A Monkey In Your Home?

Can caring for monkeys be a rewarding experience? Yes, but only if you are prepared, dedicated, and well-informed ahead of time. To what extent is this feasible? What if monkey care is more difficult than you anticipated? Are your expectations adaptable? Will you stay devoted in the face of adversity? The “Caretaker Rating Chart” on the next page should assist you in answering these questions.

Is it feasible for monkeys to get high-quality care and live happy lives as pets? Yes, but keep in mind that monkeys are sophisticated social/emotional creatures who are best described as “high-care/high-need,” “difficult” pets. Difficulty levels differ across species and individuals, with bigger monkeys being more difficult in certain ways and smaller monkeys being more difficult in others. In fact, most individuals are unlikely to be the highly motivated, dedicated caregivers necessary to cater for a monkey’s lifelong demands.


Here’s a lengthy, serious look at some of the issues that monkey owners are dealing with. Examine it carefully. You’ll be pleased you did if you’re serious about monkeys!

Prepare yourselves!

First and foremost, determine if monkeys are legal in your state, county, city, or municipality. Monkey ownership may be prohibited at any level of government. Federal certification does not eliminate the necessity for state certification. Where necessary, state licensure does not meet the criteria for county, city, or municipal permission. Without widespread public knowledge, the ability to lawfully possess monkeys may be abolished at any moment and on any level. In certain places, illegal monkeys are refused veterinary treatment. Some states have the authority to seize and retain illegal animals, and fines and prison terms may be imposed. The state of California formerly sought the authority to seize and euthanize illegal monkeys. The public has emboldened the animal rights/animal welfare movement, which continues to battle against the legal right of private persons to keep monkeys. Outlawing monkeys is also motivated by public fear of shared monkey/human illnesses. Monkey ownership is progressively becoming prohibited at all levels of government in the majority of states.

Annual payments may be needed when permits are available. Paid inspections or unannounced government agency inspections may be required as part of the permission process. Check with your state fish and wildlife agency, county animal control or humane society, town or city planning commission, or other local government authorities to learn the status of monkeys in your region. The onus is on you. State agencies are not held liable for incorrect information. If you are able to get a permit, take measures to assure that your permission will be grandfathered if the legislation changes. Whether you purchase one monkey now, see if you qualify for a “pair” permit, which allows you to lawfully obtain a second monkey as a social partner later, even if the legislation has changed.

Quality, Committed Caretaker—Are You a Good Fit?

Taking care of a monkey is a difficult chore. Monkeys have complicated social/emotional demands that alter throughout their lives. Monkeys thrive in the hands of patient, well-educated, mature caregivers with innovative problem-solving skills—those who are in it for the long haul and want to provide monkeys with a permanent and rewarding home. People who have had good success (1) raising children or (2) dealing with other intelligent social creatures such as dogs, parrots, or other exotic animals are the greatest candidates for the position. Monkeys benefit from “foreground” rather than “background” attention to their demands. Still, no other animal can compete with a monkey in terms of potential difficulties. The increased intellect of a monkey implies a larger ability for unexpected or challenging conduct, as well as a greater capacity to suffer when confined to a bad or unsuitable lifestyle.

Monkeys as Family Members?

Monkeys make family life more difficult. Dealing with a developing monkey may sometimes be compared to dealing with a tough kid. This is particularly true for capuchin-sized and bigger monkeys. Monkeys may split the family by having separate connections with each member—usually the most dominating adult—or by scapegoating or focusing on the least favored person—usually the weakest or youngest family member. Maturing monkeys may become hostile in the presence of two or more humans and may need to be managed by only allowing one person in the room at a time.

Can You Meet The Complex Social/Emotional Needs Of A Monkey?

Only when their social requirements are addressed can monkeys flourish. Another suitable social animal, a large social circle of humans, or another comparable monkey may provide companionship. Monkeys have emotional demands for affection and protection, as well as the want to be caressed and have bodily contact. Although a monkey’s emotional requirements are human-like, monkeys will nonetheless display species-specific “wild animal” behaviors, particularly as adults. Monkeys must be acknowledged for the emotional beings that they are. Recognize your monkey’s desires, needs, and emotions. When regarded as “things,” or when efforts are made to treat them rigidly like human children, or to over-handle or control them, monkeys may become emotionally disturbed or hostile.

Can You Afford Adequate Housing?

Proper housing enables substantial motor exertion, such as sprinting and jumping. Cages that only show monkeys are frequently insufficiently big. Kennel crates, cat cages, and bird cages are not suggested as even temporary housing since temporary housing often turns into permanent habitation.

