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Old 06-04-03, 03:29 PM   #1 (permalink)

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Reptiles, pets or collectors items?

Reptiles, Items of material value, or creatures of joy?

(I hope I dont sound like a downer, I am just looking for some thougts and ideas from our world of reptile lovers... please feel free to disagree with me...)

Its great that the art of keeping captive reptiles is spreading all over the nation. But at what cost??

Remember when you were a kid and the simplest frog or lizard would satisfy the soul? It sometimes seems that the reptile hobby is like a trading card game. It sometimes seems to be all about getting the rarest and the best, and having more.

I am not saying its terrible to own rare and exotic color morphs, because it is really cool to have them. But what I am getting at is do we care about the animal itself, or about their appearances? Do we care about what we actually do have, or about what we will and could have?

I am guilty. I have lots of animals. This made me ask myself, is it better to have 3 herps that I totally love, rather than 15 for the sake of having them??

When a new bearded dragon comes out, with awesome colors, should I sell my old one so I can have the new one? A kid would love the one they already have, because it is their bearded dragon, color doesn’t matter just the fact that it is their baby.

The thing that is so cool about the reptiles that we care for and keep is that not only are they exotic, but we can hold them, get to know them and connect with them, it is so AWESOME!!

Or maybe reptiles are just cool "ornamental" collectors items, nothing like a cat or dog that we can love or be attached too. Are reptiles just items that are to be collected and traded constantly... how often do you trade your dog or cat for another one? Why invest in something we wont cherrish till it dies? Maybe reptiles are different and are more objects than they are pets...

I am not trying to say that it’s bad to go for the latest and greatest, or to dream of the "complete" collection. I just think that it is important to have enough LOVE for all the animals we do keep, for what they are and not what they could be.

Peace to all!!
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Old 06-04-03, 03:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Creature of joy fer sure!
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Old 06-04-03, 03:51 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You have a great point, but I cant say if i agree or disagree with you. When I was younger a grass snake or a worm satisfied me. Now I have to have a rare color morph or anything and I feed worms to my herps. I love my herps, and I am very attached to them. But I do in some ways treat them like trading cards, as I think we all do. Damn you, you made me think about things I hate now I feel all sadd.
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Old 06-04-03, 04:03 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Friends. Family. I don't sell one, jsut to get another, there are snakes in my collection I am not into, but they are my babies, and will not sacrafice them so I can have more room to work on breeding species that I do have an avid interest in. I have only ever sold one snake, and I may have to sell another, but these are snakes that I have *just* aquired and something had come up... even though I hadn't formed an attachment, I still felt incredibly guilty for it. Offspring are a different matter, sure I would love to keep them all, but that isn't very realistic... hence I do not consider them part of my personal collection.
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Old 06-04-03, 04:08 PM   #5 (permalink)
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All my pets, once I get them, I keep them. I get emotionally attached to every pet I own. Especially snakes. So for me at least, it's emotional joy.

"A rattlesnake that doesn't bite teaches you nothing."
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Old 06-04-03, 04:22 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I drawn a line right away if it is something I am getting with the intension of selling then that's that. But if I decide to keep something I will usually keep it unless it goes to one of my friends that I KNOW will give it a good home. But I have kept pretty much everything through the years. I absolutly hate people that flip flop on species and throw money around but never actually keep anything or manage to breed anything. Those people do it for the money. Not for the love of the animals and unfortunatly there are a lot of those people out there.
To address another good point you brought up. I love all herps from an anole to a retic. I hate people that I call reptile elitists. That hold there noses up on anything that doesn't have a high monatery value. Or people that say I don't like those, any idiot can breed them. Who cares do what you love and you will be much happier. Don't be all high and mighty and everyone else will be much happier also. If it costs a buck or a 1000 it is all part of this wonderful hobby! Tim.
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Old 06-04-03, 04:24 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'd have to say they're family for me. I don't have to have a fancy colour morph, although hard to keep species are an interest, just because the challange involved in raising them.
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Old 06-04-03, 05:40 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I would say the ones in my collection are my babies and thats the way i refer to them as my babies. The girls are my baby girls and my boys are my baby boys sept my bearded dragon boy hes my chunker lol. i would NEVER sell any of them ever and would be bawling like a baby if anything would ever happen to them. If you would ask my mom about my reptiles she would ask "which one of her babies are you refering to". As far as offspring goes sure i sell those but it's just like your cat or dog having babies are you going to keep all of them every time a new litter comes NO.

the only time i have kept a baby is my first leo female born ever, and a baby leo i hatched from a friends collection(he had a horseshoe pattern on his head i named him lucky charms), or if i have become seriously attatched to them. If i truely like the babies i will save them for family or close friends so i can go visit and play with them. Just like i had a favorite that hatched last year i named her butterfly cause it look like she had wings on her back i gave that one to my boyfriends little sister( which we have corrupted into liking reptiles as much as us) so i could see and play with her anytime i wanted. maybe i do get alittle to attached to them but they are my pets and i owe it to them to take the best care and love them as much as i can. and i do have a few morphs but that wasn't the only reason i bought them and i do plan on buying more ranges of color morphs but they like the rest will become part of a growing family.

