Brighten Your Life With 5 Unconventional Pets You Can Legally Adopt In India

Brighten Your Life With 5 Unconventional Pets You Can Legally Adopt In India
L: Shantanu Kuveskar R: Daniel V. Raju

Having a jazzy Siamese cat sitting on your shoulders as you drive around town sounds cool, right? Or having a muscular Rottweiler on a leash as you walk down the streets of your neighborhood sounds quite gangster, isn’t it? But can any of these be cooler than Salvador Dali walking around the streets of 1960s Spain with an anteater as his pet? Thanks to that mad genius, I had developed a penchant for unusual pets since childhood. Now, my grandmother would go blitzkrieg if I bought home a python or a monkey to keep as my pet. So until I get a place of my own, it's an uncompromising no for me in the unconventional pet department. However, if you’re lucky enough to have accommodating or should I say, slightly crazy household members, who don’t mind having an unusual pet in the house, here are 5 exotic pets for you to choose from.

(Note: Please ensure you follow the legal procedure and acquire the required permits before acquiring any of these pets.)

I. Python

A python coiled up

Pythons are seriously misunderstood creatures. All they want is to give you a tight hug. Jokes aside, usually, they don't attack humans unless provoked or offended. Make sure you have a sturdy and spacious cage and a friendly butcher who can provide copious amounts of meat from time to time. Anyway, pythons only eat three to four times a year. Also, you will have to face the pain of separation probably once in your life as they can live up to 40 or even 45 years. And if you’re one of those who lead a rock and roll lifestyle, your beloved pet may even outlive you. If I ever had a python, I’d call it Noodley.

II. Madagascar Hissing Cockroach

Two Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches placed on a hand
Madagascar Hissing CockroachAlphe's Corner

Buffalo Bill might be one of the most famous fictional serial killers but if you can just look past that, there’s no doubt that he had an impressive pet collection. From moths to dung beetles, the creepy crawlies were his best friends. He also had Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches in his basement and weirdly coincidentally, some Indians have them as pets, as well. As the name suggests, they are native to Madagascar. They're whoppers when it comes to size and have a cool hissing sound that sets them apart. Big bonus? They're not too fussy when it comes to care. However, they do need a roomy, escape-proof cage with lots of hiding spots to feel comfy. They're not picky eaters – fruits, veggies, or even dog food will do the trick. While they're relatively easy to keep, their size and hissing might not be everyone's cup of tea!

III. Indian Langur Monkeys

An Indian langur monkey sitting on the branch of a tree
Indian langur monkeysShantanu Kuveskar

Unleash the inner Lord Rama in you and keep a brave monkey as your pet. Indian langur monkeys come in two flavors!  There are the ones chilling in Nepal and the Himalayas, and then there are their cousins in the rest of India. Even though they're the same species, the Himalayan monkeys are like the shorter, furrier versions. Their counterparts down south have less fur and a tail that goes on forever! Now, monkeys have been buddies with people in India for ages. They're hilarious and full of energy, which can be a lot of fun. But before you picture them swinging around your apartment, it's important to remember they're not ideal pets for small spaces or homes with little ones.

IV. Indian Bullfrog

A male Indian Bullfrog
Indian BullfrogDaniel V. Raju

The future is hopping mad as frog ownership is on the rise, and soon everyone will be sporting a slimy sidekick. In India, you can snag yourself a giant, booming Bullfrog instead. These impressive dudes are basically the rockstars of the amphibian world, with voices that would make Frank Sinatra blush. Just like your mansion needs a swimming pool, your Bullfrog needs a sprawling enclosure to hop around in. Plus, forget kibble – this is a gourmet frog who expects a daily buffet of creepy crawlies, maybe even the occasional pinky mouse (just don't tell PETA!). The good news? Taking care of them is easier than wrangling a toddler. The bad news? Check the local laws first – some places frown upon these funky fellows. But hey, if it's legal in your area, then bullfrog away!

V. Leopard Gecko

A leopard gecko and its baby
A leopard gecko and its cute babyGetty Images

Trust me when I say this, the new 'it' pet is a leopard gecko! These little dudes are like living jewelry — all decked out in spots and packing a personality that's bigger than their bug-eyed stare. Owning a leopard gecko is like having a tiny, silent disco ball that occasionally licks its own eyeballs (don't worry, it's normal gecko stuff). They're basically low-maintenance party animals, content to chill in a tricked-out terrarium and chomp on mealworms all day. Plus, they have sticky toe-beans that make them miniature ninjas of the climbing world, scaling branches and backgrounds with the grace of a drunken acrobat (which is also hilarious to watch). Just remember, leopard geckos are escape artists with a Houdini complex, so make sure your tank is Fort Knox-level secure. But hey, if a little jailbreak attempt is your idea of a good time, then a leopard gecko might just be your perfect pet! After all, it is considered to be the first and most popular domesticated species of lizard.