If you’ve ever owned a reptile or have simply looked after one for any period of time, you know one simple fact. The act of picking out your preferred pet and actually owning it are two entirely unique experiences. Unfortunately, some newcomers to the reptile world find themselves enraptured with the beauty and grace of a certain animal only to find that it doesn’t make a good pet. With this guide, we hope to elaborate on what makes a good reptile pet. Additionally, we want to provide you with certain factors to consider when thinking about how a certain animal might fit into your lifestyle.
What Makes A Good Pet
When looking at the best reptile pets to own, you are going to have to account for several factors. These will be important when determining how a specific animal is going to fit into your lifestyle. By taking the time to truly examine a specific pet’s needs and if you can account for them, you will have a better understanding of which animals work best for you.
Regardless of whichever pet you wind up owning, you are going to need to live with it for an extended period of time. That means having to physically handle them at times in addition to dealing with their temperaments and behaviors on a regular basis. You don’t want a pet that is particularly dangerous to you or other animals in your house. Fortunately, the animals listed below are known to be perfectly docile and friendly toward humans. However, you may want to consider how you are going to accommodate certain animals around other pets you may have. For example, safely keeping a snake in the same house as a hamster.
Reptile Ease of Care
The mental, financial, and physical resources that go into caring for a pet should always be taken into consideration. Naturally, the level of care that goes into accommodating an animal will depend on its species and your own experience. With that being said, many reptiles are known to be relatively easy to care for. This is partially due to the fact that some reptiles – such as snakes and tortoises -need little daily care or interaction.
When choosing a pet, size is going to be one of the more immediate and pressing factors determining if you can care for a certain animal or not. After all, the size of your pet will determine how much space it’s going to take in your house and your ability to handle it. Thankfully, you can accommodate reptiles in a variety of living situations due to their smaller size. However, this is a wide, varied group of animals. Some are quite a bit larger than others, and therefore need more space. The experience of owning a red-tailed boa is going to be much different from taking care of a bearded dragon, after all.
Reptiles aren’t exactly common pets. While some may have commercially available food, you’re going to have to formulate and make the meals for others yourself. Before purchasing a reptile, be sure to thoroughly conduct your research regarding their dietary needs. No matter what, you need to provide a complete, species-appropriate diet for your pet reptile. From there, it is important that you honestly assess your ability to provide the foods it needs on a consistent basis. To do that, you’re going to have to understand how your specific animal should be fed and how often. From there, you can go forward with making a budget and plan for your pet’s diet and feeding.
5 Best Pet Reptiles To Own
Variety is the spice of life, and in fewer places is this more apparent than the reptile world. From small, quick-moving lizards to the regal tortoise, no group is quite the same as the other. As previously stated, there are a variety of factors that will go into which pet reptiles for sale will work best for you. This list seeks to show you commonly owned reptiles, why they’re popular, and what you can expect when owning one.
The ball python is a moderately sized constrictor originating from sub-Saharan Africa. These snakes are known for being very chill and low-key, especially as they age. One of their primary claims to fame is their ability to roll themselves into a tight “ball” when trying to perch and relax on something (sometimes even your arms). Many reptile lovers enjoy this sensation and consider it a must when owning one of these guys. To learn more about these animals and how they can fit into your home, check out “How big do ball pythons get?“.
Corn snakes are another fairly popular species of snake on the market. And for good reason. These reptiles grow to a very manageable 3-5 feet. They have famously calm temperaments, and come in a stunning variety of 800+ morphs. While perhaps not as relaxed as the famously slow ball python, the corn snake is still content to spend hours basking in a warm spot. If you’re looking for a snake but want something that’s a bit less bulky than the ball python, the corn snake may be an excellent option for you.
While many reptiles make wonderful pets, it can’t be denied that many remain somewhat ambivalent to their owner’s presence. This is not the case for the bearded dragon. This lizard is famous for being especially friendly. Some even describe their bearded dragons as being “dog-like”, and walk them around their homes on a leash. Some say they display genuine enjoyment from being handled. An additional benefit of owning one of these reptiles is that they are diurnal. That means they are active during the day when you are.
If you are looking for a smaller, more manageable pet, geckos may be an excellent choice for you. These critters are climbing animals that prefer tanks taller than they are wide with plenty of vines. This means that their enclosure may take up less horizontal real estate in your home. Unlike some of the other animals in this list, there is commercially available food for geckos on the market.
Tortoises are a varied, long-lived group of animals that can demonstrate massive differences between species. While some tortoises remain at a manageable 10 inches, others grow to 2-3 feet long and 100+ pounds. Naturally, this means that caring for these ancient reptiles can look quite different depending on the species. Before settling on a specific tortoise species, be sure to do your research.
Making Sure Your Pet Reptile Works Out
The reptiles shown here are known to make excellent, manageable pets. However, you can’t automatically expect things to work out. To ensure that your pet has a stable, happy, healthy life, it is important to make sure that you spend time getting to know your pet. All the research in the world isn’t going to tell you exactly what your individual reptiles going to be like. When you first bring your pet home, be patient, and give it time to relax and show its true personality.
Tips For Owning a Pet Reptile
Make a plan for the future. Reptiles tend to live longer lives than some more traditional pets. Certain snakes, for example, can live for 20+ years. It is best to make a reliable plan for anything that may happen 5 or even 15 years down the line.
Consider other animals in the household. Now, it is certainly possible to keep more than one species of animal in the same house with no issues. However, it still pays to be vigilant. Especially when you have “prey” animals in the home. It is best to keep a secure lid on your reptile’s enclosure. You also want to keep any larger animals from getting too curious. This could stress your reptile pet.
Observe your pet reptile. Especially when it first comes home. Take the time to get to know it, and you will have a much better idea on how to keep your happiness and overall facilitate a closer bond with your newcomer. You will also have a better chance of catching any potential disease or injury before it settles in.
Have things in order before bringing your pet reptile home. By getting all of your supplies in order and set up before your pet’s arrival, you are ensuring a smooth, healthy transition into your home. This will minimize the chances of stress-related disease and get your relationship started on the right foot.
Keep in mind that this list was not an exhaustive rundown of every reptile that could make a good pet. This was simply an attempt to shine some light on reptile species that can fit into a variety of homes. These reptiles are known to be especially “beginner friendly”. Because of this, they are considered a good stepping stone into the hobby. If you are a newcomer looking for reptiles for sale, we hope that this was helpful in finding a pet that’s perfect for you.