Exotic pets have become more popular thanks to television and movies. Many celebrities, from Michael Jackson to Elvis, also owned their fair share of exotic pets. Check out these 10 exotic pets and find out where in the country you can own them. If you‘re looking for something a little “out of the ordinary” for a pet, you‘ve come to the right place! These ten exotic pets are legal to own in many places in America. Some of them just require a license for private ownership.
If you‘re unsure, check your local registration before deciding to bring home a capybara as a pet. Originating from Australia, the bearded dragon is a common house pet in the United States.
They make good pets for kids because they have a calm nature and are relatively easy to care for . Bearded dragons are legal to own in the United States and sold in most pet stores. It is legal to own a fennec fox everywhere in the United States except Missouri, Minnesota, Nevada, and Washington.
A chimpanzee’s lifespan can be upwards of 50 years, meaning you‘re signing up for a lifelong commitment to raising this wild animal . Still, you may be able to obtain a license to own one in a few states like Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, or North Dakota. However, there are a few places where it’s still illegal–Pennsylvania, Hawaii, California, Georgia, and Maine–but you may be able to own one with a permit in these states.
If you decide to own this large macaw, you‘ll definitely want to begin training as young as possible to ensure they never hurt anyone with their powerful beak. Although smaller than boas, pythons can reach up to 3-4 feet long and live for an average of 20-30 years. Maybe not surprisingly, ball pythons are illegal to own in Florida (unless you have a permit before 2010), New York, Hawaii, and some cities in California.
Some honorable mentions for the furry exotic pet trade include prairie dogs, skunks, pot-bellied pigs, red foxes, sugar gliders, slow loris, gerbils, ferrets, and large cats like lions, tigers. If you are more interested in the arachnid variety of exotic pets, you can even check out tarantulas or even Madagascar hissing cockroaches.
What is the coolest pet to own?
Chinchilla. ….Cockatiel. ….Iguana. ….Insects and Spiders. ….Sugar Glider Squirrel. ….Hedgehog. Hedgehogs are amazing little creatures that make fascinating pets. ….Ferret. Ferrets make excellent pets for owners who take the time to bond with them. ….Wallaby. These miniature kangaroos from down under make a unique pet.
What are the top 10 exotic animals?
Leafy seadragon..Fanfin Angler..Japanese macaque..Pink dolphin..Liger..Atelopus frog..Pangolin..Fennec fox.
What is the rarest exotic pet?
Number 1 – The Capybara. ….Number 2 – The Fennec Fox. ….Number 3 – The Squirrel Monkey. ….Number 4 – Stick Insects. ….Number 5 – Hedgehogs. ….Number 6 – Skunks. ….Number 7 – Pygmy Goats. ….Number 8 – The Spotted Genet.
As pet-keeping continues to grow in popularity, exotic pet-keeping does as well. Many people are surprised to learn about the great diversity of species that we have on this planet, and this variety extends to the animals we keep in our homes.
Keeping exotic pets, which are often incorrectly considered to be ‘wild animals,’ has become very controversial. Even dogs and cats, the country’s most popular and commonly kept pets, can have more complicated care than most people consider.
For instance, as most cats are essentially self-domesticated , they have a lot in common with so-called wild animals. They can suffer from behavioral, psychological, and physical problems when they don’t receive adequate enrichment in the home. Domesticated pets are not free from instincts nor do they not require the same attention and enrichment as many so-called wild animals in captivity.
Some of the animals on this list are difficult to care for by even the highest standards, but especially in these days of the internet, any dedicated individual can learn how to manage an exotic pet. I have listed species I’ve seen for sale or owned by private owners in the United States and the UK. They are large rodents with an odor reminiscent of human BO (not everyone’s cup of tea), and that might be why they’ll never surge in popularity.
These magnificent animals resemble cats crossed with ferrets but are neither; however, they are relatives to both, being feliforms. These animals can be skittish, and they will not hesitate to scale their owner’s body as though its a tree to escape from “danger.” When they were sold a few years ago, they have fetched a hefty $6000 price tag, though I’d say it’s worth it.
The normal-colored animal has an uncanny resemblance to a typical raccoon, but it is a canid from East Asia. The prevost squirrel is stunningly beautiful; many people find their coloration hard to believe, but it is all natural. Being a member of these active rodents, they require large housing and a lot of enrichment, but captive-bred babies can be very human-friendly.
While this animal resembles a marmot or some other common rodent, the fascinating thing about hyraxes is that they are the closest living relative to elephants. These quick little mammals actually have small “‘tusks” tucked away in their mouth, and they have a gestation period of about 7 to 8 months! They are not readily available because they breed poorly in captivity and are also challenging animals to work with if they are going to have human interaction.
Take into account the activity level of the animal that might be drastically different from many dogs and cats that most people are used to. Spotted genets can live 30+ years in captivity, that’s a long time with a flighty carnivore. The Patagonian mara is one of the largest rodents in the world, and they resemble and occupy a similar niche to deer in the wild.
People who don’t live in western states are usually unfamiliar with ring-tailed cats in general and certainly that they can be kept as pets. Being native animals, they are banned in many states, including those which have ‘lenient’ exotic pet laws like North Carolina and Nevada. Many kinkajou owners report that aggression with this species is unpredictable, and “attacks” can occur despite their otherwise affectionate demeanor.
You are unlikely to see anyone owning these because they are very hard to breed and care for, but some adventurous and advanced keepers have managed wild-caught specimens. These pigs are typically kept in zoos, but a few breeders exist and offer them to the public. They have spots just like a baby deer and can weigh up to 26 pounds, so this is not a pet for a guinea pig enclosure.
Unfortunately, their importation was banned along with several other African rodents after an embargo on them resulted from a monkey pox scare in 2003, but they are still kept as pets in Europe. In Africa, they’ve even been trained to help detect land mines and tuberculosis. They are famous for the strange use of their droppings in expensive coffee called Kopi Luwak, where they are often incorrectly described as being a cat.
They are nocturnal animals that have the unpleasant habit of rubbing their hands with their own urine. Capybaras are the largest rodents in the world, and while they are enjoying immense popularity in Japan, many people in the United States are still not so familiar with them. These enormous guinea pig relatives are semi-aquatic and require a pool of water to swim in.
Palawan porcupines have recently been introduced into the American pet trade and are less common than the others, such as the African crested. Many people are not aware of tenrecs, a species that resembles a hedgehog but they are actually not even closely related. Few people keep these unusual animals because should they die, their toxins will kill everything in the aquarium.
Tailless whip scorpions, or vinegaroons are arachnids that are kept as pets in the arthropod trade. When disturbed, they can shoot a very strong smelling acetic acid spray. Their enclosures require deep substrate, and they can tolerate some handling, although they do have a painful but non-venomous bite.
They are one of the less common small exotic cats kept as pets (after servals, bobcats, and caracals). Common snake-necked turtles are strange-looking aquatic animals that are rare in the pet trade as they are difficult to breed. They can emit a foul-smelling liquid that smells like skunk from their musk glands when threatened.
This raccoon, native to Central and South America, has been recently imported and has become available to private owners in small numbers. As the name suggests, they eat crustaceans but also foods like fruit, amphibians, and eggs. This endearing trait makes it a fine choice for tanks with peaceful fish and invertebrates.
These are lesser anteaters and they have complex dietary requirements that are difficult for the average person to provide. The very rare but stunning-looking marbled polecat is a ferret-like animal that in the past was kept to control rodents in Kabul. They’ve been available on exotic pet selling websites in the past but are presumably extremely hard to track down today.
These strange eels are not commonly kept and very difficult to care for, but putting in the effort and setting up their complex environment (they require a very deep sand bed so they can form their holes from which they stick out of) is well worth it. Degus are not rare in the pet trade by any means, but the majority of people have never heard of them. They are popular animals within the exotic pet trade despite their size and complicated enrichment needs.
It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. I’ve actually been told tamandua are very difficult pets, but it probably helps that you live in their country so they could forage naturally. Dr Mark from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on October 04, 2017:
They eat a lot of different foods, so feeding is not that difficult, even for those of you that are not “blessed” with thousands of termite nests. One thing about the Gambian pouched rat: it’s become naturalized on Key Largo (critics call it “invasive,” though it hasn’t spread outside the keys); I’ve long thought it would be neat for someone living in South Florida to get permission to trap them, then breed and export them, preferably before the FWS ads it to their “injurious wildlife” list because it can sort of survive on one small tropical island. The most beautiful squirrel in existence that no common gray could hold a candle to.
The laws regarding exotic pet ownership vary by state. Animal rights advocates advise against keeping most wild animals in captivity, but that hasn’t stopped exotic pet lovers from legally owning everything from ferrets and foxes to more dangerous beasts like alligators, bears, and tigers.
It may sound odd, but over the years, wild foxes have been bred to live almost like dogs and cats but not exactly, as they’re hard to fully domesticate. The most common , the fennec fox, is an adorably petite pack animal that is pretty docile though it is still important to note that even these tiny furry friends are not fully domesticated.
Reuters/Amy Newman/NorthJersey.com via Imagn Content Services, LLC
Believe it or not, it’s legal to privately own this notoriously deadly reptile in a number of states, according to FindLaw , including the unofficial home of the gator: Florida. Many animal advocates, however, are fighting back against the laws that allow private citizens to keep them as pets, arguing that inhumane conditions have led to too many kangaroo deaths at the hands of unprepared caretakers. JOHN MACDOUGALL/AFP/Getty Images
The cool, low-key llama is often recruited as a therapy animal, which is why it makes such a great family pet in the states where it’s legal.
It turns out llamas rival guard dogs in their ability to ward off predators, according to Mother Earth News . Flickr / gamppart Most domestic skunks have been bred in captivity, where they’ve had their scent glands removed at a young age, according to PBS . Youth Photographer of the Year Jenaya Launstein, age 15, captured a tranquil moment in the life of a porcupine in Kluane National Park, Yukon Territory, Canada.
That lesson has been learned the hard way by one too many curious dogs who have found themselves on the receiving end of a quill attack . This usually involves custom enclosures with simulated tropical conditions and a diet consisting of pre-killed rats and mice on a weekly or monthly basis, according to The Spruce Pets . Though a privately owned cougar will eventually grow accustomed to its owners, it can never be domesticated like a dog or a cat.
Sure, monkeys are cute and in some ways remind us of tiny humans but that’s part of the reason they’re such a handful to raise as pets. Monkeys require constant care and attention, and many will live up to 40 years, according to the Primate Rescue Center .
Perhaps you‘ve always wanted to own a pet monkey, or you‘re wondering whether it’s legal for your neighbor to have that cougar in his backyard. Fortunately for your curiosity, every state has exotic animal laws which allow, restrict, or prohibit ownership of certain types of animals. The following article describes some of these state laws in more detail.
Exotic Animals That Are Illegal to Own Special Permits or Licenses Required to Legally Own Exotic Animals
Alabama allows you to possess any native animal that isn’t prohibited. Alabama prohibits personal possession of numerous exotic animals, including: Mongooses Giant African snails Tegus Walking catfish Coyotes Foxes Raccoons Skunks Wild rodents Wild turkeys Venomous snakes Black bears Mountain lions Bobcats Antelope Pigs Any species of bird, mammal, reptile, or amphibian listed as injurious wildlife under the U.S.
Fish and Wildlife’s Lacey Act (18 U.S.C. 42). Possession of non-native animals owned before 10/15/2020 allowed with a permit obtained before 1/13/2021 (Alabama Administrative Code 220-2-.26).
You can own a variety of exotic animals in Alaska, including: One humped camels Domesticated reindeer Domesticated elk Domesticated bison Crocodiles Alligators Lizards Any nonvenomous reptiles Toucans Guinea pigs European ferrets and rabbits Gerbils Hamsters Chinchillas Parrots and parakeets Macaws Cockatiels Mynahs Peafowls All live game is prohibited unless specifically permitted and listed in 92.029(b).
You may possess a chimpanzee if you owned it before 1/31/2010 and obtained a permit before 7/1/2010. Wolves and wild cats allowed with permit. Permits can be obtained for using certain game for the purposes of teaching and preserving historical Alaskan traditions, including deer, moose, caribou, black bear, and small game.
Many exotic animals are allowed in Arizona, including: Wolfdogs Savannah cats Chinchillas Pythons Domestic water buffalo Domestic American bison Long-eared and pygmy hedgehogs Wallabies Kangaroos Capybaras Sugar gliders African crested porcupines Short-tailed possum Arizona prohibits certain wildlife, including:
Golden moles Tenrecs Even-toed ungulates Pronghorns Antelopes Bison Buffalo Cattle Duikers Gazelles Goats Oxen Sheep Water buffalo American bison Bison Buffalo Cervids Deer Elks Moose Red deer Wapiti Pecaries Bears Foxes Ocelot Raccoons Servals Skunks Wolves Weasels Bats American opossum European hedgehogs Gymnures Moonrats Wild hares Chimpanzees Gorillas Macaques Orangutans Spider monkeys Hutias Beavers Jumping mice Coypus Nutrias Pocket gopher Chipmunks Marmots Prairie dogs Squirrels Woodchucks Desmans Moles Shrews Shrew-moles Anteaters Armadillos Sloths Grouse Pheasants Partridges Quails Turkeys Alligators Caimans Crocodiles Gavials Burrowing asps Brown tree snakes Boomslangs Keelbacks Bird snakes Elapids Cobras Coral snakes Kraits Mambas Sea snakes Gila monsters Mexican beaded lizards Pit and true vipers Rattlesnakes Snapping turtles Gopher turtles Desert turtles Giant or marine toads Bullfrogs Leopard frogs Clawed frogs Desert tortoises can be adopted on a short-term basis from April 1 to September 30 every year, in a special program through the state. License required to possess game birds, but no more than 50 per owner.
