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bit of an odd question?

BlueGirl

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Ok so this is a long shot, but I've been wanting a pet skunk since I was 8 and was wondering is anyone here had one? I've recently had more time on my hands and can afford a skunky friend now, but it would be fantastic to know if anyone else has exsperiance. Just not sure how a skunk would react to a naked kitty. :LOL::LOL:
 

MissMySphynxBoys

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Maine has some very strict "exotic " pet laws so they are illegal here. We had a family of skunks living off our backyard this year. The little ones were cute but they sure made for stinky summer nights.
 

Sleepyheadkitten

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I have very good friends with skunks- and from what I understand, they are a lot like cats. Um, I'd suggest probably joining the Yahoo group for pet skunk owners- I am sure there is one out there and it is probably a very active list since in states where they are legal, they tend to be owned quite often.
 

ckutkuhn7

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I've always thought skunks were adoarable. Goodluck finding fellow owners who could offer more help.
 

Marnasobsession

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There are breeders on the net and I believe you can buy them descented already. Good luck in your search...I looked into it one time myself.:BigSmile:
 

Bella07

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So I just did a few minutes of research on them--Wow, I never thought about owning a Skunk before, but it sounds fascinating! You have to make sure that they are legal to own where you live. And, in my state, they require that I not purchase from a breeder out of my state. I must purchase one from a reputable skunk breeder in my state directly. Good Luck! Let us do know if you bring home a skunk!
 

lawgrl

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One of my friends when I was growing up had a pet skunk (de-skunked, thank goodness!)...it was a really great pet; very smart and friendly. His was also very friendly with other pets. Good luck with your search!
 

BlueGirl

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Yeah I've done all my reserch on them already, I've been waiting for years untill I had a decent job, was just hoping maybe someone knew how they were with sphynx's. I know some people who have skunks and cats and dogs that get on great, I guess I'm just worried about sharp skunk claws on my un-furry baby. I worrie about him too much!

In the uk skunks its illegal to de-scent a skunk, but I know some people with whole skunks and they are great, they've only had 2 spraying accidents in the 7 years they've had them. I'll have to take Loki to visit the breeder and see how he reacts to them I guess :BigSmile::BigSmile:

I do have a love for odd animals, my friend Karlyn thinks I just love all the animals no one else wants hahaha she used to think Loki was strange too but obviously having met him she's inlove, maybe it'll be the same with a skunk! :p
 

Sleepyheadkitten

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I figure if my F1 Savannahs can live with a Sphynx and not permanently mar them playing- a skunk should do just fine :) I am super jealous- this dumb state- no skunks and no fennec foxes *cry*!
 

Gizzymom

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I figure if my F1 Savannahs can live with a Sphynx and not permanently mar them playing- a skunk should do just fine :) I am super jealous- this dumb state- no skunks and no fennec foxes *cry*!

Totally off the thread, but Illinois just outlawed owning a monkey... but after that chimp ate that lady's face, I am not complaining!!:Woo:
 

Sleepyheadkitten

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Monks are hard keepers. Really, I find the outlawing of exotic ownership distasteful- ONLY because people will still own them and I think it's safer and more intelligent to require permits- and permits that cater to the species. Like- if you have a monk, you need to be on top of enrichment 24-7. They get bored very, very easily- and need someone that is willing to work with them a lot. Most people won't do it- but if you have the option to get a permit, which could require a class and whatnot before you can get it- then I think it would actually ensure less bad owners have monks.

Did that make any sense? LOL!

I guess I see it as- I don't want a tiger. Or a lion. But I know the owner of Rexano, an exotic pets' ownership site, and she has lions and tigers and she takes wonderful care of them. Why is it better to place an animal in a small cage in a zoo versus allowing a private owner, who has more time and oftentimes more experience with that type of animal, to keep said animal?

:)
 

spygirl

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I've never played with a captive bred skunk, just wild ones that were brought to the rehabber who I work with. They're bundles of fun and very cat like. They litter train fairly easy. But man, they're little claws can be sharp! Sadly, they are also illegal in Texas. I've always wanted an albino one.
 

Gizzymom

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Monks are hard keepers. Really, I find the outlawing of exotic ownership distasteful- ONLY because people will still own them and I think it's safer and more intelligent to require permits- and permits that cater to the species. Like- if you have a monk, you need to be on top of enrichment 24-7. They get bored very, very easily- and need someone that is willing to work with them a lot. Most people won't do it- but if you have the option to get a permit, which could require a class and whatnot before you can get it- then I think it would actually ensure less bad owners have monks.

Did that make any sense? LOL!

