Every pet owner knows that pets are part of the family, so of course you want to give them the best. Part of taking care of your pets is ensuring that they're comfortable in their crates and cages, whether they only go in occasionally, like dogs and cats, or they spend a lot of time in there, like birds, small mammals, or reptiles. This guide will give you advice on how to make any pet's cage as comfortable as possible.
Dogs: Most of the time, your dog will be free-roaming in your house or yard. Many people prefer to put their dogs in a kennel or crate during the night or when they're away. To make the crate comfortable for Fido, make sure it contains a comfortable pet bed. Aging and oversized dogs will need beds with extra padding, like memory foam, to support their joints. In addition, a soft blanket is cozy for them to snuggle up to, and some familiar toys can help calm them. Make sure your dog also has access to food and water if he's going to be in his crate for an extended period of time.
Cats: Like dogs, cats should spend most of their time free in the house. Kitties need to decide when to use the litter box, and they want to discover their own favorite places to nap or play. Fluffy will often just go into a cat carrier when she goes to the vet or groomer. If your cat gets stressed in the carrier, add a pee pad, so if she urinates, it won't get in her fur. Most cats are distressed by the carrier, so food, water, and toys will probably be ignored. Just try to let her out as soon as possible.
Birds: Birds typically need two things to feel comfortable in their bird cages: space and a place to perch. Different breeds of birds have different size requirements, so research what is best for the type of bird you have. The same goes for perches; a parrot needs a perch with a wider base than a cockatiel, for example. To keep your bird happy and entertained, hang mirrors and other toys near their perches and place them in areas where they can easily see and interact with your family. Avoid placing their cage too near appliances, heat and air conditioner outlets, and windows, as birds are very sensitive to temperature changes.
Reptiles and amphibians: These cold-blooded pets need a heat lamp and a glass aquarium to keep them warm and comfortable in your home. They also require some sort of ground cover, such as wood shavings or chips, and a place to hide and sleep, like a hollow log. Both reptiles and amphibians need water, too. Snakes and lizards require dishes of water to drink and regulate their body temperatures, while turtles and frogs need a small pool to submerge themselves in.
Small mammals: From rabbits to mice, small animals need a good place to sleep, burrow, and play. Wood shavings make the perfect ground cover for most small mammals, while wool, tissue, and cotton provide soft bedding material. Rabbits are best kept in a large hutch, while mice, guinea pigs, hamsters, and other small rodents are comfortable in either a small wire cage or a glass aquarium. You'll need to provide your pets with food and water as well as exercise toys, like a running wheel or tubes to climb through.