The most popular pets for Londoners and how you could welcome one into your family

Pets can often become highly valued members of the family. If you’re looking for a pet, you might be concerned about which pet your London home is suitable for. London homes may be more compact compared to homes elsewhere in the UK, so concerns about space may make you pause before taking the leap and bringing home a pet. It is a good idea to look critically at the space you have at home and consider if you need to move to a larger property to ensure you have room for a pet. In this blog London Mums look at the most popular pets for Londoners and how you could welcome one into your family.

Monica & kinmg charles cavalier dog Biscuit in Richmond Park

I often walk my friend’s dog Biscuit in Richmond Park which is my favourite spot in London

It is important to consider the space available when deciding to get a pet. It is also a good idea to consider your surroundings and how safe or comfortable they would be for a pet. For instance, if you are considering a dog, you might think about the number and location of nearby parks for you to take them on walks. There’s a lot of choice of suitable pets for Londoners, and the one you choose may depend on various considerations, including personal preference, local amenities and the space you have at home.

Dogs

It is estimated that up to 9% of Londoners own a dog making them one of the most popular pets in the city. Dogs can be great companions, but they may require a lot of time and dedication to maintain them as pets. Depending on the size of the dog, they may require walking several times per day and for extended walks. Different breeds may require different levels of care, so it may help to do some research into the breeds available. It could also help to consider your home and how suitable it is for a dog. Smaller dogs may require less space to explore at home, while larger dogs might need more room to play. 

 

Fish

You might consider fish to be a more low-maintenance pet, and in some cases, this may be the case. Like any pet, fish each need specific environments to live a healthy and happy life. Some fish might be easier to care for, for instance, the classic goldfish. Others may require more work and specialised equipment to create their optimal environments. It is best to do some research into the types of fish available until you find the type of fish that would work for your home and lifestyle best. 

 

Budgies

Budgies are small, beautiful birds that are the most popular bird pets in the UK. They are often highly intelligent and may be more convenient for Londoners, as they take up less space than some pets. Budgies require a suitable environment, just like any other pet, and their spaces usually need daily cleaning. They could be excellent pets for children, but it is important to teach kids how to handle them safely and correctly since budgies are usually quite delicate. 

 

Parrots

Parrots may be a rewarding and enjoyable pet for any family home. Parrots are often considered more intelligent and curious birds, meaning they may need more stimulation in their environments than other birds. Part of the attraction for many people is the beautiful colours of a parrot’s feathers and their ability to mimic sounds. Parrots may be noisy pets, so they might not be suitable for people who live in blocks of flats or places with thinner walls. 

 

Cats

Cats can be fun pets to have at home, but if you plan to keep them indoors, it may be best to ensure you have space for them to explore. If you plan to let your cat outside, it could help to assess the possible risks nearby, such as living on a busy main road. Some cats may thrive in an indoor-only setting, while others might need some time outdoors. If you do live near to a busy road and often let your cat outside, it may be a good idea to invest in pet insurance to help should an accident occur. Purely Pets are a great example of pet insurance providers that could be an excellent investment for you and your feline friend. 

cats

Rabbits

Rabbits can be adorable and loving pets, ideal for adults and children alike. They may require more room than a flat or house without a garden can provide. Often, rabbits are best kept in a hutch in the garden, with secure fencing to keep the rabbits in and predators like foxes out. This means that potential rabbit owners in properties without outdoor access might not be ideal for rabbits. Rabbits often require plenty of space to hop around and exercise, whether indoors or outdoors. They also require spaces to hide and relax, meaning that, though they may be good pets for children, they should also be able to retreat when they want to. 

 

Hamsters

People might consider hamsters to be a good starting pet for anyone that hasn’t owned an animal before. Hamsters can be relatively low maintenance and often won’t need as large a space to live as other animals. Many hamster cages come equipped with an exercise wheel, which may be as much exercise as a hamster might need. For families with children, hamsters might be a good addition, but, like budgies, hamsters tend to be delicate and require gentle handling. This could make them less than ideal for very young children. 

 

Gerbils

Gerbils are sociable and friendly pets and may do better in a domestic environment with other gerbils. Solo gerbils may become lonely without companionship is it might be best to consider getting more than one. Gerbils might also need a stimulating environment with plenty of things to do to prevent boredom. They may also need more space than you might think, as gerbils can often be keen explorers. If you consider gerbils as your next pet, it may help to ensure your home is well-secured. Any gaps in walls, doors and other places might need to be filled to prevent your gerbils from escaping. 

 

Turtles

Turtles can be excellent pets, but they may require specialist equipment and environmental controls to thrive. Turtles might also live for decades, so it is best to be sure that you are ready for the commitment of keeping a turtle. There are many places you could get a specialist turtle tank and filtration systems that can help turtles live long and healthy lives. Turtles may be good pets for children, but it is important to teach them about how to properly care for and handle the turtle. 

 

Horses

Horses might not be the first pets you think of when you live in London, but there are actually a wide range of stables in the city. The number of green spaces that London boasts is part of what makes it possible for many people to keep horses in the city. If you’re considering getting a horse, it is a good idea to do some research on local stables which can board the horse for you. Horses can be a great addition to the family, and horse riding is an all-around workout that can be excellent for kids and adults alike. In addition, learning to ride horses can often be a great way to improve confidence and self-image in kids. 

horse being brushed by a girl

Ferrets

Ferrets can be sociable and affectionate pets, though they may not always be suitable for homes with children. Ferrets might be tricky to handle at times, and some may bite if they feel anxious or threatened, which may mean they are not ideal for homes with younger children. However, ferrets may often be naturally curious and playful, which could make them an excellent addition to your home. If you consider a ferret for your next pet, you might need to ferret-proof your home, as their love of exploration might make them surprisingly effective escape artists. 

 

Conclusion

This is a great list of popular pets for Londoners. The joy and companionship that can come from being a pet owner may be what motivates you to get your own pet. There are many pets that might fit seamlessly into your home and family in London. It is important to weigh up all of your options and consider how different pets would impact your daily life. For larger pets, such as horses and dogs, it might be beneficial to do a trial run by volunteering to care for a friend or relative’s pet for a short time. This could help you get a better idea of what will be required as a pet owner and help you determine any changes to your home or lifestyle that could be necessary.

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