Are You Prepared to Handle Temperament?

It is unrealistic to believe that you will never get bitten by a monkey. The comparatively calm kid gradually progresses from play-violence to adult-level hostility. Coping requires effective management strategies. In general, the bigger the monkey, the worse the difficulty. However, it is difficult to prepare for the assault of adult hostility in a monkey. Have you ever seen a rabid dog in the midst of an attack—the chase of an enraged bull in a bull ring, the ferocious tearing power of a lion’s canine teeth? A grown monkey, even if hand-reared, may attack a friend or stranger with equal zeal. An enraged monkey possesses the intelligence and ability to jump into the air and take a precise swipe at the human eye, or to bite the human body in the most susceptible regions, such as the jugular vein, wrist veins, and nerve-filled fingers of the hand. To cope with the personalities of certain individual monkeys in a productive manner as they age, it practically needs the discipline of a professional trainer. To be a dedicated caregiver, you must have love, forgiveness, and tenacity.

What’s Going On In The House?

Greater intellect does not imply greater awareness in monkeys. Most monkeys are naughty and cannot be trained like dogs, birds, or other animals. When capuchin-sized or bigger monkeys are let wild in the home, they often seek after prized personal belongings, i.e., the most significant objects to a monkey are frequently disallowed. Growing monkeys may, at their worst, pull down drapes, shred cloth, chew wood, spill drinks, steal food, take possession of articles and refuse to return them, damage house plants, torment other household pets, soil or stain furniture, tip chairs, break knickknacks, ink pens or dishes, tear books and papers, get into cleaning fluids or baking ingredients, open drawers, cabinets, unlock or open inside and outside house doors, open refrigerators and windows, remove window s Monkeys are escape artists, and they will unfasten their belts and leashes, wriggle the bolts from their kennel carriers, and discover methods to escape cages or other forms of confinement. Such activities are not only harmful to your house and possessions, but they may also be hazardous to the monkey.

Monkey Mishaps

Monkeys do not have an innate desire to keep their living environment clean. All surplus food and waste slide downhill away from the monkey in nature. Caged monkeys have a natural inclination to drop food. They may spread food, shred and remove diapers, shred cage sheets, smear excrement, and spray pee in the worst-case scenario. Several animals have natural urine washing or urine scenting habits. Monkeys that are properly fed produce a steady flow of urine and excrement, which must be cleaned daily. Monkey feces stink, particularly when kept in indoor cages. Mature monkeys may grow enamored with unclean cage objects and resist cleaning. Because they may be violent against their cleaning team, a cage must be designed with simple, hands-off cleaning in mind. Cleaning and sanitizing monkeys may be tough and time-consuming. It is possible that shelves and toys may need to be wet. Cage wire ultimately gets “grungy,” necessitating further cleaning.

Do You Have Any Free Time?

Monkeys do not stay still. An engaged connection with a monkey requires a daily time commitment. Cleaning and meal preparation take time. Sick monkeys may need round-the-clock care and attention.

Can You Complete the Task?

Do you have the energy to keep up with daily cleaning, care, and meal preparation? Monkeys need the buying, cleaning, and preparation of fresh vegetables, the ordering of fresh monkey chow, the addition of vitamins to their meal, and the provision of vitamin D3.

Can You Afford the Cost of Ongoing Monkey Care?

Monkeys squander food naturally and may become picky eaters, avoiding formerly basic or favored foods. Spilled or spilt food is normally thrown away. The expense of veterinary treatment may be rather considerable. A single emergency might result in a charge of several hundred dollars. Regular health exams are expensive, as is anesthetic gas and diagnostic blood testing. Heating, enrichment, and maintenance are all part of the continuous expense of home.

Are you tolerant, adaptable, and prepared?

Can you put up with monkey behavior that is beyond your control? If you can’t find a vacation sitter, can you arrange plans around your monkey? Would you be prepared to shorten your trip if your monkey refuses to eat or becomes unwell while you’re gone? — Monkeys live between 20 and 40 years. Are you prepared to provide for your monkey(s) in the event of your death? — Can you cope with the untimely loss of a beloved monkey, particularly one as little as a marmoset? Other activities that may need tolerance include male and female masturbation, same sex mounting, genital scratching, exhibiting erections, and monkeys copulating in front of an audience.