I guess I see it as- I don't want a tiger. Or a lion. But I know the owner of Rexano, an exotic pets' ownership site, and she has lions and tigers and she takes wonderful care of them. Why is it better to place an animal in a small cage in a zoo versus allowing a private owner, who has more time and oftentimes more experience with that type of animal, to keep said animal?

:)

I completely respect that... but we have a WHOLE BUNCH of idiots in the Chicagoland area.... If monkeys were legal, people would get them cuz they thought it was "cool" and when it got to be too much work, they would just let it go. That is why people frequently get attacked by fighting dogs... and why 2 alligators were caught in the Cal Sag River this year. I don't want to be the one going for a walk with Gizzy in the stroller one evening and come across the loose chimp... or lion... or tiger...:Dizzy:
 

Bella07

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Pets 101 is on Animal Planet right now and they are just about talking about owning a Skunk as a pet! How ironic concerning this thread. Just had to log on and share the news!
 

Avasmommy

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I didnt take the time to read through everyone else responces, but I knew an older guy in NC while I was living there who got friendly with the wild skunks. They got to know him so well that he could feed them out of his hand. From what he told me, they act like cats.
 

kaoticharmony

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Find some long time owners and ask about their pets. Ask about health issues. Do they need any sort of shots? What kind of problems have people had with them and how did they deal with them? Is a male or female a better pet?

I had a friend who had a coatimundi (which I believe are in the racoon family). He had read about the breed and the pet store said they were great pets. He got his coatimundi when it was still a baby and he and his girlfriend thought he was awesome.

He traveled alot leaving their pet with his girlfriend. So when night while he was away overseas he called her to say hi. While he was on the phone his girlfriend dropped the phone and started screaming.... He was scared and called a friend to check on her.

When his friend got there she had huge gashes on her arms, shoulder and the back of her neck. The coatimundi had attacked her. She said she was just sitting on the sofa talking on the phone when he came from behind and grabbed the back of her neck and shoulder. She managed to close him into one of the bedrooms. For the duration of her boyfriends trip she kept him in there shoving food and water into the room quickly 3 times a day.

It turned out the coatimundi had reached maturity. They weren't sure why but he decided she was a threat and he kept attacking her even when her boyfriend was there. They ended up having to build a cage outside where the little guy lived the rest of his life.

My point? When dealing with "wild" animals you need to not only learn about the animal but find long term owners of both male and females. You also need to know if you can let one run around your house or do they need to be caged when unattended. We had a friend with a racoon that dug a nice bed into their new sofa while they were at work. Ask people what kind of problems they have had with their skunks (check both sexes again). Can they be house broken? How are they with children? If they do become agressive (due to being scared or whatever) how do you calm them down? How trainable are they? Can they eat catfood? Do they change at maturity? What are their "bad" habits as well as good?

I mention learning the bad things not to talk you out of getting a skunk. Most people you talk with love their pets and tend to tell you all the good stuff. If you know their strong and weak points you will have a better pet. Like knowing that dogs will chew up things when they are teething. Alot of people might not mention that their dog ate the baseboards in their house as well as 4 pairs of shoes... but if you know that ahead of time you would have things for your dog to chew and teach him thats what they are for. Ohhhh and get it used to being brushed (your Sphynx will bathe it and get hairballs) and having it's claws clipped for your Sphynx's sake as well as yours.
Try to understand the psychology of the animal. Lean why it does what it does etc.

....and good-luck, I hope it works out. It could be a cute combination.
 

Sleepyheadkitten

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Yeah, anyone knowledgeable with Coatis would have told your friend that an unneutered male- and from what you described- he was unneutered- is a ticking time bomb waiting to go off. It's called male berserk syndrome and it amazes me that any breeder would allow a male to leave their home without being neutered- yet, I know a lot of them do. It's just like the cat world and the dog world- there are caring great people and then the ones who only care about money!

I have had long time experience with Coatis and even wrote a small pamphlet about them to be sent out with babies going home.

Unfortunately, too many people jump into exotics feet first- just like getting a Sphynx or anything else. And you need to realize that breeders' sites are often there to SELL you an animal. While that might not always be a bad thing, they do tend to gloss over a lot of the hard work required to own certain exotics on many sites! Heck, Serval breeder sites will make you think they only tinkle when they spray- but they actually spray like a garden hose from their rear!

And NEVER EVER EVER BUY FROM A PETSTORE!
 

kaoticharmony

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That's kinda the point I'm getting at. The couple with the Coatimundi asked a few people, but didn't research...they trusted a pet shop that knew the guy had money. It wasn't fair to them or to the animal. I agree with you that what they did was in VERY poor judgement. In my opinion if you are going to adopt a wild or a exotic animal you don't just do it...and any place or person that will sell you such an animal without knowing that you know what you are doing should not be allowed to do so... it's just wrong!

