Owning an Exotic Animal in WV


As many people know, exotic pets are what people always fantasize about but never go about owning. Why may you ask? Well many exotic animals are difficult to come across as well as getting permits to own them. But there are a few exotic animals you can own in West Virginia without having to go through the hassle of getting a permit.
One of the exotic animals that first caught my eye when doing research was alligators and crocodiles. The only reptile you can’t own in wv is a komodo dragon, any other reptile is fair game and you don’t need a permit for it. There’ve been incidents in well known towns, like parkersburg, where a 6-10 foot long boa constrictor had escaped its home. These pets are legal in wv even though they are considered dangerous and aggressive.the world’s largest rodent is called a capybara. This rodent is 4.6 feet long and 2 feet tall at its shoulders. This animal weighs anywhere from 77-120 pounds. Although this animal seems big and scary, its actually a herbivore. So don’t worry, it won’t eat you whole. Yes, this animal seems crazy to own but it is actually legal to own a capybara without a permit in West Virginia.
In West Virginia we always see ferrets in pet shops that you are free to purchase and own without a permit, but in some states (like Utah) you actually need a permit to own an animal that we always see in pet stores all around our state in just about every county. Now, with that being said, there are some restrictions on owning exotic pets. West Virginia citizens can not own dangerous, non-native animals such as bears, elephants, big cats,etc. But if you owned any of these animals before this law was made then you didn’t need to get your permit because you owned them while it was still legal.