Dedicated to making the world a
better place one squirrel at a time
Most species of squirrels, as a general rule, do not make good pets; nonetheless, some states allow for ownership of certain types of squirrels. It is important to know the laws in your state. As with any pet, you need to ensure the animal has been gently handled, purchased from a reputable dealer, bred in a legal captive breeding program (not taken from its mom in the wild to be your pet), and has been inspected by a veterinarian.
The food choices will depend on the genus of squirrel you are caring for as there are differences in needs for ground squirrels, flying squirrels, and tree squirrels. This site is primarily focused on the needs of tree squirrels; however, much of the information is appropriate for all species of squirrel. For additional information specific to ground squirrels and flying squirrels, please review the links to the right.
The basic needs of captive squirrels boil down to these:
When a normally sweet squirrel starts showing new aggression (and its not normal breeding season ‘grumpies’),it may be the first signs of a very serious nutritional disorder called: Metabolic Bone Disease Or MBD
Making appropriate food choices for weaned juveniles and adults can make the difference between a healthy releasable squirrel and a sickly, disabled or dead one.
This section discusses how to ensure the squirrel gets complete and palatable nutrition.
Food & Diet
The housing needs of squirrels change as they grow and reach adulthood. This section discusses the needs at each stage and provides instructions for building a release house; as well as, adapting the environment to meet the physical, emotional and social needs of captive squirrels.
Illness in squirrels can result from multiple causes. Some diseases require immediate
care from a veterinarian while others can be readily treated at home by correcting
the diet or with commonly available over-
This section discusses what to look for when you suspect illness and covers the most frequent internal and external parasites found with squirrels, common bone & teeth problems; as well as, bacterial, viral and fungal infections and the current thoughts on the most effective treatment protocols.
Also provided are links to reliable sources for more detailed information on specific
illnesses and discussions on diseases that are considered zoonotic (transferable
from animals to people) and ways to protect the squirrel-
Legal status, wildlife holding, trapping restrictions; as well as, other information
related to the treatment of native and non-
Information on the natural history and care of flying squirrels
Species is important!
Most states have laws that apply based on the species of squirrel.