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Mon., Thurs 10-8
Wed., Fri., Sat 10-6
Sun 11-3
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(301) 424-7387

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October 9, 2007

DWARF HAMSTERS

Filed under: Small Animals — admin @ 10:18 am

   Yes there are dwarf hamsters but they are not just small Syrian hamsters. They are actually different species and there is  more than one. There is a very nice book on the dwarfs that we encourage you to read if you are interested in these active little rodents. It is in the book rack facing the small animals.  

   One of the points that is interesting is that  the dwarf species can interbreed and so when we get these little guys in, it’s sometimes unclear which one they actually are. In any event they are all very active and are usually easier to keep together than the solitary Syrian.

   All species of hamsters are easily kept in our favorite cage, a ten gallon tank. Our money saving set up includes a book about the animal you choose and in our 28 years in the pet business, it has proven to be the safest and easiest to keep clean. Tubes and toys can be added but we look for an easy to clean home first.

October 1, 2007

HOME OWNERSHIP FOR BIRDS

Filed under: Bird Care,Store News,Uncategorized — admin @ 5:29 pm

   All the fuss over morgages and foreclosures got me thinking about our birds “property” and it’s value.

   A cage needs to be not only comfortable for the bird but easy for you [the house keeper] to manage and an attractive part of your home. That’s why we at Animal Exchange have put so much effort in the last 28 years into evaluating not just cages but the companies that manufacture them. There are some companies that we absolutely will not support and even with our best suppliers, there are some cages that we just don`t bring into our inventory. Let us show you the features we feel are important and be sure to look at our collection of antique cages while you are here. It’s hard to imagine birds were kept in them.

   Interior decoration of your bird habitat is another area that concerns us. The bird needs room to move around in the cage and if there are 12 perches in a cage that measures 18xi8x22 it’s going to have a tough time. That same bird will enjoy one or two toys but not 18 all in the cage at the same time. Rotate those toys and keep the rest in a toy box. Let the bird pull them out of the box and then switch with the ones in the cage.

   If you are sitting at the table with food in front of you 24 hours a day, do you eat more than if you have to go out and find it? Birds in the wild have to forage for food and any toy that makes them work to extract food is not only good exercise physically but it also stimulates their brains which you know are extraordinary.

   In my cages at home, food and water bowls are on the floor, not where the  bird poops, but in a corner that stays clean. All of the birds will eat from the highest  cup but will go to the floor if needed. To convert to a different food, put the new up high and the old on the floor. I routinely take the grate out of the bottom so the bird is comfortable walking around and can retrieve food that is not in the bowl. Our black palm cockatoo will carry a whole ear of corn up to his perch but has no problem with his food bowl on the floor.

   A well designed, clean cage with a few comfortable perches and a rotating collection of toys will make for a happy bird and a successful relationship with the family.