Thomas Harford Columbia is passionate about making sure that those who watch after exotic pets are using the proper methods to care for them in a safe and loving manner. To that end, he’s put together a short guide on what it means to take care of a domesticated skunk.
It may seem outlandish to some—after all, skunks aren’t exactly a common pet choice for at least one very obvious reason—but skunks are actually a shockingly popular pet. This is especially true in the UK, where it is currently 100% legal to keep a skunk as a pet without the need to apply for a license. Their surprising popularity as a pet is in spite of the fact that removal of a skunk’s scent glands is considered an immoral practice in the UK, meaning the risk of being sprayed by a spooked skunk is very real!
The legality of owning a skunk
As mentioned earlier, if you live in the UK, you’re free and clear to take care of a skunk. However, Thomas Harford Columbia urges Americans to take a look at their local state laws to make sure you won’t be breaking the law if you decide to welcome a skunk into your home as a new part of the family.
Thomas Harford Columbia informs us that skunks are fully illegal in 32 of the 50 states. Even if you’re in one of the outlying states that will allow a skunk as a pet, there are many restrictions depending on where you reside. Most states require a permit, while some impose a restriction on how many you’re able to have. In some states, such as Michigan, you’ll need to build an outside cage for your new furry friend.
Taking care of your skunk
Thomas Harford Columbia warns us that taking care of a skunk is a considerably larger challenge than other housepets. Skunks’ appetites are no joke: they’ll eat just about anything, and it’s tough to tell when to stop feeding them, as they tend to have very large appetites. Obesity in pet skunks is a very common problem, Thomas Harford Columbia advises.
As stated earlier, skunks are extremely difficult to take care of compared to other pets. The reasons for this are many, besides the obvious challenges one would face when dealing with a skunk. Thomas Harford Columbia explains that although there are numerous domesticated skunk organizations dedicated to helping people take care of their skunks, they often offer conflicting information, and it can be hard to know what advice to follow.
Skunks are intelligent creatures, and with intelligence comes emotion. It’s entirely possible your skunk will sometimes be in a bad mood and resort to biting and scratching. The constant upkeep and work that goes into taking care of a skunk may be too much for someone to handle, warns Thomas Harford Columbia. If you give if your best and truly believe you can’t continue to care for the skunk you’ve adopted, there are relocation options available if you know where to look. Thomas Harford Columbia suggests looking for a local skunk shelter who can help you ensure your pet skunk finds a new, loving home.
As with any domesticated animal, they will be unfit for life in the wild after spending so long away from it. Thomas Harford Columbia implores any skunk owners who have reached the end of their rope to not under any circumstances release the skunk into the wild.
It may seem strange, but caring for a skunk can be a beautiful, rewarding experience if you’re willing to put in the time and care as you would for any other living being. If you’ve decided to make the leap and care for a skunk, Thomas Harford Columbia wishes you the best of luck!
Learn more about Thomas Harford Columbia by visiting his website: https://tomharfordcolumbia.com/posts/