Hyena’s pet is a scary idea, Hyenas can be scary because of their laughs and giggles. They have made a bad reputation in the minds of people because of this. Also, some movies like Lion King, portray hyenas as villains or ferocious animals.
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The Ultimate Guide For keeping Hyenas as a Pet
We would all tremble at the thought of casually meeting a Hyena. Hyenas are considered very predatory Animals, They are characterized as dangerous predators, not because of their size or body, but due to their actions, as they eat carrion and hunt huge prey. Hyena has got the strongest jaw among predators.
Owning a hyena puppy is not an easy task for several reasons. The most important is the animal’s predator instincts. It is difficult to tame a Hyena or control their behavior.
Is the Hyena suitable for making a good pet like a Dog?
Dogs or Cats? Which Pet is Closer to Hyenas?
The short answer is neither. Because Hyenas are not members of the dog or cat families. Instead, they are so unique that they have a family of their own, named Hyaenidae. There are four members of the Hyaenidae family: the striped hyena, the “giggly” spotted hyena, the brown hyena, and the aardwolf (don’t be confused, it’s a hyena, not a wolf!).
As for Dogs, they belong to Canidae, which is a biological family of dog-like carnivorans. A member of this family is called a candid. There are three subfamilies found within the canid family, which are the extinct Borophaginae and Hesperocyoninae, and the extant Caninae. The Caninae, known as canines include domestic dogs, wolves, foxes, coyotes, and other extant and extinct species.
Can you I own a Hyena as a Pet?
Can hyenas be pets? Yes, it is possible, but the conditions are very difficult to meet. You need to approach the matter with high precaution as hyenas are wild animals. There are those who condemn keeping wild animals as pets, while many of them own dogs and cats themselves. Some may say that all domesticated animals were once wild but on the other hand, the latter can’t survive good without human care, while wild animals are doing great in their natural habitats and it’s a stressful process to take them away from their real home.
The key to taming a Hyena is to take it home as a small puppy. But to achieve this, is not an easy task, since usually, you will not be able to find it in stores near your home or from people who have a breeding ground for it.
Can I own a Pet Hyena In The USA?
Many pet owners aren’t prepared for the responsibility of owning an Exotic pet. Some, even find themselves on the wrong side of pet ownership laws in the United States. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has some say over the pets Americans can own. But individual states have their own laws, too. Some states allow almost anything that creeps, crawls, or slithers, while others forbid almost all pets except domesticated cats and dogs.
Is it legal to Own a Hyena Pet?
Finding a hyena for sale or to adopt is not going to be your only problem. There are also legal implications. It can be considered a dangerous animal, so you could end up with prohibitions on having Hyena as a pet at home.
If you are seriously considering owning a Hyena as a pet at home, it is important that you first go to the corresponding authorities to verify that it is not something illegal.
Hyena Pet Behavior and Temperament
Owning smaller non-domestic pets, such as bobcats, servals, Lynx, and Foxes is nothing like having a Hyena as a pet. Different species have different temperaments, but all of these wild animals can exhibit unwanted behavior from urine marking to aggression.
Some Types of Hyenas will need spacious outdoor cages in order to thrive. It is a huge commitment and responsibility to properly care for them.
The Pet Hyena is even more problematic. Even if they are not overly aggressive, their natural tendencies must be remembered. They are predators; even when play, their huge size and strength can make them a threat.
Having Hyenas as a pet has been responsible for several fatalities and maulings in some African countries in recent years. Sadly, pet Hyenas or other big cats end up neglected, abused or given up to sanctuaries when their owners cannot care for them.
Care for Hyena Pets
While there are owners of big cats and other wild animals who go out of their way to provide appropriate housing and diet and have no problems, there are countless others who are misguided, grow wrong expectations and end up unable to provide proper care.
Hyena puppies have sharp claws and teeth and can be quite destructive. Even trained zookeepers who work with these animals every day are in danger of being attacked if a hyena is startled or provoked in any way.
What do Hyena Puppies Eat?
Hyenas Puppies are carnivores and require a lot of raw meat. They can eat up to 15 pounds of meat per day. In the wild, they hunt wildebeests, zebras, antelopes, carrion, reptiles, birds, and any other animal they can kill.
Hyena Puppies Price
how much does it cost to buy a Hyena pet?
The price ranges from $900.00 to $7500.00 per hyena puppy for most of the mid-size ones. That’s if you could find hyena for sale.
How much does it cost caring for a Hyena pet?
As mentioned before, their daily food (meat) intake is high and combined with providing appropriate housing and space, the average cost will be 15.000$ per year for taking care of a Hyena pet.
Hyenas as pets, a growing market
Having said all the above, in countries like the United States and Spain there are already people serving this market. Even if you check social networks, you will notice that more and more people are claiming to have Hyena as a pet at home.
