When considering a pet, the noise an animal makes is a major consideration. Noisy pets can disturb sleep at night, annoy neighbors and attract unwelcome attention from landlords. Silent pets – or, at the very least, quiet animals – will prevent these issues from ever arising.
Hermit crabs are among the quietest pets that anybody can adopt, although they do chirp. Other options for quiet pets include fish, certain birds, reptiles (snakes and lizards), rabbits, ferrets or rodents, or even spiders if you’re not an arachnophobe. Some cats are quiet.
Quiet pets that don’t smell are the lowest-maintenance form of animal companionship. That does not mean you can disregard their needs as all pets require care and attention.
What are the Quietist Pets?
Let’s take a look at pets that are considered quiet, or even silent. Again, there are no guarantees. Any animal may make noise on occasion. If you enjoy a quiet life, these animals are likeliest to meet this need.
When considering animals that make no sound, crabs must be close to the top of the list. You could consider us biased. We are unabashed hermit crab enthusiasts. All the same, we stand by our judgment.
Are Hermit Crabs Silent?
Hermit crabs do make a chirping noise, comparable to a cricket crossed with a croaking frog. This is known as stridulation. This is not a verbalization from a larynx. Stridulation stems from hermit crabs rubbing body parts together or vibrating in their shells.
Nobody is entirely certain why hermit crabs engage in stridulation. The Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom proposes that this is a defensive sound, designed to deter other hermit crabs.
This is possible. Stridulation is commonly heard when a hermit crab is grumpy or afraid. Unwelcome attempts to handle hermit crabs, for example, often result in chirping.
Some hermit crabs also make noise while eating or playing, though. This suggests that stridulation could be a response to any form of stimulus. Whatever the reason, it is rarely loud. Even when chirping, hermit crabs are quiet pets.
What Do I Need to Keep Hermit Crabs?
This depends on whether you have marine or terrestrial hermit crabs. There are eight core genera of hermit crabs. Seven of these live underwater, while the remaining group lives on land. Both types of hermit crab enjoy a varied diet, involving plenty of fruit and vegetables.
If you have aquatic hermit crabs, you’ll need a fish tank of at least 10 gallons in size. Ideally, go larger. This needs to be filled with saltwater. Never use tap water – this is toxic to hermit crabs. Just like fish, hermit crabs need their aquariums cleaned regularly.
Land hermit crabs cannot live underwater. They have gills, but these are attached to the lungs. Land hermit crabs cannot hold their breath indefinitely and will drown if submerged in water too long. They can still live in an aquarium, but this must be dry. Either type of hermit crab will need the following:
- Hermit crabs are social, so never adopt just one
- 6 inches of sand on the ground of their habitat
- Toys and entertainment
- Hiding places
Terrestrial hermit crabs need saltwater and freshwater. They use this to drink and bathe. Land hermit crabs also love to climb. Provide apparatus to enable this instinct. Land hermit crabs also require a habitat with 80% humidity and a temperature of 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Where Should I Buy Hermit Crabs?
Hermit crabs are a common sight at seafront gift stores. These hermit crabs have been captured from the beach. From here, they are housed in painted shells and sold to tourists.
You may be able to get a hermit crab from an exotic pet store. Alternatively, look online. There are plenty of internet-based sellers. These hermit crabs will be kept by people that understand their unique needs, giving them a better start to life.
Fish are often considered ideal for anybody seeking a quiet pet. They do not make noise or smell and can be relaxing to watch. Despite this, there are still things that need to know about fish before adopting them as pets.
Are Fish Easy to Care For?
This depends on what fish you bring into your home. Freshwater fish are largely considered easier to care for than tropical breeds. All the same, many different fish have unique needs.
If you want to adopt fish, it is best to consult with a specialist. Key questions to ask include:
- What types of fish can live together without fighting?
- How large an aquarium is required?
- How often should the fish be fed?
- What temperature should the tank water be?
- What peripherals will the tank need?
Taking on fish as pets is not as simple as filling a tank with water and leaving them to swim. Ensure you are ready for the commitment.
Are Fish Tanks Noisy?
Another consideration with fish is that, while the animals themselves are silent, their habitats are not. A fish tank requires power filters and water pumps. These peripherals will often create noise.
You can buy equipment that works at a lower volume. This is often reflected in the price tag, though. If you do not want to live surrounded by a low hum or splashing sounds, fish are best avoided.
