A exotic pet is a rare or unusual animal which is kept as a pet. It is kept in human households but is relatively unusual or usually thought of as a wild animal rather than as a pet.
"Exotic" often refers to a species which is not native (indigenous) to where the owner lives, or an animal that isnt typically kept as a pet (unlike cats or dogs). "Pet" is a companion animal living with people.
Some animals kept as exotic pets
A wide variety of animals have been kept as pets. Below is a list of some animals that are kept in captivity at home and are thought to be "exotic". Where examples are provided within a category, the examples are the animals that are relatively commonly kept as pets in captivity at home within that category (although mice and parakeets may not really be considered very "exotic").
- Arachnids (e.g., tarantulas, scorpions, and vinegaroons)
- Dolphins and porpoises
- Frogs and toads (e.g., African bullfrogs, Argentine horned frogs, and fire-bellied toads)
- Insects (e.g., crickets, stick insects, Hercules beetles, Madagascar hissing cockroaches, and praying mantises)
- Lagomorphs (e.g. rabbits and hares)
- Lizards (e.g., bearded dragons, blue-tongued skinks, chameleons, day geckos, iguanas, monitor lizards, frilled dragon lizard, leopard geckos, and tegus)
- Marsupials (e.g., wallabies, wallaroos, koalas, wombats and possums such as sugar gliders)
- Myriapods (e.g., millipedes)
- Non-domesticated and hybrid canids (e.g., wolf-dog hybrids, fennec foxes, domesticated red foxes, and raccoon dogs)
- Non-domesticated and hybrid cats (e.g., Asian leopard cats, Bengal cats, caracals, chausies, savannah cats)
- Parrots (e.g., African grays, Amazon parrots, caiques, cockatiels, cockatoos, conures, eclectus parrots, lories, lorikeets, lovebirds, macaws, parakeets, and parrotlets)
- Primates (e.g. galagos (bush babies) and monkeys such as squirrel monkeys and capuchins as pictured above)
- Procyonids (e.g. raccoons, kinkajous and coatimundis)
- Raptors (e.g., falcons and hawks)
- Rodents (e.g., capybaras, chinchillas, fancy rats, gerbils, dormice, guinea pigs, hamsters, mice, Patagonian cavies, and squirrels)
- Salamanders (e.g., axolotls and tiger salamanders)
- Sharks and other fishes
- Snakes (e.g., ball pythons, boa constrictors, king snakes, rat snakes)
- Tortoises and other turtles (e.g., Greek tortoises, Hermann's tortoises, Russian tortoises, painted turtles, and red-eared sliders)
- ↑ "A framework for assessing the suitability of different species as companion animals, Appendix C"; Animal Welfare 2000, 9:359-372, p. 360 pet animal, as defined by the European Convention for the Protection of Pet Animals (Council of Europe 1987) as: animals sharing man's companionship and in particular living in his household.