Therefore, every day it is becoming easier to satisfy the demand of having Hyenas as a pet at home if that is your desire.
When contacting these breeders, it will be a good idea to consult with them about guides, warnings, and other ways that can help guide you to learn how to train and tame Africa hyena pet.
A Pet Hyena will surely want a lot of attention once it has adapted to you. They usually behave as friendly and affectionate as dogs.
Where I Can Find Hyenas For Sale?
We can’t really tell you where to find a Hyena for sale, but we can assure you that in many African countries there are hyena cubs for sale at the cheap price of 50$. The problem is that you can’t take one from there, for reasons like your country laws or airport Shipping. Then you can choose the right type of hyena for you.
Why is it Hard to have a Hyena pet?
The biggest problem is that it is very difficult to tame one, once it has reached adulthood.
And to get a Pet Hyena, can take a long time. Some will most likely choose to invest in catching one and plucking it from its natural habitat. That is an expensive option, because you would have to pay for people to do so and have them travel to the location to catch it.
Once you have the Hyena Pet, you will find that you don’t have anyone to help you tame it. Because there is no expert who does this or knows how to do it. It will be an animal that will always be looking for an escape, threatening the life of whoever approaches.
On the other hand, having a Hyena Puppy can help to achieve breeding since it will grow up surrounded by human beings. It has not developed its wild nature, so it could adapt to people.
But obtaining it is also difficult since as previously mentioned, there are not many Hyena puppy stores or shelters in the world. Most likely, you would have to take it from its mother’s side in the wild as well (and we don’t encourage you to do that).
Pet Hyena in African countries
Can hyenas be tamed?
In some African countries, people own pet hyenas instead of dogs (in addition to predatory monkeys). They use them for guarding and caring for sheep just like dogs, and when someone asks about this, they say that they prefer Hyenas pets because they are stronger and faster than dogs, and they learned to raise them a long time ago. But the question is: How did they tame Hyenas to be a good pet?
Is it possible to crossbreed a Hyena with a Dog?
Many people wonder; What if we crossbreed a Hyena with a dog? Will we get a new “hyena dog” breed? The answer is no because the dog breeds and the Hyena breed are two different factions.
As for the genetic and laboratory merging, it became close, but the experiment was not done between Hyenas and dogs because this hybrid is not worth the effort and money.
Can I Pet a Striped Hyena?
You may wonder why a Pet Striped Hyena. Well, they are loving, loyal companions and look so beautiful. As we know these wild animals are so strong, more than dogs, and have a huge body that allows them to run fast and fight other wild animals, but they don’t often possess these qualities. They are wild animals, and by nature, fearful of human beings. An animal that is tamed may not be afraid of humans, but it will still possess wild instincts.
This article is general and is not based on breeding. Refer to specialists and discuss with them before purchasing a hyena as a pet.
More about the Hyena pet
Habitat of Hyenas
Different species of hyenas have slightly different habitat preferences. Aardwolves live in dry, open bushland and plains, and are restricted to areas where termites are plentiful. Spotted hyenas will live in mountainous areas, woodlands, savannas, and even semi-deserts. Brown hyenas live in deserts, semi-deserts, savannas, and will scavenge in urban areas. Finally, striped hyenas live in mountain regions, and scrub woodlands.
Distribution of the Hyena
Different species of hyenas can be found across Africa and in the Middle East. Aardwolves are found in Southern Africa, East Africa, and Northeast Africa. Spotted hyenas are found from Sub-Saharan Africa to northern South Africa, except for rainforest areas. Brown hyenas are found only in southern Africa. Striped hyenas are found in northern Africa, as well as parts of the Middle East.
Hyena and Human Interaction
Hyenas rarely attack humans, and most instances are attacks of sick or young when outside at night. Many species of these animals are quite timid towards humans and avoid conflict.
Unfortunately, many species are despised by native people and farmers. Especially with scavenging, hyenas can be wrongly accused of killing livestock when feeding on carcasses. This leads to retaliation killing by farmers and townspeople.
Reproduction of the Hyena
When females give birth they seek an isolated den away from the rest of the pack. The gestation period differs based on species. When the cubs are older they will be moved to a communal den with cubs from multiple mothers in the pack. There, they will develop a dominance hierarchy amongst themselves, and the most dominant cubs will eat the most and be most likely to survive.
Cubs will nurse anywhere from one to two years, before becoming fully weaned. Female cubs will stay in the pack, but males leave at around three years old when they reach sexual maturity.
