The best way to adopt snakes/reptiles?

I’ve been searching primarily on Facebook to obtain my first snake. I did mention in the post that I wanted to adopt a snake, and I received a handful of replies.

They were all common breeds and morphs within the range I’d specified (medium, beginner-friendly). They were also all male snakes, which only matters because I’d rather have a larger one. Those would’ve been fine, but all of them turned out to be either from breeders, or regretful buyers who wanted to make back most of the worth of their purchase.

I don’t actually have any issues with snake breeders, but my pets have always been rescues. I’d always rather adopt an animal that needs a home than to buy one. What are my best options when it comes to trying to look for this?


Sadly that’s probably going to be the most common way to get a ‘healthy’ animal. There’s always exceptions…

The best way to get to an actual adoption is to ask at the local animal shelter (there’s sometimes an exotic space) or for reptile rescues in the area. Or in some cases you can find them online and they may consider shipping. Of course, you may still find the same thing. Common morphs and species. And on top of that, they may have permanent health concerns as well. But that’s the way to find ones that definitely need a home.

Occasionally, the big box breeders may have one for adoption as well. The PetSmart I used to work for would adopt out reptiles from time to time. Usually leopard geckos with dropped tails or snakes that refused to eat frozen thaw. But you will also be contributing to the issues of big box stores and a slew of other issues


I’ve seen a rescue at local reptile shows, if I remember right. Another resource to check out, has a list of reptile rescues by state and sometimes lists adoptable animals on their website.


Morphmarket now also has a section for rescues - Rescues in US & Canada - MorphMarket.

You can see if any are local to you, or consider having one shipped


You might also contact your vet or any reptile vets in your area to let them know you open to adopting a reptile surrendered by its owners for whatever reason.

Best of luck to you @sir_bunny and welcome to the forum! Hope you find what you are looking for! :blush:


Not sure if it is close/feasible for you, or even what the waitlist is like, but Snake Discovery has an Adoption Island where they adopt out all sorts of reptiles that were surrendered and rehabbed in their care. I’ve seen them get a huge variety of snakes, lizards, etc.

Again, that particular place might not be super feasible for you, but if you do have a local exotics or reptile place, its likely that they get abandonded animals since they are labelled as the “snake people” or “reptile people” of the area. They could have a similar program, or be able to point you towards the programs THEY themselves send animals left on their doorstep.