The Southern Tamandua is a toothless mammal that is between 21 and 31.5 inches in length, with an additional 15 to 23 inch long prehensile tail that is strong enough to hold their entire body weight. Listeners would instantly know what was being eluded to and would get the joke. As cute and interesting as you make it sound, I'll just stick to the dogs. Whether sitting on the couch with my tamandua and playing “footsie," watching her long tongue searching for termites in her eucalyptus nest, or finding her stretched out on the floor and taking a nap, I often smile when around this creature. In the wild, they depend on their sharp, front claws to defend themselves. But I do envy you for living in a beautiful country with all those exotic pets available. Pregnancy lasts between 130 and 150 days, after which a single offspring is generally born. It feeds on ants, termites, and bees. Skin conditions crop up occasionally, especially after being bit by a tick. Be the first! Since the tamandua digs a lot in the dirt, they are going to pick up parasite eggs. The best part of dealing with them is, many parts are edible. Although it is not a problem here, it will be much worse if you live in a cool climate and your house has to be closed up because of the weather. We have our place up for sale and hope to buy a sailboat. In the rainforest, the wild tamanduas are often hungry and have to search all night long for accessible termite nests. If he has been fed improperly for years and has serious health issues, you do not want to spend a lot of money for him. Look at his musculature. Tamanduas, and all anteaters, belong to the suborder Vermilingua, which literally means “worm-tongue,” describing their famous long tongues which can be almost 16 inches in length! Answer: Some people choose to provide their pets with a cage, but it needs to be as large and vertical as possible so that your tamandua can climb up on a branch and feel safe. Thanks for sharing the information about her and about keeping a tamandua as a pet. Before you go ahead and accept a $10,000 animal, you should take him to a vet (not the former owner's vet) and have him examined. These interesting creatures are at home both on the ground and in trees. What a cute animal! Intervals between births in the wild can range from 2- 3 years,  making the reproductive rate of Tamandua abysmally low. So it’s not surprising that in the wild these curious creatures feed exclusively on termites and ants. The word Tamandua means ‘insect eater’. I think it took about 5 minutes to tame my tamandua--I wish puppies were so easy. There are many reasons to host a tamandua. If you live in an apartment, though, I do not think they are the best pet. Jerboas as Pets: Feeding, Housing, and Personality, Lion Attack Should Not Change North Carolina's Exotic Animal Laws. I have the time, space, and money for it and I am very curious about getting one, except I don't know where. These secretions help mark trees, paths, objects and advertise their presence, status, and territories. All rights reserved. Tamanduas have small eyes and poor vision but a strong sense of smell and hearing. If cleaned and disinfected, the skin should never require antibiotic therapy. Your jungle menagerie is a far cry from your beach menagerie, isn't it? A tamandua is not for everyone, but they are pretty special. Southern tamanduas are between 21 and 31.5 inches  in length, with an additional 15 to 23 inchlong prehensile tail. The longest captive southern tamandua was known to live for nine years and six months. Dr. Mark is a veterinarian. At times, I may not give enough, so she will abandon her termites and dig through my compost pile to find some freshly squeezed fruit. They are known to be territorial and generally only come together to mate. Vet care would depend on who you have available locally. For one, the species is affectionate. Tamanduas, and all anteaters,  have no teeth. Of course. You may only find a Tamandua far away from where you live, and the owners might ask you to send a deposit before seeing him. No comments on this page yet. If they come straight from the rain forest, how long does it take for them to warm up to humans and relax as a pet? Some zoos make up a termite substitute diet, but other keepers feed eggs, ground beef, or a powdered milk mixed with cat food. Southern Tamanduas are native to South America. You can ask your local zookeeper if you live in a city, but beware, you might run into someone who will tell you how terrible it is to keep an animal like this as a pet. The vet can also listen to the heart and palpate the abdomen. Question: Where is the best place to buy a tamandua? You know what they say in home is complete without a capybara! Southern Tamanduas have a thick coarse coat to protect them from ant bites. I would not advise doing so. The tamandua is about the size of a miniature schnauzer, and about as active and mellow as a lazy house cat. Some tamandua owners use puppy pads. In an apartment this might be difficult to live with. Those kind of people are wrong. This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Not on purpose. In fact, their mouth can only open to the diameter of a pencil! Be sure to take your tamandua in for a wellness pet visit as soon as you find a vet. Penny Leigh Sebring from Fort Collins on November 14, 2017: I have never seen these before. (Sorry, do you remember that old pine tree commercial?). They can produce an unpleasant odor from a secretion from their anal glands. Perhaps your profession allows you to come into contact with them as well. Although it does not hinder her ability to rip open a termite nest, it has saved the skin on my neck. Their coat can be a light gold or black and tan color. I will surely research more about their availability as pets in or near Toronto and see the practicality of getting one. This is not a big issue like with some exotics. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately. Many parts are edible." I have capyvara in my swamp. It’s very stro… A specialized mouth and tongue let tamanduas eat up to 9,000 ants in a single day! You always have such interesting articles. Tamandua searching for termites in her nest. To avoid puncturing themselves with their  sharp claws, they walk on the outside of their curved wrists. This species typically weighs around 10 pounds. If you do cage your tamandua, let him out as much as possible. Topanga is a female Southern Tamandua (Lesser anteater). In the wild they are most active at night, however they can be either nocturnal or diurnal in nature. REFERENCE ONLY: Animals listed have been sold or removed. If you are already used to having pets around the house, it is not much to get used to. Even though they are insectivores, tamanduas are not hard to feed. Is this their wild state as well, or were they groomed for the camera? Out on a farm or in a big house this might be okay. Answer: There are sites on the internet where you can buy a tamandua. The "ever eat a pine tree" line took on a life of its own as people changed pine tree to any number of odd things. The name Tamandua comes from the combination of two Tupi Indian words: “Taa”, meaning ant, and “Mandeu”, meaning trap. Like most exotic animals, the tamandua is generally healthy. My first tamandua was given to me as a baby after a hunter shot her mother, but if you find a pet for sale at one of the wild animal auctions in the US, a young animal will cost between $3000–8000. She is well-fed and spends a lot of the time napping in the sun. With tongue movements as rapid as 150 times per minute they can quickly ingest their ants/termites along with their larvae and cocoons. If you can find a veterinarian willing to treat exotic animals, this is your best bet. This species typically weighs around 10 pounds. I had never heard of the tamandua (apparently neither has the spell checker because the word earned a red underline), so this was an especially interesting hub.