Can I Keep Other Animals with Fish?
One of the advantages of fish is that they can often live with other aquatic animals. Marine hermit crabs can live with fish. This brings a little variety to an aquarium.
This can also be a mutually beneficial relationship. Hermit crabs can help keep a fish tank clean by eating algae. Alternatively, keep snails in your fish tank. These will serve the same purpose.
Unfortunately, when you keep two animals together, there is never a guarantee they will co-exist. Hermit crabs are docile and rarely attack fish. They could be eaten by large fish, though. Keep this in mind before pairing up two different species in an aquarium.
Birds may not be anybody’s first choice of quiet pet. After all, most of us wake up to the sound of birdsong in the morning. Particular breeds are louder than others, though. If you adopt a macaw, you can hardly be surprised if it is verbal.
The easiest way to keep a bird quiet is by providing mental and physical stimulation. Keep a constant rotation of toys in circulation, changing them out every few days. This will keep your bird engaged with the contents of its cage.
Birds also enjoy a wide range of different sounds. If you are busy or out for the day, leave the TV or radio on. The bird will be enthralled by the rise and fall of voices and music. This makes it less likely to trill and shriek, creating a noisy nuisance.
What is Quietest Bird to Have as a Pet?
If you’re looking for a quiet pet bird, look at the following breeds. They will still make a degree of noise. These birds typically contently chatter throughout the day without bursting into a screech, though.
- Bourke’s parakeet
Again, let us stress that birds are not silent animals. If your bird is not making a peep, check that it is not unwell. The breeds above are quieter than some Avoid lovebirds or cockatoos if you are seeking a quiet life.
Snakes are primarily the reserve of exotic pet enthusiasts. These reptiles are growing in popularity, though.
Part of the appeal of snakes is that they keep themselves to themselves. These are quiet animals that prefer to be left alone. You will rarely hear from a snake. The occasional hiss or sound of digging is the extent of the noise created.
Are Snakes Dangerous Pets?
It is illegal to own a venomous snake in the United States without a permit. These are not typically granted to hobbyists. This makes it extremely unlikely that a snake will be dangerous in this sense.
Even if a snake is venomous, that does not automatically make it dangerous. Snakes are shy, skittish creatures. The popular cliché, “they are more afraid of you than you are of them” rings true. Snakes will only attack humans if they have no other course of action.
The most popular breed of pet snake, the ball python, is considered to be particularly gentle. These snakes could harm another household pet, though.
If a python feels threatened by a cat, for example, it may asphyxiate this enemy. Equally a snake may consider a pet rodent or rabbit a viable snack. Factor this into any choice to keep a pet snake.
Do Snakes Make Entertaining Pets?
That depends on how you define, “entertaining.” Snakes will not play with a ball or respond to tricks or commands. Many snake lovers can pass several contented hours watching their pets, though. Snakes are so unique in their movement and physiology that they enthrall many people.
What’s more, snakes can be beautiful. Snake experts across the world breed a wide array of different morphs. This creates a range of different colors of pet snake. If you invest in a snake with a rare or unique appearance, it will make a striking addition to your home.
Will I Need to Feed My Snake Live Animals?
A common deterrent to keeping snakes is their table manners. Snakes digest meals extremely slowly. The average pet snake will only need to eat once a week. It will spend the rest of this time absorbing its meal.
The good news is that you will not need to feed a snake live prey. This should be avoided. A live mouse or rat will not willingly sacrifice itself. It will fight for its life, potentially injuring the snake in the process.
You will need to feed mice to a snake unless you have a particularly small breed. These are purchased from exotic pet stores, pre-killed and frozen. The mice will need to thaw first, so that still may not appeal. It is surely preferable watching nature take its course, though.
You may wish to consider keeping a more conventional pet lizard. Some of the most popular choices for lizard novices include:
- Bearded Dragon
- Leopard Gecko
- Blue-Tongued Skink
- Crested Gecko
- Uromastyx (aka Spiny-tailed Lizard)
Lizards are docile, clean, silent, and largely low maintenance once you have set up their tank. Many breeds of lizards even enjoy handling, so you can interact with your pet.
What Do Lizards Eat?
This depends on the breed of lizard. The common consensus is that lizards eat crickets and mealworms. This is true in some cases, but not all.
