You’ve decided to get a snake. Snakes can be excellent pets if you train them right.
Finding the right snake from the right place can be difficult. Understanding the snake buying experience will help ensure you get the best snake for you.
Places to Buy Pet Snakes
You have a lot of choices when picking a snake. Each style of snake store has pros and cons. There are no wrong choices; you have to select the option that works best for you.
People that work in pet stores tend to like pets. They will usually give advice for free even if you didn’t purchase the animal with them.
If you like the information that you are getting from a store, buying there will help ensure they stay in business. Even if they’re more expensive, the advice may be worth the higher price.
If you have already bought the snake, you can often get supplies and info from any of these places.
Most pet supplies like food, cage materials, and care products make you a return customer, which can help build a relationship.
Also read: 15 Most Popular Pet Snakes (with Images)
Chain Pet Store
Large chain stores, like Petco, and PetSmart, are almost everywhere. They are easy to find and even easier to shop at.
At one of these chains, you will be able to see many different kinds of snakes, and you can get a great setup.
The prices are low so that you can find a deal. The selection is often good, but it may not have a lot of unique options or choices. They will carry the most popular options out there.
One thing that is very hit and miss in chain stores is the employees. You may get lucky and get a person who knows snakes. More likely, they have only had a quick training on snakes.
They won’t always be able to answer your questions, especially when it comes to specifics. It can make it harder to care for your snake, especially if you haven’t owned one before.
Chain stores have huge problems with disease and parasites. Most of these problems are not easy to see from a quick look at the store.
These problems can lead to higher vet prices. They can have more health issues and a shorter life span.
Chain stores can be a decent place to get a cheap snake. However, you will want to learn a lot about pet snakes before making your purchase.
- Parasites and Disease
- Lack of Knowledge
Reptile Pet Store
Reptile-specific pet stores aren’t nearly as common as chain stores. They are harder to find, and they tend to be small.
The best thing about reptile pet stores is the knowledge of the staff. The people that work there usually have a deep love for the topic and know a lot about it.
They will be able to answer your questions, and they can help you understand how to take care of your pet. Their advice will be focused on your specific pet and situations.
You can also find unique snake options at these stores. Sometimes you can learn about new snakes that may work better for you. It can also be a lot of fun to look at the animals.
To get all this extra knowledge, you pay a premium. Everything is likely to be more expensive than the chain store. Your selection of supplies may be limited at these stores as well.
If there is a reptile store in your area, it can be an excellent resource for snakes. They have a ton of information about the topic and can help you care for your pet.
- Unique Choices
Online Snake Sales
You can now buy your snake online. The best part of this new system is that you can pick snakes from every breeder worldwide. You will be able to find the snake you want.
Buying a snake online is still a relatively new experience. People are still learning how to use these resources to expand the snake community, especially for new buyers.
There are a lot of new rules when you are buying a snake online. You don’t get to hold the snake. You want to make sure you see images of your snake specifically.
Read reviews about the site. You want info on how they ship the pets. Shipping is critical with online stores. You want to make sure your snake is safe for the whole trip.
The health of the snake is vital, so reviews about current pets can help. You also want to hear about customer service. Learn everything you can about the shop before you place your order.
The downside to buying a snake online is that you can’t get personalized help. Sites may offer a ton of information, but it is harder to talk to a person if there is a problem.
Online shops can offer you a great selection and incredible price. There is a learning curve to shopping for pets online, but it can be useful. Transparency in online stores is essential.
- Can’t Pick Your Pet
- Hard to Get Help
Local Pet Store
Local pet stores can be very hit or miss for snakes. Often if your local shop is heavily into reptiles, they become known as a reptile pet store.
However, even small shops that focus on dogs and cats can have some selection of snakes. How much employees know about them can vary greatly.
You can find local pet stores that know everything about snakes. They can be experts, and you can gain a ton of info that can help you.
If they know snakes, you can get a lot of personalized information about your snake. They can be fantastic resources to help with your new pet.
These shops usually have a minimal selection of snakes and equipment. They also can be higher priced than some of the bigger stores.
Take a look at your local store and talk to the people. Ask them about what kinds of animals they have. You can usually tell if they know snakes, depending on how they respond.
