Exotic Pets™

Exotic Pets podcast

The show for people interested in pets that slither, hop, creep, fly or swim:  from bunnies to iguanas, parrots to ferrets, snakes to tortoises. Information on the physical requirements of these exotic pets and how to manage the often challenging environment and correct diet essential to their welfare.

Co-hosted by Dr. Doug Mader, author of “The Vet at Noah’s Ark: Stories of Survival from an Inner-City Animal Hospital,”who is a world-renowned specialist on exotic animals, author of four major veterinary textbooks on reptile and amphibians, and a passionate educator.

Sponsored by:

Zoo Med - 40 Proud Years - 1977-2017ZuPreem LogoOxbow Animal Health - Est. 1980


Ferrets — the Obligate Hyper-Carnivore

#245: Dr Micah Kohles, the Chief Veterinary Officer for Compana Pet Brands, talks about the specific nutritional needs of rats and ferrets, which are considered “obligate hyper carnivores.” They need meat — and lots of it!

Annual Exams for Exotics Are “An Ounce of Prevention”

#244: Dr. Doug Mader, the author of “The Vet at Noah’s Ark,” explain why an annual exam for exotic pets is so important to catch medical problems early, before they become too costly or life-threatening.

Protect Against RDHV — The Rabbit “Ebola Virus”

#243: Dr. Micah Kohles from Oxbow Animal health discusses how the deadly RDHV virus can have up to a 90% mortality rate in bunnies — therefore the truly life-saving importance of getting the RDHV vaccine for all pet rabbits.

Birds Are Perch Potatoes

#242: Avian veterinarian Dr Jennifer Graham discusses the stewardship of a pet bird and how the inherent problem is that they cannot do their normal behavior, which is to fly! Being sedentary can lead to a host of physical and emotional problems, which as their guardian you need to be aware of and try to mitigate.

Your First Vet Visit with Your Exotic Pet

#241: Dr Micah Kohles, Chief Veterinary Officer with Compana Pet Brands, talks about how to go about planning your first vet visit with an exotic pet to form the beginning of a partnership in its care. You can find a specialized vet at the Association of Exotic Mammal Veterinarians [AEMV], the Association of Avian Veterinarians (AAV) and the Association of Reptile Veterinarians (ARV).

Dr. Doug Dispels the Myth — You CAN be Allergic to Exotic Pets!

#240: Are exotics hypoallergenic? “No, that’s a myth!,” Dr. Doug says. Proteins in saliva, urine and feces are what can trigger allergies. These proteins dry — become airborne — and cause reactions in some people with a tendency to allergic reactions.

Little Mammals Need to Forage

#239: Dr. Micah Kohles explains why foraging is a basic need that is essential to the wellbeing of all small mammals, who engage instinctually in this behavior. He describes how to support meaningful foraging activities to provide enrichment to guinea pigs, rats, gerbils and other little pets.

Decisions, Decisions. What Kind of Pet Snake to Get?

#238: Dr. Karen Rosenthal describes the characteristics of a variety of snakes to help people choose the right kind for themselves.

“Chonkosaurus” the Obese Snapping Turtle

#237: Tracie asks Dr. Doug whether exotics can get overweight — like the photos circulating on the internet about the gigantic snapping turtle nicknamed Chonkosaurus, who got too fat for his shell. Dr. Doug discusses the dangers of obesity in pets in general, but particularly exotics.

Feeding Your Bird — Is She Insectivorous? Granivorous?

#236: Dr. Micah Kohles discusses avian nutrition and how to layer the right foods on top of basic nutrition from Zupreem by adding the variety of foods your particular species of bird needs — insects, nuts and seeds, fruit? [Hint: the shape of your bird’s beak does indicate the right foods for her.]