Over 100 different species can be kept in Arkansas without a permit, including: Buffalo Mice Norway rats Coturnix quails Emu European domestic ferrets Gerbils Indian and green peafowls Guinea pigs Hamsters Llamas Muscovy ducks Ringneck doves Wolf hybrids Sugar gliders Long-tailed chinchillas Four-toed and African pygmy hedgehogs Bactrian and Dromedary camels African sideneck, redbelly shortneck, and African mud turtles Bearded dragons Water dragons Ball pythons Blood pythons Geckos Veiled chameleons Doves Parrots Macaws Alligator lizards Austral-Asian lizards Caimans Specific snakes, mostly non-native Tortoises Iguanas Tegus Monitor lizards Households can have up to six animals of the following animals taken directly from native wildlife, so long as certain confinement conditions are met:
Bobcats Coyotes Red and gray foxes Opossums Rabbits Raccoons Squirrels Wolves are allowed under certain conditions. Deer captured by hand prior to July 1, 2012, are allowed.Certain native and non-native animals cannot be owned as pets, including:
Mountain lions Tigers African lions Bears Apes Baboons Macaque Non-native birds Bats Alligator snapping turtles Ornate box turtles Ozark hellbenders Ouachita streambed salamanders Collared lizards Troglodytic species (cave dwellers) Endangered species Permit required for large carnivores (such as bears) owned before 8/12/2005 must have received a permit within 180 days of 8/12/2005. Owners of apes, baboons, and macaques in 2013 who registered and meet certain requirements may keep them.
Some venomous reptiles must have permits starting 07/01/2021. The following exotic domesticated species are allowed: Wolfdogs that are not first generation Savannah cats that are not first generation Golden hamsters Dwarf hamsters Rats Mice Guinea pigs Chinchillas American bison Llamas Dromedary and Bactrian camels
Certain wild animals are allowed as pets, including lesser and giant pandas and river otters. Many types of birds and reptiles, including monitor lizards, nonvenomous snakes, toucans, and ostriches are allowed.Restricted Species Laws and Regulations Manual 671 contains a lengthy list of prohibited animals, mammals, fish, and birds, including: Ferrets Morro Bay kangaroo rats Bighorn sheep (except Nelson bighorn sheep) Northern elephant seals Guadalupe fur seals Ring-tailed cats Pacific right whales Salt-marsh harvest mice Southern sea otters Wolverines Primates Falcons Hawks Crows Marsupials Sloths Hedgehogs Wild rodents Zebras Mongooses Gerbils
Permits are required for the import, transport, and possession of any wild animals that are illegal to own. Colorado allows many different types of pets, including: Alpacas Donkeys Bison Camels Chinchillas Hybrid and wild cats Hybrid and wild dogs Ducks Emus European ferrets Geese Hamsters Llamas Mice Minks Ostriches Rats Reindeer Yaks Elks Fallow deer Hedgehogs Red kangaroos Wallabies Wallaroos Short-tailed possums Sugar gliders Tropical birds Fishes Frogs Snakes Lizards Turtles Caimans Most marine non-mammals except anadromous and catadromous species
Note that certain animals can only be acquired at the rate of four per year, and no more than 12 at a time.Colorado prohibits some animals from being pets, including: Wildebeests Wild hogs Raccoons Skunks Hedgehogs Opossums Squirrels Porcupines Monk parakeets Primates Alligators Crocodiles Tropical and non-native venomous snakes require a license.
The following exotic animals are allowed as pets: Primates under 35 lbs. at maturity and owned before 10/1/2010 Ferrets Hedgehogs Sugar gliders Degus
Many exotic animals may not be kept as pets, including: Lions Leopards Cheetahs Jaguar Bobcat Puma Lynx Ocelot All wild dogs Wolf Coyote Bears Gorilla Chimpanzee Orangutan Hyaena Kangaroos Wallabies Hybrids except for TICA, CFA, or ACFA domestic cat hybrids Permits are required for wild animals, and most often you can only own one (to prevent breeding).
Delaware allowed the following animals as pets without permits: Chinchillas Degus Ferrets Gerbils Guinea pigs Hamsters Hedgehogs Mice Norway rats Possums Rabbits Sugar gliders Anoles Agamas Asian water dragons Basilisks Bearded dragons Chameleons Geckos Iguanas Skinks (except the five-lined skink) Swift lizards Tegus No specific animals are banned.
Permits generally required to possess wild and exotic animals. Certain exotic pets are allowed, such as: Non-venomous snakes Fish Turtles Ferrets Racing pigeons Domesticated rodents Domesticated rabbits
Animals that are specifically not allowed include: Hybrid dogs with wolves, coyotes or jackels Hybrid cats with ocelots or margays An annual animal hobby permit is required to keep more than six animals (exotic or not) larger than a guinea pig and over four months old.
Cougars, panthers, or cheetahs acquired before August 27, 2009 are allowed. Button quails Canaries Chinchillas Cockatiels Doves Ferrets Gerbils Hedgehogs Guinea pigs Hamsters Honey possums Sugar gliders Lovebirds Moles Shrews Myna birds Parrots Prairie dogs Rabbits Rats Mice Shell parakeets Squirrels Chipmunks Toucans Camels Llamas Wild horses Jungle fowl Peafowls Reptiles or amphibians that are not venomous or protected or endangered The following animals are barred from personal possession:
Baboons Bears Black caimans Cape buffalos Cheetahs Chimpanzees Cougars Crocodiles Drills and mandrills Elephants Gavials Gelada baboons Gibbons and siamangs Gorillas Hippopotamuses Hyenas Aardwolves Jaguars Komodo dragons Leopards Lions Orangutans Rhinoceros Snow leopards Tigers Venomous reptiles Wild foxes Skunks Bats Raccoons Whitetail deer Permits required to possess certain wildlife. A Class II annual permit is required for certain animals that pose more of a threat to human safety:
African golden cats African hunting dogs Alligators Caimans American badgers Binturongs Bobcats Caracals Cassowary Clouded leopards Douc langurs Dwarf crocodiles European and Canadian lynx Fishing cats Giraffe Okapi Guenons Guereza monkeys Honey badgers Howler monkeys, Idris Indian dholes Langurs Macaques Celebes black apes Mangabeys Ocelots Old World badgers Ostrich Patas monkeys Proboscis monkeys Sakis Servals Snub-nosed langurs Tapir Temminck’s golden cats Uakaris Vervet monkeys Grivet monkeys Green monkeys Wild cattle Wild antelope Non-native hoof stock Wolverines Wolves Coyotes Jackals Class III permit required for all other wildlife. Permitted pets include: European ferrets, if neutered by 7 months and with rabies vaccine Hamsters Gerbils Guinea pigs American bison Water buffalo Llamas English sparrows European starlings Hill mynas Sugar gliders, with valid documentation from the USDA
Certain exotic animals may not be pets, including almost all marsupials, insectivores, primates, including but not limited to: Wallabies Kangaroos Shrews Moles Hedgehogs Tenrecs Bats Monkeys Apes Sloths Armadillos Pangolins Anteaters Wild hares and rabbits Cabybaras Cavies Prairie dogs Degus Whales Dolphins Weasels Ferrets Foxes Wild cats Wolves Wolf hybrids Exotic cat hybrids, such as savannah cats Aardvarks Elephants Conies Manatees Dugongs Most hoof stock Rhinoceros Wart hogs Hippopotamus Hawks Eagles Vultures Wild turkeys Cuckoos Owls Sky larks Bulbuls Thrushes White eyes Yellow hammers Sparrows Cape and baya weavers Queleas Blackbirds Monk parakeet Java sparrow Starlings Mynas Crows Ravens Crocodiles Gavials Alligators Venomous colubrid snakes Gila monsters Beaded lizards Giant and marine toads Banded tetras Piranha Grass, silver and big head carp Air-breathing catfish Giant walking catfish Snakeheads Fresh-water stingrays Special permits are required for ownership of a capuchin monkey by disabled persons.
Legal exotic pets include: Peafowls Guinea pigs Chinchillas Rabbits Domesticated mice and rats Domesticated pigs, such as pot-bellied pigs Select parakeets Select doves Many pets are illegal to own, including: Dog hybrids Cat hybrids Any hybrid with an illegal animal Hedgehogs Hamsters Ferrets Snakes Gerbils Lions Tigers Cheetahs Jaguars Cougars Leopards Clouded leopards Caracals Ocelots Margays Servals Bears Wolves Hyenas Aardvarks Elephants Hippopotamus Rhinoceros Non-human primates Crocodilians Bloodworms Hermit crabs Freshwater crabs Honeybees Mexican jumping bean moths Jellyfish Freshwater clams Octopuses Salamanders Sirens Frogs Cuban tree frogs Snakes Gila monsters Nicaraguan freshwater sharks Freshwater stingrays Spotted carpet sharks Banded carpet sharks Lampreys Bowfins Dogfishes Mudfishes Eels Electric eels Freshwater morays Silversides Needlefish Halfbeaks Pike minnows Piranhas Cacchorros Characins Lizard fish Pirarucu Snake heads Pike cichlids Lion fish Scorpion fish Catfish Hummingbirds Pigeons Doves Crow Finches Grouses Bulbuls Sparrows Orioles Vermillion cardinals Mynas Starlings Parrots Parakeets Parrolets Caiques Bats Flying foxes Wild hares Porcupine
Permits are required for importing legal pets listed in Hawaii Administrative Rules Section 4-71-6.5. These animals are subject to quarantine rules before being lawfully distributed to their owners. No permit is required to possess agricultural or domestic animals, domestic cervids, or conventional household pets, including but not limited to:
Guinea pigs Chinchillas Llamas Alpacas Minks Sugar gliders African hedgehogs Captive-bred domestic birds Unprotected wildlife Predatory wildlife legally taken by hunting or trapping. Up to 4 per species of native reptiles and amphibians, legally taken by hunting or trapping. It is illegal to take large predatory and big game wildlife and keep them as pets.
You also may not possess as pets any nongame and endangered, threatened species, unless it is unprotected and predatory.Idaho law prohibits possession of “deleterious exotic animals”, which are defined as non-native and dangerous. They are prohibited without a possession permit and include: Mute swans, unless they have been pinioned All wild dogs Red and silka deer Caracals Cheetahs Geoffrey’s cats Jaguars Leopards Lions Margays Ocelots Servals Tigers European hedgehogs Brushed tail possums All non-human primates Barbary sheep Mouflon sheep Coatimundi Kinkajous African dormice African rope squirrels African striped mice African tree squirrels Brushed tail porcupines Cabybara Gambian giant pouched rats Prairie dogs South American rodents European or Russian wild boars Peccaries Pond fish
Residents may take, by hand or hook-and-line, 2 snapping turtles per day from the wild, up to 4 in possession. Residents may take, by hand or hook-and-line, up to 8 bullfrogs per day, up to 16 in possession. Residents may take, by hand or hook-and-line, up to 4 species with a total of 8, native amphibians other than snapping turtles or bullfrogs.
Permitted exotic pets that are allowed under special handling requirements include: Boas Pythons Anacondas Captive-bred poison dart frogs Private possession of dangerous animals is prohibited, including but not limited to:
Bears Lions Tigers Leopards Ocelots Jaguars Cheetahs Margays Cougars Lynx Bobcats Jaguarundis Wolves Coyotes Hyenas Venomous medically significant reptiles Flying fox Mongoose Meerkats European rabbits Indian wild hogs Multimammate rats or mice Raccoon dogs Rosy pastors Doiches Java sparrows Red-whiskered bul-buls Snakeheads Walking catfish Ruffes Silver carp Bighead carp Black carp Round and tubenose gobies Rudds Stone morokos Zanders Wels catfish Yabbies Zebra mussels Mitten crabs Rusty crayfish Filler shrimp Golden mussels Brown tree snakes Registration required for permitted capuchin monkey owned by a person with a severe and permanent motor disability. Primates are allowed that were owned prior to 01/01/2011 and grandfathered if owners registered the primate by 04/01/2011 and have followed up with proper notifications.
Aquatic wildlife not on the approved species list must have a letter of authorization to be possessed. Indiana allows domestic animals and domestic hybrid animals as pets without any permits.Indiana does not specifically forbid having any animals as pets. Wild animal possession permits are required for certain wild animals.