The Political Situation Concerning Monkeys

The animal rights movement’s impact on monkey keeping cannot be overstated. Animal rights and welfare organizations continue to push for legislation to make monkey ownership illegal. Monkey owners often unknowingly support humanitarian or sanctuary groups that utilize their funds to oppose monkey ownership. Where licenses are necessary for monkeys, owners may face stringent requirements and expenses. You may face harassment as a pet monkey owner from regulatory organizations or animal rights activists. Even if you offer exceptional care, you may confront a lack of support or a rejection to be given a legal licence. Good veterinary treatment may be difficult or impossible to get in areas where monkeys are outlawed. In a crisis, you can be alone or confronted with the option of driving to another state. Furthermore, popular dread of shared monkey/human illnesses has grown in recent years, and you and your monkey may be rejected by the public. Veterinarians may also reject to care for your monkey due to animal rights convictions……..

Just the Facts for Pet Monkey Owners Please……..
Most individuals purchase monkeys that are 3-4 months old or younger. An infant’s look might be highly misleading. Infant monkeys behave and look quite different from grownup monkeys.

The Six Most Popular Reasons People Purchase Pet Monkeys:

“They’re so adorable!” (I like how they seem!!)
“They’re awesome!!” “I wanted an interesting pet,” (Different), (Attention Getting). (Was looking for an interesting pet for the kids) “They’re so cute dressed up like humans!”
“I’ve always wished for a monkey!” (Wanted to know how it felt) “They have to be the most unique pet you can obtain.”

The Top 12 Reasons People Quit Their Pet Monkey:

An occurrence featuring one or more of the following behaviors:

A significant bite or other violent conduct, generally directed towards a kid or other family member, but occasionally directed at a friend or stranger.
Monkey is “disobedient,” doesn’t mind getting into stuff, and rips diapers or clothing off.
The monkey has escaped and caused damage to the home.
Interference with family unity: the monkey loves certain members of the family but dislikes/attacks others.
Messiness—either with food, droppings, cage clutter, or when running through the home
Other examples of “problem behavior” include loud vocalizations, urine scenting, male erections, and male or female masturbation.
A judicial proceeding involving a bite, scrape, or sickness

Other common reasons include:

There isn’t enough time to spend with the monkey since he is too busy to care for.
There isn’t enough room to keep a monkey.
Monkey is prohibited.
The monkey is disliked by one or more family members.
The family is relocating.
Some Thoughts on Displaced Monkeys

Before you buy a monkey, make sure you understand what it is so you are not disappointed later. If you want a monkey as a novelty item, an attention getter, or a cross between a doll and a youngster, you could be satisfied with a newborn, but not with a growing or full-grown monkey.

Remember that monkeys, unlike dogs and cats, do not keep “tameness” or “docility” without a consistent considerable expenditure of time. Even with time investment, monkeys gradually move to adolescent and mature behaviors that make them less compatible with most people and their human homes.

The caregiver skills necessary to properly deal with a developing monkey’s behavior are comparable to those of a professional animal trainer or animal behaviorist. In summary, providing a fair and meaningful life for a monkey is much more difficult than anybody might think.

All monkeys become less controllable in terms of human expectations as they mature, making them more difficult to handle as “pets.” If the owner cannot begin to make suitable sacrifices at this point, the monkeys are sold to new owners.

According to studies, children who are moved from one strange family to another experience long-term psychological damage. Moving is also a significant source of stress for both humans and animals.

When monkeys are traded and resold as “secondhand monkeys,” they suffer greatly: Extreme psychological distress—often internalized—along with melancholy, separation, severe depression, aggressive behaviors, self-abnormal or mutilating behaviors—can be the long or short-term emotional outcome for monkeys that are moved from home to home.

A Call for Higher Expectations

Breeders, Dealers, and Brokers Must Be Honest: Inform the new monkey owner on the complexities of caretaking, the expense of correct cage settings, feeding and vet care, zoonotic illness, licensing information, and public health issues. Request a snapshot of the appropriate sized housing in which the monkey you are selling will reside.

Accountability for New Monkey Owners: Make an informed decision. Before you purchase, learn all you can about monkey care. Have the appropriate sized housing arrangements from the start, that is, create the suitable cage before purchasing the monkey. Prepare for veterinary care, social companionship, understanding of health and food, toys and other entertainment, and a money set aside for probable additional monkey needs. Check that you grasp the permit requirements as well as the public health issues.

Commitment in both new and experienced monkey caregivers:

Maintain a commitment to continual, supporting education in order to improve housing, vet care, enrichment, social, or other situations as needed. Keep up to speed on legislation and public health issues.

So You’ve Heard—

You’ve received the message. Perhaps you’re thinking why someone would desire a monkey. Despite the difficulties, some individuals are unwavering in their specific affection and dedication to nonhuman primates. Some individuals are very gifted at comprehending monkeys and their behavior, like dealing with them, and may even adore them more than their human counterparts.

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