Thursday, November 18, 2010

What is an Exotic Pet?

Depending where you live anything other than a cat, dog, fish, or livestock, could be thought of as an exotic pet.  This means that in most areas everything from hamsters to hedgehogs, to hermit crabs... everything from parrots to pigeons to panthers, is considered as an exotic pet. 

There is no specific rule to define what is an exotic pet, as such when different people encounter this term they may think it refers to different animals.  Some may think of large carnivores, lions, wolves, and tigers, but other people think of ferrets, fennec foxes, or even pet rats.

It is important people define what they mean when using the term "Exotic Pet" particularly when making rules, such as landlord/tenant agreements.  Be aware some exotic pets have laws regarding restriction of ownership, or permit needs - if you own an animal that might be called an exotic pet, check to be sure it is allowed in the area you plan on moving to.

On the whole exotic pets require different care than cats and dogs, and it may be harder to find food, supplies, and veterinary care for an exotic pet.

People who want exotic pets need to be sure they want such a pet for the right reason - because they can care for it, and it fits their lifestyle - not because they want a "Cool Pet".

photo by author - llama cria

Read more about the Laws on Owning Exotic Pets in the USA - click here.
Read more about the Concerns of Owning an Exotic Pet - click here.


  1. I live in Alberta, and I was wondering where you found the list of animals not permitted?

  2. A very nice article. As you said each person will have their own perception of exotic pets, the picture in this blog represent what exotic pet is. I think llama is a great example of exotic pet.

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