The Best Reptiles For Pets: What You Should Know


Reptiles can make the best kind of pets for a wide range of owners. Are you a novice at owning and handling reptiles? Do you have the money to spend to keep your reptile comfortable? When it comes to choosing the right reptile for a prospective owner, a lot comes down to the individual's experience, budget, and lifestyle.  

Here is what you should know before you bring home popular reptiles as pets:

Corn Snakes

Corn snakes are gentle and tolerant of being handled by their humans. They are non-venomous and live primarily on a diet of mice. The ideal corn snake habitat contains branches — Corn snakes love to climb — and it should be a secure enclosure. Corn snakes are clever and can escape with ease.  

Corn snakes can live 20+ years and usually reach a length of around five feet. Corn snakes are often recommended to novice reptile keepers and handlers.   

Bearded Dragons

Some other beginner-friendly reptiles include bearded dragons. 'Beardies' are social and typically live to be about ten years of age. These reptiles eat vegetables and bugs. Beardies are gentle and docile, so they are a good choice for homes with children or for novice reptile keepers.  

Beardies don't have expensive veterinary needs, usually, and they only bite when frightened or under threat. Bearded dragons are easy reptiles to maintain, but they do require quite a bit of space to thrive.  

Box Turtles

The eastern box turtle is another example of a great pet. This species of turtle remains small, growing up to about six inches long. These turtles eat bugs and veggies, and they are fun to watch with their unique ability to retract their entire body into their beautiful shells. You will find wild box turtles in wooded areas during warm weather.   

Thinking about adopting box turtles? Here are a few things that you should know first:  

  • Don't house more than four box turtles together in the same habitat, and make sure that there are not more females than males or you risk aggressive behavior.  

  • Turtles are known to carry salmonella, so always wash your hands well after tending to or handling your turtle. Keep their enclosure clean and deter your pets from crawling around on common surfaces, like your kitchen table or the bed.  

  • Make sure your turtles are not crowded, as they can pass bacterial infections around in tight quarters or small habitats.  

  • Box turtles require specialized equipment to thrive, which can be expensive.  

  • Box turtles require a lot of care and attention, which is one reason why they are not the best choice for the novice.  

  • Always check your local and state laws before adopting reptiles to determine what and how many you are permitted to keep.  

Some of the most popular reptiles include corn snakes, bearded dragons, and box turtles — but consider your own circumstances to the best pets for your lifestyle. From the newbie-friendly corn snake to the more expensive box turtle, reptiles make fascinating, engaging, and cool pets! Contact a local reptile shop to learn more.


29 December 2022

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