Hyena Diet in the wild
Aardwolves are insectivores, and they only eat termites. Though the termites secrete a toxin, aardwolves do not seem to be affected by it, according to ADW. They consume the termites by licking them off surfaces with a flat, sticky tongue. They can consume 30,000 termites every night
The other hyena species are carnivores, which means they only eat meat. They are known to take advantage of other animals’ kills for easy meals, but they aren’t just scavengers. They also hunt and fill their diet with wildebeest, antelope, hippos, birds, jackals, lizards, fish, snakes, foxes, porcupines, eggs and insects.
The size of the meal often is determined by how large the hyena’s clan is. Clans work together to take down prey, so the bigger the animal, the more members the clan needs to have for a successful kill.
They often hide extra food in watering holes, since nothing is wasted. Hyenas will eat every part of an animal, including bones and hooves.
Why Do Hyenas Laugh?
The “laughter” vocalization for which they are known is a high-pitched series of short giggle like sounds. These sounds, rather than being associated with hyenas having a good time, are generally made when they are threatened or under attack. A hyena may also produce a laughter sound when it is frustrated.
They begin to exhibit hunting behaviours at the age of eight months and will begin fully participating in group hunts after their first year. Spotted hyenas reach sexual maturity at the age of three years. The average lifespan in zoos is 12 years, with a maximum of 25 years.
Types of Hyena in the world
There are four hyena species — aardwolf, striped, spotted and brown. Spotted hyenas are the largest of the three. They are fairly large in build and have relatively short torsos with lower hindquarters, and sloping backs. They have excellent night-time vision and hearing.
1.Aardwolf (Proteles Cristata)
The aardwolf (Proteles cristata) is an insectivorous mammal, native to East and Southern Africa. Its name means “earth-wolf” in Afrikaans and Dutch. It is also called “maanhaar-jackal” (Afrikaans for “mane-jackal”), “termite-eating hyena” and “civet hyena”, based on its habit of secreting substances from its anal gland, a characteristic shared with the African civet.
The aardwolf is in the same family as the hyena. Unlike many of its relatives in the order Carnivora, the aardwolf does not hunt large animals. It eats insects and their larvae, mainly termites; one aardwolf can lap up as many as 250,000 termites during a single night using its long, sticky tongue. The aardwolf’s tongue has adapted to be tough enough to withstand the strong bite of termites.
2. Striped Hyena (Hyaena Hyaena)
The striped hyena (Hyaena hyaena) is a species of hyena native to North and East Africa, the Middle East, the Caucasus, Central Asia and the Indian subcontinent. It is listed by the IUCN as near-threatened, as the global population is estimated to be under 10,000 mature individuals which continues to experience deliberate and incidental persecution along with a decrease in its prey base such that it may come close to meeting a continuing decline of 10% over the next three generations. It is also the national animal of Lebanon.
4.Spotted Hyena (Crocuta Crocuta)
Spotted hyenas are often called laughing hyenas because of the noise they make after catching prey.
Spotted hyenas live in large groups called clans, which can include up to 80 hyenas. They hunt in smaller groups and use various techniques to attack different types of animals.
They are successful hunters in groups or alone and will even try to catch fish, birds, and bugs in lakes. After catching their prey, spotted hyenas celebrate by making a sound like a laugh. This giggle tells other hyenas that they have food to share, but it can also attract other animals, such as lions, to the feast. This can spark a game of tug-of-war.
5.Brown Hyena (Hyaena Brunnea)
The Brown hyena has a scruffy look and differs in appearance from the three other hyena species by its pointed ears and long shaggy coat. It is well known for its weird howl, sounding like a hysterical human laugh. The Brown hyena lives in the southern regions of Africa, namely, Angola, Namibia, Botswana, southern and western Zimbabwe and southern Mozambique. The south part of the Kalahari Desert and the coastal areas of southwest Africa is the location of the largest population in existence today. These animals inhabit semi-desert and desert areas, open woodland savanna and open scrub. They can survive near urban areas but need some sort of cover where they can rest during the day, like bush cover and rocky areas.
Facts About Hyena
1. They are adept hunters
One of the longest standing false accusations against the spotted hyenas is that they are purely scavengers. Particularly that they steal most of their food from lions. In fact studies have shown that hyenas kill 66-90% of what they eat and when it comes to the actual hunt they are extremely versatile and successful hunters.
2. They are great mothers
When thinking of nature’s great mothers, a gorilla nestling her young baby in her arms or a cat nursing her kittens may come to mind; usually not a spotted hyena. However, hyenas surprisingly are one of the best mothers in the animal kingdom, investing more energy per cub than any other terrestrial carnivore. Hyenas give birth to 1 to 3 tiny jet black cubs (some call them pups, but early naturalists thought they resembled bear cubs).
Hyena cubs are “precocial”, meaning they are born in a more advanced stage of development with their eyes open, teeth intact, and muscles ready to go, unlike many of the cat species where cubs are born largely blind and helpless for several weeks.