They are divided up into three classes, with each class of permit requiring more stringent conditions be met for the safety of all people, animals, and the environment. Eastern cottontail rabbits Eastern fox squirrels Eastern gray squirrels Southern flying squirrels Class II: American beavers Black-footed cats Coyotes Fishing cats Geoffrey’s cat Gray foxes Jaguarundi Jungle cats Least weasels Leopard cats Little spotted cats Long-tailed weasels Marbled cats Margays Minks Muskrats Pallas’ cats Pampas cats Pantanals Raccoons Red foxes Sand cats Servals Striped skunks Virginia opossum
Class III: Bears Crocodilians 5 feet or more Venomous reptiles Wild cats not listed in Class II Pure wolves Iowa allows the following animals without a permit: Captive bred skunks Offspring of domestic dog and a wolf Offspring of a domestic cat and a Bengal or Savannah that is fourth or later filial generation
Certain wild animals are considered dangerous and therefore are banned as pets: Wild canines Wild cats Bears Pandas Hyenas Aardwolves Rhinoceros Elephants Nonhuman primates Marmosets Tamarins Monkeys Lemurs Galagos Bushbabies Great apes Gibbons Lesser apes Indris Sifakas Tarsiers Crocodiles Alligators Caimans Gharials Water monitors Crocodile monitors Mole vipers Burrowing asps Beaded lizard Gila monster Reticulated python Cobras Mambas Coral snakes Kraits Adders Vipers Rattlesnakes Copperheads Pit vipers keelbacks Cottonmouths Sea snakes Anaconda African rock python Wild boars Russian or European boars Hybrids Wild animals obtained and registered before 12/31/07 and microchipped by 09/01/07 are permitted as pets so long as they are registered with the state, and a lengthy list of requirements have not been violated.
Dangerous animals may be possessed if they are assistive animals. License required for keeping falcons or raptors. Kansas allows possession of certain pets, including:
Amphibians and reptiles, limited to 5 per species, except you cannot possess bullfrogs, common snapping turtles, and soft-shelled turtles Armadillo Moles Most rodents Exotic doves Feral pigeons Invertebrates, though mussels are limited to 5 It is illegal to possess dangerous regulated animals, including: Lions Tigers Leopards Jaguars Cheetahs Mountain lions Bears Hybrids Non-native venomous snake
In addition, certain animals may not be possessed because they are an invasive species, including: Monk parakeet Asian raccoon dog Walking catfish Silver carp Bighead carp Black carp Crucian carp (grandfathers 01/01/2021) Largescale silver carp (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Wels catfish (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Eurasian minnow (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Stone moroko (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Snakehead Round goby White perch European perch (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Nile perch (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Roach grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Amur sleeper (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Zander (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Zebra mussels Quagga mussels New Zealand mudsnails Diploid grass carp Marbled crayfish Common yabbies (grandfathered in if possessed before 01/01/2021) Other native animals are also prohibited, including: Commensal rodents (Norway rats, roof rats, house mice) Gophers Ground squirrels Kangaroo rats Porcupines Prairie dogs Woodchucks Wood rats Permits are required to possess:
Cougars Wolves Black bears Grizzly bears Falcons Many exotic pets are allowed without permits in Kentucky, including: Domestic raccoons Alpacas American bison Goats derived from the wild goat or bezoar Chinchillas Cockatoos Domesticated ducks and geese Domesticated minks, if over 1.15 kg as adults Domesticated rats Domesticated turkeys Domesticated yaks Gerbils Guinea fowl Guinea pigs Hamsters Indian Hill mynahs Llamas Parrots Lovebirds Cockatiels Budgerigar Parakeets, except Monk parakeet Macaws Peafowl Domesticated pigeons Ratite Toucans
Animals that are considered endangered species by either the federal government or the Commonwealth of Kentucky may not be kept as pets. “Inherently dangerous wildlife” pets are prohibited unless they were owned prior to 07/13/2005, including: Alligators Caimans Crocodiles Gavials Gila monsters Beaded lizards Komodo dragons African buffalo Bears Elephants Hippopotamus Rhinoceros Cheetahs Clouded leopards Lions Jaguars Leopards Snow leopards Tigers Honey badgers Old World badgers Wolves Wolverines Wolf hybrids over 25% wolf Hyenas Gorillas Gelada baboons Baboons Drills Mandrills Sea snakes Cobras Coral snakes Adders Vipers Venomous exotic snakes except for hognose snakes Copperbelly water snakes Wild turkeys Alligator snapping turtles Hybrids of the above
Other animals are prohibited due to their potential injury to the environment, including: Baya weavers Non-native blackbirds European blackbirds Cape sparrows Non-native cowbirds Non-native cuckoos Queleas Fieldfares Flying foxes Fruit bats Foxes Gambian giant pouched rats Giant, marine, or cane toads Hawaiian rice bird or spotted munias Jack rabbits Java sparrows Madagascar weavers Mistle thrushes Monk or Quaker parakeets Multimammate rats Mute swans Nutrias Prairie dogs Raccoon dogs San Juan rabbits Sky larks Song thrushes Starlings, except Indian Hill mynahs Suricates or slender-tailed meerkats Tongueless or African clawed frogs Weaver finches, except Passer White eyes Wild European rabbits Yellowhammers Wild or feral pigs Eurasian boars Russian boars Domestic or wild hybrids Wild ferrets are allowed by permit.Louisiana does not list any specific pets that are allowed by law without permits.
Louisiana prohibits pet ownership of certain potentially dangerous animals, including: Black, grizzly, and polar bears Red and gray wolves Tigers Lions Leopards of all types Jaguars Cheetahs Cougars Subspecies and hybrids of all listed cats Coyotes Foxes Animals that are listed as threatened or endangered may not be kept as pets, including: Mississippi gopher frogs Green sea turtles Hawksbill sea turtles Kemp’s ridley sea turtles Leatherback sea turtles Loggerhead sea turtles Gopher tortoises Ringed sawback turtles
Permits are required to take animals out of the wild for personal possession. You can‘t use commercial gear to capture them, and there are limits: No more than two box turtles may be taken out of the wild per day, and you can only possess 4 at any given time as pets.
No more than two razor-backed musk turtles may be taken out of the wild per day, and you can only possess 4 at any given time as pets. No more than one alligator snapping turtle may be taken out of the wild per day. A permit is required for keeping the following as pets removed from the wild:
Tiger salamanders Red-backed salamanders Webster’s salamanders Mud salamanders Red salamanders Louisiana pine snakes Black pine snakes Eastern diamondback rattlesnakes Permits are required for many venomous and large constricting snakes, including: Papuan pythons Olive pythons Carpet pythons Diamonds pythons Scrub pythons Amethystine pythons Southern African pythons African rock pythons Indian pythons Burmese pythons Reticulate pythons Boa constrictors Anacondas Pit vipers Vipers Cobras Mambas Sea snakes Mole vipers Some wild-caught native animals may be kept as pets without permits, so long as their environment complies with regulations.
including: Amphibians, up to 5 of each species Reptiles, up to 2 of each species Invertebrates Other animals that can be kept without a permit or license include:
Savannah cats F4 or higher. Capuchins used as physical aides from recognized institutions and not in contact with the public. Wildlife purchased from a dealer or pet shop.
The following animals cannot be kept as pets: Monk parakeets Mute swans Burrowing parrots Laughing kookaburras Austral parakeets Alender-billed parakeets Anatidae Hornbills Cassowaries Emus Storks Pigeons Doves Rollers Crows Chachalaca Guans Cussarows Cranes Turacos Pheasants Flamingos Trumpeters Toucans Penguins New Zealand parrots Starlings Bearded barbets Birds of prey Shorebirds Bustards Pelicans Owls Ostriches Prevost’s squirrels Hoffman’s two-toed sloths Brazilian porcupines Black-tailed prairie dogs Red-rumped agouti Long-nosed armadillos Pronghorn family Mountain beavers Bovids Canids Beavers Cervids Elephants Quidae Felids Giraffes Hippopotamus Hyenas Aardwolves Kangaroos Wallabies Mustelids Walrus Eared and true seals Rhinoceros Pigs Tapirs Viverrids Crested porcupines Gray short-tailed opossum Cetacea Bats Primates Sea cows Aardvark Kinkajou Southern tamandua Asiatic linsangs Deer Moose Wild turkeys Hybrids The following captive bread animals cannot be kept as pets: Western dwarf clawed frogs African clawed frogs Golden mantellas Bernhard’s mantellas Yellow mantellas Green mantellas Brown treesnakes Puerto Rican boas Grand Cayman blue iguanas Eastern indigo snakes Eunectes Elapidae Beaded lizards Gila monsters Viperidae Gopher tortoises Isla Todos Santos king snakes Amethystine pythons Scrub pythons Atlantic Salt Marsh snakes Crocodilians Chinese softshell tortoises Louisiana pine snakes Indian pythons Southern African rock pythons Reticulated pythons Northern African rock pythons Common box turtles Gulf Coast box turtles Three-toed box turtles Pond sliders Red-eared sliders Maine also prohibits possessing the following endangered or threatened animals: New England cottontails Little brown bats Northern long-legged bats Least terns Golden eagles Piper plovers Sedge wrens Grasshopper sparrows Roseate terns Black terns American pipets Peregrine falcons Black-crowned night herons Least bitterns Box turtles Black racers Blanding’s turtles Redfin pickerels Six-whorl vertigos Edward’s hairstreaks Hessel’s hairstreaks Katahdin arctics Juniper hairstreaks Rapids clubtails Cobblestone tiger beetles Frigga fritiliaries Northern bog lemmings Easter small-footed bats Razorbills Harlequin ducks Arctic terns Upland sandpipers Common gallinules Great cormorants Short-eared owls Barrow’s goldeneyes Spotted turtles Swamp darters Tidewater muckets Yellow lampmussels Brook floaters Whales Leatherback turtles Atlantic ridley turtles Shortnose sturgeons Loggerhead turtles
Maine allows certain captive-bred animals to be kept as pets so long you have a permit, including: Golden poison frogs Golfo Dulce poison-dart frogs Cane toads Axolotl Rhinoceros iguanas Green iguanas Pernatty knob-tails Rock monitors Argus monitors Crocodile monitors Common water monitors Togian water monitors Rosy and rubber boas Russian ratsnakes Brazilian smooth snakes Olive pythons Concho water snakes Eastern fox snakes African spurred tortoises Yellow mud turtles Alligator snapping turtles Northern diamondback terrapins Ornate box turtles Maine also allows for the following animals to be kept without a permit, including: Japanese white-eyes Camelids Genets Binturongs White-nosed coati South American coatimundi Mountain coati You may possess a prohibited animal if you owned it prior to 05/31/2006 and provided specific written notification to local animal control before 8/1/2006.
