Can We Keep Hyena as a Pet? Care, Natural Habitats And More

Hyenas, known for their unique vocalizations and complex social structures, captivate the interest of many animal enthusiasts. However, when it comes to keeping a Hyena as a Pet, there’s a plethora of considerations to be made, from legalities to welfare concerns.

This detailed guide aims to delve into the practicalities and challenges of having a Hyena as a Pet, emphasizing the importance of respecting these animals in their natural habitats.

Hyena as a Pet

Understanding Hyenas

Hyenas are large, carnivorous mammals native to Africa and Asia. They are incredibly intelligent and have complex social structures, much like wolves. Their distinguishing features include their powerful jaws, sloping back, and iconic ‘laugh’.

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The Challenges of Keeping a Hyena as a Pet

Here are the challenges you will face to keep hyena as pet:

Space and Environment Requirements

Hyenas are built for the expansive landscapes of the savanna, desert, or forest. They need ample space to roam and exercise. Confinement to a domestic environment can lead to stress, anxiety, and health problems.


Hyenas, as carnivores, require a specific diet primarily composed of meat. It’s not only costly but also a challenge to provide a diet that satisfies a hyena’s nutritional needs in a household setting.

Behavior and Safety Concerns

Hyenas, particularly spotted hyenas, are large and powerful predators. They have one of the strongest bite forces among mammals. Their predatory instincts make them potentially dangerous, especially if they feel threatened.

Legal Aspects of Owning a Hyena

In many jurisdictions, owning a Hyena as a Pet is illegal. It’s essential to understand the legal implications before considering adopting such an exotic and potentially dangerous pet.

The Ethics of Owning a Hyena

Aside from the practical challenges, there are significant ethical considerations when thinking about keeping a Hyena as a Pet. Hyenas are wild animals, not domesticated pets, and they thrive in their natural habitats where they can exhibit normal behavior.

The Role of Hyenas in the Ecosystem

Hyenas are key players in their ecosystems. They are scavengers and hunters, helping control population numbers of other animals and cleaning up carcasses, thus preventing the spread of disease.

Better Alternatives to Owning a Hyena

For those who are fascinated by hyenas, there are many ethical ways to learn about and interact with these animals.

Consider supporting wildlife conservation efforts, visiting reputable zoos, or even travelling to regions where Hyenas live in the wild for responsible eco-tours.

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While the idea of owning a Hyena as a Pet might seem intriguing, it’s important to understand the practical, legal, and ethical implications.

Hyenas are intelligent, complex creatures that belong in the wild, where they can contribute to the ecosystem and live according to their instincts.

Rather than trying to fit them into a domestic setting, we should strive to protect and respect their natural habitats, ensuring these fascinating animals continue to thrive for generations to come.