The definition of an exotic pet is ever-evolving. Fish, rabbits, rodents, and birds have become so commonplace that they are no longer considered exotic. Non-traditional pets such as hamsters, guinea pigs, tropical fish, parakeets, gerbils, bearded dragons, hedgehogs, and ferrets are now regulated and have been kept as pets for many years. These animals have been raised by humans for generations but are not considered domesticated.
When considering an exotic pet, it is important to do your research and understand the commitment involved. Some of these animals can live longer than cats and dogs, so having an exotic pet can be a long-term commitment. Additionally, talking to a veterinarian who specializes in exotic pets is a great source of dietary recommendations. An exotic animal is one that is wild but from a different continent than the one you live in. It is also important to make distinctions between wild animals, exotic animals, and non-traditional pets.
The words “exotic” and “wild” are often used interchangeably, but they are not the same when it comes to pets. On the other end of the spectrum, some exotic species are only kept for display purposes (i.e., some reptiles, amphibians, birds, and fish).Finding the right food for your exotic pet can be difficult as pet stores often stock a variety of foods that may not be healthy options for them. If you have any specific questions about whether a certain exotic pet is suitable for your home, don't hesitate to ask your veterinarian.