Should You Keep a Snowy Owl as a Pet?

Should You Keep a Snowy Owl as a Pet?

Since ancient times, humankind has been fascinated by the beautiful Snowy Owl as a pet. These raptors are frequently represented as knowing and secretive creatures in popular culture because of their brilliant white feathers and piercing golden eyes. Some individuals often desire to keep them as pets. But is doing so morally or even legally acceptable? This post will examine the benefits and drawbacks of owning a snowy pet owl.


One of the world’s most notable species of owls is the snowy owl or Bubo scandiacus. They are indigenous to North America’s and Eurasia’s Arctic regions, where they hunt small animals like lemmings and voles. Due to their eye-catching appearance and reputed intelligence, snowy owls have grown in favor as pets in recent years. Owning a Snowy Owl as a pet, however, presents a variety of difficulties and moral dilemmas.

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A snowy owl cannot be kept as a pet in the United States. The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 forbids private ownership, but if you’re interested in learning more about these intriguing creatures, keep reading.

Recognizing snowy owls

Large raptors, Snowy Owls can reach lengths up to 28 inches and have wingspans up to 65 inches. They have prominent white feathers with black markings and bright yellow eyes. Snowy Owls can hunt with fantastic precision in the pitch-black Arctic winter because they are well adapted to life in cold, harsh settings.

Ownership of Snowy Owls: A Moral Issue

Keeping Wildlife is Prohibited

The keeping of a Snowy Owl as a pet is prohibited in several nations. Due to their status as a threatened species, these birds are protected by several laws and regulations. The Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which forbids their unlicensed possession, sale, or purchase, lists Snowy Owls as migratory birds in the United States.

Keeping Snowy Owls Can be Harmful to Them

Even if it were legal, owning a Snowy Owl is unethical. Because they are not tamed, these birds should not be maintained in captivity. Owners of Snowy Owls may experience tension, anxiety, and aggressive behavior. They need specialized care, a diet, and a carefully managed habitat to ensure their well-being.

Snowy Owl Ownership is Pricey

In addition to being unethical, owning a Snowy Owl is also exceedingly expensive. These birds need specialist gear, including big aviaries or flight cages, premium feed, and medical attention. Due to the high care expense, many people find taking care of a Snowy Owl financially burdensome.

The Difficulties of Maintaining Snowy Owls

Nutrition and Diet

A diet comprising complete prey items like mice, rats, and rabbits is necessary for snowy owls. They also require a high-protein diet with different meats like chicken or quail. Keeping a Snowy Owl requires you to supply a consistent flow of fresh food, which can be challenging and expensive.

Climate and Habitat

To thrive, Snowy Owls need a certain kind of habitat. These birds demand a lot of areas to fly and exercise. Thus a tiny apartment or small enclosure is inappropriate for them. In addition, Snowy Owls are delicate to temperature changes and need an excellent habitat to avoid overheating.

Healthcare and Health

A Snowy Owl owner must receive specialist veterinarian treatment. Many health conditions, including obesity, hunger, and respiratory disorders, can affect these birds. Routine checkups and preventative medicine are required to ensure the bird’s health and well-being. Having a Snowy Owl also means being able to spot symptoms of disease and offer proper care when needed.

More Options Besides Owning Snowy Owls

There are numerous ways to enjoy Snowy Owls without keeping them if you are interested. You can go to zoos or nature sanctuaries where Snowy Owls are kept on exhibit or bird watching in their natural setting. Another option is supporting conservation initiatives that safeguard these birds and their habitats.

Frequently Ask Questions (FAQs) 

Can I keep a snowy owl as a pet?

No, it’s forbidden to keep Snowy Owls as pets in many nations, including the US.

How much does maintaining a Snowy Owl cost?

Because a Snowy Owl requires specialized equipment, premium food, and medical attention, caring for one is pricy. Many people find it financially burdensome due to the cost’s speedy accumulation.

Snowy owls, are they hostile?

Snowy owls have become hostile whenever they feel threatened or under stress. They have not tamed animals and need specialized care and a specific environment to survive.

Are Snowy Owls kept in zoos or wildlife refuges that I can visit?

Sure, Snowy Owls can be seen at many zoos and wildlife refuges. Visiting these sites is the only way to understand and appreciate these birds’ beauty.

How can I help Snowy Owl conservation efforts?

Donating to groups that fight to safeguard these birds and their habitats is one way to support conservation efforts. By supporting citizen science initiatives, you may support legislation protecting species and their habitats.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, keeping a Snowy Owl as a pet is immoral and illegal. These birds are wild animals and shouldn’t be kept in captivity. A Snowy Owl can grow agitated, anxious, and aggressive when kept as a pet, and adequate care can be expensive.

Owning a Snowy Owl is not the only option; you can also see them in zoos or contribute to conservation efforts. We may contribute to preserving and ensuring their existence in the wild by appreciating these birds from a distance.

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