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ethics of exotic pet keeping

How exotic pets can be kept in an ethical way






- Not keeping wild caught animals- promotes unsustainable trade- Transportation stress- Not adapted to UK climate


- Licenses for all exotics even more 'basic' or common pets eg bearded dragons- Requirements varying depending on needs of species- May vary from compulsory courses to house inspections


- Greater presence of exotic vets- Many people live too far from exotic vets or find them too expensive- Could feed into licensing, have to be made aware of common illnesses to look out for

- Better promotion of exotic pet needs to prevent impulse buying- Pet shops and breeders should inform of these and what to do if owners cant meet their pets needs


In summary, exotic pets should be allowed to be kept but only those who can be suitably housed and only by those who can effectively meet their needs.

How can legislation change help this?

Currently only species that are most at risk require paperwork to be sold which can be checked by potential buyers. This could be changed to apply to all exotic pets so owners can ensure the sources are trustworthy - sellers not providing this paperwork can then be reported to reduce illegal and unsustainable trade.

The sale of wild caught exotic pets in the UK is currently prohibited however many pet shops still engage in this practice illegaly and openly admit this to customers. Could enforce a 'mystery shopper' style scheme as in hospitality to ensure legislation compliance

Could set up sections within local councils repsonsible for overseeing the sale and keeping of exotic pets. This could employ people to conduct housing assessments of those with exotic pets to ensure the animals requirements are being met, and suggest improvements. Important as some keep species that are illegal or impossible to house correctly in homes, such as keeping crocodiles in lofts.

Morphs of retiles that are linked to health issues should be banned, such as scaleless snakes who cannot thermoregulate easily and are prone to burning and morphs in which poor genetic health is implicated for example 'translucent' bearded dragons who are prone to seizures and neurological issues