Hi all,

A little over a year ago, I decided was the right time for me to get a reptile. I'd wanted one for years before, but since I moved out of my mothers home and got a place with my girlfriend, I thought that was the right time.

I did lots of research to find out what animal would be best for me and every other implications a pet like this would have, and I've never looked back. Infact, i'm now about to purchase a new lizard. I've had two Bearded Dragons, and now i'll be getting an Australian Water Dragon, possibly a snake eventually.

So what do you have?

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Been wanting to get a python for a while.  The wife is decidedly opposed.  I'll probably wait 'til we move and I can keep it in the garage.  I'm not such an ass that I'll make her uncomfortable in her own home.

JB

I have had a ball python since college. I love it and he's going on 20yrs old now. I had him when I met my wife. She also hated him and hoped he would die soon but it's been 10 yrs for her being around him and she tolerates him well. I had a beautiful red tailed boa but he died. Reptiles do make the best pets.

What do you feed a python?  Mice?  Crickets?

JB

Mice/rats. Dead or alive depending on what the animal is used to. 

Id love a snake, my girlfriend is a little uneasy around them so ill put a hold on that. Although we do know a guy who's a breeder of large snakes and always has them around. He has the only private license in the UK to own and display anacondas, pretty fascinating guy. 

The wife is decidedly opposed.

Just goes to show you there is no accounting for taste. My wife really enjoys my anaconda.

Oh, wait...

I live in an area that has a very rare rattlesnake (Sistrurus Miliarius Miliarius) sometimes called a "Carolina" or "Hyde county" pygmy Rattlesnake. It's a brightly colored genetic variation on the Dusky Pygmy (Sistrurus Barbouri). This got me into herpetology when I was a preteen and by the time I was in my actual teens, I was an active exotic pets dealer with my uncle. I was a southern redneck version of Steve Irwin without the good looks or charm. 

 I kept snakes (mostly hots) until I was in my mid 20s' when I just kinda got tired of it. My pride and joy was a Crotalus Horridus Horridus (Canebrake rattlesnake) I named Maxdeth that I raised from birth. He maxed out at 68 inches and 10 pounds (not an unusual length or weight for one hand raised, though by wild standards he would be considered an absolute monster). I used to have a lot of fun with new people to my apartment by reaching right in his cage without any form of protection to change his water bowl or even touch him. But he was pretty easy going since he was raised by hand, and I knew the animal well enough that his body posture and head movements signaled to me when I could and could not go poking around in his cage. If he followed by site my hand and used very rapid head movements to do so, I knew he was really not in the mood to be dicked around with (or it was time to feed him). My second best was a hand raised Savannah Monitor that I had for years and years. He got so big that I eventually just let him run loose in my bedroom with a corner of the room dedicated to his stuff (water bowl, two large heat pads, a sunlight on a timer). It looked like I had a baby Godzilla running loose in the room.

 But I have had many many many many rattlesnakes and every version of local reptile you can possibly think of, several cobras (though I never technically owned one, I was just facilitating the sale of them), monitors of every kind, one Theraphosa Blondi (Suriname Goliath Bird Eating Spider) , Bushmasters, you name it. 

  Unfortunately for me, most of my most enjoyed animals are no longer legal. 

Sound like some amazing reps. This will be my third one, but I can see im already on a slippery slope anx will be getting more!

One of the things that annoys me though, is when I tell people and they look confused and say 'but what does it do??' What a daft question. Its not like a cat or dog, you have to provide their habitat, their heat, their light, the right kinda food and supplements. They completely rely on you, which gives me great satisfaction when I see them thrive in it.

That's quite a story.  I don't mind snakes at all ... but I'm inclined to skip over the venomous ones.  Never known anybody that owned rattlesnakes.  Or cobras.  Might be worth doing just for the story.

 

I have watched a documentary or two about hillbilly serpent-handler churches.  Lots of pastors die at those places ... so, it wasn't a very good advertisement for venomous snake ownership.  Didn't work out too well for the dude on Justified, either.

 

JB

The best was when I had a columbian ground squirrel. Looked like a cross between a squirrel and a groundhog. I placed a very official looking tag on his cage that read "Caution: Argentinian Death Mongoose. Bite and dandruff causes plague. Disturb at your own risk". 

I'll be working on getting a red fox when I'm out of the military and back on my farm. 

You might have issues with that pesky 13th Amendment.

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