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Things to Consider Before Adopting an Exotic Cat

March 15, 2021

Have you alwa ys dreamed of having an exotic cat, such as a lion or tiger, for a pet? This sounds great in theory, but in practice, owning a large cat can be expensive, time-consuming, and even dangerous. While you can find exotic cats for sale, you should definitely think twice before buying one. A vet lists some things to think about before adopting a big cat below. 


Space

The typical housecat can do just fine in a smaller home, such as an apartment or condo. Exotic cats, however, are bigger and more energetic, and require a lot of room to run and play. You may need to build a fairly sizable enclosure for your pet. Keep in mind that a cat won’t be happy in a bare cage. You’ll need to provide your pet with plenty of furniture and toys.


Price

Exotic cats are expensive, and can cost thousands of dollars. The exact price range will vary, depending on the type of kitty you are getting. Mid-sized kitties, like Servals, go from about $1700 – $3000. Ocelots can cost up to $15,000, while tiger cubs (which are now illegal to buy or sell in many places) can cost $7500.


Laws 

The laws on owning exotic pets vary wildly from place to place. For example, Savannah cats are illegal 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 to consider if you think that you may eventually move to another area. 


Veterinary Care

Another thing that is crucial is finding a good veterinarian that is experienced with exotic cats. Most—if not all—veterinarians have been thoroughly trained to provide care for domestic cats. Exotic cats, however, have different needs, and require additional training. 


Ethics

We understand the appeal of exotic cats. They’re beautiful, unique, and fascinating. There’s also a glamorous aspect to them. Unfortunately, many big cats just aren’t well-suited to being pets. This goes for kitties, too. Consider donating to a reputable rescue instead.


Behavior

If you’re thinking that an exotic cat will act more or less like a giant housecat, think again. Some don’t take to using litterboxes, while others just dislike being handled. For example, ocelots really don’t enjoy domestication, and tend to ignore commands … even more than the average housecat does.


Compromise

There is another option. You may want to consider a Bengal, or a Cheetoh cat. 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 today! We’re always here to help .

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