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Tarantulas as pets, pros and cons 
or
 How to convince your family that tarantulas make great pets


Here's a list of reasons for and against keeping a tarantula as a pet. These all came from the Arachnids mailing list and are reprinted here with the permission of the original authors.

PROS:

  1. They don't bark (although some can make sounds).

  2. They don't claw the furniture.

  3. If you go away for a week (or even 2), they don't die of starvation.

  4. They don't need a litter box.

  5. They don't need to be walked.

  6. They are interesting and educational.

  7. They are VERY quiet (although some can make sounds).

  8. They are very low-maintenance pets.

  9. They can be helpful in getting rid of unwanted visitors. (I'd invite you over, but my Tarantula doesn't like strangers.)

  10. They take up very little space. (If you only have one!)

  11. If caged properly, they aren't under your fee.

  12. No license, shots, collars, brushes, or other extra (expensive) equipment needed! 

  13. You don't have to bathe them, and they groom themselves.

  14. They are odorless. (Assuming you clean out the left-over cricket parts.) 

  15. Some are really beautiful, all of them are at least neat looking.

  16. Gives you something really different to talk about. ("You'll never believe what my Tarantula did yesterday".)

  17. They carry no diseases.

  18. Like fish they are enclosed in a tank, no mess to step into.

  19. Are great for breaking the ice with new people. Tarantulas are a great conversational piece. 

  20. They teach discipline, not the easiest to care for so you must stay vigilant. 

  21. The bite of most species, including the G. rosea (Chilean rose) is NOT medically significant.

  22. Keeping one can change mild arachnophobes into arachnophiliacs.

  23. You'll learn latin fast.

CONS:

  1. You have to listen to crickets chirping (which may actually be a pro for some).

  2. Must be cared for diligently, no putting off like with fish (Also can be listed a Pro IMHO). 

  3. Some people are intimidated of them. This fear can range from mild to a extreme phobic of spiders.

  4. You may be called 'Weird' or at least 'Eccentric'.

  5. Once you're hooked you'll have a desire to visit ancient lands and explore in search of an unknown species of theraphosid unknown yet to man. You'll learn many languages and learn of many cultures in your travels. Then, when all is done, you'll have created in yourself a self filled with the wonderment of it all and in the end. You'll have the pride of knowing that the simple interest in one small, fuzzy Rosie, created in you the respect and responsibility to teach others such as your mother & father, that these creatures are a necessary and wonderful addition to our natural world and to those of us that maintain them.

  6. Once you've got one, you'll want more!


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