In this article, we are going to talk about The15 best and easy to handle reptiles for beginners to own.
So you want a pet reptile but you are not sure which one to choose.
Luckily you are here to learn and I am here to help you in the right direction.
Because only certain reptiles are available at big-name pet stores, we will stick to those options to make things a bit easier for you.
Reptiles as pets are a great option for a multitude of reasons.
For owners who are looking for something relatively easy to care for, unique or hypoallergenic reptiles are a great choice.
However each animal has a particular and important set of reptile care requirements and it’s best to choose the requirements that work well for your lifestyle.
Reptiles are available in many shapes and sizes and while some pets have higher care needs others are fairly low maintenance.
The best pet reptiles for beginners and kids.
Regardless of whether you are allergic to feathers or fur, Confined to a small space, or are simply intrigued by Reptiles, the following suggestions are great for both new reptile owners.
Have possesses little to no previous experience and children.
Some reptiles are poor choices for beginners due to their diet, environmental needs or an unwieldy adult size.
However, some readily available reptiles are good for beginners.
These animals are relatively low maintenance compared to other reptiles, but they still need a significant investment in the proper equipment upfront.
Thorough research before deciding on one of these pets and getting your enclosure setup before bringing your new pet home is crucial.
The bottom line and theme we looked for was low maintenance.
They will still need a significant investment in housing and care but compared to other reptiles these 15 are easier to handle when you are considering pets.
Here are some examples of the 15 best beginner reptiles to own.
15. Crested Gecko
Crested Gecko are usually popular these days as they are very easy to care for and easy to breed for those looking to get into that aspect of the hobby.
Christie is a very docile, entertaining reptile.
The long crests on their body and eyes make them look like cartoons.
This Gecko Species is arboreal and require an enclosure that is taller than it is long, which makes it an easy pet for someone that might not have a lot of space for an enclosure.
Their dietary needs are easily available through insects and commercial foods, making them not only entertaining but convenient as well.
One of the most important rules to keeping a Crested Gecko is that you always make sure there is some humidity in the cage.
For this reason screen top cases don’t work so well as they don’t hold humidity.
Beginner misconceptions about crested geckos, that they need to have their tank SOAKED in water.
In reality, crested geckos need high humidity but they also need to be able to dry out.
If a gecko can’t get dry, it will likely develop a bacterial infection, which can be difficult and expensive to treat.
14. Red-Eared Slider
They are a freshwater turtle that makes a fun pet! These pet reptiles require daily nutrition when young while the older red eared slider can be fed once every two or three days.
The Red-Eared Slider eats in water and is omnivorous.
13. Russian Tortoise
If you are looking for a pet that will be in the family for generations ( No, seriously…. I’m talking up to 50 years) and stays relatively small with low maintenance habit requirements, then the Russian tortoise may just be for you!
A Russian tortoise is a better choice than the popular red eared slider, because of the different maintenance requirements and ability to interact with a human.
However, tortoises live for up to 50 years which is a lengthy commitment.
relatively small on the tortoise scale ( Maximum of 8-10 inches), these tortoise are very hardy, which makes them a great choice.
They also don’t have the water requirements of other reptile pets, as they get almost all of their moisture from their food.
When it comes to diet you will want to opt for a diet rich in fibrous leafy greens such as leafy greens ( think kale, collard greens, spinach, etc. ) and avoid breads and sugary foods (like fruit) at all costs.
Surprisingly they enjoy climbing, so if you can give them the ability to do so without putting them up too high or risking and escape from the enclosure, go for it!
12. Water Dragon
Water dragons are full of personality and spunk! With easily attainable habitat requirements, you get to spend more time enjoying them then caring for them.
This attractive lizard has skin made up of different Shades of green and a glamorous head to tail crest.
Water dragons may require more maintenance than beginner level reptiles.
They grow up to 3 feet long and eat crickets and worms.
Many people want to own iguanas, without realizing the space they take up ,or their aggressive nature.
A water Dragon is a perfect compromise because they are much smaller, and less aggressive, but have some similar physical qualities.
11. African Sulcata Tortoise
The Sulcata Tortoise (Geochelone Sulcata), also known as the African spurred tortoise, is one of the largest tortoise species in the world.
It has a brown to yellow cell and very thick yellowish brown skin, along with pointed scales or spurs on its legs.
It is strictly herbivorous and does not require animal proteins, fruits for pet Tortoise food.
They may outlive you so make some plans.
As pets these tortoises are generally pleasant and docile.
They are rarely aggressive or territorial.
But they still should not be handled regularly especially when they are younger and more fragile.
Excessive handling can stress a tortoise and lead to health issues or even premature death.
10. Corn or Rat Snake
A native species to the Southeastern United States, the Corn Snake makes a wonderful choice for those new to Reptiles or children because of their mild temperament and easy to care for.
Smaller in size and very calm, both of these snakes make for great pets.
They enjoy climbing branches so they need an enclosure that allows them some space to do so.
Corn Snakes Spend the rest of their time hiding and burrowing.
Because of their curiosity they are incredible escape artists and their tank needs to be secure.