3. They are amazingly intelligent
Often cast as being foolish and dull, perhaps due to the misunderstanding of their laugh or giggle vocalization, spotted hyenas show shocking signs of intelligence that rival most wild animals in Africa. In fact, hyena intelligence is thought to mimic the evolution of our own intelligence, with success through complex social behaviors driving brain evolution. In experiments spotted hyenas outperformed even chimpanzees when it came to collective or group problem solving; showing that in some ways hyena intelligence may even exceed some of the great apes in certain aspects.
4. They can count
Studies have shown that spotted hyenas can determine the number of other hyenas in a rival clan and decide their best course of action. Similarly, males looking to join a new clan will always join the clan with the least number of other males after doing a quick census. It may not be calculus, but spotted hyenas are able to count.
5. They have powerful jaws
A bite that can kill and also crush bones. Spotted hyena jaws have evolved colossal masseter (jaw) muscles to be able to produce massive amounts of force in a specific section of their dentition; the molars and premolars. With the ability to exert over 1,100 psi or around 9,000 newtons (depending on the studies you read), spotted hyenas can crack open bones nearly 2 ½ inches in diameter. This allows hyenas to access the nutrient-rich marrow inside that is inaccessible to most other animals.
6. Hyenas Look Like Dogs but Are Not Related.
With their square heads and powerful bodies, hyenas look similar to larger breeds of dogs. The reality, however, is that hyenas are not related to dogs. They are more closely related to cats, mongooses, and civets, but have their own unique family of mammals, the Hyaenidae.
7. Do hyenas laugh?
Some hyenas really do make a noise that sounds a lot like maniacal giggling. But it’s only the spotted hyenas that make the sound, and it has nothing to do with having a sense of humour. Rather, their “laughter” is an indication of nervous excitement or submission to a more dominant hyena. Spotted hyenas also make a range of sounds, including “whooping” noises that they use to call their young.
8. Striped Hyenas Can Double in Size.
Striped hyenas are usually silent, except for a crackling sound that can rise to a howl. When scared, they can raise the hair along their backs and nearly double in size. This is believed to be a last-ditch effort to frighten off potential predators that are too big to fight and too close to escape.
9. All species come from Different Regions of Africa.
Different hyena species dwell in different African locations. While striped hyenas prefer the dry, rocky lands of northern Africa, brown and spotted hyenas live in sub-Saharan Africa. Aardwolves prefer bushlands found in southern and eastern parts of Africa.
10. They Sometimes Go Head-To-Head With Lions
Lions and hyenas hunt for the same food, so it’s not surprising that they sometimes find themselves in competition for the same meal. When that happens, a fight may break out. Lions typically win, often injuring or killing the hyena — but hyenas can call out for help when threatened. If a hyena is joined by a group of friends, the hyenas may be able to chase away a lion.
Can Hyenas Be Tamed?
Can hyenas be domesticated? Hyenas pet takes a great deal of patience to tame, as well as a firm hand to function as the leader of their pack. The striped hyena is the smallest of the hyenas, and it is also the easiest to tame. They can be fully trained and have been for thousands of years. The Ancient Egyptians would tame these animals and use them in hunting or guard. Some people equate their behaviour and affection to that of a dog when raised in youth. Attempting to train an older animal would be much more difficult and dangerous.
Hyenas puppies have a predatory drive, which needs to be met even in captivity. You’ll be feeding them large quantities of meat, as they are carnivores. Dog food is not designed to meet their dietary requirements.
They also need enrichment, which they get from each other and hunting. As highly social animals with a complex social structure, living alone with humans is not what they were designed to do. Owning more than one hyena would increase the risks involved, as they are generally even more effective hunters when hunting in a pack. They need strong enclosures and a large area to roam, as these are large animals that can run quickly and jump high, meaning your regular 6-foot privacy fence around a quarter-acre yard is insufficient to meet their needs.
Hyenas are also able to bond with dogs, particularly striped hyenas when they are raised in captivity. They are prone to killing dogs in the wild, so they should be raised together from a young age to mitigate the danger.
The striped hyena is not considered very aggressive and usually avoids contact with other wildlife. Misunderstood and viewed as dangerous or destructive, it is poisoned, trapped, or shot for supposedly preying on livestock or raiding farms. As populations of other large carnivores decline, so do the food they leave behind that striped hyenas scavenge.
Some people even mistakenly believe the hyena’s body parts can be used as medicine for humans. Once numerous, the striped hyena population is dwindling and has disappeared from some areas altogether. The Barbary hyena Hyaena hyaena barbara, which lives in Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia, is endangered.
Yet, we have much to learn from hyenas. For example, they seem to be immune to certain diseases, such as rabies and anthrax. By studying their immune system, we might find cures for humans.
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