Unique pets add variety to the homes of DCHS students

Eighth Grader Kennen Robinson’s tortoise, Alex, roams around the house. Tortoises can be taken outside in the summer to eat dandelions.

Brittney Palik

Most students at David City High School have a pet such as a dog or a cat, but a few have something a little more unique.

Clayton Harris is a freshman at DCHS who owns two ferrets and two hedgehogs. Harris has had the two ferrets for about six months, and the hedgehogs for a year. Of the two, ferrets need more special care.

“Ferrets are stinky; you have to buy them special shampoo, and they need their nails trimmed,” Harris explained. “Hedgehogs just need to be handled. They can both eat cat food.”

Harris isn’t the only one with unusual pets; eighth grader Kennen Robinson has a Russian tortoise and a leopard gecko. Robinson has had his tortoise, Alex, for five years, and the gecko, Finn, for around two months.

“Tortoises are very calm; they don’t do much,” Robinson explained. “They need a heat lamp, UVB light, a large enclosure, water for bathing, and lettuce, but not romaine.”

Robinson’s leopard gecko needs other kinds of special care.

“He needs a heat mat, two hiding places, a water dish, live crickets, and a UVB light,” Robinson said.

Robinson’s live crickets must be kept in their own enclosure, as Finn can only have two or three each day. Crickets must be purchased about once a week to keep Finn healthy and fed.

“Leopard geckos shed their skin once a month. I’ve stayed up at night to watch it happen,” Robinson shared about his unique pet.