You may also possess a prohibited animal if it is trained to help you with a severe mobility impairment. Maryland allows some animals to be kept as pets without permits, including: Domestic cats Dog Ferrets Non-native reptiles and amphibians that are not listed as forbidden
Maryland allows individuals to possess up to 4 of each of the following native reptiles and salamanders, and unlimited amount of any of these reptiles or amphibians that are albino, partial albino, or other color mutation resulting from captive breeding: Red-spotted newts Spotted salamanders Marbled salamanders Northern dusky salamanders Seal salamander Mountain dusky salamanders Northern two-lined salamanders Long-tailed salamanders Northern spring salamanders Four-toed salamanders Eastern red-backed salamanders Northern slimy salamanders Valley and ridge salamanders Northern Red salamander Eastern spadefoots American toads Fowler’s toads Northern cricket frogs Cope’s gray treefrogs Gray treefrogs Green treefrogs Northern spring peepers Southeastern chorus frogs Pickerel frogs Southern leopard frogs Wood frogs Green frogs American bullfrogs Eastern fence lizards Common five-lined skinks Little brown skinks Eastern wormsnakes Northern black racers Ring-necked snakes Cornsnakes Black ratsnakes Mole kingsnakes Eastern milksnakes Coastal plain milksnakes Eastern kingsnakes Red-bellied watersnakes Northern watersnakes Rough greensnakes Smooth Greensnakes Dekay’s brownsnakes Red-bellied snakes Eastern gartersnakes You may possess one of the following without a permit: Broad-headed skink Eastern six-lined racerunner Eastern hog-nosed Snake Queen snake Common ribbonsnake Wood turtle, not taken from the wild Spotted turtle, not taken from the wild Eastern box turtle Eastern painted turtle Midland painted turtle Eastern mud turtle Northern red-bellied cooter Stinkpot Diamond-backed terrapin, not taken from the wild
Maryland forbids possession of numerous animals as pets, including: Felines and domestic hybrids over 30 pounds Canines and hybrids Foxes Skunks Racoons Non-human primates Lemurs Monkeys Chimpanzees Gorillas Orangutans Marmosets Loris Tamarins Bears Caimans Alligators Crocodiles Poisonous snakes in Hydrophidae, Elapidae, Viperidae, and Crotolidae families Cervids Eastern tiger salamanders Green salamanders Jefferson salamanders Wehrle’s salamanders Eastern hellbenders Mudpuppies Eastern narrow-mouthed toads Carpenter frogs Mountain chorus frogs Barking treefrogs Northern map turtles Leatherback sea turtles Loggerhead sea turtles Green sea turtles Atlantic hawksbill sea turtle Kemp’s ridley sea turtles Bog turtles Spiny softshells Northern coal skinks Rainbow snakes Smooth earthsnakes Northern scarletsnakes Timber rattlesnakes Copperheads Turtles may be kept as pets under special permit:
Up to three diamondback terrapins are allowed with a permit Turtles limited to one, must have at least a 4-inch carapace, and be caught with a license. Certain counties have carved out the ability to regular hybrids of domestic and wild animals, including: Carroll Cecil Frederick
Fathead minnows All amphibians All turtles, up to 100 each of any combination of turtles and eggs, unless the turtle species requires a permit Boas Most pythons Shield-tailed snakes Sunbeam snakes Work snakes Thread snakes Asian ratsnakes Trans-pecos ratsnakes Brown and redbelly snakes Diadem snakes Garter and ribbon snakes Gopher and pine snakes Ground snakes House snakes Kingsnakes Milk snakes North American ratsnakes Mole snakes Puffing snakes Texas indigo snakes Tropical rat snakes Water snakes Western hognose snakes All skinks except for Florida sand skinks and Soloman Island ground skinks Flash-club tailed lizards Girdle-tailed lizards Plated lizards Rock lizards Teiids Jungle runners Tegus Wall lizards Sand lizards Asian grass lizards alligator lizard Glass lizard Slowworms European legless lizards Geckos, except Big Bend geckos Basilisks Collared and leopard lizards Common or green iguanas False of spring-tailed iguanas Tree iguanas New World chameleons Spiny lizards Tree and bush lizards Diving lizards Zebra-tailed lizards Dragon lizards Forest, garden, and bloodsucker lizards Sailfin lizards Bearded dragons Water dragons Frilled lizards Uromastyx lizards All night lizards except the Utah night lizard All true chameleons Spiny-tailed monitor lizards Ridge-tailed monitor lizards Blue or button quail Pigeons Doves Waxbills Finches Weaver finches Parrots Toucans Aracaris Toucanets Starlings Mynahs Emus Rheas Ostriches African pygmy hedgehogs Chinchillas Deer mice White-footed mice Degu Egyptian spiny mice House mice Jerboas Pacas Southern flying squirrels Striped hamsters Golden hamsters Sugar gliders American bison Ferrets Most hybrids Domestic greylag geese Domestic swan geese Domestic Egyptian geese Domestic mallard ducks Domestic muscovy Common coturnix Domestic chicken Peafowl Domestic helmet guineafowl Domestic turkeys Blue rock pigeons Domestic asses Domestic horses Minks propagated in captivity for at least two generations Domestic swine Llamas Alpacas Dromedaries Domestic water buffalo Domestic cows Domestic yaks Zebus Domestic goats Domestic sheeps Domestic hamsters derived from the golden hamster Mongolian gerbils Lab rats Lab mice Guinea pig Domestic rabbits, but not the wild European rabbit or the San Juan rabbit None of the following can be kept as pets: Threatened or endangered species under the U.S.
Endangered Species Act. Those listed in the Red Book(s) of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. Any animals on the Massachusetts lists of endangered, threatened, and special concern species.
Permits are required for certain animals, including: Grass carp White amur Piranhas Rudds Walking catfish Argentina or Chaco tortoises Gopher tortoises Pancake tortoises Spotted turtles Red-eared sliders All venomous snakes African rock pythons Reticulated pythons Anacondas Black ratsnakes Gila monsters Beaded lizards Florida sands skinks Solomon Island ground skinks Desert tegus Big Bend geckos Utah night lizards Migratory birds Birds native to the United States and Canada Red-billed, black-fronted, and Sudan Dioch finches Rose-colored starlings Rosy pastors Wild canid hybrids Wild felid hybrids Native herp are allowed as pets in limited number, including:
10 frogs, toads, and salamanders 4 snapping and softshell turtles, limited to 2 per species. Snapping turtles must be 13 inches. 6 in total of any other turtle, snakes, and lizards, with the caveat that you are limited to 4 turtles.
You can possess up to 12 of the following birds without a permit: Pheasants Bobwhite quail Hungarian partridges The following “large carnivores” are prohibited from being kept as pets:
Cheetah Cougar Jaguar All leopards Lion Panther Tiger Hybrids of large carnivore cats Bears Other forbidden animals include: Wolf-dog Wolf-dog hybrids
The following wild-caught animals are also forbidden: Any game Eastern massasaugas Queen snakes Blanding’s turtles Wood turtles Eastern box turtles Grey rat snakes except for common albino colors Boreal chorus frogs Western lesser sirens Mudpuppies Fowler’s toads Pickerel frogs Butler’s garter snakes Smooth green snakes Northern dusky salamanders Northern two-lined salamanders Mink frogs Kirtland’s snakes Copper-bellied water snakes Eastern fox snakes Six-lined racerunners Spotted turtles Marbled salamanders Small-mouth salamanders Blanchard’s cricket frogs Permits required for “large carnivores” and wolf-dogs grandfathered in with proper permits. Permits are necessary to hold certain game that was reared in captivity.
Such game includes: Badgers Bobcats Foxes Raccoons Coyotes Beavers Otters Muskrats Minks Squirrels Skunks Woodchucks Possum Pheasants Bobwhite quail Hungarian partridges Ducks Geese Wild turkeys Ducks Pheasant Registration is required to possess non-native fish.
Taking and possessing non-prohibited wild reptiles and amphibians requires a fishing license. You can possess numerous domesticated animals, including: Rabbits Degus House rats House mice Sugar gliders Hamsters Gerbils Ferrets Hedgehogs Chinchillas Guinea pigs
Minnesota bans “regulated animals” from being kept as pets, including: Felines, except domestic cats and breeds recognized by national or international multi-cat registries Bears Nonhuman primates Hybrids Other animals prohibited as pets include:
Deer Wolves Mourning doves Bats Snakes Salamanders Lizards White-tailed and mule deer Moose Elks Black bears Antelopes Caribou Game birds Gray squirrels Fox squirrels Cottontail rabbits Snowshoe hares Jackrabbits Raccoons Lynx Bobcats Short-tailed weasels Long-tailed weasels Red fox and gray foxes Fishers Pine martens Opossum Badgers Cougars Wolverines Muskrats Minks Otters Beavers Lake and shovelnose sturgeons American eels Black and white crappies Largemouth, rock, smallmouth, white and yellow bass Sunfish and hybrids Muskellunges Northern pikes Burbots Blue, channel, and flathead catfish Saugers Walleyes Yellow perch Paddlefish Atlantic, chinook, coho, kokanee, and pink salmon Brook, brown, lake, and rainbow trout Ciscos Lake whitefish Carp Buffalo fish Sucker fish Sheepsheads Bowfins Gars Goldeyes Bullheads Minnows Leeches Alewives Chubs Lake whitefish Coregoninae Rainbow smelt Frogs Turtles Clams Mussels You may have a pet “regulated animal” if you qualified and registered the animal, or the animal’s parent, before 03/02/2005. Permits are required to have pet native frogs.
Bullfrogs and Northern leopard frogs are required to be over 6 inches. Laws generally limit the import and export of animals. Possession is generally allowed unless it is specifically not allowed.You cannot have a pet alligator in Mississippi.
You will need a permit for any other “inherently dangerous” animals.Permits are required for having “inherently dangerous” animals as pets, including: Gibbons Orangutan Chimpanzees Siamangs Gorillas Macaques Mandrills Drills Baboons Gelada baboons Wolves Jackals Dingos Hybrid canis Maned wolves Red dogs African hunting dog Bears Wolverines Hyenas Lions Tigers Jaguars Leopards Snow leopards Cheetah Cougars Elephants Rhinoceros Hippopotamus African buffalo The following out-of-state animals may be possessed without any documentation:
Bison Herp Mammals Asian clams You can possess birds that are not native to the continental U.S., except for ring-necked pheasants and gray partridges, so long as they are not on the U.S. endangered, prohibited, or Species II list. You may possess a “dangerous wild animal” so long as you register it with local law enforcement.
“Dangerous wild animals” include: Lions Tigers Ocelots Jaguars Cheetahs Margays Mountain lions Canada lynx Bobcats Jaguarundis Hyenas Wolves Coyotes Bears Nonhuman primates Coyotes Any deadly, dangerous, or poisonous reptiles Any deadly or dangerous reptiles over 8 feet long Some native wildlife may not be kept as pets, including:
Skunks Hoofed animals Cooperheads Cottonmouths Timber and pygmy rattlesnakes Massasaugas Wolves and hybrids Black bears You will need a permit to possess the following “large carnivores”, including: Tigers Lions Jaguars Leopards Snow leopards Clouded leopards Cheetahs Large cat hybrids Non-native bears
You may keep the following native wildlife as pets so long as you have a Wildlife Hobby Permit: Badgers Beavers Bobcats Coyotes Gray and red foxes Groundhogs Minks Muskrats Virginia opossum River otters Ring-necked pheasants Bobwhite quails Eastern cottontail and swamp rabbits Raccoons Eastern gray and fox squirrels Least and long-tailed weasels MontanaDomestic animals kept as pets do not require a permit, and include:
Cattle Horses Mules Asses Sheep Alpacas Bison Swine Ostriches Rheas Emus Goats Dogs Cats Rodents Eurasian ferrets Poultry The following exotic animals may be kept as pets without a permit: African pygmy hedgehogs Degus Jungle cats Serval cats Sugar gliders Two-toed sloths Bennets and Tammar wallabies Cameroon volcano frogs Eritrea clawed frog, African reed frogs Leptodactylidae frogs Emperor scorpions Tanzanian redclaw scorpions Terrestrial hermit crabs Mynahs Toucans Toucanettes Siskins Finches Cardinals Weavers Sesias Tanagers Zosterops Parrots Lories Cockatoos Most non-native Phaisianae except chukar partridges, gray partridges, ring-necked pheasants, and turkeys All tropical fish, subtropical fish, marine fish, common goldfish, and koi Boas Round Island boas Dwarf boas Pythons Modern snakes File and elephant trunk snakes Sunbeam snakes Pipe snakes Shield-tailed snakes Blind snakes Chisel-teeth lizards Worm lizards Limbless lizards Glass and alligator lizards Legless lizards Chameleons Girdle-tailed lizards Casquehead lizards Collared and leopard lizards Eyelid geckos African snake skinks Geckos Beaded lizards and Gila monsters Iguanas Wall lizards Earless monitors Earless, spiny, and horned lizards Anoles Snake lizards Skinks Whiptails Neotropical ground lizards Monitor lizards Night lizards Knob-scaled lizards Harlequin frogs True toads Glass frogs Poison dart frogs Tree frogs Rain frogs Narrow-mouthed toads Spadefoot toads Old world tree frogs Mexican burrowing frogs Caecilians Mole salamanders Amphiumas Hellbenders Giant salamanders Asian salamanders Woodland salamanders Waterdogs Newts except for rough-skinned newt and Taricha granulosa Sirens
All nonnative tropical and subtropical turtles can be kept as pets without a permit so long as their shell length is more than 4 inches and they aren’t a controlled or prohibited species. Allowed turtles include: New Guinea softshell turtles Snake-necked turtles Snapping turtles Central American river turtles Pond turtles Mud turtles and musk turtles Hidden-necked turtles Big-headed turtles Tortoises Soft-shelled turtles Wild-caught species of large cats and bears and forbidden as pets.
Some wildlife is banned under the rabies control laws, including: Skunk Foxs Bats Raccoons Other exotic wildlife banned as pets include:
African clawed frogs North American bullfrogs Rusty crayfish Bighead, black, grass, and silver carp Eurasian ruffes Round gobies Snakeheads Walking catfish White perch Zanders African natal rats Multimammate mice Argali sheep Brush-tailed possum Short-tailed possum Hyenas Aardwolves Nutrias Small spotted genets Southern flying squirrels Virginia opossum Transcapian urial sheep All monkeys and apes New Zealand mudsnails Quagga mussels Zebra mussels Alligators Crocodiles Caimans Red-eared sliders African rock pythons Amethystine pythons Burmese pythons Reticulated pythons Boomslangs Green anacondas Coral snakes Cobras Kraits Mambas Nonnative Viperidae California quail Gambrel’s quail A “wild animal menagerie” permit is required to possess up to 10 captive-born bears or large cats. Permits are required for some controlled exotic wildlife, including: Barbary falcons Taita falcons Brolga falcons Buff-banded and giant wood rails White-breasted waterhens Exotic ducks Geese Swans Cranes: black-crowned, black-necked, common, demoiselle, blue, grey-crowned, hooded, red-crowned, Sarus, Siberian, wattled, white-naped Pacific white shrimp Coho salmon Goldfish Koi Wallaroos
Domestic pets are allowed as pets without permit, including: Guinea pigs Ferrets Chinchillas Some animals are banned as pets if acquired after March 1, 1986, including:
Wolves Skunks Felines, except domestic cats Bears Hawks Owls Eagles Jackrabbits, including blacktail and whitetail Short-horned lizards Asian raccoon dogs Whitetailed deer Mule deer Red deer Wild pigs Bighorn and thinhorn sheep, in certain counties Any wild bird or mammal that is in need of conservation Any wild bird or mammal that is listed as an endangered or threatened species A Captive Wildlife Permit is required to keep certain captive wild birds, mammals, or wildlife, including: Badgers Beavers Gray and red foxes Minks Muskrats Opossum Raccoons River otters Long-tailed weasels Flying squirrels Fox squirrels Gray squirrels Cottontail rabbits Hungarian and Chukar partridges Ringneck or Common pheasants Bobwhite quails Trumpeter swans Crows Sharptail and prairie chick grouse Wild turkeys Bighorn sheep, though restricted in some counties.
