Monkeys like humans are social animals and therefore need large amounts of quality and frequent social interaction. A pet monkey that is not showered with enough time and attention and love could lead to such an animal developing some unusual behavioral issues like screaming, biting, and destroying things all in the bid to get your attention.
They could also become prone to sudden displays of aggression, regardless of size, especially at the age of sexual maturity. At this stage, a monkey may destroy everything in the house and bounce off the walls in fits of agitation. They might also develop psychological problems which are even worse because it could be quite difficult to find a cure for them. Primates have special and specific needs that need to be taken care of and great thought needs to be given to considering taking a monkey as a pet.
The challenges of raising and training a monkey as a pet are usually enormous because caring for a pet monkey is not the same as caring for a dog or cat or even a rabbit. Even though monkeys might share some genes with humans, they require a full commitment for the 20 to 40 years they might spend alive if they are well taken care of, meaning they need to be cared for their whole lives. These animals do not mature and grow up as human babies do which makes them children for life.
Another challenge is that monkeys who are pets tend to get used to their owners so much and could get jealous and possessive when new additions are made to the house such as a newborn child or a new spouse. It is also not very possible to leave your pet monkeys at home to go for vacations, neither can they be kept with neighbors or family members, and in some other countries keeping monkeys as pets is prohibited.
Monkeys You Can Have As Pets
Monkeys generally are a very difficult species of animals to keep as pets. Even though as babies, they might appear so sweet, irresistible, and helpless as babies, they often grow to become very stubborn and difficult animals as adults and make it difficult for the owners to keep up. Some examples of small monkey breeds that could be kept as pets after serious consideration include:
Although chimpanzees and humans have been said to have some sort of cordial relationship, these set of primates are not really pets, but some people choose to keep them as pets. The mature chimpanzee has enormous size and brute strength double that of a human meaning it is possible for a chimpanzee to overcome a human. Although people have kept chimpanzees as pets, it is not recommended; they can be aggressive. Chimps are not monkeys. In the real sense, these animals are great apes native to the forests and savanna of Africa.
The capuchin monkey is said to be the most intelligent of the monkey species. But even with their smartness, they never seem to know where the toilet is and keep on messing the whole place up. They typically weigh about 5 to 7 pounds and, after the socialization and training process, they allow people who have severe disabilities like quadriplegia, spinal cord injuries, and mobility issues to maintain their independence. This species of monkey also tends to be mischievous and highly territorial.
Macaques are native to Asia and are very small monkeys compared to the capuchin. Their size could get up to 40 pounds with a life span of about 30 years. They also need to wear diapers throughout their lifetime.
Tamarins are tiny New World monkeys that weigh less than a pound but will live about 15 years in captivity. Despite their small mouths, they can still give nasty bites. They need a very secure cage with small bar spacing; if not, they will escape or get stuck in the bars. For an indoor cage, you can house one in a 7-feet square enclosure. But, they will need access to a larger outdoor enclosed space for highly needed vitamin D for their growth and development.
#5. Squirrel Monkey
Squirrel monkeys are acrobats. They live up to 25 years, use their tails to hang on branches, and need a lot of space and hanging branches for clinging and moving around. They will also wear diapers for their entire life. They have extensive dietary requirements and require a wide variety of foods.
Marmosets share many similarities with the tamarin monkeys in terms of size and the necessary features required for their housing. The only difference being the nutritional needs of the Marmosets which include insects, fruits, the sap of trees, and some smaller animals. It is not really easy to train or handle a Marmoset monkey due to its special feeding habits and temperament.
Guenons are monkeys found majorly in the Sub Saharan forests of Africa. When turned to pets, they can manage to live for about 25 years. They weigh nearly over 10 pounds and are High maintenance animals that survive and thrive better in large groups. Therefore, to successfully keep this animal as a pet, it will also be required to keep a large number or troop of them.