Animal Welfare 101: How to Raise Unique Pets Such as Amphibians, Cats, Dogs, Fish, Reptiles, and More From A to Z

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I think we’ve all walked into a pet store of some kind and been sold a pet as “easy.” The real issue is, some of these pets aren’t just difficult, they are sometimes completely recommended against as pets. Very few people would be silly enough to bring home a lion, it’s obviously too big and demanding. However, unethical stores sell us red tail catfish, common plecos, baby large-sized turtles, and iguanas without batting an eye.

Iguanas often become giant and aggressive. We’re learning more and more about how much care and space an iguana truly needs, and that they’re rarely a good fit for a home.

Large turtles can outlive their keepers and demand specialized care. They will also outgrow nearly an enclosure you can think to offer them. Turtles and tortoises are rarely small and short lived, and even small ones can outlive their keepers. However, this isn’t often something discussed in a big chain store, even if it’s common knowledge among reptile keepers.

Red tail cats can grow to human sizes: nearly 6 ft (1.8m) long and nearly 180lb (80kg). If you ever look up a picture of a red tail cat, you will see people in boats who are sometimes struggling to hold such a large fish. It has no business in a small aquarium.

The common pleco is just too large for many aquariums full sized since its max size is most every dimension, makes a big mess, and works less as it grows larger. Many people do not realize that a pleco grows in all dimensions.

These high care, giant growing creatures can fit into the home of very few, but we aren’t told that when we purchase them.

Once they’re home, they’re our responsibility.

This book aims to teach beginners how to consider these things and what types of questions to ask when admiring a pet and considering bringing it home.

It helps you to see how think like those who have great success with pets that they don’t mind keeping. Once you decide what kind of enclosure you would like to keep, you will often find you didn’t want the lizard in the shop at all. It can also help you to think in terms of whether or not you’re OK with feeding your pet mice.

On the topic of cats and dogs, we briefly cover how to choose what kind of cat or dog to choose and how to care for it once it is home. When we’re face to face with a cat or dog, we’re not often given the time to consider if it truly is a good fit for us, and rarely given the chance to learn how to consider if it will be at all.

Given the chance to learn how to choose, care for, and thrive with a pet, most of us would always make the right choice. This book is a crash course in how to make these choices and provide the best home that we can for our future loved ones.

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