Some years ago there was nothing trendy about keeping snails as pets. When people thought about keeping pets, what really came to their minds was keeping dogs and seemingly more generally acceptable animals. Well, it appears long gone are the days people avoided keeping snails as pets.
In the last couple of years, lots of people have picked up an interest in keeping snails as pets. There could be quite a number of reasons for this. However, one prevalent reason is the fact that snails are not as difficult to care for as other pets that have been people’s favourites for several centuries. In addition to the fact that you do not need to put in so much effort into caring for snails, watching them move around can be really amazing.
Although taking care of snails is not as difficult as caring for birds, cats, dogs, etc, they are not inanimate objects. The implication of this is you still need to put in a great deal of attention into caring for them and you might struggle to do this if it is not something you have handled in the past.
If you are looking to keep a snail as a pet, then, you are in the right page. Read on to find out how to get this done effortlessly.
Why Should You Keep a Snail as A Pet?
There is a lot to keeping a snail as a pet. One thing you must always consider when looking to keep a snail as a pet is the various reasons you might want to own a snail.
Some of the reasons you might want to consider keeping a snail as a pet are;
It works well for people with busy schedules
Lots of people enjoy keeping pets. However, not many of them end up doing so because of their busy schedules. If you have always wanted to keep a pet but your busy schedule made this difficult, you can always try out a snail.
Taking care of snails is not as demanding as caring for other pets. You can comfortably take care of a snail by giving it attention once in a day. When caring for your snail, what you really need to do is take note of its living condition, spray some water in its terrarium, and give it fresh food. In as much as checking up on a your snail daily is great, you could go about four weeks without actually checking up on it if you have the right setup in place.
In as much as your snail can survive even if you simply check up on it once in a month, this is not a good way to take care of a snail.
Snails are Quiet
Having a pet around can be really noisy. The noise associated with keeping pets around is one reason several people just might not keep one around even though they are really interested in having pets.
Well, if noise is an issue for you so long as keeping pets is concerned, then you really do not have a problem with keeping snails as they are known to be very quiet animals. They will not disturb you neither will they disturb your neighbors. Additionally, with a snail as a pet, you will not have to worry about your pet waking you up early in the morning.
They will Never Harm Your Kids
When you keep pets that have a history of being in the wild, you will need to ensure they are properly grained so they do not hurt your young ones. Beyond simply ensuring that they have the right training, you will always have to keep an eye on them whenever they are alone with kids. Fortunately, the same cannot be said of a snail.
In addition to the fact that your children are absolutely safe with snails, you do not need to put your children through any real training before they can handle snails. All you need to teach them is to wash their hands with soap before making contact with the snail and after they hold it.
Keeping a Snail is Inexpensive
Snails are very inexpensive. You will not need to drill a hole in your pocket to get one. Although you might need to buy a snail if you are interested in keeping a particular type of snail, if you do not mind keeping just any snail, you can walk into any garden and pick up a snail.
In addition to the fact that snails are quiet inexpensive, you can always feed your snail from left over vegetables. That’s not all. You do not need to take your snail to the vet periodically. When looking to keep a snail as a pet, you will basically be spending the most on a terrarium.
Keeping a Snail
If you must keep a snail properly, there is a lot you should know and give your attention. Some things you must give your attention to when looking to have snails as a pet are;
Snails live in the soil. So, if you intend keeping one as a pet, you will need soil form a garden. In addition to soil, you could add sphagnum moss. The soil should be about 7 to 10 cm deep. This gives the snail the chance to burrow. You should make its new home as comfortable as is natural home.
Getting the right soil for your snail is great. Another thing you will need to do in addition to getting the right soil is ensuring the soil stays wet always.
Your snail’s enclosure should be properly maintained if your snail must live a healthy live. It is important that you clean its side at least once every week. Additionally, you will need to change its substrate every month. That’s not all. You should not let rotten food sit in the enclosure for a long time. So, after a couple of days, take out rotten foods and put in fresh food.