Available in a wide variety of beautiful morphs, many people enjoy owning a Corn snake because of their unique schemes and patterns.
Relatively thin bodied, these snakes tend to grow to be around 5 feet long and Leo on average around 15 years with some living as long as 20.
If you are looking for a reptile that is super easy to care for and can be left to tend to itself for days on end, look no further.
Adult Corn snakes only require feeding about once a week while babies should be fed several times.
9. Ball Python
For those who like a leg-less companion, ball pythons are one of the most popular choices.
They are readily available from pet stores and require very simple care but they can in some cases be Pinky with food which can be hard to deal with for a new reptile owner.
Balls are a little and smaller in size which appeals to many first time snake owners.
They come in a variety of color variations and range from 3 to 5 feet in length.
Another factor is lifespan, their average around 25 to 30 years, which is a long time so make sure you are committed!
They do not have elaborate tank requirements which makes them favorable to first time owners.
Ball Pythons are often thought of as the best pet snake!
8. Eastern Box Turtles
These turtles live a long time but they do not have the aquatic requirements like red eared sliders!
Eastern box turtles live in varied climates, so they are quite adaptable and are Omnivores.
Eastern box turtles are typically active during the day.
Which they naturally spend roaming around foraging for food.
Pet box turtles don’t usually prefer frequent handling, as this can cause them stress.
A common sign of stress is when the turtle completely retreats into it’s shell.
Some may say Chameleons are not great for beginners but it’s mainly due to the environment they need as it has to be very precise.
If you are not interested in handling your pet reptile then this is a great option as they can also stress easily.
Yet with their ability to change colors, they make a very interesting and unique pet.
Work with an expert on their housing.
6. Blue Tongue Skink
Not as well known as the more popular options above, vmzinc can be a great choice for a handling friendly reptile.
You do need to acclimate them to it form an early age or they may become nippy.
Well-socialized blue Tongue Skinks enjoy hanging out outside of their tank and spending time with their humans.
They also are not nocturnal like some other lizards, so they are more likely to be awake and open to interaction when you are up and about.
It’s friendly demeanor and curious nature make it a joy to watch and interact with.
Living on average 15 to 20 years (up to 30 years in rare instances!), You should be prepared to commit to your skink the same way you would a kitten as they will likely be around for quite some time.
There are 10 different subspecies of skink, all of which sport a berry-blue Tongue-Skinks.
5. leopard Gecko
These cute little creatures are the darling of the lizard world, with their smiling faces and big bright eyes.
Leopard Gecko is a perfect place to start with reptiles.
These little guys are easy to set up, easy to feed and only require a heat mat for warmth.
Hardy and docile geckos make a great pet.
They are nocturnal however, so if your family is active early in the morning or at night, you will get to experience their peak activity.
These spotted geckos are also quiet and easy to maintain, which makes them great additions to any family.
They have easily accessible heat and dietary requirements (they eat only insects!) That also contributes to the ease of ownership.
This Cool lizard boasts a colorful neck pouch and is a great choice for novice Reptile pet parents.
Anoles can live more than five years and grow up to 8 inches long.
They like to chillax in a tropical habitat and love to eat crickets and worms.
3. Bearded Dragon
The Bearded dragon ( pogona vitticeps) along with the leopard gecko, shares the top spot in the pet lizard Kingdom.
Beardies have easy care requirements and when socialized properly, love interaction.
They have great personalities individual to each one and make great additions to the family.
Bigger than geckos and smaller than and a iguanas, this lizard species is a wonderful size for pet lovers of all ages.
Bearded Dragons are omnivores and eat insects and vegetables.
They are also diurnal, so they are awake during the day, which makes a great pet for anyone who spends a lot of time at home.
2. Argentine Black and White Tegu
Another pet lizard that isn’t as well known is the Argentine tegu.
These lizards are not only friendly but they have even been described as “dog-like” in their behavior toward their owners.
They even can be house trained and allowed to roam your house, though this isn’t advisable if you have other pets.
They do require interaction though as lack of proper care and socialization can lead to aggression.
1. King Snake
King snakes are great beginners’ pets as well, and come in a variety of species that are good as pets.
These snakes can be kept in a small enclosure when they are young, but may grow up to be 4 to 5 feet long or bigger.
For this reason you should probably get a nice roomy enclosure for your King snake when it starts to get larger as they are active and will use the space.
Needing a larger enclosure may seem like a downside for a beginner, but having a snake as active as a king will mean your snake will be a joy to watch when exploring its environment.
The more places it has to borrow and climb the more truly fascinating it becomes to observe.
One of the biggest misconceptions about King snake is that they stay small, which can be true in some cases but they have the capability to grow large.
It’s important to keep this in mind when you buy a baby as they may need a big enclosure as adults.
Their care remains simple, they just need some extra room to live slither around.
Reptiles are awesome!
Knowing the personality and requirements of each potential reptile will help ensure a perfect reptile fit for everyone.
Make sure you do thorough research on each of these pet reptiles, as they need proper care and commitment!
Which reptiles do you think makes the perfect pet?
Should any other reptiles make it on our list?
Let us know in the comments below!