Do you know that pets like otters can inflict injuries of the hospital admit seriousness? Otters are queerly being liked as pets. In pictures, in social media and elsewhere they look appealing and coy which is not the case. They devastate the surroundings with their paws as they are strong in strength. If annoyed they can strike the keeper in a flash.
So, you should be cautious in selecting otters as a pet. Otters live in several types of water bodies globally like freshwater, lakes, rivers, oceans, coastal areas as well as marshes. Otters are found some hundred meters away from the water body. All species of Otter have aquatic food habits.
Otters have a slender long agile body, legs are short, and their neck is strong. The tail is long flattened as well as strong. The body is heavily laid out with a fur. It safeguards them from the cold water of the surrounding where they live. Two species live in the sea while the remaining live in freshwater. There are different species of otters, sea otter being the largest and Asian small-clawed otter the smallest of the breed. Otter weighs 3-5 kg and is 90 centimeters long. With webbed feet, hind legs, and a strong tail they are able born swimmers and swim at the rate of one meter per second. They are seen floating on their backs. The dense fur captures air making them buoyant. Their fur is in demand for which they are hunted, and the creature is on the verge of extinction.
A group of otters is known as a raft. They mostly hunt at night-time and they relish playing with each other. The game they play is to move down the embankments within the water, grapple, scuffle, chase each other, and do other fun activities. The curiosity is commendable and they investigate what they see.
They like to groom themselves and a major portion of the daytime goes into it. These fastidious creatures clean their fur through biting or scratching or rubbing it against surfaces like logs, rocks, or grass. The fur has two types of layers; a thick undercoat that encompasses air and the top layer of long waterproof hairs.
Taming your pet otter can be a tough job as they are sharp and wild creatures. It is difficult to domesticate them as their basic instinct of predator stays with them. In the wild, they travel far away but most of the time stay close to the habitat. Fur color is in different shades of brown with lighter underparts. They exist in all continents barring Australia as well as Antarctica.
Are Otters Good Pets?
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Otters are not good pets as they are destructive by nature. If you block the passage of pet otters, they discover another route to reach their destination. By nature, they are social and do activities that get them attention. Their screams for attention can be annoying. However, you can train them in some activities, but they can use what they have learned against the owner. This is seeking attention in a negative way.
It is difficult to toilet train them. The shit is very foul. Despite training, they will very often ease themselves anywhere to the disgust of the owner. Otters have an active metabolism, as a result, they ease several times during the day. That results in cleaning many times during the day. Oyea is the excretion from the butt which is foul-smelling. With this fluid, they mark their territory. The smell stays on furniture and other surfaces. Pet otter move around the home mostly destroying items through their paws.
Otters in appearance are very cute and adorable. Their activities like snoozing or rollicking on waterbeds appeal to human nature. North American river otters have a life longevity of 21 years. In the wild, the survival rate is 8-9 years.
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How To Take Care Of Pet Otter?
While it's not a good decision to keep an otter as a pet, still some people love to keep it as a pet. If you want to keep an otter as your next pet then here are few tips to take care of a pet otter.
Understanding How To Setup Habitat For Your Pet Otter
Pet otters should be caged outdoors. The cage should be big enough that permits the creature to be physically active and move around with ease. Keep in mind that the pet otter is energetic and frolic loving as well. There should be enough space in the cage. The surroundings should be heated if the temperature touches 50-degree F. The pool should be at 75-85-degree F. Be ready with supplementary heat for warmth.
Know What To Feed Your Pet Otter
Otters are carnivores and eat fish, amphibians, crabs, mussels, frogs, tiny mammals such as rabbits, and a few types of water birds. They prefer fish to other types of meat. There is variation in the diet with the change of season and availability of prey.
Pet otters in captivity feed on meat food dead for some time. Otters are very energetic and enjoy their hunt moments. If this is denied they get bored. Provide them with living creatures in captivity as well. Pet otters need to eat 20% of their body weight every day for food. The food foundation can be made with nutritionally fit cat food.
About 80% of the diet should be meat-based. 20% in the form of fish. Supplement the diet with soft-boiled eggs, nuts, crayfish, insects, vegetables, etc. Feed them irregularly to prevent stereotypic behavior.
Health Concerns Of Pet Otter?
Not much is known about the health status of pet otters in captivity. To keep them fit and healthy, there should be enough land to keep the otter dry on land. Always wet otters will develop health issues. The cage should have a 30% water pond. Otters can climb so make in-ground habitat because they can dig as well.
Apart from this, place hollowed-out logs, trees, and shrubs, and different cage furniture for the pet otter. The pool water should not be with chlorine.
Is It Legal To Pet An Otter?
The laws permitting pet otters differ from state to state in the USA. However, otters can be legally secured as a pet. States in the USA that allow pet otters are Nevada, North Carolina, New York, Florida, Indiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Tennessee.
The only species of otter permitted as a pet is an Asian clawed otter. It is difficult to procure one as a pet. Contact an exotic animal broker and he will do the needful.
How Much A Pet Otter Cost?
Asian small-clawed otter is priced at $4000. It is a steep price.