Keeping a tarantula for a pet certainly is not for everyone, but some species will make surprisingly good pets. The most popular kind is the Rose Hair Tarantula, also called the Chilean Rose Tarantula. This is mostly because they are attractive, docile and easier to care for than most of the more run of the mill pets out there – looking after them is very straightforward compared to dogs or cats for example.
If you’ve never had an exotic pet before, a Rose Hair Tarantula would be an exceptional choice. This is not only due to the aspects mentioned previously, but also due to the wealth of accessible information about them in books, online and elsewhere. They strike a good balance between being unusual enough to be different but being retained by enough people to make them cheap, easily available and well researched.
1 natural concern about caring for a pet arachnid is the potential danger involved. This species is more inclined to run away from a threat than to behave defensively, and will only very rarely bite. If they do sting, the quantity of venom injected is very small and it is not especially potent, so this isn’t serious unless you’re allergic.
As these creatures come from the hills and scrubland of South America (Bolivia, Chile and Argentina to be specific), they need to be kept in a warm environment and they may be kept in relatively low humidity. Catering for all these requirements is simple – a simple heating pad may control the temperature simply and effectively, and allowing the water dish to overflow a few times a week should provide adequate humidity.
A 10 gallon terrarium should definitely be large enough, and they’re frequently kept in smaller tanks as well. Many Rose Hairs will use burrows in the wild, and therefore a simple little shelter should be provided to keep your pet happy – even a coconut shell or flower pot will do well.
They do not have regular feeding schedules, and can even be fed only once a fortnight and then left alone, as they’ll naturally gorge themselves when they have the chance in the event of a famine to come.
The decision to obtain a Chilean Rose Tarantula shouldn’t be dismissed, as some will live for twenty years or longer, but rest assured that they are easy to look after and are extremely unlikely to cause you some problems. They are also a brilliant talking point, and will be the perfect arachnid for your initial exotic pet.