Here is a picture of a baby Meerkat, which I want as a pet someday (not actually due to logistics). I don’t see how anyone can look at this picture and say that they wouldn’t want one. They are so small and adorable that they would be so much fun to watch play in a backyard.
The meerkat is a small mongoose weighing on average about 731 grams (1.61 pounds) for males and 720 grams (1.58 pounds) for females. Its long slender body and limbs give it a body length of 25 to 35 cm (10 to 14 inches) and an added tail length of 17 to 25 cm (7 to 10 inches). Its tail is not bushy like all other mongoose species, but is rather long and thin and tapers to a black or reddish colored pointed tip. The meerkat uses its tail to balance when standing upright. According to African popular belief (mainly in the Zambian/Zimbabwean region), the meerkat is also known as the sun angel, as it protects villages from the moon devil or the werewolf which is believed to attack stray cattle or lone tribesmen.
They are mostly known for the character on the Lion King “Timon”. They live mostly in the Kalahari Desert in Botswana and South Africa. They used to being in groups (“mob”, “gang”, or “clan”) and living in Africa so it wouldn’t be possible to have it as a house pet. Here are some reasons why Meerkats would not be good as a house pet.
- Meerkats have a bad tendency to fight with other pets, which means large veterinary bills on both sides of the brauls.
- Also, they love to dig, which means HUMONGOUS holes in the floors, drywall, upholstery, etc., instantaneously.
- Meerkats are not able to be effectively house broken.
- Their diet in the wild is very expensive live insects and small mammals and reptiles, although they are fed raw meet in zoos.
- Meerkats are, duh, highly social, so it would be VERY cruel to keep them away from other meerkats.
- Meerkats BITE! They FREQUENTLY bite people that work with them. Their biting behavior is unpredictable, at best.
My Response: It will be easy to get around these slight “issues”. If you don’t have any other pets except a clan of Meerkats, you will take care of numbers 1 and 5. Also, if you have a house with a big open backyard, sand and desert style terrain, the holes wouldn’t be a problem. You can find the food that they eat…I mean snakes eat mice and people have them as pets. Finally, number 6 is a tough one, but I’ll take a stab at it. Meerkats may bite, but so do babies (but they are not animals) and their behavior is unpredictable just like any other animal. I have seen dogs, cats and fish become insane with rage causing all kinds of ruckus.
If having one as a pet is not an option, you can Adopt a Meerkat