Best Places to Purchase or Adopt

Whether a person is interested in tree pythons, hybrid cats or bactrian camels, any prospective exotic pet owner will eventually need to decide where to to acquire his or her new pets.

Although exotic pet-keeping is less common than owning a dog or cat, there are still a multitude of places where one can purchase or adopt a wild animal. Choosing the best place can be difficult, and while every species has its own special considerations, there are some guidelines that should always be kept in mind.

Consider Location

Generally speaking, the best place to buy or rescue an exotic pet is going to be closer to home. While wild animals can be transported across state or even international lines, doing so is expensive. It also may or may not be illegal, depending on the locations and species involved.

Thirdly, it is always best if the animals can be viewed in-person to ensure that said animals are in a good health and actually exist. Many people have purchased animals online based on pictures and empty promises alone, only to be given sick animals- or to discover they had been completely scammed and the animals they wanted never existed in the first place!

Reputation is Important

Another important consideration is the reputation of the breeder or the rescue. Is the place legitimate? Some breeders may refer to themselves as responsible but in fact be inhumane breeding mills. Likewise, some so-called "rescues" are actually animal hoarding situations. It's important to read reviews and talk to others who purchased or adopted animals from a place. Scams abound in the world of exotic pet-keeping, so caution is advised. Buyer beware!

What About Classifieds?

Occasionally, exotic pet sales may be listed in local newspapers or community-centered websites. Often times this is a result of someone down-sizing a breeding operation or being forced to give up pets before a move. Animals will have the health and behavior that their previous owner enabled them to have. Some animals found in classifieds will be great, physically and behaviorally, while others may have been neglected and never been to a veterinarian. Buying or adopting an animal from a classifieds advertisement is always a gamble.

Regular Pet Shops

Sometimes ordinary pet shops may sell parrots, geckos or other exotics. It is best to avoid purchasing animals from such places. First of all, they are often sourced from cruel and unhealthy breeding mills. They may have health or even behavioral issues because of this. In addition, there is usually not a wide selection of species to choose from at a normal pet shop.

Perhaps the main problem is the lack of advice. Pet shop employees typically know little or nothing about caring for animals- they may give out no advice or even incorrect information. The advice and expertise of a knowledgeable breeder or rescue is invaluable. Pet stores just can't offer the dependability that comes from years of handling and raising the animals themselves.

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