Visit a pet store
I’m always surprised how much my kids love visiting a local pet store. For me, it’s an errand that needs to get checked off my to-do list. But for them, it’s almost like a free mini visit to the zoo. So now, every once in awhile when we are nearby, we’ll go to a pet shop just so they can look at the fish and the mice, and the adoptable kittens.
It helps to have some ground rules established ahead of time. For us, this is namely that we will NOT be getting a pet to bring home. Any requests to get a new pet means the pet store visit is over and we will leave. I’ve found this is a good place to enforce that kind of rule. Leaving the pet store is no big deal to me – we didn’t pay to get in or drive a long way to get there.
Also, if you can get a small group of kids together, many pet stores will set up a tour for you. We’ve been on one such tour at a PetCo, and it was more fun than I expected. The pet shop employees brought several animals out of their enclosures to let the kids hold and pet them, and we learned a little about what type of care they each needed.