The part that was the saddest part of the coatimundi story was that he ended up spending the rest of his life in a cage. I believe he died from a snake bite.

I won't say to never buy from a pet store. There are exceptions, but they are few. I used to be into reptiles, Boas were my fav. If you buy one from a standard everyday petstore you are asking for trouble and heartbreak. There was a petstore near us with a national reputation that specialized in reptiles. They would not sell you a snake without also selling you proper housing. When we bought a Boa from them they spent a few hours with us making sure that it was an appropiate choice. They also gave us 30 days to bring her back if we changed our minds. If you had a problem with a reptile you were better off calling them then a vet.

You need to research every aspect and talk to everyone you can find who has experience with the animal you are interested it. People tend to forget these are not animals like cats and dogs. Personally I would spend months researching.

The woman who posted wants to get a pet skunk. She already has a Sphynx and wanted opinions. I don't know anyone who has had a pet skunk...and yes they are cute, but so were the baby raptors in Jurassic Park! The one thing that sticks in my head is that I have never known anyone with a pet skunk... is there a reason? I've never seen one in a petting area of any center. I hope she takes her time and really thinks about it...

My cats mean the world to me. I gave up my snakes because of my cats. I kept having this nightmare where the glass on one of the cages got broken and I walked into the room just in time to see my snake eatting my cat. It was always the same cat... The one that liked the snake. The snake had never shown ANY interest in her. According to everything I've heard Boas don't like the smell of cats and won't usually eat them.... but I love my kitties.

Do you know anything about skunks?
 

Sleepyheadkitten

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Skunks are on the 'no-own' list for this state- very few animals are, but they are considered a rabies-vector here (which is odd because when my little sister was bit by a dog with no rabies shot- Animal Control told her not to get the shots for rabies because we haven't seen rabies here for a long time- an exotic from a USDA registered breeder (which is the license required for people to breed/sell all exotics, if memory serves) obviously wouldn't carry for rabies).

HOWEVER, I have very good friends with skunks in other parts of the world. Really- the best place to get the down and dirty info is an online discussion forum- such as this. However, the exotic owners tend not to post on open forums, but like the Yahoo groups because they can be closed (otherwise, they risk AR activists creating havoc- it has been known to happen). From all of the knowledge I have of skunks, they are much like cats- much. I believe one of my older friends used to work with Skunk Rescue- I'd send the OP to her, but she's undergoing cancer treatment so probably not the quickest response.

I did find the Yahoo group for Skunk owners though and it looks like a VERY active list. I'd post it- but links to other sites are a no-no on this forum. The OP should sign up, sit back and read through the archives and read what people are saying for the first few days and then plunge in with her own questions, etc.

You are right- reptiles are a bit different, but mammals- dogs, cats, exotics- really should never be purchased at a pet store.
 

Sleepyheadkitten

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"I've never seen one in a petting area of any center. I hope she takes her time and really thinks about it... "

Ah- and as for this... You also won't find African Servals, Coatimundis, Kinkajous, Fennec Foxes, etc, in a petting zoo either (if you do- it's pretty rare!). The fact of the matter is- exotics need to be protected. A petting zoo type environment encourages hands-on from ANY Joe Schmuck off the street. I have handled all of these animals myself except for the Fennecs- and they are all very sweet, in their own way, and following their rules. Servals, however, are shy around strangers and would probably smack the crap out of anyone trying to manhandle them in a petting zoo. Coatis follow their own set of rules and if you don't understand them, you will probably get bit. Kinks are nocturnal and therefore wouldn't care to be roused during the day to be handled at a petting zoo- and are very grumpy when woken up. Fennecs are actually pretty delicate little fellas and could easily be injured in a petting zoo type environment.

Plus, all animals bite or scratch in self defense! Not only would a nip or bite from an exotic raise the insurance rates for a small zoo, it would also probably require the animal's death because the rabies vaccine, for the most part, is not approved for use in exotics.

I still fully agree with you- the OP needs to take the time and research what will work for her. Even if I owned skunks, I couldn't say for sure they would work for her. You really need to take the point of view from more then one source- say I might have the perfect household for a skunk and yet, someone else does not have the right set-up. So I'd gush and gush about how wonderful they are, but someone else might complain about how destructive they are! By going to a pet owner forum, she'll get all sides of the issue- she'll see the good, the bad, the ugly. And that will help her decide :)
 
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