Brining any pet into your home is a unique commitment that will affect your lifestyle and daily routine on some level. Regardless of size or ease of care, there is no such thing as an unobtrusive pet. Reptiles commonly kept as pets, of course, are included in this. Whether you’re keeping a tiny lizard or giant boa constrictor, you are going to need to know how keeping one is going to work into your current life. To get started, here are a few factors that will help you understand what you should be thinking about before making that final purchase.
Unique Environmental Needs
One aspect of reptile care that is going to need to be taken into high consideration is its environmental needs. Reptiles have evolved to thrive in somewhat specific conditions, and that may not be what your 75 degree home can provide on its own. Typically, you will need to provide clean substrate, hiding areas, and specific spots in its enclosure where it can heat up or cool down. You will also need UVA/UVB bulbs to provide it with the specific type of light source it needs to regulate its body temperature and metabolize nutrients.
Every Reptile is Different
When looking at reptiles for sale, it’s important to remember that this group of animals is diverse and has varied needs. For instance, a leopard gecko will have totally different needs from a ball python or tortoise. Dietary requirements, habitat, and behaviors are all different from species to species. It is important to thoroughly research any animal before bringing it into your home.
Out of the aforementioned differences that reptiles share, diet is worth examining and pointing out. Some reptiles are obligate carnivores while others are omnivores or insectivores. Some may even have highly specialized diets, such as egg eating snakes. Many reptiles are also fed in entirely different ways. For instance, snakes can be fed three times a month while bearded dragons should be fed every day. Regardless of what you think you know, it is vital that you not make any assumptions about a specific animal’s diet before doing your homework.
Socializing Your Reptile
Properly socializing your pet reptile will be an important part of developing a long-term relationship with it. It’s important to remember that reptiles don’t have high social needs to begin with, and don’t actively seek out human attention or contact. However, with patience, and by observing your reptile’s body cues and comfort level, you can help it build trust and positive associations with your presence.
Reptiles of all varieties make for a unique, accessible pet. By understanding what to expect before bringing home a reptile for sale, you are doing your part to set yourself and new pet up for long term success. Remember, it is ok to not know everything about your new pet or experience the occasional pitfall. As long as you seek out recommendations and solutions from reputable sources, however, you will find that there are few obstacles that you won’t be able to overcome.