What To Expect When Going To A Reptile Show
How To Prepare For Your First Reptile ShowReptile shows are a great way to get to know local reptile enthusiasts in your community, as well as the perfect time to pick up that new python you’ve been dreaming about. With our many appearances at upcoming reptile shows nationwide, we figured now would be the best time to let you know how to prepare for your next reptile, whether it is your 1st reptile show or your 30th, the following tips are sure to come in handy.
Leave your own pets at home
These shows often involve a large numbers of animals of multiple species coming together under one roof. It is important to remember that any given animal can be carrying parasites as well as any other number of contagious diseases. For this reason, your best bet would be to leave your pets at home in order to avoid the potentially lethal situation of introducing your healthy pet to an unhealthy one.
While more vendors are beginning to take credit and debit as a form of payment, there are still a large majority of vendors that rely on cash only. While an ATM may be available on the grounds of the exposition, there will likely be long lines and hefty fees to pay at these terminals. If you are planning on making a purchase at these shows, you’re definitely going to want to bring cash.
Do not ask a vendor to set aside an animal unless you are certain you will purchase it.
Most vendors at a reptile show are there in order to sell their animals as well as educate people on how to properly care for their pets. For this reason it is important to remember that you should only request that an animal be set aside for purchase if you are 100% certain that you plan on purchasing that animal. In the end this saves everyone time and allows everyone a fair shot at all of the reptiles.
Research purchases before you buy, this is your responsibility.
While there are plenty of vendors out there that are willing to share as much information as possible with potential new reptile owners, it is still the responsibility of the buyer to know whether or not a snake will grow to 18 inches or 18 feet. Also be aware of the environment that you will need to provide for your future pet prior to bringing it home. Ensure you know your new pet's diet and whether it eats insects or frozen feeder mice.
Be aware of all state and local reptile laws prior to purchasing and bringing one home
This rule holds up especially well if you are attending an out-of-state expo. Vendors may not necessarily know the laws of your home town or even your home state, but it is important to remember that it isn’t their responsibility to know whether you are making an illegal purchase or not. For example, venomous snakes are not allowed to be owned in the state of Maryland, but they are permitted in Pennsylvania and are often sold at reptile shows there. Make sure you know these laws prior to making your purchase.
Expect that animals will be caged in temporary housing.
Some of these containers will be quite small as they permit for safer transportation; this is not a reflection on how the breeder may keep their livestock when they are at home.
Thoroughly examine all potential purchases
Some breeders pride themselves on the health of the reptiles that they are showing at an expo. Unfortunately there is also a segment of breeders who are just looking to push their stock out so they have room for newer, healthier, fresher animals. Be sure that prior to making your purchase you do a thorough review of the animal to check for mites or other diseases that are specific to your potential pet. Also be sure to quarantine any animal that is purchased when you bring it home. Let it live in quarantine several weeks before allowing them to acclimate with the rest of your reptile population.
Make sure your children are under control and know proper sanitation measures.
Children often love reptile shows and it can be a lot of fun for vendors to share their knowledge of animals with these children in order to educate them on the benefits of owning such a pet. However, we also all know how destructive a child can be when left to its own devices. Be sure to keep an eye on your children at all times, as well, make sure that they know the importance of washing their hands before and after handling a reptile in order to prevent the spread of diseases such as salmonella.
Change clothes when you get home
When you arrive home from a reptile expo it is a good idea to totally change your clothes before handling your reptile or entering into a room with a reptile. Some diseases and parasites are great at hitching a ride on your clothing and will infect your collection. Some people also prefer to take a shower prior to handling their reptiles in order to be thoroughly safe. Be safe when you return home and change your clothes.
These are just several suggestions on what to expect at a reptile show. Be sure to come out and visit us at one of the many that we will be at in the coming months.
Find upcoming reptile shows to attend, and make sure to visit Rodent Pro for your reptile food, or to learn more about the benefits and importance of providing your reptile frozen feeders!