Nevada has a long list of animals that can be kept without permits, including: Canaries Toucans Lovebirds Nonindigenous house finches Parakeets Cockatiels Mynah birds Parrots Hamsters Domesticated races of rats and mice Gerbils Guinea pigs Monkeys and other primates Aquarium fish Marsupials Elephants Felines, except mountain lions and bobcats Wolves that are lawfully acquired and bred in captivity Camels European ferrets Llamas American Bison Marine mammals Ostrich Emus Rheas Nonvenomous, nonindigenous reptile species and subspecies Albino forms of indigenous reptile species Alpacas Guinea fowl Old World species of pheasants, partridges, quails, francolins, peafowl and jungle fowl, except Chukar partridges, Hungarian partridges, snow cocks; and ring-necked and white, winged pheasants Domesticated turkeys Domesticated races of ducks and geese Domesticated races of chinchillas Domesticated races of minks Yaks Cassowaries Coturnix quail Zebras Saltwater fish, crustaceans, and mollusks Nonindigenous species of amphibians, except bullfrogs African pygmy hedgehogs California kingsnakes that do not have between their head and vent a continuous pattern of bands or rings regardless of whether the bands or rings are opened or closed. Some animals are not allowed as pets in Nevada, including:
Wild pigs and hogs Axis deer Red deer elk and wapiti Rusa, Sambar, Sika, Roe and white-tailed deer Moose Reedbucks Oryxes and gemsboks Addaxes Blesboks, topi and bonteboks Wild dogs or dhole Raccoon dogs Mongooses Meerkats Wild European rabbits Multimammate rats or mice Bats Nutrias Coyotes Foxes Raccoons Skunks Hartebeests Wildebeest and gnus Chamois Tahrs Ibex, wild goats, turs and markhors Barbary sheep Mouflon sheep, urials, bighorn and argali Alligators Crocodiles Gharials Bird snakes Boomslangs Keelbacks Burrowing asps Coral snakes, cobras, kraits, mambas, Australia elapids Pit vipers and true vipers, except indigenous species Snapping turtles Giant or marine toads Clawed frogs Pink starlings Rosy pastors Red-billed dioches Red-whiskered bulbuls Lampreys Freshwater stingrays Freshwater sharks Bowfins Gars Herrings and shads, except threadfins and gizzards European whitefish Mexican banded tetras Piranhas South American parasitic catfish White perch Freshwater drums Grass carp, except certified triploids with a permit Pike topminnows Snakeheads Walking catfish Tigerfish Sticklebacks Tilapia Nile perch Goldeyes Carp (various species) Rudds Northern pikes Asian swamp eels New Zealand mudsnails African giant snails Zebra and quagga mussels Crayfish Asiatic mitten crabs If you were issued a permit or license by the Nevada Department of Wildlife to keep an animal prior to February 28, 1994, you are allowed to keep that animal and its progeny under certain conditions. New Hampshire does not require a permit to possess “non-controlled” wildlife, including:
Ornamental aquarium fish Exotic amphibians Up to 5 indigenous amphibians Exotic reptiles, except alligators, crocodiles, and venomous reptiles other than Western Hognose snakes Cockatiels Canaries Parrots Parakeets Mynah birds Finches Pekin robins Weavers Toucans Button quail Pigeons, exotic and feral Doves Emus Ostriches Rhea Exotic migratory waterfowl, except mute swans Mallard waterfowl Some gallinaceous birds Chinchillas Gerbils Guinea pigs Hamsters Mice Ferrets Llamas Alpacas Pot belly pigs Rabbits African pygmy hedgehogs Sugar gliders Tenrecs Yaks Camels Asian water buffalo Degus Guanacos Bison Most local marine species Some animals are prohibited as pets, including: Armadillos Anteaters Badgers Barbary sheep Bears Beavers Wild boars Bobcats Chipmunks Deer Elephants Kangaroos Kinkajous Lemmings Leopards Lions Lynx Mongooses Mouse Muskrat Virginia opossum Prairie dogs Porcupines Primates Raccoons African pouched rats Shrews Skunks Squirrels Flying squirrels Tigers Voles Wallabies Water buffalo Weasels Wolverines Wolves Zebras Zebra mussels Spiny waterfleas Fishhook waterfleas Non-indigenous catfish Asiatic clams Walking catfish White amurs Grass carp Black carp European rudds Round gobies Tubenose gobies Ruffes Snakeheads Bighead carp Silver carp
Permits are required for certain animals, including: American toads gray treefrogs Spring peppers American bullfrogs Green frogs Pickerel frogs Mink frogs Wood frogs Spotted salamanders Northern two-lined salamanders Northern dusk salamanders Eastern red-backed salamanders Red-spotted newts Musk turtles Painted turtles Snapping turtles Ring-necked snakes Northern watersnakes Brown snakes Red-bellied snakes Garter snakes Ring-necked pheasants Chukar partridges Grey partridges Some animals may be kept as pets without any permits, including:
Budgerigars Cockatiels Peafowl Rock doves Canaries House sparrows European starlings Zebra finches Society finches Ostriches Greater rheas Lesser rheas Emus Hamsters Gerbils Guinea pigs Pigmy goats Mice Rats Chipmunks Red squirrels Flying squirrels Alpacas Guanacos Llamas Bison American anoles Common iguanas Boa constrictors Eastern painted turtles Snapping turtles Fence lizards Garter snakes Tokay geckos Ribbon snakes Leopard frogs Green frogs American toads Fowlers toads Bullfrogs Red newts Dusky salamanders Any African species Elephants Rhinoceros Tigers Lions Leopards Cheetahs Pangolins Marine turtles Rays Monkeys Baboons Apes Nondomestic dogs Bears Nondomestic cats Gila monsters Coral snakes Cobras Alligators Caimans Crocodiles Gavials Ring-necked parakeets Monk parakeets Patagonia conures Prairie dogs Ground squirrels Permit required for certain animals, including but not limited to:
Red-fronted parrots Turquoise-fronted parrots Yellow-cheeked parrots Half-moon conures Jenday parrots African gray parrots Macaws Ferrets Kinkajous Coatimundi European hedgehogs Llamas Exotic sheep Exotic goats Pythons Rat snakes Bosas- family, except boa constrictors King snakes Racers Ringneck snakes Green snakes Collared lizards Monitors Skinks Ameivas Chuckwallas Alligator lizards Geckos other than Tokay Geckos Armadillo lizards New Mexico does not specifically list any exotic animals that can be kept as pets. Though many New Mexico cities have much more stringent exotic pet laws than at the state level, some animals are forbidden as pets in the state of New Mexico, including:
Felines Crocodiles Wolves Alligators Primates The health department has reserved the authority to place regulations on the following animals as pets: Subhuman primates Captive-born skunks Raccoons Foxes Sylvatic carnivores
New York allows feline hybrids F4 or later as pets without any license or permit. You can‘t have the following pets in the state of New York: Any wild animals Nonhuman primates and prosimians All cats and hybrids except domesticated and feral cats All dogs except domesticated dogs and captive bred fennec foxes Bears All venomous snakes Burmese pythons Reticulated pythons African rock pythons Green anacondas Yellow anacondas Australian amethystine pythons Indian pythons Asiatic monitors Nile monitors Whitethroat monitors Black throat monitors Crocodile monitors Komodo dragons Crocodiles Lions Racoon dogs wolfdogs Animals indistinguishable from wolves or coyotes
Animals that are grandfathered in under a Dangerous Wildlife License may be kept as pets. North Carolina does not list any specific animals that can definitively be kept as pets. Possession of dangerous animals is regulated by cities and counties
The following animals can be kept as pets in North Dakota without a permit: Arachnids Amphibians Invertebrates Nonvenomous noninjurious reptiles Tropical freshwater fish Gerbils Guinea pigs Hamsters Mice Rats Sugar gliders Turkeys, geese, and ducks morphologically distinguishable from wild turkeys, geese, and ducks Pigeons Rabbits Ratites Chinchilla Guinea fowl Ranch foxes Ranch mink Peafowl All pheasants Quail Chukar Hedgehog Degus North Dakota forbids some animals from being pets, including:
Skunks Racoons Venomous reptiles License and import permit required for certain animals, including: Wild pigs Mountain lions Jaguars Leopards Lions Tigers Cheetahs Bears Wolves Nonvenomous injurious reptiles Primates Nondomestic sheep and goats Deer Pronghorns Zebras Nondomestic cats Waterfowl Shorebirds Some upland game birds Crows Wolverines Bats Otters Martens Fishers Kit or swift foxes Badgers Coyotes Mink Red and gray foxes Muskrats Beavers Weasels Opossums Prairie dogs Ground squirrels Black sheep Hawaiian sheep Corsican sheep Painted desert sheep Multi-horned hair sheep New Mexico dall sheep Texas dall sheep Desert sand sheep
Ohio residents cannot have more than four of each species of collectible reptiles or collectible wild, native amphibians. Service spider monkeys are allowed. “Dangerous wild animals” may not be kept as pets, including:
Hyenas Pure grey wolves Lions Tigers Jaguars Leopards Clouded leopards Sundra leopards Snow leopards Cheetahs Lynx Cougars Caracals Servals Domestic cat hybrids except for savannah cats Bears Elephants Rhinoceros Hippopatomus Cape buffalo African wild dogs Komodo dragons Alligators Crocodiles Caimans except for dwarfs Gharials Nonhuman primates except lemurs Golden lions Black-faced lions Golden-rumped lions Cotton-top tamarins Emperor tamarins Saddlebacked tamarins black-mantled tamarins Geoffrey’s tamarins Southern and northern night monkeys Dusky titi and masked titi monkeys Muriquis Goeldi’s monkeys White-faced, black-bearded, white-nose bearded, and monk sakis Bald and black uakaris Black-handed, white-bellied, brown-headed, and black spider monkeys Common woolly monkeys Red, black, and mantled howler monkeys Some invasive species are also prohibited as pets, including: Walking catfish Diploid white amur Diploid grass carp Silver carp Black carp Ruffes Round gobies Snakeheads White perch Three spin sticklebacks Sea lampreys Eastern banded killfish or hybrids Raccoon dogs Marrons Yabbies Zebra mussels Quagga mussels Rudds Dangerous wild animals were grandfathered in.
Lemurs, marmosets, squirrel monkeys, and capuchins require registration. Permits are required for restricted snakes that are 12 feet or longer, including: Yellow anacondas Green anacondas Reticulated pythons Indian pythons Burmese pythons North and South African rock pythons Amethystines
Permits are required for the following restricted snakes of any length: All Atractaspididae All Elapidae All Viperidae Boomslangs Twig snakes Non-native raccoons may be kept as pets with proper certification of veterinary inspection and proof of legal ownership.
Non-domestic animals require an entry permit and a certification of veterinary inspection within 30 days of entry into the state. If you wish to keep and propagate certain animals, even with no intention of selling them, you will need to obtain a “noncommercial propagating license” for the following animals: Game birds Game quadrupeds except captive white-tailed deer, reptiles, amphibians, and fur-bearing animals
Possessing wild reptiles and amphibians requires detailed records and written permission from the chief of the division of wildlife. The following animals do not need a license to be kept as pets: Alpacas Guanacos Vicunas Bison Camels Cats, except native cats Cattle Chickens Chinchillas Dogs, except native foxes and coyotes Exotic tropical fish Ferrets, except black-footed, Mustela nigripes Gerbils Goats Guinea pigs Hamsters Hedgehogs Horse Donkeys Mules Llamas Domestic mice Native invertebrates, except for crayfish and all freshwater mussels including Zebra and Asian clams Peafowl Pigeons Migratory waterfowl Pigs except for javelinas Rabbits, except cottontails, jackrabbits, swamp rabbits, and other native wild rabbits Domesticated rats Saltwater crustaceans and mollusks Sheep, except dall and bighorn sheep Turkeys, except Rio Grande, Eastern, Merriam, and Osceola Zebras Gerboasies Sugar gliders Civets Wallab Kangaroos Fennec foxes Coatamundi Primates Most monotypic species or reptiles and amphibians not indigenous to Oklahoma
Some imported birds must have legal import documentation, which then excludes them from requiring a license, including: Cockatoos Cockatiels Canaries Macaws Finches Parrots Parakeets Budgerigars Ostriches Rheas Emus Oklahoma bans certain pets:
Native bears over 50 pounds, including black bears Native cats over 50 pounds, including cougars A Noncommercial Wildlife Breeders License is required to own any wildlife that is not specifically allowed as pets, including: All venomous reptiles in the Elapidae family, including cobras and coral snakes.