Snails need a good dose of fresh air to survive at their optimum. Going by this, you need to build your snail’s home in a way that it gets the right supply of air.
If you buy a terrarium in a store, there is a likelihood that it will come with some opening. In as much as you need an opening that can help your snail get the right amount of fresh air, ensure the opening in the terrarium is not too big so your snail does not escape.
Not everyone gets to buy a terrarium from a store. So, if you intend making your snail’s home, you will need to create a couple of holes in the box. This will go a long way in helping with ventilation.
While ensuring that the terrarium is well ventilated, it is important that it comes with a secure lid. This is important as snails have the ability to lift weights that are far heavier than they.
The enclosure for keeping your snail can be made as complex or as simple as you deem fit. This means you can decide to spend little money or put in quite an amount into making a home for your snail.
If you simply want to have your snail for some days, you can keep it in a plastic box. However, if you want to keep it for much longer, a bigger container will be much better.
Whatever the enclosure you want to use, ensure you settle for one that offers a good level of ventilation. To a great extent, snails are comfortable with humidity. However, they need very fresh air to thrive.
What Do Snails Eat
Just like every other pet you keep, you should have a plan for feeding your snail. There is really not much to feeding snails. If you have vegetables and fruits, you can always comfortably feed your snail. While fruits can always be used in ensuring that your snail is well fed. It is important to note that you should avoid citrus fruits at all cost.
Fruits and vegetables do not stay fresh for very long when added to the tank for keeping your snail directly. This means if you want them to stay extra fresh you will have to put them in a bowl. When foods are kept in a bowl, cleaning up your snail’s home becomes easy. Also, you will not need to struggle when adding fresh food.
Simply beyond giving your snail fruits and vegetables, ensure the foods you give it are properly washed. This is more important than a lot of people know. The fact is the many fruits and vegetables that you will feed your snail with have some dose of pesticides on their skin. So, if you do not wash them properly, your snail will die after feeding on them.
Snails have shells that should be properly maintained. This means they will need a healthy dose of calcium. It might not be possible to give your snails calcium directly, you will need to add dried crushed egg shells and some cuttlefish to its meal.
Is there any Form of Danger Associated with Handling Snails
There is really no danger associated with handling a snail. Regardless of this fact, it is important that you wash your hand just after handling a snail. Additionally, to make sure that children do not put their hands into their mouth after holding a snail, ensure that they are properly supervised when they handle one.
Before going on to pick up a snail pet, you will need to wash your hand with soap and water. It is vital that you wash off all soap residues before picking up the snail. This is to avoid killing the snail. Once you are done washing off all soap residues from your hands, get them a little moist before going on to pick up the snail. This might be a little difficult. However, if you have a water spray bottle, it becomes an easy task.
When picking up your snail, ensure you never pick it up from its body. Additionally, picking it up from its shell will be a bad move. Furthermore, you should not pick up a snail that is hanging on strongly to a surface. If you pick it up by force you might end up breaking its shell or hurting it in some other way. The most effective way to pick up a snail is to place your hand in a way that it walks into it. Additionally, you could place a leaf in front of it and pick up the leaf after it hangs n to it.
A snail might not mind being on your hand for a while. However, ensure it does not spend so much time on your hand. After about 10 minutes you should put it back into its tank.
How Many Snails Can be Kept in one Terrarium
There are really no rules to the number of snails that you can keep in a terrarium. Regardless of this fact, you should be careful about keeping too many snails in a single terrarium. You must note that the way you keep snails when they are reared will be quite different from how they should be kept when you have them as pets.
Although there is no fixed amount of snails you can keep in your terrarium, ensure they are very comfortable and have no issue with being crowded.
Although keeping a snail as a pet might seem like a break from the norm, it is not really different from keeping other animals as pets. If you can keep rats, ferrets, rabbits, and other similar animals as pets, you should simply consider your snail to be a pet like any of these animals. With this mindset, you will feel very comfortable with keeping a snail as a pet. That’s not all. You will also be able to give it your best.