Exotic animals are becoming increasingly popular as pets. Whether you’re interested in having a pet snake, ferret, tarantula, or gecko– there are specific actions to take when looking after an unusual animal. Besides, they require special attention and may even need to visit the vet regularly, so you must be fully prepared.
If you just brought home or plan to get a unique pet, here are several handy tips on how to take care of them:
1. Research and Learn
Prior to acquiring an exotic pet, research if the regulation in your area permits it. Laws may also restrict the type, size, and quantity of animals that can be kept as pets. Know all the information regarding the species’ specific needs before getting one.
You should analyze how to handle them, their primary care, and their traits. Find out what type of food they consume, how many hours of sleep they need throughout the day, and much more. This will aid you in preparing the right environment for the pet.
You should also understand if they need regular wellness care and examinations. Like cats and dogs, exotic pets must visit the animal hospital for periodic checkups.
2. Consult a Veterinarian
Not all vets specialize in exotic animals, so seek advice from a knowledgeable one before purchasing the pet. They will advise you on properly caring for the animal and guide nutrition, exercise, and other essential elements of its well-being. For example, a reptile veterinarian may provide more detailed info on taking care of a tarantula or gecko than a regular veterinarian. Click here to read up on the essentials of pet care, from the most common to the most unusual species.
3. Create a Perfect Environment
When it comes down to an exotic pet, the environment is vital. Create a risk-free and comfortable room for them that fulfills all their needs. If you have several pets, ensure they get along with each other and don’t fight or hurt each other.
Additionally, try to recreate the pet’s natural surroundings as much as possible. Reptiles, amphibians, and many other exotics may require specific temperature ranges or humidity levels, so have the necessary equipment.
Similarly, some animals require particular types of lighting, such as ultraviolet lights. Beware that not all exotic pets need the same kind of environment, so double-check prior to purchasing anything additional.
4. Stay Up to Date on Vaccines and Treatments
For some unique pets, vaccinations are mandatory. Similar to cat and dog vaccinations, some exotics may need shots to protect against illnesses and other health problems. For instance, alpacas and llamas need vaccines for tetanus that begin at three months and are followed by a booster 30 days later.
Furthermore, exotic pets might require treatments for parasites, such as fleas or ticks. So stay up to date and adhere to your veterinarian’s advice regarding any essential pet vaccinations and therapies.
5. Provide Quality Care
Exotic animals can provide joy and companionship, giving them the most effective care possible. You can do this by:
- Monitoring their meal plan and providing the right amount of food
For instance, a tarantula will eat live crickets and other insects. Or, a ferret will call for a top-quality cat or dog food. This also includes providing them with plenty of fresh water.
- Observing their behavior and recognizing potential health problems
If the pet isn’t eating as usual or has difficulty moving, take them to the vet right away for an evaluation. Also, watch out for any unusual discharge from their eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Cleaning the enclosure regularly
This involves disinfecting the cage and replacing soiled bedding. Depending on the animal, change the bedding regularly.
- Creating an enriching environment by providing them with toys and other stimulating items
This could include balls, sticks, or ladders for reptiles to climb up. Smaller pets, like sugar gliders, need nest boxes and other secluded locations. For larger animals, like acouchis, provide ample space to move around and explore.
Exotic pets are one-of-a-kind but need care and interest like any other pet. Make sure to do your research before getting one and comply with the advice of a vet for proper health maintenance. If you are already looking after an exotic pet, take the necessary steps to provide them with a healthy and enriching environment. As long as you continue to be updated on their needs, your pet will undoubtedly have a good quality of life.