5 Reasons Monkeys Should Never Ever Be Pets
5 Reasons Monkey Should Never Ever Be Pets gives you just a few reasons why owning a pet monkey is a bad idea.
First off.... we love monkeys!
Monkeys are cute - fact. Whether you're a fan of the tiny tamarin or a big baboon: everyone has a favourite. In fact, we think they’re so awesome, we even named our online pet food store after them!
But is it illegal to own a pet monkey UK?
It might surprise you but it’s not actually illegal to own a monkey. According to information on Pet Primates by the Born Free animal charity, an estimated 5,000 primates are being kept as pets in the UK.
‘Subject to certain restrictions in some circumstances, the sale and keeping of primates as pets in the UK and many other countries is currently legal.’
But, like Born Free, and many other animal charities, we believe that Monkeys Should Never Ever Be Pets. Here’s 5 reasons why:
#1 Monkeys have complex needs
Primates have very specific needs. Starting with their diet alone….from fruit and veg to protein and supplements: figuring out what they need is a full time job. And even if you do get it right, they, like other animals, will fall ill now and again. Who are you gonna call if yours gets sick, or hurts itself? Vets that specialise in the care of exotic pets, particularly monkeys, are rare. And expensive.
They also needs LOADS of space.
Sure, you might have a large back garden but that doesn't come near to the space that monkeys need. Some zoos even get into trouble for not providing enough space for the pets in their care, and we bet you've marvelled at how big those enclosures are. And if all that doesn't put you off (as it should), consider the cost. Conservative estimates put the price of even a smallish monkey, such as a capuchin, at between £3000 and £6000 - and that's just the initial outlay.
Throw in vet's bills, food, cages, supplements, fruits, vegetables, blankets, branches and toys. Not to mention nappies. They're very hard to housetrain, which is why most primate owners stick them in nappies. In fact, the capuchin monkey is unable to learn using the loo so you'll have to keep it in pull ups forever. And if you think human babies are expensive....try keeping a monkey!
#2 Monkeys are messy and smelly
Sorry if that offends you, but monkeys stink! Marmosets in particular have a musky scent that is very off putting to humans. And don't even think of keeping them inside. They'll throw poo, urinate all over the house and make a massive mess as they do so - and that's all normal behaviour for a wild animal!
Captive monkeys are often seen wearing nappies in an attempt to house train them, but this is controversial for its own reasons (see next point). Even if you could get your monkey to wear a nappy (and some quite rightly won't), then the nappy can restrict their muscle growth, stopping their tails from growing normally.
#3 Owning a monkey is controversial
The laws around exotic pet ownership aren't clear-cut, creating opportunities for the large-scale availability of primates for sale online, as well as some pet shops. So, while owning a monkey (subject to certain conditions) is not illegal in the UK, it's definitely controversial.
Groups such as the RSPCA are calling for the keeping and trade of primates as pets to be banned. And for good reason. Pet monkeys have to be taken from their mother at just a few days old, to be 'tamed' as pets. This is not just cruel for the baby monkey, but for the mother too, who will likely have to repeat the process over and over again. So even if you can live with that on your conscience, don't expect others to be so understanding.
#4 Human companionship is not enough.
Monkeys are certainly sociable - but only with their own kind. Monkeys crave the companionship of other monkeys in order to develop emotionally. Relying on a single human for companionship will cause your pet monkey to become depressed. However well-meaning you are, however much of your life you give over to a pet monkey, you’ll never be a substitute for their pack.
#5 Monkeys can be dangerous
A lonely, depressed primate easily becomes aggressive. Monkeys may attack their owners, or if not their owners, then other humans. That's because they want to assert their dominance in the hierarchy. So even if they've forged some kind of bond with you (which as we've said, isn't a patch on another monkey) they sure as heck ain't gonna let another human take their perceived place in the pecking order. Do you really want to be the only person that the monkey trusts, leaving your friends, family and visitors open to vicious attacks?
And if that's not enough, pet monkeys can be disease carriers. Diseases that exist happily dormant within your pet can easily be passed through a single scratch or bite. This can result in nasty conditions (that we do know how to treat) such as herpes to more serious health issues that we've never seen before. Erm... do we need to say anything else?
But don't fret, there's still a perfect pet for you.
For all these reasons, owning a pet monkey is never a good idea. Stick to regular domesticated pets as companions and you won’t go wrong. Shop Dog Food, Cat Food, Bird Food, feed for Guinea Pigs, Hamsters & Gerbils, Rabbits and Aquatics at PetMonkey.