Baby skunks are simply adorable. They are itty-bitty, so fluffy, and you can hold them in the palm of your hands. (Well, a human hand).
Isn’t this baby skunk the cutest thing you’ve ever seen?
Skunks as Pets 101
According to an article in the Daily Mail, skunks are the newest must-have pets for animal lovers who want something more unique than a cat or a dog. Apparently, keeping skunks as pet follows the craze of teacup piglets, meerkats, and pygmy hedgehogs.
Baby skunks have super soft fur, and they can be house trained. Skunk breeders estimate that there are over 2,000 skunks that are being kept as domestic pets, and the demand is growing. In the United Kingdom, a baby skunk can cost up to £1,500 (or $2,368) in a pet store.
Skunks are a member of the weasel family, and they can live between 10 and 20 years. They’re known to be biters when they’re little, but with consistent training, owners can stop this habit.
In the United Kingdom, the Animal Welfare Act bans the removal of their scent glands, but in the United States, domesticated skunks grow “unarmed.” Their scent glands are removed when they are two to five weeks old, so owners don’t have to worry about accidental sprayings.
There are rules and regulations for owning a pet skunk, though. In the US, only 17 states allow you to keep a domesticated skunk – Alabama, Florida, Iowa, Indiana, Michigan, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Wyoming, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. But just because these states allow you to have a pet skunk, it doesn’t mean keeping a skunk as a family pet is that simple. Many states have additional rules and regulations that you must follow, and some require a special permit.
Owners of pet skunks have to pay careful attention to their pet. A domesticated skunk that escapes can be in grave danger. Since they don’t have their scent glands, they have no way to protect themselves in the wild. Plus, they do not have the natural instincts to forage and hunt. The biggest danger to skunks – wild and domesticated alike – is cars. Every year, more cars are responsible for the death of skunks than any other factors, like disease and rabies.
In the US, you can buy pet skunks from breeders (who have a permit from the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service), licensed animal shelters, and special non-profit organizations.
If you’re interested in having a pet skunk, you definitely want to do your research beforehand. To learn more about pet skunks, watch this PBS Nature Episode – “Is That Skunk?”
Adorable Baby Skunk Pictures
Source: gotosay.com via octobermoon on Pinterest