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Narrowing Your Interests

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So when you first get introduced to the animal ownership world, you want EVERYTHING. At least, that's how I was. But as I've gotten older and acquired more animals, I have realized that it is important to narrow down your interests. This makes it easier and funner to take care of the animals you already have or are yet to have.

I've decided to narrow my interest down to lizards (yeah, that's broad, I know), fox species, and aardwolves. If I focus on those three things, suddenly everything seems more manageable. I have always loved foxes and aardwolves, and lizards are a big door that has just started opening for me. Fox species require similar care and behave similarly, so new fox species aren't going to be as hard as jumping into something new like an exotic cat for me. Plus I've done lots of research and reading on various fox species over the years, which gives me an easier time adjusting to new acquisitions.

Anyway, I'm excited that I've narrowed my interests down. I still one day want a binturong, marbled polecats, an alligator, and some others, but those can go on hold for now.

This all happened because I got a pair of tegus recently. I love them to death, but they are a LOT of work. Especially since their enclosure came in pieces that needed to be reassembled with lots of heavy lifters. I realized then that I had less time than I thought I always had. Which opened my eyes that narrowing down your interests is actually a VERY good thing. I considered the animals I wanted carefully, and now I know what I want to have and what I want to do. Smile

I'm Fable and Ifrit's mommy. Also mommy to Carousel, Breeze, and a bunch of snakes, lizards, and spiders. Oh, and one amphibian!

Topic starter Posted : January 18, 2017 1:58 pm
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That's great and I've tried to express similar here before though not all that well. That's why I never want a zoo because I like the more individualized care and relationships I can have with just a few species. It's kind of sad for me to see friends who do have "zoos" with lots of species. I mean they have help/staff so the animals get the care they need but it's not the same. Actually someone mentioned that just the other day that they get to work with all these species but it's just that WORK but they get these little moments now and then that make it worth it. Of course we do need people who do this but I'd rather have a relationship which includes lots of regular moments like my nightly snuggles with Pua or like when she was younger and still ran all over the place with me playing. If you have a bunch you then have limited structured time and it's just not the same.

Reptiles are different though. They are kind of like fish in that you can enjoy them without interacting with them. I guess you could enjoy a mammal by just looking at and having it too if you somehow made sure they are happy without your interaction, like having a friend and tons of enrichment. It's sure as heck not what I want though. And even the reptiles and fish take time just not as much daily as mammals do.

I have narrowed my interests down further recently as well to a realistic multiyear plan of a fennec now, hopefully some more to breed in a couple years then after that I hope to be able to import a new fox species(which replaced my desire to import slender mongoose and is a bit easier and realistic to make happen).

There are still some I'd like if the chance arises but might not do if it would take too much time from my current animals(whatever they are at that time). Like a mara since they are outside critters anyway it might work out in the right location and circumstances.

Unrealistically if things worked amazingly in my favor I'd still love to also import slender mongoose and hutia and start breeding programs with them but I'd have to be able to afford help I think or not need to work aside from the animals any more. But not likely to happen, it's okay to still day cream though. So just want my fox dreams to work out.

My fennec fox site:
My anteater site:


Posted : January 18, 2017 4:31 pm
Honorable Member Pats Friends

I'm starting to feel that way too. I've wanted a fox for years, and was crushed to find out they were illegal in NC.
So I started doing research on other exotics, found a couple that peaked my interest, but after research and talking to owners I ultimately decided against every one of them.

I always end up where I began- foxes. So that's what I'm going to work towards owning, whether I have to fight to legalize them here, move to a different state, or wait until I can get an exhibitors license and do exhibit work.

And in the future, I definitely want to own or work with more exotics. But until that time arrives, I've set realistic goals for myself. icon-smile

3 Dogs, 2 horses, 1 donkey, ducks, chickens, and a coatimundi currently

Exotic "wishlist": red fox, gray fox, bat eared fox, mink, sand cat, owl (any species).

Posted : January 19, 2017 11:25 am
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Mary, I got that vibe from you--wanting to focus on fewer species in order to both specialize as well as to focus on the animals you do own.

Yeah, reptiles don't need attention the same way mammals need attention. So my main focus is going to be on my mammals, which are my three red foxes. The reptiles are going to get attention too, of course, but it's not as important.

