Have you always dreamed of having an exotic cat, such as a lion or tiger, for a pet? This may sound very glamorous in theory. However, the reality may not be as appealing. While you can find exotic cats for sale, you should definitely think twice before buying one. A local vet lists a few things to think about below.
Exotic cats are quite expensive. They can actually cost thousands of dollars. The exact price will vary on the type of kitty you are getting. Mid-sized cats, such as Servals and Savannahs, may range from about $1700 to $3000. An ocelot can go for as much as $15,000, while tiger cubs (which are now illegal in many places) can cost $7500.
Your typical housecat will do just fine in a smaller home, such as an apartment. Exotic cats, however, are bigger and more energetic, and need much more room. You may need to build a fairly sizable enclosure for your pretty pet. Keep in mind that a cat won’t be happy in a bare pen or a small cage. You’ll need to provide plenty of furniture and toys, as well as greenery, such as trees and bushes.
The laws on owning exotic pets vary wildly, depending on where you are. For example, Savannah cats are illegal for people to own in several states, but not in others. If you have an HOA, you may also need to look at their regulations. This is also something for you to consider if you think you may eventually move to another area.
Another thing that is crucial is finding a good veterinarian that is experienced with exotic cats. Most—if not all—veterinarians are well-trained when it comes to providing care for domestic cats. Exotic cats, however, have different needs.
We understand the appeal for exotic pets: they’re absolutely beautiful, unique, and fascinating. Unfortunately, many of them just aren’t well-suited to captivity. This goes for kitties, too. Consider donating to a reputable rescue instead.
If you’re thinking that an exotic cat will act like a giant housecat, well, you may want to think again. Some don’t take to litterboxes, while others dislike being handled. For example, ocelots really don’t enjoy domestication. They tend to ignore commands … even more than the average housecat does.
Still debating? You may want to consider a Bengal. While these adorable, charismatic kitties are considered exotic, they’re no bigger than the average housecat, and they have tons of charisma!
Do you have questions about your cat’s health or care? Contact us, your local vet clinic in Waterdown, ON!