Are you considering getting a reptile? Reptiles can make absolutely wonderful pets. However, it’s important to do plenty of research before adopting one, so you know exactly what you’re in for. Read on as a local Scottsdale, AZ vet lists some of the most common mistakes reptile owners make.

Miscalculating Size

This one probably won’t be much of a surprise. Unfortunately, there have been far too many cases of people adopting young snakes, not realizing how big their pets will get. In Florida, this has led to the release of many huge anacondas, who are now thriving in—and seriously disrupting—the Everglades’ fragile ecosystem.

Cheap Equipment

In order to keep your pet’s home at the right conditions, you’ll need to get some special equipment. This definitely isn’t something to skimp on!

Buying On Impulse

We know, it’s easy to walk through a pet store and fall for a cute face. However, reptiles need a lot of care and good TLC. Adopting one is a lifetime commitment, so be sure you know what you are signing up for!

Not Replacing Lightbulbs

Many reptiles need specific lighting to thrive. Those UVB bulbs don’t last forever! In fact, they get worn out and weaken long before they stop working. Replace your bulbs regularly.

Poor Substrate/Habitat Conditions

Be sure to choose the right type of substrate for your scaled buddy. For example, baby lizards can get very sick if they ingest sand or small pebbles.

Wild-Caught Food

Another common mistake is giving pets bugs from the wild. These are much more likely to make your pet sick, as they may be carrying parasites and/or diseases.

Not Monitor Conditions

Even the best-kept tank or terrarium is prone to fluctuations in heat and humidity. This can be very dangerous to reptiles. Check your levels daily.

Getting In Over Their Heads

Be sure to do plenty of research before buying a reptile. If you’ve never had a reptile before, opt for one that is gentle and easy to care for.

Not Buying Responsible

Always get your reptiles from a reputable store or breeder. Some sellers unfortunately shirk laws against importing wild animals. This not only damages ecosystems and wildlife populations, it’s also very sad for the animals. Wild-caught reptiles rarely do well in captivity.

Do you have questions about caring for a pet reptile? Contact us, your local Scottsdale, AZ vet clinic, today!