These pets dine out on traditional pets

Courtney, Connor and Leah Becroft and one of the family pets, a python named Mindi.

MICE and rabbits can be cute pets, but they are pet food for Colac district’s Becroft family.

Cororooke’s Jason and Joanne Becroft and their children Courtney, Connor and Leah have two olive pythons and a diamond python.

Mr Becroft said the care of pythons varied depending on the species and size.

“In captivity, they eat once every 10 days as a rule but it depends on the animal and size of its feed,” he said.

“Some eat small feeds like mice and others eat larger feeds such as rabbits.”

Little Leah Becroft enjoys a snake snuggle.

Mr Becroft said people interested in owning a python should research what type they wanted to buy.

“Like most animals, some sort of background knowledge is a must,” he said.

“They are technically wildlife, not domestic pets.

“Get a wildlife licence from DSE and then set up an enclosure.”

Pythons need a heated enclosure and water and there are species that like to climb tree branches.

“I have both a diamond python who love climbing on anything and also a pair of olive pythons which prefer to stay on the ground,” Mr Becroft said.

He said people asked how dangerous pythons could be.

“I love this question, I hear it all the time and to it I say this ‘does a dog bite?’ ‘does a cat bite?’ ‘does a horse bite?’,” he said.

“Some are bad-tempered and bad-natured and will bite 90 per cent of the time such as scrub pythons and then there are others like Murray Darlings that hardly ever bite at all.”

“But in saying that there are the exceptions.

“Personal experience I have found if you start with a quite young python and handle it as often as possible you will have a pet just like my pair of olives that can be handled by my seven-year-old daughter.”

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