3 things to consider before adopting an exotic pet

According to recent research from the British Veterinary Association (BVA), eight in ten (81%) of vets are worried about the welfare of ‘exotic’ pets.

This is because non-traditional companion animals (NTCAs), such as amphibians, birds and reptiles have complex needs which are not always fully understood by pet owners.

As a result, the BVA is asking the public not to rush into adopting an exotic pet without taking everything into consideration.

In this article, we offer a brief overview of the factors to consider before bringing a new companion home…

  1. Environmental needs

From dietary needs, to providing a suitable environment – unorthodox pets require a lot of attention to keep them healthy. Despite pet owners’ best intentions, the data collected suggests that ‘irresponsible animal ownership’ is one of the leading factors for animals being admitted to the vets. Therefore, it is vital that people are realistic about whether they can provide a safe space for their desired pet, before making any haste decisions.

  1. Cost

Next, prospective pet owners must consider the price tag that comes with owning and maintaining the health of an exotic friend. Primates, for example, require specific lighting, heating or UV which can rack up those energy bills pretty fast. Make sure this is something you remind your clients of next time they enquire about adopting a new pet. This is especially pertinent amidst the cost of living crisis, with gas and electricity prices still on the rise.

  1. Veterinary services

It is also important to note that some NTCAs need specialist veterinary care, which is not always accessible in the UK. Obviously, it would be extremely cruel to adopt a pet with the knowledge that there is nowhere to go if it becomes ill – so tell potential buyers to do their research!

Over the last year, vets have reported a 26% increase in the number of ‘exotic’ animals being brought in for treatment.

We hope you found this article helpful – don’t forget to inform your clients about the level of responsibility that comes with owning a NTCA!

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