Keeping a Snake as a Pet? Here are the Important Factors You Need to Know

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

Some types of snakes can be kept as pets. In fact, snakes are fast becoming some of the most popular animals kept as pets. Most snakes make good pets because they are surprisingly docile and easy to take care of. These animals are naturally clean, virtually odorless, and are quiet. Other than pythons and boas, snakes do not require regular feeding so keeping a pet snake is inexpensive too. That said, there are several factors you need to consider first before getting your first pet snake:

Lifespan and Breeds

There are about 2,900 snake species found all over the world. They differ in size, color, temperaments, and natural habitats. Not all types of snakes can be kept as pets. It is important to learn what species of snake make great pets by researching and consulting with a veterinarian.

Some snakes can grow to 25 feet while others grow no more than a foot. Snakes have a very long lifespan ranging from 25 to 30 years. Of course, the longevity of your pet snake depends on its breed and its environment. Your pet snake will live a long time as long as you care for it properly.

Proper Housing

Just like any type of pets, snakes require proper housing too. We recommend using an aquarium to keep your pet snake. Snakes are very slim, limber, and they can slither away in regular cages. An aquarium has no holes that the snake can escape to. You want the aquarium to have a lid that latches securely on top of the containment. Add bedding or substrate to create an ideal living space for your pet snake.


Apart from using an aquarium as proper housing, snakes need precise habitats to survive. The cage must have proper lighting because reptiles utilize sunlight to heat their bodies. Using an artificial light that produces a day and night cycle works great to maintain an even temperature of 80 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 75 degrees and above at night. You can also use under-cage heaters and heat lamps to maintain an ideal temperature for your pet. Never use hot rocks or you will burn your pet snake!

That said; some snakes require warmers temps while others need cooler temps. To be on the safe side, consult with your vet.

Diet and Feeding

Unlike other animals, reptiles do not require frequent feeding. Snakes are carnivores. Their diet includes small insects, amphibians, rodents, and birds. If you are squeamish, caring for a snake might not be the best choice for you. Snakes need meat to survive.

However, never feed pet snakes live prey. This practice is cruel to the prey animal and dangerous to the snake. The prey animal could fight back and bite the snake. If the snake is sick or it is not warm enough, chewing on a life prey is difficult.


As mentioned earlier in this post, snakes live a long time. As such, you need to make sure you are ready for the commitment. Before getting a snake, consider your ability and dedication to caring for such a special animal. If you are unsure that you can care for a snake, do not get one. As long as the snake is properly taken care of, you can bet that it will be with you for years to come!