By William Cutting
Friday, June 21, 2013 – 04:30 p.m.

As a parent, I know how difficult it can be to think of an original idea for a kid’s birthday party. The other day I read an interesting article about a company that puts together exotic pet viewings/showings for parties featuring many fascinating creatures. The company is called “SoCal Jungle” and they are in the business of reptile parties — and the article specifically discussed a birthday party in Rancho Cucamonga.

I am not a “huge” reptile fan, but I do find them to be very fascinating creatures and enjoy learning more about them/watching shows about them on channels like National Geographic, etc.

I was dumbfounded at the number and variety of animals presented to the children.  Here is the list:

  • Sulcata Tortoise
  • Tarantula
  • Hissing cockroaches
  • Various geckos
  • Burmese python
  • Ball pythons
  • Reticulated python
  • Red-tail boa
  • Savannah monitor lizard
  • Argentine Black & White Tegu

You may not be aware of the fact that California has arguably the strictest laws in America when it comes to ownership of reptiles and other exotic pets. It would only be a slight exaggeration to state that unless it is a gold fish, a cat or a dog, you cannot own anything else.  And every now and then, when there is a high profile event concerning an exotic pet we have more states and their media-whoring politicians clamoring for more restrictive laws on pet ownership.

In Ohio, an owner of an exotic animal farm killed himself after releasing all of his animals.  Ohio then cracked down and passed new laws.  And much can be said for other states. However, there are still several states that allow you to own a wide variety of animals and you can find these exotic pets listed for sale at many different places.  These websites include, but are not limited to:

For example, did you know you can buy a pet skunk?  I had no idea.  And the list goes on and on.

If you believe that the government is growing too aggressive in its limiting the ability of Americans to own exotic pets and animals, I encourage you to take a look at the United States Association of Reptile Keepers, or USARK.  They are kind of like the NRA for snake and reptile owners.