Even if some people do trade for the newest morphs i'm sure they still have an old friend they hold onto.
1.2 Bearded dragons (Login, Raven, & Jean Grey) 1.1.1 Corn snakes(Havoc,Sable, & Kink0 1.5 Leo's (Psyloke (Lucky-male) Speedball, Domino, Rouge, Siren, Elektra) 1.0 Veiled Chams (Neo), 0.1 Rose Hair T. (Night Crawler) 0.0.3 Crested Geckos (Shiva, Storm, Beast) 0.2 Kenyan Sand Boas (Tigra & Cloak)
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Old 06-04-03, 05:50 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Creatures of joy! That's all I can say... no if's, and's, or but's about it.

It is fun to have more than one, but they are live animals and should be treated as such, not as some baseball/pokemon cards or whatever they collect these days.
Who are you callin' a freak?!
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Old 06-04-03, 05:55 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I would have to agree with alot of the people here that my little girls are part of my family and I dont think I would ever sell them unless there was no other way to avoid it(family sickness or something like that) I do love watching my girls wandering around and chasing there crickets and hand feeding my Sassy .Yes I do plan on breeding them sooner or later probly later and I will sell the offspring unless one really grabs my eye then it will be one more in the family . So there you have my thoughts on this like everyone else I love my herps hehe.
2 bearded dragons plus a nigerian uro more to come these are addictive!!:zi: :zi: :zi:
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Old 06-04-03, 06:14 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I dont have a single pet although I have a HUGE family!! (Hint hint)
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Old 06-04-03, 06:15 PM   #12 (permalink)
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theyre my buddies i dont care what morph i get or what species .. i go for personality rich animals.
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Old 06-04-03, 06:45 PM   #13 (permalink)
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This is a very good question.

I love my snakies, but I keep two collections. One is my permenant collection. Ones I don't sell, and the other are snakes, that I got b/c of a trade or had to buy a pair, or this or that. Ones I'm not especially attached to.

Snakes do not bond like cats or dogs, so rehoming them means nothing to them aside from some initial stress from shipping. Okay I don't COMPLETELY agree with this statement, but for the most part yes. They will not pine away like a dog or cat or bird. Regardless I miss a lot of the snakes I sell and am glad that I can sell most to friends I know so I can keep an eye on them and see how they are growing.

Please remember collections evolve, you may pick up this and that species and realize, you REALLY like working with a certain species and not so much the other. It is human nature to concentrate on the one you really like and not interact as much with the one you don't. Is it not better to find another home who will appreciate that species/snake better?

It's easy to say you won't ever sell a reptile when you're collection is under a certain number, but there comes a certain 'magic' number where you have to go, ok, I've got too many. It's easy for that to happen b/c reptiles are just so incredible you can't resist their little faces.
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Old 06-04-03, 08:30 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Silkie, I understand your views. I can't imagine having a pet for however many years then just 'trading' them in to get the 'flavor of the month'. I am way attached to my animals, and it may sound stupid to say, but they are my kids. My bf and I can't have children so they fill a much needed void in our lives.

If anyone has ever read my posts about my 'babes' then they know I am truely into it for the personality and joy of interacting and watching them everyday. Some say that cleaning their cages and making sure they eat is a chore, but to me it's something I don't think twice about. I love my animals, and I mean it. I would do anything for them, and even if the animals AREN'T mine, I've gone out of my way to help them.

My dad once told me that if I left all my pets and rescues with my mom and moved to live with him in FL he'd buy me a car, pay for my schooling and give me anything I would ever need. I believed him, but telling me to leave my kids behind is something I CAN'T even consider. (Some of them are 'special needs' animals).

For the people who consider keeping reptiles a 'hobby' (and those of you who have mentioned this aweful word know who you are). Reptile keeping is no different from dog or cat keeping, yet no one calls that or treats that as a hobby.

My animals are my pets, members of a family; included in everything from holidays to their own birthday parties and I've got the pix to prove it!

Well thought-out thread, Silkie, thank you for reminding us just how special our pets are!
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Old 06-04-03, 08:42 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I probably have too much of a pet mentality for my lifestyle. Now that I work from home rehabbing post-operative cases that will be going back to their owners I should be able to have some detachment and think of those herps as part of somebody else's collection.

But I find myself thinking of them more like they are my foster kids and my own pets are my babies. I get way too attached and it's very bittersweet once my fosters have recovered enough to go back to their owner. There are so many that I really wish I could keep.
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