Are Sand Boas Good Pets?

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Sand boas are fascinating creatures that have gained popularity in the pet trade. These small, docile snakes are native to the deserts of Africa and Asia, and make for interesting and low-maintenance pets.

However, before deciding to bring one home, it’s important to understand the unique needs and characteristics of sand boas, and whether they would be a good fit for your lifestyle and living situation. In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of keeping sand boas as pets, and help you make an informed decision.

Are Sand Boas Good Pets?

Are Sand Boas Good Pets?

Sand boas are small, docile snakes known for their unique appearance and low maintenance care requirements. These snakes have become increasingly popular as pets in recent years, but are they a good choice for a pet? Let’s explore the pros and cons of owning a sand boa.


Sand boas are a unique species of snake with a distinctive appearance. They have short, stocky bodies and are typically less than two feet long. These snakes come in a variety of colors and patterns, including albino, anerythristic, and snow. Many sand boa owners find their appearance to be one of the most appealing aspects of owning these snakes.

If you’re interested in owning a sand boa, it’s important to note that they are burrowing snakes. This means that they spend a lot of their time underground, and may not be as visible as other types of snakes. Some owners find this behavior endearing, while others prefer a more active pet.


Sand boas are known for their docile nature, which makes them a great pet for beginners or those who are new to snake ownership. They are not aggressive and rarely bite, making them a low-risk pet. In fact, many owners find that their sand boas are quite friendly and will even enjoy being handled.

While sand boas are generally easy to handle, it’s important to note that they are still wild animals and may become stressed or agitated if not handled properly. Always approach your sand boa slowly and gently, and avoid sudden movements or loud noises that may startle them.

Care Requirements

One of the biggest benefits of owning a sand boa is that they are low maintenance pets. These snakes require a simple setup, including a small enclosure with a heat source and substrate for burrowing. They do not require frequent feedings and can go weeks without eating.

When it comes to feeding, sand boas are typically fed frozen-thawed rodents, which can be purchased at most pet stores. They should be fed once every two weeks, or as needed based on their size and activity level.

Benefits of Owning a Sand Boa

There are many benefits to owning a sand boa as a pet. These snakes are low maintenance, making them a great choice for those who want a pet but don’t have a lot of time or resources to dedicate to their care. They are also docile and easy to handle, making them a great choice for beginners or those who are new to snake ownership.

In addition to their low maintenance care requirements, sand boas are also fascinating animals to observe. They have unique behaviors and are known for their burrowing abilities, which can be fun to watch.

Disadvantages of Owning a Sand Boa

While sand boas have many benefits as pets, there are also some disadvantages to consider. One of the biggest drawbacks is their burrowing behavior, which can make them difficult to observe at times. They may also not be as active as other types of snakes, which may be a downside for some owners.

Another potential disadvantage of owning a sand boa is their lifespan. These snakes can live for up to 20 years in captivity, which is a long-term commitment. Owners need to be prepared to provide care for their sand boa for many years to come.


Overall, sand boas make great pets for those who are looking for a low maintenance, docile snake. They are easy to handle and require a simple setup, making them a great choice for beginners or those who are new to snake ownership. While there are some potential drawbacks to consider, the benefits of owning a sand boa as a pet far outweigh the negatives.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are you considering getting a sand boa as a pet? Here are some common questions and answers to help you decide if a sand boa is the right pet for you.

1. Are sand boas good pets?

Yes, sand boas can make great pets for the right owner. They are small and easy to care for, making them an ideal choice for first-time snake owners. Sand boas are also very docile and generally have a gentle disposition, making them a good choice for families with children.

However, it is important to note that sand boas are not very active and spend a lot of their time burrowed in their substrate. If you are looking for a snake that you can handle frequently or observe as it moves around its enclosure, a sand boa might not be the best choice for you.

2. What kind of enclosure do sand boas need?

Sand boas are burrowing snakes, so they need an enclosure that allows them to burrow. A glass tank with a secure lid is a good option, as it allows for easy observation of your snake. The enclosure should be at least 20 gallons in size and have a substrate that allows your snake to burrow comfortably.

It is also important to provide a heat source for your sand boa, such as an under-tank heating pad or heat lamp. The temperature in the enclosure should be kept between 80-85 degrees Fahrenheit on the warm side and 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit on the cool side.

3. What do sand boas eat?

Sand boas are carnivores and eat a diet of appropriately sized rodents. The size of the rodent should be roughly the same size as the girth of your snake. It is important not to overfeed your sand boa, as obesity can lead to health problems.

Feeding should occur once a week for adult sand boas and twice a week for juvenile sand boas. It is also important to provide a separate feeding enclosure to prevent substrate ingestion during feeding.

4. How often do sand boas shed?

Sand boas shed their skin approximately once a month. Before shedding, you may notice that your snake’s eyes appear cloudy or blue. It is important to provide a humid hide for your sand boa during shedding to help facilitate the shedding process.

It is also important not to handle your sand boa during shedding, as their skin can be sensitive and handling can cause them stress.

5. How long do sand boas live?

Sand boas have a lifespan of approximately 10-15 years in captivity. With proper care and husbandry, your sand boa can live a long and healthy life.

It is important to note that sand boas are a long-term commitment and require regular feeding, cleaning, and monitoring of their health. Before getting a sand boa, make sure you are prepared to provide the care and attention they need for their entire lifespan.

10 Reasons Kenyan Sand Boas are Great Pets

In conclusion, sand boas can be great pets for the right owner. They are low maintenance, quiet, and fascinating creatures to observe. However, it is important to do thorough research before deciding to bring home a sand boa.

It is crucial to understand their specific care requirements and to ensure that you are able to provide the proper environment and diet for them to thrive. Additionally, it is important to consider whether or not you are comfortable with handling and interacting with a snake.

Overall, if you are a responsible and dedicated owner who is willing to put in the effort to properly care for a sand boa, they can make wonderful and rewarding pets.

Aubrey Sawyer


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