Bearded dragons, for example, are omnivores. These lizards need a balanced diet of live insects alongside fresh fruits and vegetables. Leopard geckos, meanwhile, are strictly carnivorous. At the other end of the scale, an uromastyx is almost exclusively vegetarian.
Ensure you consult a specialist about diet before adopting a lizard. The wrong food can make these animals sick. Never assume that what works for one lizard is safe for a different species.
Are Lizards Expensive to Care for?
One thing that is rarely mentioned about lizards is how costly they are to run. The average lizard will have a healthy appetite. You will likely need to spend upward of $100 a month on food. As lizards live a long time, be prepared to sustain this commitment.
Veterinary bills for lizards can be costly, too. Most vets work primarily with furry animals, not scaly critters. You will likely need to travel to find a lizard specialist. This will be an expensive appointment once treatment is concluded.
Before you even bring your lizard home, your credit card will start to suffer. Lizards require an elaborate habitat, with heat lamps providing a regular power drain. Expect to pay anywhere from $200 to over $1,000 for an appropriate vivarium.
Pet spiders, especially tarantulas, are not for everybody. If you have an affinity for arachnids, though, they certainly make quiet pets.
Spiders are clean and require comparatively little space. Spiders like enclosed habitats, so a small terrarium will meet their needs. They also like to live alone, so you won’t need to bring in any friends. Never house another animal of a different species with a tarantula.
Be aware, taking on a tarantula is not a short-term bit of fun. These spiders live for over 20 years if cared for properly. Bearing in mind that so many people are afraid of spiders, that could become an issue in the long-term.
How do you think a future roommate would feel about sharing their home with an eight-legged companion? If you are prepared to prioritize your spider’s needs, go ahead. Think carefully before doing so, though.
Are Tarantulas Poisonous?
Tarantulas do have fangs, known as pedipalps. These fangs contain venom, which is used to immobilize prey. Never purchase a tarantula that has been defanged. This is a painful and cruel procedure that prevents the tarantula from eating properly.
Thankfully, tarantulas are docile creatures. They rarely bite humans, only doing so if provoked or afraid. If you are bitten by a tarantula, the result is comparable to a bee sting. The venom released may cause some swelling or stiffness but will not kill a human.
A more prominent tarantula defense mechanism is urticating hairs. If threatened, tarantulas eject bristly hairs from their abdomen. These cause skin irritation, including a painful rash. Most tarantulas dislike handling, so leave the spider alone to avoid this treatment.
Do Tarantulas Escape Their Enclosure?
There is another thing to know about tarantulas – they are skilled escape artists. These spiders may be quiet, but the reaction of somebody encountering a tarantula is likely to be anything but.
A lizard vivarium is the best home for a tarantula. These are tougher to flee from and can be tailored to the needs of a spider. Reduce the desire to escape by providing a tarantula with plenty of substrate to burrow under.
Rodents, such as hamsters, mice, and rats, are a perennial choice of first pet for children. They are small, docile, and do not live long enough to become a burden.
Rodents do not tend to verbalize. At least, not a pitch that human beings can frequently hear. This does not make rodents silent pets, though.
Are Rodents Quiet?
These animals are nocturnal and wake at night filled with energy. The Journal of Ethology explains that wild hamsters travel over five miles a day in search of food. While these animals do not verbalize much, they can make noise.
Advances in pet care include silent hamster wheels. This means that your pet rodent can exercise without waking up the entire home. Some rodents, especially hamsters, rattle and bite the bars of an enclosure, though. The rodent is bored and wants attention.
The only way to avoid this is by investing in a clear, plastic habitat. This way, there are no bars to bite or rattle. Just ensure the rodent has enough air – and provide as much entertainment as possible to stave off boredom.
Can I Make My Pet Rodent Diurnal?
It is possible to train a rodent to sleep at night and be active by day. This is inadvisable, though. You will be flying in the face of nature and completely changing the animal’s circadian rhythm.
To undertake this training, reverse the light-dark cycle of your rodent. Leave lights on at night and cover the habitat by day. This tricks the animal into thinking that day is night, and vice versa.
Interact with your rodent constantly to keep it awake during the day. Instinct will tell the animal to sleep by day. You’ll need to be patient and keep this up. It may take several months for your pet to adjust.
Eventually, your pet rodent will burn off energy – and make the associated noise – during the day. This may help you or your children get a better night’s sleep.
