Kangaroos are among the most interesting and surely very unique animals. What you might not know about them is that they are a very popular choice when it comes to people looking for a new pet. This article will give you some info about general pet kangaroo care and things you should really keep in mind when bringing one home.
According to the Kangaroo Protection Coalition, gray and red kangaroos are usually kept as pets in the United States and Canada. These varieties are also available for sale for wildlife parks and zoos. A sad fact is that due to the fact that these animals are usually kept restrained in very small spaces, some reports show that their lifespan is very limited in captivity. These animals will easily develop some very severe diseases related to stress and you will find a very limited number of veterinarians overseas that will know how to treat them.
You should never mix kangaroos or wallabies with other domestic animals; they can’t be housetrained regardless of how much you try. They are also very vulnerable to diseases that other animals might have. Kangaroos and wallabies are very social creatures and will need others of their own for a healthy and happy life. They also require a big area full of grass to live in.
As you already know, these are animals coming from The Land Down Under. You’ve surely seen them on TV, jumping all around the arid, dry forests of Australia. They are really interesting creatures to watch, with very impressive leaps, great, long tails, and cute babies hanging in their pouches. More and more people are nowadays looking into getting one as a pet. Impressively enough, there are already a lot of homes that have them raised as domestic animals, just like dogs and cats, jumping all around the house and yard.
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If you have other pets, it will be very strange for them to see these animals jumping all around the house, although with time they can get used one to the other. But how much of a good idea is to domesticate kangaroos? Below you will find some things to make you understand whether a kangaroo is the pet you’re looking for.
A kangaroo is surely not cheap, considering that it is still an exotic animal. For the kangaroo alone, you will usually spend thousands of dollars. Buying the animal won’t be the only expense and you will also take into account getting a permit as well as buying the initial starter kit, which is usually sold by the breeder you buy the animal from, as well as general vaccinations, a cage, food, and future medical bills.
You will have to make sure you have the necessary funds before going on with the purchase. There are also some categories of permits that will need you to get emergency disaster arrangements. This is to prepare in the case the animal is injured in some type of disaster or goes wild and will usually be pretty expensive. Don’t bring a kangaroo home unless you are prepared to take in all of these costs.
The kangaroo is a pretty big animal, with a length of at least 6 feet, out of which around half will be the tail. This is why you will have to have a big area for it to hop and live in.
Clearly, this animal isn’t suited for apartment living. Having a kangaroo inside your house will mean seeing it jumping all around your kitchen counter, patio, dining table, sofa, bed, or any other surfaces big enough for it to jump on. This also means that you’ll see your precious exotic animal jumping on your dinner table and kicking your expensive crockery down. This is why it is vital for you to have enough patience and a lot of outside space for it to consume its energy.
Fencing is yet another very important necessity. A kangaroo has a pretty impressive jump. Even at moderate speeds, it can still jump 4 feet high and 15 feet forward. You will have to get a pretty impressive fence both in sturdiness and in height, to prevent the animal from hopping over it or knocking it down. This, of course, means additional work and an added cost you shouldn’t ignore. You should not only ensure it is sturdy enough, but also make sure it won’t hurt the animal trying to tackle it.
The kangaroo won’t just eat your leftovers. It will need a special feed that isn’t readily available in grocery stores or pet stores. You will have to look for places especially selling it and having it shipped to your address. The feed will also have to be delivered multiple times each year because the kangaroo is big enough to need large quantities of food a few times per day. Be prepared for some impressive costs for exotic feed for these exotic pets.
As soon as you become a kangaroo owner, you will notice that is very hard, almost impossible, for you to find a vet knowledgeable about these specific creatures. Most vets will have no idea about the basic health needs and emergency care of these animals considering that they are still considered rather uncommon pets and most of them live like wild animals. If you don’t have an emergency medical institution for pets somewhere close to you, then it really isn’t viable to keep this creature as a pet. Keeping an animal ill with no medical attention is unnecessary suffering, of course.
A Kangaroo is basically a part of the wild. Regardless of how much you try to train them, they will have an inherently non-domestic heart, which makes them really unpredictable. This means that you never know when the animal will lose control and just attack a member of the family or even a stranger getting a little too close.
These snaps are even more possible if the kangaroo doesn’t have enough outdoor time or if its emotional requirements are not met. Kangaroos are also very good at boxing. This means that you should always be prepared for a fistfight game with your pet, regardless of its mental state. People will tell you that you can actually train out this behavior if you get the pet young enough, but keep in mind that this is an inherent trait and a wild animal won’t forget these easily. Just keep in mind and accept this possible sudden change of behavior which for you might be unusual, but it’s totally normal for the animal while in the wild.
Keep in mind that there are some restrictions around keeping a kangaroo as a pet, but the actual laws will be different depending on the state. There are some states that completely prohibit keeping exotic pets at home, while some allow them but with some restrictions, and some will let you keep these animals in your home freely and with no restrictions. Below you will find some of the states that have specific laws, along with whether it is legal or illegal to own kangaroos as pets in those states.
As long as the future owner is able to get a valid permit, the state of South Carolina will allow them to keep a kangaroo as a pet at home. To get the actual permit, you will have to fulfill caging requirements and have a contingency plan for disaster prevention. It will be illegal to own a pet kangaroo if you don’t obtain the needed permit first.
Residents of Oklahoma state are allowed to keep kangaroos and they won’t need any licenses or permits to do so. Even though this animal is placed in the exotic creatures category, you are still allowed to keep one as a pet.
When it comes to Georgia, you should know that this state actually has some strict restrictions on keeping kangaroos as pets. As long as you don’t have a valid permit, you will be banned from purchasing, possessing, selling, transporting, transferring, and importing these animals. You will only be able to get a permit if you’re over the age of 18 and it will have to be issued by the USDA. Even so, keep in mind that it will usually be illegal to own this animal in this particular state.
Colorado on the other hand lets you, as a resident, own no more than 6 unregulated wildlife creatures and native reptiles. As for Kangaroos, they are part of the unregulated wildlife category. There are some restrictions around them and these involve trading or selling them, or using these animals for commercial purposes. Before getting exotic pets for these purposes you will have to get some special permits that have very complicated restrictions.
These are states with very specific laws for owning pet kangaroos. Even if you live in a state that isn’t on our list, it is better to check with your state and city for any laws that might affect your ability to own these animals as pets. You can even get help from your local animal department.