a chance? You might be surprised at how much love and joy they have in store.”