Are you interested in keeping a snake as a pet? Do you live in a small home that doesn’t have room for large snakes? Or would you prefer a small snake because they’re easier to handle? If you said yes to any of these questions, then you’ve come to the right place!
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the best small snakes that make great pets!
Why Have a Snake as a Pet?
Some people are highly interested in snakes and reptiles; however, keeping them as a pet should not be done lightly. That’s because owning a snake is a very important responsibility. Even so, snakes can make great pets.
Snakes may make excellent pets for those who are allergic to other types of animals. If you can’t have a dog, cat, bird, gerbil, etc., due to allergies, the type of pet you can have is very limited. But a snake might be a good choice for those who have allergies.
However, it’s important to note that it is possible to be allergic to snakes. Though rare, snakes carry proteins in their saliva and skin, just like other animals. These proteins are what cause an allergic reaction. So, keep that in mind if you do have allergies.
Another reason to choose a snake as a pet is because they can live in small spaces. Now, if you have a large snake, it will need to be housed in a larger tank. Still, snakes are great for smaller homes or apartments, where it may not be possible to have larger animals due to lack of space.
Snakes are quiet. Have you ever heard of a barking snake? While they may not bark, snakes may hiss, which is still much quieter than a bark!
You don’t have to take the snake out for exercise, which may be a great thing for families who have busy lifestyles. Snakes don’t make large messes that need to be cleaned up, either.
The only downside may be the snake’s diet. However, if you can get past that, then maybe a snake is the right pet for you!
Small Snakes That Make Great Pets
If you’re going to be a first-time pet parent to a snake, then it’s usually best to start off with a small snake. Smaller snakes are easier to take care of, for one thing. And they don’t need as much space as a larger snake.
We’ve put together a list of small snakes, which stay small and make great pets! Let’s get started!
1). Milk Snakes
The milk snake is a three-color snake that you may have seen at the pet shop. They’re extremely popular and grow to about 36 inches long. They’re beautifully colored in red, peach, black, and white. And feeding them is pretty easy. They can eat small frozen, thawed rodents you can buy at the pet shop.
These snakes can live for up to 15 years, so you’ll be taking on a long commitment. Some have even been known to live for 20 years!
What’s more, you can hold the milk snake; be warned, though, that they are quite squirmy. The good news is that they rarely bite once they’ve become socialized (used to being handled). However, they will put off an odor when they become frightened or stressed. With gentle handling, you won’t have to deal with this problem.
2). Corn Snakes
Corn snakes are another beautifully colored snake, and you’ll be happy to know they grow to somewhere between 3-5 ft as adults.
Corn snakes don’t move very fast, which makes them easier to handle. And they will eat frozen, thawed rodents. Some will even eat fresh raw chicken.
These snakes are docile and easy to handle, which makes them an excellent choice for first-time snake pet parents. However, because they are ground snakes, they will burrow. For this reason, you’ll need to keep a substrate in the snake’s cage to keep him comfortable.
3). Western Hognose Snake
The Western hognose snake is another snake that’s become popular in recent years. This is snake grows to be about three feet long, though some can reach four feet. When it comes to eating, these snakes are also not picky. They’ll gladly eat frozen, thawed rodents or even pieces of raw chicken.
When young, these snakes tend to be squirmy; however, as they become older and used to being handled, they’re easier to handle. And these snakes rarely bite. These snakes live an average of 10 years.
The Western hognose snake is pretty, with beige, brown, and white scales, with dark brown saddles. However, breeders have come up with new colors and patterns.
Two things to keep in mind: these snakes may hiss and strike; however, if they’re properly socialized, they’ll make a great pet.
4). African Ball Phyton
African Ball Pythons are considered to be very calm snakes, which are happy to wrap around you or even curl up into a ball in your lap. These snakes come in shades of white, black, brown, and beige, with spots and saddle patterns. However, through breeding, you’ll also find other colors and patterns. One interesting version of this snake is an albino.
African ball pythons can grow to anywhere between 3 feet and 5 feet long, and they can live for 25-30 years. If you get this snake, you’re in for a very long commitment.
These snakes are shy and like to hide their head in their coils when they become scared.
African ball pythons can be finicky eaters, especially when in a new environment. However, most will accept frozen, thawed rodents or even raw chicken.
5). King Snake
Kingsnakes are related to milk snakes but tend to be larger. In the wild, king snakes eat other snakes, including those that are poisonous. For this reason, they need to live alone, separate from other snakes. They have been known to eat their cage mates.
Kingsnakes can grow to become three to four feet long, though some have been known to reach five or six feet. They tend to live between 10-15 years. When it comes to eating, king snakes will accept frozen, thawed rodents or pieces of raw chicken.
You’ll find a variety of king snakes available in the pet shop. The most popular are the banded California kingsnakes. These are chocolate brown or black, with white and cream bands or stripes.
Young king snakes can be squirmy; however, as they become older and used to being handled, they will be easier to handle. These snakes will sometimes bite.
There you have it! These are some great small snakes that stay small and make excellent pets. With the right handling and feeding, you’ll have a happy, healthy snake who will be a great companion for years to come!
KimKim is a talented author, who loves animals especially dogs. She engaged in writing books and articles relating to animals a decade ago. Kim resides in Chicago with her husband and son. The family is the proud owner of a dog and a parrot (Jack and Lily). Kim wanted more than these two pets, but her husband put his foot down... She often visits elementary schools to talk to the kids about what she learned about pets and how they could learn from them.
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