If you’ve ever traveled various cities in different parts of the world like Toronto, Las Vegas, or any many major metro city, you have most likely bumped into people with vivid colorful hair, walked by someone talking aloud to themselves or stumbled across a citizen dressed as a character straight out of Game Of Thrones. So, what things you know before buying an exotic animal?
That being said, Cats and dogs are just too ordinary and boring for these people. If you belong to the latter category, this article is for you.
Trend setting is very popular in today’s era. An what is a better statement than uploading a picture with some exotic super cute animal like Sugar Glider sitting in your pocket or playing in your hand?
While the current fad can be one reason to buy an exotic pet for some people, others are simple too adventurous and have a taste for rare stuff. Regardless of the reason to buy an exotic, there are quite a few things that should be considered before bringing an animal in your house.
7 Things to know before Buying An Exotic Animal:
First rule of buying an exotic beauty is:
Never Be Impulsive.
Impulse buys can cost an you thousands of dollars every year. Dresses and jewelry though are inanimate objects that can be returned, disposed of or re-gifted.
If you have a any animal in mind, just find the answers to the following questions and decide if it’s suitable for you to buy and if you haven’t, keep the following points in mind before you choose a cool exotic pet:
1. Selection of your Exotic Pet:
When you decide that you want an exotic animal for your pet, it is vital you stop and do the homework. You should research at home via the internet, via the library, via local professionals. You should research the appropriateness of whatever pet it is you are considering.
If you keep your home warm, exotic animal whose natural habitat is in cooler temperatures may not be for you. If you cherish your sleep, nocturnal animals are a No-No.
If you’re looking for a bird that’s a great talker, you don’t buy a sun conjure because the sun conjure is marvelous and beautiful, but all they do is scream. They rarely actually talk. In a different case scenario, if you want a bird that’s playful and highly social and that’s the priority, you wouldn’t get an African gray because they’re very anti-social.
Homework may be the first step to getting to know an exotic pet but understanding what you want is also crucial.
Dr. Don J. Harris, veterinarian, and director at the Miami-based Avian & Exotic Animal Medical Center states “Every species has its unique qualities that make them right or wrong for each individual,”
It’s through that extensive research that the realities of owning that particular animal become clear.
At times, some animals are social and better bought in pairs to prevent them for slipping into depression. It is no secret that exotic animals are expensive. So make sure that they fit in your budget.
Don’t make the mistake of considering only the purchase price of that particular animal. Make a list of basic items required like escape proof cage, food, chew toys vet visits and find its cost as well. Including this, if all the costing is under the belt, well and good.
Some animals are better suited in cold climates while other are not. Cross check if the animal you wish to buy can survive in the environment you live in and survive all the climates in your region. Also, some exotic animals are housepets, and others are meant live in open spaces.
Dr. Don J. Harris says, “They should know, not just guess, what the appropriate habitat requirements are. They should know what their nutrient requirements are. The biggest problem we see here is malnutrition. Probably 70 or 80 percent of problems we see are directly or indirectly the result of malnutrition.”
Also, some animals need to handled very very very carefully and are not exactly suitable to own if you have young kids living with you.
Exotic animals require particular type of housing conditions that differ animal to animal. It may be a 15-20 gallon water tank for amphibians like Axolotl or even small cages with vertical bars that have branches and sleeping pouches inside for Flying Squirrels. Make sure the home of your animal you wish to buy is set before it arrives.
Consider all possibilities before you decide where you will set up its home in your house.
Habitat problems range from not enough space, not enough lighting, to and incorrect bedding material. Properly prepare the habitat well before the pet’s arrival. Not only you should know what the environment is, you should also know how to maintain the conditions, how often to control it and the animal’s precise dietary needs.
Make sure that the cage is escape-proof. If the animal is kept outdoors, ensure it has protection from cold, heat, and rain. If the animal in to be kept indoors, and out of the cage, baby-proofing a room can be similar to making to make it safe. Baby proofing involves covering electrical cords and outlets, etc.
When buying a cage, consider the adult size of the animal too. A baby iguana is only 6 inches long, but an adult can be 6 feet long!
Every animal requires a particular intake of food. We all know is always better to buy young exotic animals so that they can be tamed, trained and be familiarized with their human owners but then their dietary needs are also more demanding. They need to hand fed with syringe and cared for like actual human babies. And error can be fatal. Hence, know everything regarding diet of the animal you wish to buy BEFORE you buy them. Also, talk to breeder beforehand and get as many tips as you can.
6. Veterinary Doctor:
You must find a vet close by that is knowledgeable, and that will see the pet for routine stuff and in case there is an emergency.
Finding proper veterinary care for your exotic is quite simple if you use what is known as”Dr. Harris Method”.
1) Get out the yellow pages. Identify all the clinics that claim to treat exotic animals and cross them off.
2) Call the other clinics that don’t claim to treat exotics and ask them if they treat exotics animals. If they say, ‘yes’ say thank you and hang up. And if they say no which they often will ask them who do they recommend.
You will discover a pattern You will learn that all the veterinarians in a given locale will know who’s competent.
Do not to be fooled by large fancy ads. If you have a full page ad in the yellow pages, and it says, “We treat exotic animals better than anybody else on the planet.” While nobody recommends them as they probably aren’t worth your time.
7. Make Sure the animal you wish to buy is LEGAL in your country:
Trade of exotic animals changes as per laws in state. This is because, while some animals may be legal to own in a particular country, they may be banned in others.
Florida law states that it is not necessary to obtain a permit to keep chinchillas, hedgehogs, prairie dogs, honey possums.
You do need a license to keep raccoons, skunks, and possums, though.
On the other hand, skunks and raccoons are prohibited in Maryland. Ferrets can be bought in Florida with a permit but in California they are illegal.
At the risk of losing your pet, do the research on your state’s exotic pet laws. Although government sites are considered to be a reliable resource to acquire your information, they are most of the times out of dated.
When in doubt, make phone calls or visits to the corresponding office of the fish and wildlife commission in your state. Overlooking these matters is not recommended.
This is all what you need to know while buying an exotic animal. Is there anything more you want to know?