Sugar gliders have been labeled as the world's best pocket pet and for good reason. These little creatures not only truly fit and can be carried around in your pocket, but, their sweet gentle faces and their quirky characteristics make them hard to resist. However, these animals are not an animal one should purchase on impulse and for many people they are not a pet that should be owned at all.
While sugar gliders can and do make wonderful pets for some people they aren't the type of pet that everyone should own. Here are ten reasons why a sugar glider may be not be the right pet for you.
1. Sugar gliders need a lot of devoted attention. Even in pairs which are recommended for most sugar glider owners these little creatures can be very demanding of your time. In the wild they are animals that live in colonies where they depended on the entire colony for safety and for company. They are very sociable little animals once they trust you and they expect you to be there for them.
2. Sugar gliders are nocturnal animals which means that most of your interaction with them must be done in the evening hours. Most Sugar gliders are most playful during the wee hours of the morning so people who work daytime hours may find that spending time with this pet is seldom convenient.
3. Sugar gliders require a large cage. The smallest recommended cage size for a sugar glider is one that is at least three feet high and two feet square. However, the larger the cage the happier your glider will be.
4. Sugar gliders unlike a dog, cat, or rabbit cannot be fed pellet or dry food. They live on grasshoppers, mealy worms, crickets, fruit, vegetables boiled chicken breast, and a special formula containing a lot of vitamins and minerals to keep them healthy. The food you give your glider needs to be fresh (frozen vegetables are acceptable) and prepared in the evening just before the glider awakes for the night. Many people find preparing fresh daily for their pet somewhat of a hassle and if this is the case then a glider is certainly not for you.
5. While gliders are extremely healthy animals when they do get sick they can get very sick quickly do their small size. Not all vets are trained to treat exotic animals and even few have been trained to treat sugar gliders so unless you have a vet close by that has experience with these small creatures you may want to reconsider your desire to own one.
6. Due to their size and their sense of adventure a glider can be easily lost when taken from the cage. Unless you have a special glider proof room to play with your glider in he is more than likely going to find himself in peril from household dangers that much larger animals will not have to face.
7. Bonding with a glider is far different than bonding with most other animals. Even a well socialized glider will need time to adjust to his new home and family before being taken from his cage. In fact, most glider breeders recommended that once you bring your new glider home you don't take him from his cage until he fully accepts you to the point that when you stick your hand and arm in his cage he is content to stay on your arm and play for several minutes. Forcing a glider into interacting with you can make him afraid and delay the bonding process.
8. If you don't like animals that relieve themselves on your person a glider is not going to bring you much joy. Gliders enjoy urinating on their people as a way of marking them as part of their colony. The more you smell familiar your glider the more he will accept you.
9. For such a little creature gliders can be quite messy. They urinate and bring food into their sleeping bags so, those bags need changed regularly. Their cages become sticky from food and urine and cleaned top to bottom once or twice a week and they spit and throw food particles around.
10. In addition, the most healthy temperature for a glider is between 72 and 76 degrees Fahrenheit. While they can withstand hotter temperatures too much exposure to cooler temperatures can cause them to catch respiratory infections and pneumonia which can be deadly for a glider.
Owning a glider can be a rewarding experience if you are prepared for all the care these wonderful little creatures need. They are funny and affectionate and enjoy your company as well. However, while they have many wonderful qualities, they simply aren't the right pet for everyone.
Before deciding a glider is right for you take the time to do a lot of research and talk to some glider owners before purchasing a glider as a pet. Knowing what to expect and being prepared for both the work and joy a glider brings into your life will make for a happier home for both you and your glider.