All venomous reptiles in the Hydrophidae family, including sea snakes. All venomous reptiles in the Viperidae family, including vipers. All venomous reptiles in the Crotalidae family, including rattlesnakes, copperheads, and cottonmouths.
Boomslangs Gila monsters Beaded lizards Some exotic animals are not considered to be wild, and thus can be pets with no permit required, including: Alpacas Guanacos Llamas Asses Burros Donkeys Bison Camels Domestic cats Cattle Yaks Chinchillas Domestic dogs European rabbits Ferrets Gerbils Goats Guinea pigs Common hamsters Horses House mice Mules Mute swans, so long as males are neutered and all are surgically pinioned Hinnies Rats Sheep Swine Vicunas Cassowaries Chickens Ducks Geese Emus Guinea fowl Ostriches Parrots Parakeets Lories Cockatoos Peafowl Pigeons Rock doves Rheas Turkeys
Oregon lists some wildlife as Noncontrolled, and thus these pets do not require a permit: Antelope Buffalo Giraffes Okapi Pygmy hippopotamus Hippopotamus Peccaries Chevrotains Aardwolves Seals Sea lions Red/lesser pandas Olingos Coatimundis Kinkajous Binturongs Whales Dolphins Old World fruit bats Numbats Flying lemurs Short-tailed opossum Feathertail gliders Kangaroos Wallabies Striped possum Sugar gliders Cuscuses Four-toed hedgehogs Dry county bandicoots Rainforest bandicoots Zebras Asses Rhinoceros Tapirs Pangolins Tree-toed sloths Two-toed tree sloths Anteaters Elephants Scaly-tailed squirrels Maras Hutias Dwarf hamsters Pacas Agoutis Acouchis Pacaranas Prehistoric-tailed porcupines Spiny mice Bushy tailed cloud rats African giant pouched rats African white-tailed rats Slender tailed rats Degus South African springhares Prevost’s squirrels African palm squirrels Pygmy flying squirrels Old palm squirrels Giant squirrels Manatees Aardvarks Senegal thick-knee Water thick-knees Mousebirds Collies Blue-winged kookaburras Woodland kingfishers African pygmy kingfishers Hornbills Rollers Bee-eaters Motmots White-browed coucals Pheasant coucals Senegal coucals Greater coucals Turacos Plaintain eaters Go-away birds Curassows Guans Chacalacas Megapodes Trumpeters Buttonquails Hemipodes Orange-breasted bunting Cotingas Red-crested finches Pileated finch Yellow-breasted buntings Golden-breasted buntings Yellow cardinal Black-crested finches Crested bunting Yellow-billed cardinals Red-crested cardinals Black-capped warbling finches Saffron finches Double-collared seedeaters Rusty-collared seedeaters Parrot-billed seedeaters Slate-colored seedeaters Swallow tanagers Cuban grassquits Blue-black grassquits Waxbills Mannikins Munlans Broadbills Black siskins Linnets European goldfinches Red siskins Hooded siskins Yellow-breasted greenfinches European siskins Yellow-rumped siskins Yellow-bellied siskins Yellow-billed grosbeaks Oriole finches Brown bullfinches Eurasian bullfinches Black-throated island canaries Island canaries Yellow-crowned canaries White-rumped seedeaters yellow-fronted canaries European serins Long-tailed rosefinches Troupials Allies Leafbirds Fairy bluebirds Honeyeaters Old World flycatchers Sudan sparrows Red-headed weavers Yellow-crowned widowbirds Red-collared widowbirds Black-winged bishops Jackson’s widowbirds Yellow-shouldered widowbirds Red bishops Long-tailed widowbirds Red fodies Orange weavers Village weavers Lesser masked weavers Little weavers Baya weavers Vitelline-masked weavers Speckle-fronted weavers Scaly weavers Sugarbirds Golden-crested mynas Violet-backed starlings Emerald starlings Golden-breasted starlings Common hill mynas Long-tailed glossy-starlings Bronze-tailed glossy-starlings Greater blue-eared glossy-starlings Lesser blue-eared glossy-starlings Hildebrandt’s starlings Chestnut-bellied starling Purple-headed glossy-starlings Purple glossy-starlings Rueppell’s glossy-starlings Splendid glossy-starlings Superb starlings Bali mynas Golden mynas Yellow-faced mynas Tanagers Allies Babblers White-eyes Barbets Toucans Penguins Tinamous Trogons Allophrynid tree frogs Hairy frogs Cane toads African tree toads Live-bearing toads Glass frogs Poison arrow frogs Ghost frogs Shovel-nosed frogs Leaf frogs Casque-headed frogs Water-holding frogs Marsupial frogs Marbled tree frogs Australian giant tree frogs Slender-legged tree frogs Cuban tree frogs White’s tree frog Golden-eyed tree frogs Monkey frogs Burrowing frogs Casque-headed tree frogs Shovel-headed tree frogs Banana frogs Reed frogs Running frogs Forest tree frogs New Zealand frogs Common horned frogs Rain or robber frogs Paraguay horned toads Asian horned toad Tomato frog Narrow-mouthed frogs sheep frogs Malaysian narrowmouthed frogs Tusked frogs Pouched frogs Giant burrowing frogs Cannibal frogs Turtle frogs Australian spadefoot toads Browned toadlets Gastric brooding frogs Torrent frogs Australian toadlets Parsley frogs Dwarf clawed frogs Surinam frogs Mantella frogs Foam nest tree frogs Gliding or flying frogs Tonkin bug-eyed frogs Mexican burrowing frogs Seychelles frogs Axoloti Gold-striped salamanders Black-spotted and striped newts Spectacled salamanders Caecilians Worm lizards Pricklenapes Rainbow iguanas Frilled dragons Humphead forest dragons Sailfin lizards Anglehead forest dragons Spendid japalures Water dragons Bearded dragons Mastigures Strange agamas Chameleons Geckos Gila monsters Beaded lizards Iguana lizards Asian grass lizards Skinks Ameivas Tegus Monitor lizards Night lizards American knob-scaled lizards File snakes All nonnative pythons and boas Milk, pine, corn rat, garter snakes Kingsnakes Gopher snakes Egyptian cobras Black and white cobras Red spitting cobras King cobras Bush vipers Gaboon vipers Rhinoceros vipers Horned vipers Rattlesnakes Saw-scaled vipers Bushmasters False horned vipers Pygmy rattlesnakes Pignoise turtles Austro-American side-necked turtles Marine turtles River turtles Leatherback turtles Sand and box turtles American mud and musk turtles Bighead turtles Tortoises Softshell tortoises Oregon prohibits “exotic animal” pets unless the owner obtained a valid Oregon exotic animal permit prior to 2010.
No new permits are being issued. Exotic animals include: Non-human primates Bears, except the America Black Bear Non-indigenous canines which are not domestic or domestic hybrids Non-indigenous felines which are not domestic or domestic hybrids Skunks Crocodilians
Oregon will honor USDA permits obtained on “exotic animals” as well as permits it issued prior to 2010. Oregon allows disabled people to own service monkeys as pets. Falcons and hawks are only allowed with a falconry permit.
Oregon allows some native nongame wildlife to be held as pets, but you must have a valid Wildlife Holding Permit and are limited to three per household. Native nongame wildlife includes: Northwestern salamanders Long-toed salamanders Pacific giant salamanders Ensatinas Western red-backed salamanders Rough-skinned newts Pacific treefrog or Pacific chorus frogs Northern alligator lizards Southern alligator lizards Western skinks Northern sagebrush lizards Western fence lizards Common side-blotched lizards Western rattlesnakes, excluding those in Willamette Valley Pacific gopher snakes Western terrestrial garter snakes Northwestern garter snakes Common garter snakes North American porcupines Long-tailed voles Montane voles Creeping voles Ermines Long-tailed weasels bushy-tailed woodrats Dusky-footed woodrats Deer mice Great basin pocket mice Coast moles Northern pocket gophers California ground squirrels Belding’s ground squirrels Brush rabbits Douglas’s squirrels
The following animals are considered “prohibited” and cannot be kept as pets without a Prohibited Species Permit: Chamois Tahrs Wildebeests Central Asian gazelles Wild boars Foxes Wild dogs Mongooses North American otters Asian small-clawed otters Civets Genets Bats Nine-banded armadillos Broad-footed marsupial mice Brush-tailed marsupial mice Dunnants Virginia opossum Common brushtails Common ringtails Eurasian hedgehogs Hares Jackrabbits Cottontails Argentine Plains visachas Chinese jumping mice Desert jerboas Kangaroo rats Pale kangaroo mice Pocket mice Capybaras Old World porcupines Mouselike hamsters Ratlike hamsters Bushy-tailed jirds Nutrias Fat doormice Antelope ground squirrels Tricolored squirrels Prairie dogs Southern flying squirrels Marmots Giant flying squirrels Eastern gray squirrels Eastern fox squirrels Eurasian red squirrels Ground squirrels Chipmunks African ground squirrel Egyptian geese Spotted thick-knees Kingfishers Laughing kookaburras Yellowhammers European greenfinches Chaffinches Tiger salamanders Amphiumas Giant salamanders Hellbenders American giant salamanders Asian salamanders Shovel-nosed salamanders Waterdogs Firebelly newts European Mountain or Brook salamander Caucasus or spine-tailed salamanders red-spotted or Eastern newts Chinese newts Warty newts Ribbed newts Fire salamanders Roughskin newts Alpine newts Crocodile newts Sirens Fire-bellied toads True toads Midwife toads Painted frogs Cricket frogs European tree frogs Cope’s gray tree frogs Green tree frogs Mediterranean tree frogs Gray tree frogs Chorus frogs Australian froglets Australian swamp frogs Barred frogs Spadefoot toads Asians clawed frogs African bull frogs Siberian frogs Khabarovsk frogs Crawfish frogs Swedish swamp frogs Asian frog Rio Grande leopard frog Plains leopard frogs Caucasus frogs Inkiapo frogs Toudaohe frogs Green frogs Spring frogs Dybowski’s frogs River frogs Stream frogs Pig frogs Turkish frogs Iberian frogs Agile frogs Italian agile frogs Kokorit or Taipa frogs Brusa frogs Nikko frogs Pickeral frogs Mink frogs Wood frogs Tago frogs European common frogs Tasushia frogs Carpenter frogs Snapping turtles Chinese pond turtles Pond turtles Painted turtles European pond turtles Blanding’s turtles Map turtles Asian pond turtles Pond sliders Common musk turtles Common mud turtles North American soft shells Slow worm Armored glass lizards Sand lizards Jeweled lizards Iberian Mountain lizards Meadow lizards Iberian emerald lizards Balkan emerald lizards Emerald lizards Viviparous lizards Erhard’s Wall lizards Iberian Wall lizards Crocodile lizards Brown tree snakes Cape cobras Copperheads Cottonmouths Puff adders Lanceheads Palm pit vipers Rattlesnakes Mid-east vipers Pygmy rattlesnakes Asian pit vipers Wagler’s palm viper Sand vipers Bowfins Piranhas Caribes Walking catfish Oriental weatherfish Ides Rudds Asian carp Black carp Snakeheads Round goby Ruffes Sanders Pike-perch Pikes Pickerels Muskellunges Asian clams Zebra mussels Quagga mussels Japanese oyster drills Chinese mystery snails Japanese mystery snails Chinese mitten crabs Blue crabs Pennsylvania does not specifically list any exotic pets which are legal to own without a permit.
Pennsylvania does not specifically list exotic pets that are illegal to own.You must have an Exotic Wildlife Possession permit to have an exotic pet, which includes: Bears Coyotes Lions Tigers Leopards Jaguars Cheetahs Cougars Wolves Hybrids Timber rattlesnakes and Eastern copperheads may be kept as pets only if legally collected from the wild and require a Venomous Snake Permit.
