Reptile Pet

Caring for Your Reptile Pet

Having a reptile as a pet can be very rewarding. But they have different needs than cats or dogs. This guide will teach you how to keep your reptile healthy and happy.

Do Research First

Before getting a new reptile pet, learn about that kind. Every species needs something different regarding:

  1. Housing
  2. Temperature
  3. Light
  4. Food

Make sure you can give the reptile what it needs. If not, choose a different one.

Pick the Right Reptile

Many good pets are:

  1. Geckos
  2. Bearded dragons
  3. Corn snakes
  4. Turtles

Consider size, care difficulty, and your comfort level. Good starters stay under 3 feet grown up.

Handle Carefully

Always support the whole body when picking up. Keep hands away from the mouth and head. Go slow and be gentle. Wash hands before and after. Frequent, careful handling when young gets them used to people.

Give Proper Housing

Reptiles need habitats like their natural homes. Most need:

– A tank or cage they can’t escape from
– Bedding material like carpet or mulch
– Heat from lamps and pads
– UVB lighting
– Hiding spots like caves
– Clean water

Set up the habitat just right for that species. Check conditions every day.

Feed the Right Foods

Different reptiles eat:

  1. Insects like crickets
  2. Vegetables
  3. Rodents for snakes

Feed the right foods in the right amounts. Give vitamins too. Wrong diets make reptiles sick.

Keep the Habitat Clean

Scoop poop and give fresh water every day. Fully clean the tank every 1-2 months. Wash all items inside and replace bedding. Good hygiene keeps reptiles healthy.

Watch for Health Problems

Look for:

  1. Not eating
  2. Lethargy
  3. Shedding issues
  4. Weight loss
  5. Weird poops

Take sick reptiles to an exotic vet quickly. Fast treatment helps.

Enjoy Your Unique Pet!

Reptiles can be very fun and interesting pets. Give them what they need and they can live for many years. Your special care leads to an awesome bond!

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

How big do most pet reptiles get?

Sizes range widely, from just 3-4 inches to over 10 feet long! Do research on adult sizes before selecting one.

What should I put in the habitat for enrichment?

Add safe branches, rocks, tunnels, puzzle feeders and more to give them things to explore and climb on for mental stimulation.

How often does the tank lighting need replaced?

Replace UVB and heat bulbs every 6-12 months per manufacturer instructions as bulb strength decreases over time.

Is a reptile a good pet for a child?

Supervision is required, but some reptiles make great starter pets for responsible older children able to follow handling rules.

Do reptiles bond with their owners?

Reptiles recognize people who frequently handle and feed them gently. They appear to enjoy human interaction.

Can I train a reptile to do tricks?

Some reptiles, like bearded dragons, can be trained to come when called, climb small obstacles, and more through positive reinforcement.

How can I get an escaped reptile out from under furniture?

Place favorite foods nearby. Gently herd towards box or cage. Or lift furniture if can be done safely to retrieve the animal.

Do reptiles need vaccines?

No, but new reptiles should be quarantined and vet checked for parasites before introducing to other pets.

What signs mean my reptile is stressed?

Darkening color, puffing body, gaping mouth, hissing, whipping tail and hiding all signal fear or stress. Remove the cause.

Can reptiles play with enrichment toys?

Yes, some enjoy pushing balls around, solving puzzles for treats, climbing safe branches, digging, and exploring tunnels.

How can I make handling easier?

Start young, go slow, use treats, avoid looming over from above, and handle frequently in short sessions to get them comfortable.

Why is my reptile refusing to eat?

This can indicate illness, stress, or incorrect temperatures. Make a vet appointment if appetite loss lasts over 1-2 weeks.