Keeping insects as pets
Vicki Moore did not believe in the general principle of keeping animals as pets, but realised that animals would be and if they were they should be kept in the best way possible.
Lots of animals lead a miserable life due to the way they are kept. If you are going to keep a pet it is your duty to do your best for it. The following are some guidelines to help you achieve this.
Questions to ask yourself
Before purchase you should ask yourself the following question:
Are you prepared to do some extensive research about the species selected by you in advance? Different species have different needs.
Even though insects like e.g. spiders serve more for observation than interaction, they are still our fellow beings and need the best accommodation and treatment possible.
Some can live many years, such as tarantulas, but only if they are well kept. There are three groups, which in the wild live either on the ground, below the ground or on trees. You will have to recreate the proper environment for each species. Most exotic spiders need a humidity of 60 – 70 %, which means you will need a hygrometer for monitoring. You will need proper constant heating to guarantee a temperature from 22 – 28 C. Exposure to direct sunlight should be avoided.
Objects in the terrarium should be placed in such a way, that the spider cannot injure itself by either falling on them or by being buried beneath them, when digging. Avoid Cacti or anything with sharp edges. Everything in the terrarium should be non-toxic and more according to the insect’s needs than your personal taste.
While spider terrariums do not have to be cleaned completely as often as with other pets (only every three to six months), food leftovers and excrements have to be removed regularly and fresh water has to be provided.
Under no circumstances use insecticides in the same room, as they affect spiders too.
The same applies to any insects that you keep as prey for your spider. They to have to kept on a balanced diet.
Make sure your spider cannot escape and other pets cannot get at your spider, as they might be bitten or your spider may not survive the encounter. If you need to handle the spider or other insects for some reason, do not pick it up by hand, as you might injure the legs or other extremities. You might get bitten and depending on the species this can be quite dangerous.
Gently place a container over them and a piece of cardboard or a plate underneath and release them to the new location.
The industry promotes spiders and other insects as pets for children. However, a child might lose interest fast as no affectionate bond can be established with an insect, which must not be handled too often. What becomes of the pet in this case?