Pet owners are limited to one Timber Rattlesnake. Rhode IslandThe following animals may be kept without a permit, including: Alpacas Common coturnix Domestic camels Domestic cats Domestic cattle Domestic chickens Domestic dogs Domestic mallard ducks Domestic equines Domestic goat Domestic guinea fowl Domestic hamsters Domestic rabbits, except European and San Juan rabbits Domestic sheep Domestic swine Domestic turkeys Domestic water buffalo Domestic yaks Guinea pigs Lab mice Lab rats Llamas Mongolian gerbils Peafowl African pygmy hedgehogs Captive-bred chinchillas Deer mice White-footed mice Degus Egyptian spiny mice House mice Jerboas Norway rats Pacas Common captive-bred hamsters Sugar gliders Non-native, exotic amphibians if kept securely indoors Most exotic turtles that aren’t specifically prohibited Red-eared slider turtles if kept securely indoors Most invertebrates unless specifically prohibited Aquarium trade fish that aren’t specifically prohibited Exotic boas and pythons that don’t specifically require a permit Shield-tale snakes Sunbeam snakes Worm snakes Thread snakes Asian rat snakes Bird snakes or puffing snakes Brown and redbelly snakes Glossy snakes Gopher and pine snakes Green snakes House snakes Kingsnakes Milk snakes Mole snakes North American rat snakes Texas indigo snakes Tropical rat snakes Water snakes Western hognose snakes Skinks False club-tailed lizards Girdle-tailed lizard Plated lizards Rock lizards Most teiids that don’t specifically require a permit Acanthodactyls, Galliotia, Podarcis, and Psammodromus lacertid lizards Alligator lizards Glass lizards Slowworms All geckos except Big Bend geckos Basilisks lizards Collard and leopard lizards Common or green iguanas False or spring-tailed iguanas New World chameleons Spiny lizards Tree and bush lizards Zebra-tailed lizards Water dragon lizards All night lizards except Utah night lizards Old World chameleons Blue or button quails Pigeons Doves Waxbills and allies Finches and allies Most weaver finches unless they specifically require a permit Parrots and allies Toucans Anacaris Toucanets Most starlings unless they specifically require a permit Mynahs
Rhode Island specifically prohibits some animals from being pets, including: Wild carnivores and hybrids for which there is no USDA licenses rabies vaccine Non-humane primates Mute swans Mudpuppies American bullfrogs Zebra mussels Spiny waterfleas Fishhook waterfleas Non-indigenous crayfish Asiatic clams Grass carp or white amurs Rudds Walking catfish Snakeheads Black carp Round gobies Tubenose gobies Ruffes Eastern American toads Eastern red-backed salamanders Eastern spadefoots Four-toed salamanders Fowler’s toads Gray treefrogs Marbled salamanders Northern dusky salamanders Northern green frogs Northern leopard frogs Northern spring salamanders Northern two-lined salamanders Pickerel frogs Red-spotted newts Spotted salamanders Spring peepers Wood frogs Eastern box turtles Eastern musk turtles Eastern painted turtles Eastern snapping turtles Northern diamond-backed terrapins Spotted turtles Wood turtles Common ribbonsnakes Common watersnakes Eastern gartersnakes Eastern hog-nosed snakes Eastern milksnakes Eastern ratsnakes Northern black racers Northern brownsnakes Northern red-bellied snakes Northern ring-necked snakes Smooth greensnakes Timber rattlesnakes American beavers American minks Big brown bats Black bears Bobcats Common muskrats Eastern chipmunks Eastern cottontails Eastern coyotes Eastern gray squirrels Eastern moles Eastern red bats Fisher bats Gray foxes Hairy-tailed moles Hoary bats Little brown bats Long-tailed weasels Masked shrews Meadow voles Moose New England cottontails Northern long-eared bats Northern short-tailed shrews Porcupines Raccoons Red foxes Red squirrels River otters Short-tailed weasels Silver-haired bats Small-footed bats Smoky shrews Snowshoe hares Southern bog lemmings Southern flying squirrels Southern red-backed voles Star-nosed moles Striped skunks Tri-colored bats Virginia opossum Water shrews White-footed mice White-tailed deer Woodchucks Woodland jumping mice Woodland voles Ferrets may be kept as pets so long as a permit is acquired within two weeks of acquiring the animal.
Certain exotic animal species require an Exotic Animal Possess Permit, including: Argentina or Chaco tortoises Gopher tortoises Pancake tortoises All venomous snakes Emerald tree boas Green tree pythons African rock pythons Reticulated pythons Anacondas Gila monsters Beaded lizards Monitors Brown waters teiid Earless teiids Rough teiids Snake teiids Spectacled teiids Worm teiids Big Bend geckos Red-billed finches Black-fronted finches Sudan dioch finches Monk parakeets Pink starlings Rosy pastors Native and exotic cervides South CarolinaFerrets may be owned as pets.
Certain exotic animals cannot be kept as pets, including: Lions Tigers Leopards Jaguars Cheetahs Snow leopards Non-native bears Chimpanzees Gorillas Orangutans Prohibited animals may be grandfathered in if they were registered with Animal Control by 01/01/2018.
South DakotaSome domestic mammals that can breed with free-roaming wild elk, sheep, and goats may only be kept east of the Missouri River. These include: Red deer Sika deer Sambar Pere David’s deer Axis deer Mouflons Argali Urials Blue sheep Auodads Barbary sheep Hybrids of any of the above
Raccoon dogs and free-roaming wildlife may not be kept as pets. A Possession Permit is required for non-domestic animals, including: Felidae family Canidae family Ursidae family Mustelidae family Hyanidae family Tapiridae family Rhinocerotidae family All artiodactyla African elephants Asian elephants Primates
TennesseeClass III animals do not require any special permits or paperwork to be kept as pets, and include: Nonpoisonous reptiles and amphibians except caimans and gavials Gerbils Hamsters Guinea pigs Rats Mice Squirrels Chipmunks Rabbits Hares Moles Shrews Ferrets Chinchillas Llamas Alpacas Guanacos, vicunas Camels Giraffes Bison Avian species not otherwise listed, excluding North American game birds, ostriches, and cassowary Semi-domestic hogs Sheep Goats All aquarium fish Bovidae not otherwise listed Marsupials Common domestic farm animals Equidae Primates not otherwise listed Bobcat and domestic cat hybrids Captive-bred elk not within the eastern grand division of the state Cervidae except for white-tailed deer and wild elk Hybrids resulting from a cross between a Class II and a domestic animal or Class III species Class IV animals mot not be kept as pets, including:
Black bears White-tailed deer Wild turkeys Hybrids of a Class IV species, other than a bobcat Tennessee separates animals into classes. To have a Class I pet, you will need to provide information to the state and obtain a permit.
Class I animals include: Wolves Bears Lions Tigers Leopards Jaguars Cheetahs Cougars Elephants Rhinoceros Hippopotamus African buffalo Crocodiles Alligators All poisonous snakes Tennessee considers all native animals not listed in any other class to be Class II animals. Pet owners must have papers providing the supplier of the wildlife and date of acquisition.
TexasIf an animal isn’t banned or required to have a permit, it can be held as a pet. However, no person can possess more than 6 of any kind of animal, and no more than 25 nongame wildlife animals at any given time. Captive-bred coatimundi may be kept as pets, but proof of legal acquisition is required.
Permits are not required in any county west of the Pecos River with a population under 25,000. Some pets are banned in Texas, including: Wolves Bats Diamondback terrapins Indigenous birds Endangered species cannot be kept as pets.
Invasive species fish and shellfish are banned. Owners must have a Certificate of Registration (CPR) to own “dangerous wild animals”, including: Lions Tigers Ocelots Cougars Leopards Cheetahs Jaguars Bobcats Lynx Bears Coyotes Jackals Baboons Chimpanzees Orangutans Gorillas Hybrids
Pet owners must have a Residential Controlled Exotic Snake Permit for the following snakes: Exotic venomous snakes African rock pythons Asiatic rock pythons Green anacondas Reticulated pythons Southern Africa pythons Keeping a pet alligator requires a special permit from the Department of Parks and Wildlife.
UtahSome domestic species of animals may be kept without any permits, though there may be limits on the number of pets kept, including: Alligators Aquarium fish purchased from a legal source Brine shrimp, within certain rules Alpacas Asses or donkeys American bison Camels Cassowaries Domestic cats breeds recognized by The International Cat Association as Preliminary New, Advanced New, Non-championship, and Championship breeds Cattle Chicken Chinchillas Domestic dogs including hybrids between wild and domestic species and subspecies Domesticated ducks distinguishable morphologically Domesticated elk Emus Ferrets or polecats Fowl Foxes, privately owned, domestically bred, and raised Domesticated geese Gerbils Goats Hamsters Hedgehog Horses Llamas American minks House mice Mules and hinnies Ostriches Peafowl Guinea pigs Pigeons European rabbits Norway and black rats Rheas Sheep Sugar gliders Domesticated swine Tenrecs Privately owned, pen-raised domestic turkeys Water buffalo Yaks, zebus, or brahmas Certain animals cannot be kept as pets, including:
Tigers Lions Cougars Jaguars Leopards Cheetahs Ocelots Lynx Servals Bison Bighorn sheep Elks Mule deer Moose Pronghorn antelopes Rocky mountain goats Albert’s squirrels Prairie dogs Merriam kangaroo rats Desert rats Ringtails Cottontail and snowshoe rabbits Weasels Skunks Martens Minks Black-footed ferrets Banded Gila monsters Desert iguanas Glen Canyon and Western chuckwallas Desert glossy snakes Mojave Desert sidewinders Mojave rattlesnakes Sonoran lyre snakes Speckled rattlesnakes Utah milk snakes Utah mountain kingsnakes Desert tortoises Coyotes Wolves Dingos Foxes Jackals African wild dogs Bears Bats River otters Badgers Primates Venomous fish Piranhas A Certificate of Registration is required for certain “prohibited” or “controlled” species, including: Desert night lizards Mojave zebra-tailed lizards Utah banded geckos Utah nigh lizards California kingsnakes Great Plains rat snakes Mojave patch-nosed snakes Utah blind snakes Western rattlesnakes
VermontVermont keeps an Unrestricted Wild Animals List containing animals that can be kept as pets without permits, including: Sugar gliders Agoutis Domestic cat hybrids F4 or later Hamsters Gerbils Domesticated mice and rats Captive bread African pygmy hedgehog Pigeons Alligator lizards Collared lizards Tegus Monitors Geckos Many kinds of boas and pythons Some pets are prohibited, including:
Feral swine Wild boars Wild hogs Wild swine Feral pigs Feral hogs Old world swine Razorbacks Eurasian wild boar Russian wild boar Permits are required to keep wild birds and certain animals, including: Mole salamanders Hellbenders American giant salamanders Northern dusky salamanders Eastern newts Canary Island lizards Water pythons Anacondas Russell’s sand boas Burmese pythons Reticulated pythons Brown tree snakes False vipers False water cobras Eastern milk snakes Crayfish Hobo spider Recluse spiders Bark scorpions Five keeled gold scorpions Yellow-legged creeping scorpions
VirginiaDomesticated animals may be kept as pets without permits, including: Dogs, including wolf hybrids Cats, including hybrids with wild felines. Horses, including hybrids Asses Burros Donkeys Cattle Sheep, including hybrids with wild sheep Goats Swine, including pot-bellied pigs and excluding any wild swine Llamas Alpacas Camels Hamsters Minks, where adults are heavier than 1.15 kilograms or their coat color can be distinguished from wild mink Guinea pigs Gerbils Chinchillas Rats Mice European rabbits Chickens Turkeys Ducks Geese Pigeons Guinea fowl Peafowl Native or naturalized albino amphibians or albino reptiles
Virginia does not specifically prohibit any animals from being pets. However, permits may be difficult to obtain. A permit is required for certain exotic animals, including:
Pigs Hogs Wild dogs Wolves Coyotes Jackals Foxes Bears Raccoons Weasels Badgers Skunks Otters Ferrets Mongooses Hyenas Aardwolves Bats Prairie dogs Alligators Crocodiles Caimans Gavials Brown tree snakes Cane toads African dwarf frogs African clawed frogs Mole salamanders Monk parakeets Mute swans Modoc suckers Warner suckers Darters Round goby Piranhas Walking catfish Swamp eels WashingtonWashington does not specifically list any allowed exotic pets, but does list pets that are prohibited. Washington prohibits certain animals as pets for different reasons.
Washington considers certain animals too dangerous to keep as pets, including: Lions Tigers Captive-bred cougars Bobcats Jaguars Cheetahs Leopards Snow leopards Clouded leopard Wolves Bears Hyenas Rhinoceros Non-human primates Elephants Elks Atractaspidae Dispholidus Cobras Mambas Kraits Coral snakes Australian tiger snakes Sea snakes Water monitors Crocodile monitors Rattlesnakes Cottonmouths Bushmasters Puff adders Gaboon vipers Crocodiles Alligators Caimans Gavials Some animals are banned as pets because they are deleterious to the environment, including:
Mute swans Mongooses Wild boars Javelinas Chamois Wild goats Wild sheep Wildebeests Reindeer Fallow deer Due to rabies, the following animals cannot be kept as pets: Bats Skunks Foxes Raccoons Coyotes
Washington does not have possession permits for pets. West VirginiaUnless an animal is specifically banned in West Virginia, it can be kept without a permit, so long as it isn’t considered a wild animal or wild bird. Dangerous animals may not be pets unless grandfather in.
These animals include: Hyenas Gray wolves Lions Tigers Jaguars Leopards Clouded leopards Sunda clouded leopards Snow leopards Cheetahs and domestic hybrids Lynxes and domestic hybrids Cougars and domestic hybrids Caracals and domestic hybrids Bears, except black bears Elephants Rhinoceros Hippopotamus Cape buffalo African wild dogs Komodo dragons Nonhuman primates except: Lemurs Tamarins Night monkeys Titi monkeys Muriquis Goeldi’s monkeys Sakis Uakaris Spider monkeys Common wooly monkeys Howler monkeys Raccoon Fox skunk Permits may be obtained for dangerous non-native wild animals owned prior to 06/01/2015.
Pet Permits are needed to keep wild animals or birds that were acquired from a commercial dealer. WisconsinNo permit is required to have some wild animal pets, including: Arthropods Chipmunks Pocket gophers Mice Moles Mollusks Opossums Pigeons Porcupine Rats Shrews English sparrows Starling Ground squirrels Red squirrels Voles Weasels
Some animals are prohibited as pets, including: Cougars Bears Wild swine Mute swans Wolves and hybrids Nonnative wild ducks, geese, and swans Wild or native amphibians Wild or native reptiles Wisconsin does not have exotic pet permits.
