Exotic Pets

Exotic pets require special needs both at home and at the veterinary hospital. These needs vary widely and providing the proper veterinary care requires special training and skills. Forte Animal Hospital provides routine care for small mammals such as rabbits, guinea pigs, and hamsters.

Rabbits

Although yearly immunizations are not required for your rabbit, an annual wellness exam is recommended with additional visits for suspected injuries or illness. Generally, rabbits will need to be spayed and neutered as they are known to reproduce quite frequently. Having your rabbit spayed or neutered will also eliminate many health problems, including some cancers, as well as reduce behavioral problems. Rabbits spray and can exhibit sexually aggressive behavior if not sterilized including excessive digging, marking territory with urine, cage aggression, and fighting with other rabbits. Fixed rabbits are happier, healthier, and more relaxed.

Guinea Pigs

Guinea pigs require lots of space and considerable upkeep. Most cages marketed for guinea pigs are too small and cages approximately 7.5 square feet or larger are ideal so that your guinea pig can have more opportunities for recreation and mental stimulation. Guinea pigs are sensitive to overheating, so proper ventilation and cleaning are essential for his or her cage. Like humans, guinea pigs cannot produce their own vitamin C, so be sure to provide them with vitamin C enriched foods like fresh veggies, pelleted feed, and vitamin C tablets to prevent vitamin C deficiency and subsequent scurvy. Annual veterinary visits are recommended for your guinea pig. Regular brushing and nail/teeth trimmings are also necessary. They can be done by the owner or veterinarian.

Hamsters

One of the commonly kept family pets, these affectionate animals are a great first pet for young children. However, they do not live very long (18-24 months on average) so be sure to explain this to your young children so that they are prepared. Hamsters are great escape artists and tend to be nocturnal, so do not be surprised if you hear them running on their exercise wheel relentlessly throughout the night, and be careful that they don’t break out of their cages. Hamsters should be examined by a veterinarian within 48 hours of purchase and then a standard annual physical examination and fecal test to check for parasites.

We administer a complete head-to-toe examination and develop an individualized course of care that is tailored to your pet’s unique needs. Nutrition is extremely important for these small animals. Therefore, it is important to bring your exotic animal in for regular visits to keep your pet happy and healthy.