I've said it before, but the next animal I really want to get is an aardwolf. I want to be able to enjoy the foxes I have while at the same time branching out to a completely different species. I'm putting in for my permits next month (goal is Valentine's Day), so I'm going to put aardwolves on there as well as lots of fox species.

For the foxes I'm going to list more than I can feasibly own at the moment, and it will take years before I get them all. But it looks better in my state to request a bunch as opposed to just one or two. Gives them the idea that you're more serious about doing it for a living, and they prefer that. So might as well list all of them at this time. For foxes I'm going to request arctics, grays, fennecs, cana foxes, swifts, pale, kit foxes, corsacs, and bat-eareds. So pretty much all the known species that people have ever kept (aside from the cana foxes, but hopefully one day soon they'll be available ). I'd most likely get bat-eareds first since I do really like them and have studied them quite a bit; plus, they're unique. Though a gray would be neat too.

But aardwolves will be first. Smile

I'm Fable and Ifrit's mommy. Also mommy to Carousel, Breeze, and a bunch of snakes, lizards, and spiders. Oh, and one amphibian!

Topic starter Posted : January 19, 2017 12:38 pm
Reputable Member

I remember this thread from years ago, and want to add my two cents... or dollars.😛 

While previously being very anti-exotics (exotic mammals, anyway) without knowing anything about it, after I got interested in exotics circa ~2012, I did want a bit of everything. Since then, I have given up the idea of, in rough order...

- Asian elephant
- Jaguar
(Two dream pets if I had unlimited resources and lived somewhere else😆)
- Flying foxes
- Raptors, vultures
- Wallaby/kangaroo
- GP rat
- Arctic fox
- African painted dog
- Lynx/bobcat
- Striped hyena
- Burmese python
- Aardwolf
- Coyote/golden jackal
- Reindeer
(Will not have enough land and money to keep large grazers as pets)
- Kookaburra
(Watched videos on owning them, and nope)
- Common hill myna
- Emu/rhea
- Red ruffed lemur
(Still a bit sad about that one. If I were to have a different life and lived where they were legal, I would probably get 1-2 ruffed lemurs as my only exotic mammal.)
- Toucan
(I'm so into parrots, they overshadow the toucans, and I can't realistically spend thousands of dollars on a single bird)
- Monitor lizard
(I realized flesh-eating lizards are probably not my thing, they're not legal yet in Norway, and the herbivorous iguanas look cooler anyway... but they're still banned, too😣)
- Black cockatoos
(Palm and others - again, I just won't ever have that kind of money)

Note that I obviously didn't want all of these at once, but it's a list that has changed over the years.🙃

My focuses are on parrots, dogs and the livestock (poultry, rabbits, pigs, a cow or two) I will own on my future homestead. (Maybe buying land next year!😊)
I realized that even if I lived somewhere where ALL OF THESE are legal, I will never have the time and resources to care for, and bond with, even a fraction of them.

I still have on my list:
- Tons of parrots
("Carefully" considered for space, time, and purchase cost)
- Pigeon
- White-necked raven
- Boa constrictor
- Ball python
(Cool morph can replace the otherwise-wanted-but-illegal Borneo python)
- Leopard gecko
- Uromastyx
(Legal, while the Chuckwalla isn't)
- ...Rhinoceros iguana but they aren't legal right now...
- Red-footed tortoise
(I have a plan if one of my future kids ends up loving tortoises😆)
- New Guinea Singing Dog
(Also maybe Dingo, if I could convince Norwegian authorities they are "C. l. familiaris")
- Mid-content wolfdog/NorthAID
(Legal as long as they're F5)
- Bactrian camel
(I know what I said about reindeer, but this is the one large herbivore I want, no matter what... even skipping horses in favor of a camel)
- Llama
(Possibly, as camel companion if I can't have two, and cow/s aren't enough for the camel, also llamas are great livestock guardians)

Still a fairly long list, but it's mainly parrots that can be kept together in a large aviary building, pigeons and ravens in the same building but separate sections, a few reptiles that can be kept on a few square meters on a "terrarium wall", a couple of semi-wild canines (I will build a huge dog run as well, even if I don't get a wolfdog), and two large herbivores, who will keep the mini dairy cow/s company. 🙃 This will take more than a few years and more than a little money, but it's doable, and all about priorities.

Exotic birds, canines, snakes and hoofstock are my main interests.

Posted : September 16, 2020 9:44 am