WyomingSome domesticated animals may be kept as pets without permits, including: Cage and aviary birds Chickens Emus Greylag geese Guinea fowl Mallard ducks Muscovy ducks Ostriches Peafowl Pigeons Rheas Swan geese Turkeys Predacious birds Alpacas Asses Burros Donkeys Bison Camels Cats Cattle Chinchillas Dogs Ferrets Gerbils Goats Guinea pigs Hamsters Horses Ponies Llamas Mice Mules Hinnies European rabbits Rats Sheep Swine Vicunas Yaks Coyotes Jackrabbits Porcupines Skunks Raccoons Red foxes Some animals may be taken from the wild without permits and held as pets so long as they are securely confined, including:
Columbia spotted frogs Wood frogs Western toads Wyoming toads Northern trees lizards Great Basin gopher snakes Midget faded rattlesnakes Black hills red-bellied snakes Northern rubber boas Pale milksnakes Smooth greensnakes Plains box turtles Rock pigeons Eurasian collared doves European starlings Mute swans American crows can be taken during open hunting season Mollusks Crustaceans Least chipmunks North American deermice House mice Northern grasshopper mice Western harvest mice Virginia opossum Pocket gophers Bushy-tailed woodrats Norway rats Meadow voles Wyoming prohibits possessing certain animals as pets, including: Wolves and wolf hybrids Big or trophy game Black bears Grizzly bears Mountain lions Gray wolves
Permits are required to keep any living wildlife as pets that aren’t specifically listed as allowed without permits.
What Is That Animal?
As pet-keeping continues to grow in popularity, exotic pet-keeping does as well. Many people are surprised to learn about the great diversity of species that we have on this planet, and this variety extends to the animals we keep in our homes.”Traditional” pets are great, but some people prefer something a little more unusual. Keeping exotic pets, which are often incorrectly considered to be ‘wild animals,’ has become very controversial.Being against exotic pet-keeping is misguided. Most people haven’t even heard of many of the species that some people own, so why would they feel educated enough on the subject to make judgments about their suitability as pets? There is no clear line that separates so-called domesticated and non-domesticated animals.
Should These Species Be Promoted as Pets?
No animal ofFor instance, as most cats are essentially self-domesticated, they have a lot in common with so-called wild animals. They can suffer from behavioral, psychological, and physical problems when they don’t receive adequate enrichment in the home. They need what pretty much all animals need, whether they live in a zoo or an apartment.Some of the animals on this list are difficult to care for by even the highest standards, but especially in these days of the internet, any dedicated individual can learn how to manage an exotic pet.Most people have not heard of every animal on this list before, so if you have, you must know your animals. They are not all
While everyone knows what a porcupine is, many have not seen or heard of the funny-looking, tree-dwelling, prehensile-tailed porcupine from Central and South America. They are large rodents with an odor reminiscent of human BO (not everyone’s cup of tea), and that might be why they’ll never surge in popularity. In addition to that, they need a large and tall enclosure, being arboreal creatures.
Agoutis are rodents from South America that swim very well. Agoutis live in monogamous pairs just like maras and are sometimes kept as pets.
These magnificent animals resemble cats crossed with ferrets but are neither; however, they are relatives to both, being feliforms. These animals can be skittish, and they will not hesitate to scale their owner’s body as though its a tree to escape from “danger.” They deceptively look like cats, so unfortunately, they are often given up when they fail to behave like one.
These tiny antelope species have been kept as pets in the past, but today they seem to have left the pet trade. When they were sold a few years ago, they have fetched a hefty $6000 price tag, though I’d say it’s worth it.
This bear-looking creature is also called a “bearcat,” but it is a viverrid, like the spotted genet. They are famous for smelling like popcorn, and despite their size, they can be surprisingly gentle.
Pictured above is a white, or leucistic raccoon dog (also called tanuki). The normal-colored animal has an uncanny resemblance to a typical raccoon, but it is a canid from East Asia. They are one of the few federally banned species in the United States, but they are often kept in Europe.
The prevost squirrel is stunningly beautiful; many people find their coloration hard to believe, but it is all natural. They also make decent pets, for a squirrel. Being a member of these active rodents, they require large housing and a lot of enrichment, but captive-bred babies can be very human-friendly. These days, these Asiatic squirrels are getting hard to find.
While this animal resembles a marmot or some other common rodent, the fascinating thing about hyraxes is that they are the closest living relative to elephants. They are also related to manatees. These quick little mammals actually have small “‘tusks” tucked away in their mouth, and they have a gestation period of about 7 to 8 months! These animals are not commonly held as pets, but opportunities to get them do exist.
Tayras are in the weasel family, and they are kept as pets in very limited numbers. They are not readily available because they breed poorly in captivity and are also challenging animals to work with if they are going to have human interaction. They are found in Central and South America in the wild.
Many people are familiar with native Virginia opossums and short-tailed opossums which are relatively common exotic pets, but four-eyed opossums are less common. They are larger than short-tails and are more difficult to breed in captivity. Other than that, they can make reasonable pets.
Also called a striped polecat, these skunk-looking animals are a member of the weasel family. Despite not being skunks, these animals still use a foul-smelling spray as a defense mechanism. Skunks are
While they look more like spotted genets, they are actually related to raccoons. People who don’t live in western states are usually unfamiliar with ring-tailed cats in general and certainly that they can be kept as pets. Today, their populations in the pet trade are dwindling, but a few years ago captive-bred babies were offered for sale and reportedly made reasonable pets. Being native animals, they are banned in many states, including those which have ‘lenient’ exotic pet laws like North Carolina and Nevada.
Kinkajous are somewhat popular in the exotic pet trade and they received some exposure after an unfortunate incident where celebrity Paris Hilton was injured by one she illegally possessed as a pet (in California, where few exotic pets aside from reptiles are legal). Many kinkajou owners report that aggression with this species is unpredictable, and “attacks” can occur despite their otherwise affectionate demeanor.
They look like large worms, but they are actually strange amphibians. You are unlikely to see anyone owning these because they are very hard to breed and care for, but some adventurous and advanced keepers have managed wild-caught specimens. An even more limited number of people have bred certain species.
Red River Hog
These pigs are typically kept in zoos, but a few breeders exist and offer them to the public. They hail from Africa and have striking coloration. A captive-bred baby can sell for thousands of dollars.
A paca is yet another large South American rodent that few have heard of. They have spots just like a baby deer and can weigh up to 26 pounds, so this is not a pet for a guinea pig enclosure. Like the agouti, they are also good swimmers.
This name might strike fear in rat haters hearts, but these animals actually make good pets, just like domesticated rats. Unfortunately, their importation was banned along with several other African rodents after an embargo on them resulted from a monkey pox scare in 2003, but they are still kept as pets in Europe. In Africa, they’ve even been trained to help detect land mines and tuberculosis.
Asian Palm Civet
Asian palm civets are viverrids that are about the size of a house cat. They are famous for the strange use of their droppings in expensive coffee called Kopi Luwak, where they are often incorrectly described as being a cat. In a Dutch study of various exotic pets, they were actually declared to be one of the best pets along with Sitka deer, wallabies, and llamas.
These incredibly strange little rodents are some of the few bipedal mammals in the world. They are hard to breed in captivity, and most pets in the U.S. were wild-caught imports, so when the 2003 embargo on African rodents took place, they disappeared from private captivity. They are still kept in Europe.
This African primate might be better known by its other name “bush baby.” They are nocturnal animals that have the unpleasant habit of rubbing their hands with their own urine. Being primates, they are illegal in most states.
Fennec foxes are pretty well-known animals and are prevalent in the trade of exotic mammals, but the slightly larger bat-eared foxes, also from Africa, are much less common. Unlike fennec foxes, they are primarily insectivores. There are very few breeders of these animals.
Capybaras are the largest rodents in the world, and while they are enjoying immense popularity in Japan, many people in the United States are still not so familiar with them. These enormous guinea pig relatives are semi-aquatic and require a pool of water to swim in.
Palawan porcupines have recently been introduced into the American pet trade and are less common than the others, such as the African crested. They have more of a musk rat appearance. Porcupines can be interactive and surprisingly affectionate, just be sure to pet them “along the grain” so that you don’t get poked.
Many people are not aware of tenrecs, a species that resembles a hedgehog but they are actually not even closely related. Tenrecs have some of the lowest body temperatures for a mammal, and they can hibernate in captivity. Tenrecs are substantially more expensive than hedgehogs, about $1000 compared to $50-$300.
What the heck is this thing? It’s a beautiful sea cucumber, which is an echinoderm like sea stars. Few people keep these unusual animals because should they die, their toxins will kill everything in the aquarium. Therefore, they are kept in tanks alone, called species-specific tanks. Sea cucumbers are also challenging to feed because they filter the sea water. They require a specialized diet and a mature tank with live rock.
Springhaas is an Afrikaans name; they are also called springhares in the Western world. Like jerboa, these are strange bipedal rodents, and they are unfortunately rare in the pet trade in the United States due to the 2003 African rodent embargo. However, a teeny number, perhaps just one, breeder exists, and they are slowly being reintroduced. They are challenging for even zoos to breed.
If Patagonian maras are uncommon for people to have heard of, Chacoan maras are even worse. They are a much smaller, less common mara species (there are only 2) in the pet trade. Unlike Patagonians, they are small enough to easily be house pets, but not unlike guinea pigs, their cages need to be constantly cleaned.
Tailless whip scorpions, or vinegaroons are arachnids that are kept as pets in the arthropod trade. They are not actually scorpions. When disturbed, they can shoot a very strong smelling acetic acid spray. Their enclosures require deep substrate, and they can tolerate some handling, although they do have a painful but non-venomous bite.
These are South American non-domesticated cats that aren’t larger than your house cat. They have beautiful spots and are very quick on their feet. Hybrids of Geoffroy’s cats and domestic cats are called safari cats. They are one of the less common small exotic cats kept as pets (after servals, bobcats, and caracals).
Common snake-necked turtles are strange-looking aquatic animals that are rare in the pet trade as they are difficult to breed. As one can guess, their long neck prevents them from being able to pull their head into their shell. They can emit a foul-smelling liquid that smells like skunk from their musk glands when threatened. Their care is complex.
This raccoon, native to Central and South America, has been recently imported and has become available to private owners in small numbers. As the name suggests, they eat crustaceans but also foods like fruit, amphibians, and eggs. They are more arboreal (tree-dwelling) than North American raccoons.
While it looks like a rat, the bettong is a marsupial, like the wallaby that it also resembles (it is also called a rat-kangaroo). They are also native to Australia where they are critically endangered. Due to this, they cannot be sold over state lines in the United States due to the Endangered Species Act, but they are still privately owned.
Pom Pom Anemone Crab
This adorable crab is used as a member of community marine aquariums. It gets its name from the tiny anemones that it carries and waves at predators, causing it to resemble a cheerleader with pom poms. This endearing trait makes it a fine choice for tanks with peaceful fish and invertebrates.
Most people haven’t heard of the name “tamandua” but they have heard of giant anteaters. These are lesser anteaters and they have complex dietary requirements that are difficult for the average person to provide.
Many mongoose species are banned in the U.S., but the cusimanse are a dwarf species that are not. Like many other animals people haven’t heard of, breeders of these animals are hard to come by.
The very rare but stunning-looking marbled polecat is a ferret-like animal that in the past was kept to control rodents in Kabul. They’ve been available on exotic pet selling websites in the past but are presumably extremely hard to track down today.
These strange eels are not commonly kept and very difficult to care for, but putting in the effort and setting up their complex environment (they require a very deep sand bed so they can form their holes from which they stick out of) is well worth it. Another challenge of keeping garden eels is getting them to eat. They capture food that the ocean current sweeps their way.
African Jungle Cat
These animals are slightly larger than domestic cats, but do very much resemble them. They are often hybridized with regular cats, and the resulting animals are simply called “jungle cats.” Like many other exotic cats and exotic cat hybrids, they are known to be ‘dog-like’ with their behavior.
Degus are not rare in the pet trade by any means, but the majority of people have never heard of them. They look like gerbils, but are more similar to chinchillas. They are inexpensive and can be cared for with more typical small pet requirements. Unlike many small pet rodents, they are diurnal.
New Guinea Singing Dog
These dogs are genetically the same as dingoes and are also a subspecies of the wolf. They are still considered to be a ‘wild’ species of canine, however. They are thus named due to their melodious howl. A recent study indicated that there is no evidence that the captive population of singers descended from wild-living populations. These animals are kept as pets, and they were even featured on Animal Planet’s Dogs 101.
This raccoon relative from South America possesses great dexterity. They are popular animals within the exotic pet trade despite their size and complicated enrichment needs.
Pet tarantulas can be quite the handful.
They mightWhile these supercharged spiders may not be your typical family pet, plenty of intrepid arachnophiles disagree — and it’s perfectly legal for them own tarantulas in many states.