Matching the Right Reptile with Children


Dr. Dana Varble

Corn snakes can be a great first snake

On my national Steve Dale’s Pet World radio show, hear chief veterinary officer of the North American Veterinary Community  Dr. Dana Varble talk about pet reptiles, which are especially popular at this time of year as the little boy or girl might very much be determined to get a pet lizard or snake.

A reptile can be a great first pet, she says. “Of course, the parents have got to be in on it” as she notes as this is a commitment of many years. You not only need to be aware of initial costs, such as a large aquarium but also what that animal will need to eat which may to purchase dead mice or live insects. Too gross for you? Understood, but then maybe not the pet for you.

Dr. Varble points out that many children are absolutely devoted to understanding what the pet reptile species of choices requires, and are dedicated long-term with an intense human animal bond. For other children, it’s more of a spontaneous idea – what seems to be cool at the time to do but that commitment to caring for a lizard or snake wains quickly. No matter, ultimately responsibility for care falls on the shoulders of adults.

Dr. Varble talks about her choices of “starter lizards” or “starter snake” species which make a great first pet, as well as pet tortoises.