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Reptile Awareness Day

Did you know that Reptile Awareness Day is October 21st? Our scaled friends can make great pets. They are fascinating and fun to watch, and don’t need quite as much care as other animals. Reptiles aren’t right for everyone, however, so be sure to do your research before adopting one. In honor of Reptile Awareness Day, read about reptiles and their care in this article from a North Las Vegas, NV veterinarian.

Reptile Basics

Reptiles are cold-blooded, scaled animals that lay their eggs on land. There are over 10,000 different known reptile species, with more still being discovered. This roster includes over 250 kinds of turtle, 25 crocodile species, and 5,500 different types of snakes.

Longevity

Reptiles can live a very long time! Turtles can live as long as 150 years, while many snakes can live up to 70 years. While most popular types of pet reptiles don’t live quite that long, getting a pet is always a long-term commitment. Be sure you can care for your scaled buddy for its entire lifespan.

Scales

Many people assume that snakes and lizards are slimy, but most reptiles actually feel cool and smooth. Those pretty scales are actually made out of keratin, which is found in our nails and hair.

Care

Most reptiles have very specific care requirements. In order to provide a proper habitat, you may need to invest in heat and lighting equipment. Larger reptiles need lots of room, so space should also be considered. As for their diets, well, many reptiles eat rodents and bugs, so they’re not necessarily a good pet for the squeamish.

Exotic Pets

Not all of our scaled friends are suitable animal companions. Reptiles are often imported illegally and sold as pets. This black market trade is very dangerous, both for the animals and for fragile local environments and wildlife. Only buy safe, legal reptiles, and adopt your new pet through reputable sources.

Helping Reptiles

If you want to help these beautiful animals, consider making a donation to a reptile protection or rescue organization. You can also help by spreading awareness about environmental issues that endanger wild reptiles, and promoting responsible reptile ownership. If you have children, this is a great day to visit a zoo or watch a good, reptile-themed movie or TV show.

Do you have questions about reptile care? Call us, your North Las Vegas, NV vet clinic, today!

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