While these animals are delicate and have unique care needs, they make rewarding companions. Rabbits are loving and sweet-natured animals that make great pets.
Rabbits are largely quiet. They purr softly when happy, similar to a cat. They may also grunt or growl if displeased with your behavior. Ordinarily, though, rabbits are seen more than they are heard.
Can I Keep Rabbits Indoors?
Rabbits can, and should, live indoors where possible. You’ll need sufficient space to accommodate a rabbit hutch. This is safer for the animal, though. It will also keep the rabbit happier.
Rabbits are social. If possible, keep them in pairs or more. If this is not possible, let the rabbit live indoors. This way, a solo rabbit can still enjoy your company. This will ensure the rabbit stays healthy and calm.
Rabbits also prefer to sleep indoors. An outdoor hutch can be frightening for rabbits. Common predators, such as foxes and coyotes, patrol backyards at night. Rabbits cannot see what lurks outside their hutch, but and smell and hear danger. This provokes anxiety.
Can Rabbits Stay in Their Hutch All Day?
This is an issue when keeping rabbits in a small apartment. These animals need a minimum of two hours of exercise every day. Without this opportunity to stretch their legs, rabbits grow distressed.
In an ideal world, rabbits will be permitted to run around outside in a yard. Set up a playpen to contain the rabbit and make this safe. Most rabbits will run themselves to the point of exhaustion, then fall asleep on the spot.
If this is not an option, let your rabbit exercise in the house. Allow the rabbit to explore, running up and down staircases and exploring. Just keep a watchful eye. Rabbits are not the brightest pets and can be prone to chewing through electrical cables.
You can also let your rabbit out of its hutch while you relax at night. Rabbits typically enjoy this social time with owners. You may find that your rabbit relaxes on the couch and watched television with you.
Ferrets are fun and mischievous pets. These small animals love to interact with humans and can be taught tricks. You can even walk a ferret on a lead with appropriate training.
Ferrets are quiet, typically only verbalizing when afraid or in pain. This means that you should hope never to hear from your pet ferret. These adorable animals often welcome handling and can make great company for any family or individual.
Are Ferrets Smelly?
Ferrets are not a pet for anybody with a sensitive nose. These animals have a naturally musky scent that follows them from room to room. Male ferrets smell particularly strong once sexual maturity is reached. Consider early neutering to manage this aroma.
Ferrets also have oily skin, especially if handled frequently. The smell of a ferret’s skin is similar to that of a dog. Thankfully, ferrets also have an IQ comparable to a dog or cat. This means they can be trained to use a litter tray. This will minimize one set of odors at least.
Do Ferrets Like to Play?
Ferrets are among the most playful of all pets. They are highly energetic and will expect you to get involved in the game on occasion. Ensure that you have the physical capability and time to do so.
Ferrets can play by themselves, though. Give a ferret some cardboard boxes to climb in and out of. Set up a maze of tunnels to negotiate. Leave noisy toys, such as rattles, on the ground. A simple plastic ball will amuse a ferret for hours.
A ferret’s favorite game will always be running. Simply running and chasing. If you engage in this activity with your ferret, you will have a happy and healthy pet.
Over 30 million American homes have at least one feline resident. This makes cats second only to dogs as the nation’s favorite pet.
Not every home is cut out for a cat. Cats can be particular about their surroundings and are not as independent and many believe. Felines forge complex bonds with owners. What’s more, they are easily stressed. You must take good care of a cat and meet its needs.
All the same, cats are widely regarded as a quiet pet. The accuracy of this belief depends upon your definition of, “quiet.”
Are Cats Quiet?
Cats are certainly quieter than dogs, the only pet more commonplace in the United States. Cats do not howl when left alone or bark at strangers from the window. This does not mean that cats are silent, though.
Cats make a wide array of sounds. These range from soft purring to ear-piercing yowling, especially if in heat or looking to attract a mate. If you want a quiet cat, get it spayed or neutered as early as possible.
Also, be aware that cats are only silent in movement when they want to be. While hunting, a cat moves in perfect silence – so quiet you would hear a pin drop. At night, though, cats are heavy-footed and noisy. This may upset neighbors, especially if you live in an apartment.
Noise is often a consideration when choosing a pet. Consider your lifestyle, and whether you can accommodate a noisy animal in your home. If a quiet life is your priority, any of the choices listed above will meet your needs to varying degrees.