To anthropomorphize your pet is to assign it human personality traits and desires that it doesn’t actually possess. This can be benign (such as imagining that your pet snake likes to wear hats or that it has a favorite color), and, in most cases, is.
However, it can also be problematic. It’s easy to forget that your beloved pet is not a human and doesn’t work the same way humans do. Some body language doesn’t translate—I see people all the time claiming that their lizard is content because it closes its eyes when being petted. This is actually a stress response and indicates an unhappy animal, but since people think the behavior is cute, they don’t interpret their pet’s body language correctly. Another example is that distressing Uromastyx belly-scratching gifset that’s been floating around tumblr for the last few months.
TL;DR animals don’t people the way we do. They people in their own ways and it’s our responsibility as keepers to learn how to interpret the body language of the animals we work with rather than being lazy and presumptive by assuming they act like humans and want/need things humans do. This is especially important with animals like snakes and lizards which have limited capacities for communication—know your animal and educate yourself on the way it behaves in nature. Your pet’s health and contentment is more important than your amusement.
This is very important. A lot of people labour under the impression that their herps are going to behave in ways that they can easily recognise, because our brains are so carefully tuned to mammalian signals. Learning the behaviour of your animals is crucial to their happiness and, in many cases, survival. Chameleons, for instance, have very distinct stress signals (darker or more contrasting skin colour, hissing, body inflation, stiff walking, fast walking, etc.), and if these signals are ignored, they can rapidly deteriorate and die. I have watched a chameleon die from stress over a two hour period. It is not pretty.
Unfortunately, there are a lot of animals in captivity for which very little behavioural information is available. Generalising across reptiles can be difficult, but careful attention should always be paid to indicators like breathing, sounds, and body stiffness. Long term, be aware of the weight of your animal, its food consumption, and any behaviours that are changing.
Take care of your animals. As much as you might like to think of them as friends, they are not people, and deserve to be treated as such.
please if you love drawing and want to get better draw every day. no matter how ‘bad’ it is keep going. just keep drawing.
WHEN PEOPLE SAY YOU HAVE PRIVILEGE THEY ARE NOT SAYING THAT YOU DON’T HAVE ANY PROBLEMS
THEY ARE SAYING YOU DO NOT HAVE THE SPECIFIC PROBLEMS THAT COME FROM OPPRESSION
THIS IS NOT A DIFFICULT CONCEPT