- Personalized Help
- Can Be Very Knowledgeable
If you know what kind of snake you are looking for, you can find a breeder. People that breed snakes know a lot about the animals and can help you understand your pet.
With a local breeder, you can usually meet the snake and see where they raised them. You will know how much the breeder handled them. You get to learn about your pet more than other stores.
It isn’t always easy to find a local breeder. It’s even more complicated if you want a particular type of snake.
Some snake owners will travel a decent distance to get their pets. The further you’re willing to go, the more options for breeders you’ll have.
It can also be hard to learn about the breeder. Finding reviews and opinions about the person who raised your snakes is essential. Smaller breeders may not have a lot of references.
If you plan on going through a local breeder, you will want to talk to people in the snake community. Look online, too, sometimes you can learn about breeders on message boards.
Getting your snake from the breeder lets you learn the most about your snake. If you find a good breeder, they will help teach you how to care for them.
- Lots of Information
- Find The Snake You Want
- Learning Their Reputation
- Finding a Breeder Near You
Even if you don’t decide to buy a snake at a reptile expo, these events can still be a blast. You can see so many different kinds of snakes and learn more about your local snake community.
Some expos are better than others, but if you find one close, they are beneficial. It is a place where all snake and reptile fans get together and share info.
You can find a huge selection of snakes at these events. You can also get expo-exclusive deals. Some expos will even have panels that teach you about snake care.
At expos, you may not get the focus you want from a seller. There is so much going on it is easy for both of you to get distracted. It can also be hard to get an idea of the pet’s personality.
Expos are a very charged environment. Everyone will be interacting with reptiles and pets. People are excited, and you can make a rash decision.
Expos are great events to meet people who can help you buy a snake. You may not be making a purchase here, but you can still learn a lot. Plus, they are fun to enjoy.
- Huge Selection
- Great Prices Available
- Tons of Info
- Can Be Hard to Get Help After the Con
- High Energy Situation Can Lead to Bad Decisions
What to Look for When Picking a Pet Snake
Once you have decided where you are going to get your snake, there is more to consider.
If the location you choose can’t answer these questions, you may want to go somewhere else.
When picking your snake, there is some research you have to do. It helps ensure you get the right snake.
Captive Bred Vs. Wild Caught
There is a lot of discussion about captive bred vs. wild-caught snakes. Wild catches are very common in some pet stores, and they can have a lot of problems.
First, you don’t know the age of a wild-caught snake. The older the snake is when it first interacts with people, the harder it is to tame.
Wild-caught can also carry more diseases and parasites. You don’t know what their history is, which can get new owners in trouble.
Captive-bred are easy to train for being handled by owners. They also don’t get as stressed being captive. Captive-bred is the best option, especially for new owners.
Look for Signs of Problem
When picking a snake, make sure you look at them closely. You want to make sure the snake appears strong. Loose skin and sunken eyes are a bad sign.
The snakes should be active. Their colors should be vibrant, and their eyes should be clear and bright.
Pick Your Species
Even if you think you know what type of snake you want, you may want to ask. Learning about the snake can help you make the right decision. Matching a snake to an owner is crucial.
Talk to your store, and do your own research. You want to know what it takes to care for your snake. Time and energy for every snake can vary a lot.
Some snakes only need a little food and water. Others need attention often. Cleaning the cage for different snakes can also be more or less involved.
Finding the right snake can make the difference between having an amazing pet and having a burden. The more you learn about snakes, the more likely you will find your perfect match.
Knowing the reputation of the store you are using can be crucial. When you buy a pet, you place a lot of trust in the people that have taken care of them first.
You can usually find reviews online. Some of the older breeders may not have a substantial online presence. If you get involved in the snake community near you, finding info will be easier.
If you can’t find any reputation for the store, especially about snakes, it may be better to find another store. It’s hard to buy a snake without this info.
Enjoy Your Snake
Once you find the place to get your snake, have fun with them. They can be a lot of work, but they are incredible to own.
Care for your snake will depend on the snake you buy. Some snakes are affectionate and love when you hold them. Others like their own space.
All snakes are beautiful, strong, and unique in their own way. Enjoy your new pet!
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