How to Take Care of a Capybara Pet?

Take care of a capybara

Capybaras are known to be the largest living rodents in the world. They are semi-aquatic animals and love to swim. They are excellent swimmers who can hold their breath for 5 minutes in the water. A capybara is a herbivore. They eat only plants, grasses, and fruits.

They live in densely forested areas so they might bite you if they feel cornered or left alone. Cute capybaras when they are born are fed only milk for one to two weeks. Baby capybara starts eating solid food after one to two weeks.

Capybaras are great pets when it comes to petting. They are very friendly. They usually take some time to adjust to the environment as they are wild animals. However, you cannot pet only one capybara. If you think of keeping a pet capybara, you need to pet two capybaras. Either be it one male and one female, or two females, or two males. Female capybaras are weighted more than the male capybara.

Capybaras have sharp teeth as they eat bark trees. Moreover, they grind their food back and forth and not side-by-side. In this article, we are going to have an in-depth knowledge of how to take care of a capybara. Keep reading!

capybara swimming

How to Care for a Capybara?

The answer to your question about how hard it is to take care of a capybara is quite simple. You need to follow the below-mentioned steps:

  1. Capybaras are very sensitive. So, before thinking of petting a capybara you need to consult a veterinarian first. Search for any capybara nearby your area and ask him whether you should pet a capybara. If he agrees then you should go for it. Ask him about all the vaccinations you should give to capybara and the frequency of checkups. Further, consult him about all the health issues that the capybara might suffer.
  2. The next step is to arrange a shelter for them. They weigh up to 200 pounds and can reach 4 feet in length. So, create a shelter accordingly. The larger you make it, the better it is. If you are thinking of keeping an outdoor capybara, then make sure that the house is situated in a place where the capybara gets both the sun rays and shady spots. Further, if your intention is to keep the capybara inside, ensure that he receives 12 hours of darkness and 12 hours of light every day. Make an environment where the capybaras do not have to adjust much.
  3. When the temperature falls below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, use a heat source and provide hay bedding to the capybaras to make them warm. Similarly, at the time of summer, keep a water bowl in the shelter so that capybaras remain hydrated. An excess of heat and cold can cause him to die.
  4. Arrange a swimming pool that shall be 6 feet deeper which will help the capybara to swim. They love to spend time in the water as they are semi-aquatic animals.

What Do Capybaras Eat?

Capybaras are herbivores. They do not eat meat. They only prefer to eat plants, grasses, and fruits. So, feed them with vegetables, fruits, aquatic plants, grass hay, and bread. Further, to keep the teeth of the baby capybara stronger, provide them branches so that they keep on chewing. If they do not chew then their teeth will grow bigger which will prevent them from eating and they will starve throughout. 

Chewing will help the capybaras teeth to be in a safe position. For example, willow and birch branches will be a good help to keep the teeth of the capybaras stronger. But if you want to feed them with other branches then it is recommended that you consult a veterinarian or do a quick research. 

what do capybaras eat

To ensure that they receive all the vitamins and minerals, you can also feed them with packaged rodent food. To raise their immunity, providing packaged rodent food will keep them healthy and will provide them the vitamins. Additionally, always give them fresh water so that capybaras do not become dehydrated. Baby capybaras need constant care and attention from you. They are wild animals and you need to take care of a capybara nicely and their diet. Read more about their diet here.

Is It Expensive to Raise Pet Capybaras?

Do you think that raising a capybara will be on your budget? Raising a capybara pet is quite expensive. First of all, you cannot buy one capybara. You need to adopt more than one capybara. Secondly, arranging a shelter, enclosure, food, and swimming pool will be the extra expenses you need to incur to pet a capybara.

To maintain a proper diet and to take frequent veterinarian care, the budget goes on increasing. It is not easy to pet a capybara. You need to ensure that their health is not sacrificed. If a baby capybara will not be provided with a proper diet then it might suffer from an illness that can also result in sudden death. Regular health checkups will add to the costs in your budget. Read more how much capybara cost.

capybara cost

Capybaras are very fond of swimming pools. Keeping them at a place near the swimming pool might cause you extra charge as the area and space will be larger. The most important thing to raise a capybara pet is to obtain a license. Capybaras require special licensing as they are exotic pets. You will not get the license easily. If you buy them from a reputable breeder, the cost will be in the low thousands.

How do Capybaras Breed?

If you wish to breed your capybara pet, then remember the following points:

  • Breeding is done by female capybaras. They are in charge of breeding. She makes a whistling sound from her nose whenever she is ready to breed. The male capybaras and the female capybaras understand the language and help the female capybara to breed. 
  • During breeding, she refuses male capybaras to come in contact with her.
  • If your female pet capybara is breeding, ensure that you have a large swimming pool. They only breed in the water.
  • Female capybaras pregnancy lasts for 130-150 days. In other words, female capybaras are pregnant for 4-5 months. They give birth to four baby capybaras.
  • Baby capybara depends on their mother’s milk for a week. After a week or two they start eating solid food. You can provide them with solid food. 
  •  A baby capybara when born does not know how to swim. They live on land. But within a week they become swimmers. 
  • You need to take care of a capybara when they are born as they need more love. Do not corner them, or else they will be aggressive and can even bite you.

Do Capybaras Make Good Pets?

Yes, capybaras are friendly. They will make you a friend if you show them affection and care. Capybaras love cuddling. They will cuddle you if you become their friend. During captivity, they need proper diet, food, and companionship to adjust to the new environment. 

To let capybaras enjoy themselves, you need to provide them with a closed-top enclosure and a large swimming pool. The pool should be accessible the whole day. In the forest, capybaras live in a group of 10 to 20 individuals. Capybaras are happiest when they are in groups. 

capybara with other animals

Provide them with a much larger space, so that they can spend time with each other. Give them their space and time to be comfortable in the new environment. Once they are comfortable, they will play with you and even sleep with you. Read more do capybaras make good pets.

Timely provide them grass as their diet includes 80% of grasses. You need to search for an excellent source to provide capybaras grass-based hay. 

Is Keeping a Capybara as a Pet Illegal?

In some states, keeping a capybara pet is illegal. In case they are not illegal in states, they are prohibited from certain cities. While in some cities, you need to take a license or permission before keeping a capybara pet. Owning a license is costly. Furthermore, in some states it is legal and there are no restrictions on owning a capybara.

If you are interested in purchasing an adult capybara, you will have to pay between $1000 and $3000. If you buy a female capybara, the cost will be more. Ensure that the adult capybara is active and not aggressive. Before buying, make sure that you do all the health checkups so that they do not bring any kind of disease to your house.

To Wrap up:

Capybaras make good pets if they are shown love and affection. They love to play and enjoy spending time with their favorite humans. Maintain a clean and positive environment around them to ensure that the capybaras are free from any diseases. Keep consulting a veterinarian about their health issues and injections. 

Feed them with a proper diet. Provide them grasses to eat and you can also provide them packaged rodent food as it contains vitamins which are good for the health of your capybara. During summer, keep a bowl of water to make sure that they drink more water and are hydrated. During winter, provide them shelter and a heat lamp. Ensure that they do not feel left alone. Spend time with the capybaras. They love cuddling. Cuddle them and make capybaras your family member.

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