Why You Don’t Want A Wild Animal As A Pet

While some people think raccoons and other wild animals are cute and cuddly, others see them as mischievous troublemakers. You might be tempted to keep one as a pet if you side with the former. After all, they are intelligent and display impressive problem-solving skills. Unfortunately, though wild animals can be playful and even affectionate toward humans, keeping one as a short or long-term pet is unwise under most circumstances. Even former President Calvin Coolidge adopted a family raccoon instead of eating it for Thanksgiving dinner as initially intended.

Is It Legal To Own A Raccoon As A Pet In Missouri?

Before attempting to procure one as a pet, you must first consider the possible legal ramifications. Legality regarding wild animals varies by state, with only 16 allowing pet raccoon. In Missouri, it is against the law to care for the one you find in the wild; however, you can lawfully purchase one from a reputable breeder if you are willing to part with a hefty chunk of cash. According to online ads, they can cost up to $400. As for other wild animals, the Missouri legislature is strict and clear. Keeping one as a pet is considered a class C misdemeanor, and the law covers a variety of species such as coyotes, poisonous reptiles, and bobcats.

Do Exotic Animals Make Good Pets?

So, it is possible to acquire a trash panda legally, but does that mean you should? Chances are, the answer is a perspicuous no. You can find many cute stories shared on social media, like the heartwarming friendship between a Missouri dog and raccoon buddy that will tempt you to adopt one as the newest addition to your household. Unfortunately, such accounts are few and far between. Most of the time, the pet experiment simply ends in disaster.

Though they may look sweet and lovable, they are still wild animals and behave as such. They are particularly prone to unpredictable bouts of aggressive behavior. For example, they can be playful one minute and attempt to deliver a vicious bite the next. Despite having an affectionate relationship with their pet raccoon named Rebecca, President Coolidge and his family had to separate and contain her numerous times because of her violent outbursts and destructive behaviors. They are also known for scratching caretakers with sharp claws, including their favorite people. Since they can carry rabies and other dangerous diseases, breaking the skin constitutes a valid health concern. Therefore, people with young children or other vulnerable pets should be especially wary.

Additionally, most pet owners are duly unprepared for the special attention required to take proper care of them. As with most wild animals, maintaining a specific diet is crucial to their health, and unlike domesticated pets, they have not evolved with tame attributes. As a result, they do not form emotional attachments to their owners though it may appear that way. Moreover, they have independent and inquisitive personalities. Though they can be house and litter-trained, cages are typically inadequate for their exploratory needs. Much like human babies, they require constant entertainment and supervision. Otherwise, they will not hesitate to cause a ruckus, chewing on wires, cords, and furniture.

Do Other Wild Animals Make Good Pets?

Like raccoons, most wild animals have unique needs that can be challenging to accommodate. Though caring for a baby animal might be manageable, it will often become too much to handle once they become adults, as is the case in wolves, bears, and big cats. Animals that appear timid, like opossums, sugar gliders, and armadillos, aren’t. Most importantly, you should not take an animal from the wild and bring it inside your home unless you are a licensed and trained wildlife rehabilitator. If you are aware of the risks associated with caring for a wild animal and feel adequately prepared to do so, make sure you obtain the required licensing and training to provide proper care before adoption. And even then, keep in mind that there is a risk that your pet could become dangerous no matter how good-natured they might seem.

Professional Wildlife Services In Missouri

If you find a raccoon or wild animal on your property, resist the temptation to bring it inside. Most wild animals are undeniably high-maintenance and too much to handle for all but the most dedicated pet owners. Instead, contact your local wildlife control company to have them properly removed. Advanced Wildlife Control is licensed, insured, and 100% prepared to help you with your wildlife control needs. We specialize in both removal and exclusion, servicing residents of Augusta, MO, and the surrounding areas. Contact us today to learn more about our comprehensive wildlife services.

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