What are some pets that a child (five years old) could take care completely on their own?


I am interested in getting a pet for my child, to teach them the importance of responsibility. However I care deeply about the lives of animals and am aware that a child cannot take care of a dog or cat realistically without serious help from a parent or trusted adult/caregiver. I am looking for any pet that a child could take care of without any assistance at all. Any pet will do, and I am also open to more obscure pets (I've considered getting an ant farm, for example, although I haven't done a lot of research as to the upkeep).

Thank you!

7 Answers

  • Pj
    Lv 4
    1 year ago
    Favorite Answer

    ant farm

    worm compost

    lady bugs

    non venomous snake

    i gave my 6 year old girl a snail once and she loved it to death.

    a pet frog maybe? can feed it bugs. i had a alot of spiders when i was a kid

    small creatures is as far as i would go unless you are overseeing it constantly.

  • *****
    Lv 7
    1 year ago

    A pet rock. Even ant farms require regular, consistent care, or they will die. No 5 year old will be reliable and consistent about the care of a pet. YOU, as the parent, are responsible to ensure that the pet is cared for properly, which means, at a minimum, prompting and supervising the animal's care, and assisting with some tasks. For example, there is absolutely no way a 5 year old could perform a water change on any aquatic pet.

  • Merit
    Lv 4
    1 year ago

    None! A five-year old is too young to take full responsibility for an animal's life.

  • 1 year ago

    If you will not help at all then do not get anything. A 5 year old cannot clean and setup a cage.

    If you are willing to help out where needed then you can consider invertebrates. Sturdier ones like roaches and beetles. Maybe a hamster. Maybe a snake or lizard. All easy to care for. A 5 year old could feed them, give them water, turn on and off heat lamps and help with cage cleaning.

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  • 1 year ago

    You're trapped. Responsibility includes dealing with failure - which means, if you give him full responsibility, the pet will likely die, which will be a conflict with you. A cat may actually be the least problematic choice, as cats are pretty good at caring for themselves - but in any case you (I assume you are the parent/guardian) will have to deal with the fallout if the cat is injured or simply bored.

    Susan (a fantasy figure in Terry Pratchett books) deals with this problem with respect to the classroom pet by choosing pets that a) are easily replaced when they're not looking (hence the three meepos - gerbils that were replaced without the kids being aware) or b) hard to tell whther they're alive or not (stick insects as the last resort).

    For your five year old as sole responsible - won't work with any pet that might have to be brought to a vet (so no mammals) or requires an extensive technological life support (so no fish). You're tuck with invertebrates. An ant farm migth work, or a small freshwater snail tank , technology free (ok, a light for the plants may be feasible).


    PLeae, no Goldfish. Yes, they can survive in a (too) small tank for a long time. They're simply hard to kill. But not for a five year old who wants to take them out of the tank...

  • 1 year ago

    For sure a fish. Either a goldfish or beta fish. They’re easy to care for, and if you don’t want to have to take care of it too much at all, this is definitely good. All they have to do is feed it, and the only thing you might have to do is help him or her clean the tank when needed.

  • 1 year ago

    an ant farm or goldfish

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