For some pet owners, having whether a cat or a dog is not just enough. For these people, they are excited to own non-traditional pets so that they can experience the animal kingdom quite close and personal. Thankfully, you can find some of the most popular alternative pets, such as lizards, snakes, and turtles, and all of them can make excellent additions to your home.
However, before you buy a reptile, you should remember that owning them requires commitment and responsibility. Reptiles can be considered as exotic pets, so they may show behaviors that need special attention and care. This post discusses how you can prepare before bringing pet reptiles home.
First impressions with a pet reptile matter. The first indication that you and your family are ready to care for a reptile is how you feel on your first encounter with the pet. If you hold a lizard or let a snake drape around your neck brings up an emotional response of I love the pet, then you are on a good start.
However, if you don’t want to interact with the reptile, then you are not ready for the reptile. Unfortunately, a negative emotional response means that the reptile may not reciprocate that love.
Unlike cats and dogs, reptiles usually don’t show a lot of emotional bonding behavior. You see, reptiles are considered as cold-blooded animals. They can become friends and recognize your smell and voice, but they live a life of instinct. Their main interest is to mate, eat, sleep, and then eventually die.
The good news is that they don’t shed hair, meaning you are not at risk of any allergy issues. Also, you don’t need to help them do exercise as they do it alone in their enclosures. For these reasons, they can make excellent pets if you don’t like to be greeted at the door of your home by your pet. Read a reptile guide to understand the needs of pet reptiles.
Another important factor that makes reptiles favorite pets is that they are usually easy to care for. Housing reptiles is also quite simple. For example, some Iguana owners even let their pets live openly. They only supply these reptiles with a wooden tray that has a heat lamp, water, and food for the pet.
But many reptile owners use screen-topped aquariums for enclosures. Therefore, you should ask the pet store a suitable enclosure for your pet and an estimate of how large it may grow to figure out the right size.
The bottom line is that all reptiles require housing that offers them both physical and emotional comfort. Emotional comfort is when your pet reptile feels safe while the physical comfort is when your pet provides the ideal temperature and humidity. Besides this, you need to consider quarantining your new pet reptile before you introduce them to the other reptiles that you own. This will ensure that they don’t bring diseases to the other members, and it also allows them to settle into their new habitat.
Understandably, there are a variety of reptiles out there, making it hard to determine the right diets for a specific pet reptile. Ideally, the type of diet will usually depend on the pet reptile you decide to care for. That said, the main food for many reptiles includes rodents and insects.
Hence, make sure that you ask the pet supplier the suitable food for your pet before bringing them home. Some reptiles, such as tortoises, love to eat plants and fruits while others like snakes enjoy eating a live mouse. However, if you don’t like watching the circle of life, perhaps you can buy frozen rodents for your pet reptile but you need to make sure that you thaw them in hot or warm water before feeding the pets.
Remember that while your reptile is growing larger, their appetites also increases. No wonder, some owners of full-grown pythons can feed them an entire rabbit as a single meal. Iguanas are herbivores, so they can eat berries, leaves, and fruits that they can find in the trees. With these plant-eating reptiles, you can feed them fruits, leafy greens, and vegetables that you take from your home.
On the other hand, most lizards eat insects, so they will enjoy a regular diet of mealworms and crickets. As you can see, the food that you intend to feed your pet reptile will depend on its species. Therefore, you should ask your pet seller the exact food the animal will eat, where to get it, and the right way to store it.
How you can get pet reptiles
Pet reptiles, especially lizards are quite common in most pet stores. It’s easier than before to get a lizard from a pet store or breeders, but you should make sure that you get them from a reliable seller. Hence, you should check their records and ask them about the breed to make sure that they know about the reptiles.
Above all, ensure that the pet reptile you’re buying is in good health. Fortunately, many pet stores provide a two-week health guarantee. However, for a private sale, you need to insect the reptile closely for any signs of ill health like discoloration, skin wounds, or cloudy eyes.
Here is how you can buy your pet reptile. Firstly, look for the enclosures to see the right one for your pet. For example, most lizards thrive in a wire cage while others do well in an aquarium. The enclosure should have the proper heating and cooling system. Depending on the type of lizard, you may need to buy an outdoor cage so that they can have enough natural daylight.
Pet reptiles require food to survive. Keep in mind that neglecting their health needs may lead to ill health and even death. Therefore, you should talk to the local pet store owner about the proper diet for your reptile.
As you can see, taking care of your reptile requires a lot of commitment from you. After all, it can be a lot of work to handle pet reptiles, so make sure that you are prepared before you buy a pet reptile.