(credit: Riki Risnandar PhotoPro/shutterstock)

(credit: Riki Risnandar PhotoPro/shutterstock)


Reptiles are a diverse group, and selecting one as a pet can be complicated. Sometimes, people who are considering become first time reptile owners need an expert to give them some tips. Peter Gray is a local reptile expert and the owner of a reptile pet store in Capistrano Beach. He took the time to share five tips for those planning on becoming reptile owners for the first time.
(credit: winie l./yelp)

(credit: winie l./yelp)


Peter Gray
Reptiles Reptropolis
34215 Doheny Park Road
Capistrano Beach, CA 92624
(949) 492-6598
www.reptilesreptropolis.com

For the last ten years, Peter Gray has been working as the co-owner of Reptiles Reptropolis. He estimates that he has been breeding reptiles professionally for “about 20 years.” The reptiles that he breeds can be found for sale in the store. At the moment, his own reptile pets (all of which he bred) are geckos, iguanas, red tail boa constrictors, bearded dragons, and chameleons. While he doesn’t have any aquatic reptiles as personal pets, he does sell them. He can advise you on their care and the care of all the other reptiles living in his store.

(credit: Sebastian Janicki/Shutterstock)

(credit: Sebastian Janicki/Shutterstock)


Time Management

This tip has to do with the amount of time you are willing to spend on caring for a reptile. Some take longer than others to accommodate. Gray thinks this tip is a good starting point for beginning reptile owners. Look at how much time you want to spend with your reptile, as well as how much time you actually have to devote to it. Time management will be a big factor in how successful you are with your first reptile.

(Credit: Tiffani K./Yelp)

(Credit: Tiffani K./Yelp)


Heating

Discover whether or not your reptile will require any kind of heating system. Some don’t need any kind of supplemental heat. Diurnal reptiles that spend their waking hours during the day may require a heating system with UVB light bulbs to survive. Others, such as nocturnal reptiles that waken at night, may only require room temperature heating. For those on a budget, looking into whether or not purchasing extra heating for your potential new pet is a must.

Snakes! (credit: CBS)

Snakes! (credit: CBS)


Diet

Dietary needs vary among reptiles. Gray warns that some people, such as vegetarians, may have problems at feeding time. Animal lovers may not feel comfortable feeding a rodent to a snake. Even feeding insects to a reptile is too hardcore for some people. Luckily, there are some vegetarian reptiles for the squeamish.

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(Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

(Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)


Size Of Reptile

Size matters, especially when you live in a small space. There are reptiles that can grow between 10 to 12 feet in length. Are you comfortable allowing a large reptile, such as a six foot iguana, freely roam through your house? Or will you have to set up a large enclosure? Gray states that some reptiles can be  “like a cat or a dog” that interacts with the whole family inside the home.

(credit: David Byron Keener/shutterstock)

(credit: David Byron Keener/shutterstock)


Type Of Reptile

Ultimately, your decision to purchase will be based on what reptile just happens to be your “type” of pet. What reptiles are you most interested in? Are you fascinated by aquatic reptiles, such as water turtles? Do you prefer reptiles that will roam through the house and visit with your kids? You could always buy a small reptile that you can hold in your hands. Your level of interest in your new pet is important.

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Leilani Allmon writes for fun and enjoys sharing her thoughts on the internet. She resides in Murrieta, CA. More of her writings can be found on Examiner.com: http://www.examiner.com/everyday-people-in-anaheim/leilani-allmon