How Much Does a Pet Squirrel Cost | Expenses and Considerations for Prospective Owners

The cost of a pet squirrel varies widely, depending on factors such as species, age, and availability. On average, a squirrel may cost between $100 and $400. However, additional expenses for shelter, food, healthcare, and other essentials will increase the overall cost of ownership.

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to have a squirrel as a pet? In this guide, we will delve into the world of squirrel ownership, answering questions about legality, care, and costs. So, let’s get started on this nutty adventure.

Can Squirrels Be Pets?

Can Squirrels Be Pets

Do Squirrels Make Good Pets?

Squirrels can be fascinating and entertaining pets, but they are not the best choice for everyone. They require specialized care and plenty of attention. Squirrels are curious, intelligent, and can form bonds with their human caretakers. However, they are also highly energetic and can be destructive if not provided with appropriate enrichment and stimulation.

Is It Legal to Have a Pet Squirrel?

Laws regarding pet squirrel ownership vary by location. Some states or countries may prohibit keeping squirrels as pets entirely, while others may require permits. It is crucial to research the laws in your area before considering owning a pet squirrel.

What States Allow Squirrels as Pets?

What States Allow Squirrels as Pets

States that allow pet squirrel ownership with or without a permit include Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Wisconsin. Always verify your state’s specific regulations and acquire any necessary permits before obtaining a squirrel.

In What States Is It Illegal to Own a Squirrel?

States where owning a pet squirrel is illegal include Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming. Check your state’s regulations for more information on prohibited animals.

Can I Buy a Pet Squirrel?

Can I Buy a Pet Squirrel

Purchasing a pet squirrel can be challenging since they are not commonly available in pet stores. It is essential to find a reputable breeder or rescue organization. Be cautious of purchasing squirrels online or from unknown sources, as they may be illegally obtained or in poor health.

Can You Have a Flying Squirrel as a Pet?

Are Flying Squirrels Good Pets?

Flying squirrels can make unique and entertaining pets. They are social, nocturnal animals that can bond with their human caretakers.

However, they require specialized care, including a spacious cage with branches and hiding places, a balanced diet, and a calm environment. Additionally, flying squirrels may be illegal to own in some states, so check local laws before considering ownership.

Flying Squirrel Cost

Flying Squirrel Cost

The cost of a flying squirrel typically ranges from $200 to $600. The price can vary depending on factors such as age, gender, and availability. Remember to factor in additional costs for housing, food, and healthcare.

Squirrel Maintenance Cost


A squirrel’s diet should include a mix of nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables, and commercially available rodent pellets. Expect to spend around $20 to $40 per month on food.


A sturdy cage or enclosure with ample space, hiding spots, and branches for climbing is essential. Costs for an appropriate cage can range from $100 to $300, depending on size and quality.


Routine veterinary care for squirrels can cost around $100 to $200 per year. Regular checkups, vaccinations, and occasional dental care may be necessary to maintain your squirrel’s health. Be sure to find a veterinarian experienced in treating exotic pets like squirrels.

Pet Insurance

Pet insurance for exotic animals like squirrels is available, though not as common as insurance for cats or dogs. The cost of insurance can range from $10 to $25 per month. Having insurance can help cover unexpected expenses related to accidents or illnesses.

Medications and Vet Visits

Squirrels may require medications and vet visits for various issues, such as respiratory infections or parasites. The cost of medications and treatment can range from $50 to $200, depending on the condition and the veterinary clinic’s fees.

The Nature of the Squirrels

The Nature of the Squirrels

Squirrels are intelligent, agile, and energetic creatures with a strong instinct to explore and forage. They can be playful and affectionate but may also be skittish and prone to biting if scared or stressed.

Before deciding to keep a squirrel as a pet, consider whether you have the time, patience, and resources to meet their unique needs and provide a suitable environment for their well-being.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to Get a Pet Squirrel?

To get a pet squirrel, research the laws in your area, and find a reputable breeder or rescue organization. Make sure you have a proper cage, supplies, and resources for their care. It is crucial to understand the commitment involved in owning a squirrel and be prepared for the challenges of their care and behavior.

How Long Do Squirrels Live as Pets?

Squirrels can live up to 10 to 15 years in captivity with proper care. Factors affecting their lifespan include diet, healthcare, genetics, and overall living conditions.

How to Make a Wild Squirrel Your Pet?

It is not recommended to make a wild squirrel your pet. Wild squirrels are accustomed to living in their natural habitat and may carry diseases, parasites, or injuries that require specialized care.

Additionally, capturing wild animals may be illegal or unethical. Instead, consider adopting from a breeder or rescue organization that specializes in captive-bred or rescued squirrels.

List of Sources

Moorman, C., Megalos, M., Bowen, L. (2019). Eastern Gray Squirrel. NC Cooperative Extension.

Learn about squirrels. Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Southern Flying Squirrel. State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry.