What are the Five Cheapest Pets to Keep in Australia this Festive Season?

Written by 
Adrian Edlington
Adrian Edlington is PR & Communications Manager at Savvy. With a keen interest in personal finance, car loans, the mortgage industry, cost of living pressures, electric vehicles and renewable technology, Adrian's research includes conducting primary data surveys and analysis of up-to-the-minute secondary Australian data sources. His work on behalf of Savvy has been featured on ABC.net.au The Conversation, the Sydney Morning Herald, AFR, News.com.au, The Age, Herald Sun, Adelaide Now, SBS On The Money, 7News, Car Expert, Which Car, Drive.com.au and more. In his spare time, Adrian enjoys mountain biking and business podcasts.
Our authors
, updated on January 31st, 2024       

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Pet bird at Christmas

As the festive season approaches, the thought of adding a new member to your family becomes even more enticing. Discover the joy of pet companionship without breaking the bank. In this guide, we explore the world of affordable pets, covering price, characteristics, ease of care, and considerations for each budget-friendly companion. 🎄🐾

  • Fish
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Hermit Crabs
  • Budgies
  • Mice

Fish: Affordable Aquatic Companions

Price

Fishkeeping offers an affordable entry point, with initial costs covering a tank, filter, and basic decorations. Ongoing expenses include fish food, water conditioner, and occasional equipment maintenance.

Characteristics

Diverse species cater to beginners, from colourful bettas to community fish like tetras. Aquariums provide an aesthetic appeal, offering a tranquil and visually pleasing environment.

Ease of Care

Basic care involves regular feeding and water changes. Novice fishkeepers should be mindful of potential challenges like overfeeding and water quality.

Considerations

Proper tank maintenance is crucial for fish health. Understanding potential diseases and preventive measures is essential for a thriving aquatic environment.

Guinea Pigs: Budget-Friendly Companions

Price

Guinea pigs are economical to care for, with initial costs covering a cage, bedding, and food supplies. Ongoing expenses include hay, fresh vegetables, and occasional veterinary check-ups.

Characteristics

Sociable and suitable for families, guinea pigs thrive with companionship. Various breeds and colours offer options for personal preferences.

Ease of Care

Basic care involves providing a balanced diet and a clean living environment. Regular interaction and playtime contribute to their well-being.

Considerations

Dental health is crucial; providing chew toys helps maintain healthy teeth. Ensuring a secure and predator-free living space is essential for their safety.

Hermit Crabs: Affordable and Unique

Expenses

Setting up a hermit crab habitat is budget-friendly, with costs covering a tank, substrate, and shells. Ongoing expenses include food, saltwater, and occasional replacement shells.

Characteristics

Unique pets with a low-maintenance lifestyle. Variety in shell colours adds a touch of uniqueness to each crab.

Ease of Care

Simple dietary needs, including hermit crab food and fresh fruits. Maintaining proper humidity levels is crucial for their well-being.

Considerations

Understanding the moulting process is vital; provide a quiet environment during this time. Handling should be minimal to reduce stress, especially during moulting.

Small pets graphic

Budgerigars (Budgies): Budget-Friendly Avian Companions

Expenses

Initial costs include a cage, toys, and budgie-specific food. Ongoing expenses cover fresh fruits, vegetables, and occasional veterinary check-ups.

Characteristics

Sociable and trainable pet birds with vibrant plumage. Varied colours and vocalizations add charm to their presence.

Ease of Care

Basic dietary requirements include a mix of seeds, pellets, fruits, and vegetables. Mental stimulation is crucial; provide toys and interact regularly.

Considerations

Social interaction is key; consider having two budgies for companionship. Regular vet check-ups ensure overall health and well-being.

Mice: Small and Inexpensive Pets

Expenses

Mice are cost-effective pets, with initial expenses covering a cage, bedding, and food. Ongoing costs include fresh water, a balanced diet, and occasional veterinary care.

Characteristics

Small and adaptable, making them suitable for various living spaces. Mice are social animals, often thriving in groups.

Ease of Care

Simple dietary needs, with commercial mouse food providing essential nutrients. Cage maintenance involves regular cleaning to ensure a hygienic environment.

Considerations

Proper socialisation is crucial for mice; ensure they have companions. Be mindful of potential health issues and implement preventive care measures.

Conclusion

In the realm of pet ownership, affordability doesn't mean compromising on companionship. Whether you choose the tranquil world of fish, the sociable company of guinea pigs, the uniqueness of hermit crabs, the vibrant presence of budgerigars, or the small charm of mice, each pet brings joy without breaking the bank. Responsible ownership involves understanding their needs, providing a loving environment, and enjoying the rewarding journey of pet companionship. Choose the pet that aligns with your lifestyle and commitment level, and embark on a budget-friendly adventure with your new furry, feathery, or scaly friend.

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