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Reptiles as Pets for Kids – What You Need to Know

Yes, reptiles are a much more common type of pet than many people realize. While they are furry and cuddly like cats, dogs and rabbits, they do have some features that a lot of people find attractive. For example, some of them have vibrant colors like various snake morphs while others have very unique traits like the independently controlled eyes of chameleons.

The main question we seek to answer here though are not that is a reptile is a good pet but if a reptile is a good pet for children. The answer of course is a mixed bag.

Reptile for Children

Can a reptile be a suitable pet for a child. There’s no simple yes or no answer. While some of the different types of reptiles can be OK, many others are not great options.

What that means is you really need to dig deeper and look at more specific types of reptiles and even specific species within that type.

Some of the major factors you will want to consider are whether or not the animal requires very detailed and constant care or if its maintenance is fairly basic as well as if the child want something they can hold in their hands or not.

Let’s take a look at a few examples.


Snakes are the most common reptile pets. Some make great pets while other can be very temperamental.

A great choice for a pet for a child would be a ball python. They are fairly easy to take care or, are generally OK with light handling, and they tend to be on the more relaxed side of the spectrum. They can still bite now and then, so you’ll want to be careful, but overall they make a good choice.

Larger boas on the other hand are not good pets for kids. They are simply too strong and can grow too large to make them a safe option.

Also, it should go without saying that you should never own a venomous snake unless you are legally OK to do so and they are never suitable pets for kids.


Like snakes, there are many different lizards you can choose from to keep as a pet. From anoles to salamanders, your options are ample. But like snakes too, some lizards are OK for kids while others are strongly advised against.

One of the better lizard pets for kids are bearded dragons, which are a kind and curious lizard native to Australia. They are very common in pet shops, are not too expensive, and they generally love human attentions. Plus, once they grow into adulthood they are not as fragile as many other lizards.

If you want something a little smaller you can always consider a gecko. In fact, leopard geckos are widely considered as excellent pets for new reptile owners because of their demeanor.

Any kind of lizard that hides all the time or does not like being held is going to be a pass in regards to buying as a pet for a kid.

Other Options

Some other choices include various turtle species as well as some types of frogs and toads. However, even the best options in these categories are usually not going to be a s kid friendly as a good snake or lizard.

All Summed Up

Most reptiles are not going to be as kid friendly as a traditional cat or dog. That doesn’t mean you can’t choose one that will be a suitable pet for a child. With some due diligence and careful planning, you will find something that will fit the bill.

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