Would You Try These 5 Exotic Pets? They’re Legal in Arizona

While Arizona has some of the strictest laws regarding owning reptiles and exotic animals, a few pets fall outside of the “traditional” pet category that you can own in the state. Here are five of them:

1. Pythons

These large snakes can grow up to 20 feet long and are native to Africa, Asia, and Australia. While they are legal to own in Arizona, you must follow some strict regulations. For example, you need to acquire a permit to own a python, and they must be kept in an enclosed space.

Pythons usually eat rodents, depending on their size. As a general rule, the rat should be 1 to 1.25 times larger than their midsection.

These types of snakes may not be the right pet for you if you have a busy lifestyle. However, you can take them to an enclosure, a pet boarding facility, while you’re away.

2. Chinchillas

Chinchillas are small, rodent-like animals that are native to South America. They are legal to own in Arizona and make good pets for people allergic to traditional pets like dogs and cats.

They are social animals and live best in pairs or groups. Chinchillas are also nocturnal, so they may be more active at night. Their diet includes hay, pellets, vegetables, and water. They also need a dust bath to keep their fur clean and healthy.

3. Savannah Cats

Savannah cats are a cross breed between a domestic cat and an African serval. They are legal to own in Arizona, but there are some restrictions. For example, you must have a permit to own a Savannah cat, and they must be spayed or neutered.

Savannah cats are active and playful but can also be shy around people. They require a lot of space to run and play, so they may not be the best pets for people living in small apartments or houses.

They also need a special diet that includes raw meat, vegetables, and fruits. In addition, like cats and dogs, they are prone to certain parasites, such as giardia. See more about pet parasite prevention.

4. Domestic Water Bufallos

Water buffaloes are large, horned animals native to South East Asia. They are legal to own in Arizona, but you need a license to import them into the state.

Water buffaloes are gentle giants and make good pets for people with a lot of space. They usually eat grass, but they also require a source of fresh water.

5. Kangaroos

Kangaroos are native to Australia and are legal to own in Arizona. However, you must obtain an Arizona Game and Fish Department permit, which can be expensive.

They often live in groups, are active, and need a lot of space to run and play. Their diet includes grass, hay, vegetables, and water. Moreover, they need to have their nails trimmed regularly.


These are just a few exotic pets you can own in Arizona. Before you get one, make sure you do your research to see if it’s the right pet for you. Always check local laws to ensure you follow all the regulations regarding owning an exotic pet.

Ultimately, find a reputable vet clinic that provides vet services to exotic animals to keep your pet happy and healthy.