Pet Sloth Cost

Baby Sloth Cost

Last Updated on March 18, 2021 | Written by CPA Alec Pow
First Published on March 18, 2021 | Content Reviewed by Certified CFA CFA Alexander Popivker

Exotic family pets are getting increasingly more popular among pet owners in the United States. It may be due to the excitement of owning an animal that most people do not generally see in captivity. Or, some just thought the uncommon house pals are adorable.

Among those “adorable” exotic animals is the sloth. Sluggish and asleep the majority of the time, you’re not overemphasizing if you believe every little gesture they do is a milestone. That’s what makes them interesting animals.

Appeal aside, is the sloth’s cost similarly appealing to your wallet? Let’s see.

How much do Sloths Typically Cost?

Just how much does an infant sloth cost? According to Pet Helpful, the purchase rate for sloths varies from $2,000 to $4,000.

You might also like our articles about the cost of owning other exotic pets, like a sugar glider, a monkey, or a koala bear.

Normally, the younger ones are more costly. Some sites like WorldExoticsInc and ExoticAnimalsForSale, have listings sloths that range in costs from around $1,000 to $3,000.

Elements affecting the price

The cost will depend upon some aspects like:

  • Gender
  • Age
  • Quality
  • Seller

Additionally, you’ll need to think about initial expenses. These will include permits to own the exotic animal, the sloth’s environment, and food.


As it is generally a wild animal, a sloth is expected to be out there in its natural environment and not in your home. However, getting the furry slowpoke as a family pet is now commonly accepted in the United States.

That’s not to say you’ll be permitted by your state to own one as quickly as you would be able to with a dog or a cat. Each state has its own policies you’ll need to comply with. You can check out online sources such as to learn more about standards on exotic animal ownership based on your area.

For example, Arizona needs the acquisition of special permits before you can keep the animal in the house. That particular license ends on December 31 for the year when the state will be able to offer you one. Be sure that you renew your license before the expiration date. Else, authorities will charge you with illegal possession and will take your sloth away from you.


You may have to know that sloths need a special cage so they can live in peace and comfortable enough. Essentially, you’ll need to reproduce their natural environment. That means a large location and tree branches the pet can hang onto. Something like an aviary, just much bigger and taller.

When it comes to the expenses, there is no market price range that is offered from family pet dealerships. This kind of cage, after all, is not normal and easily obtainable. It may even be much better if you just built one yourself. This way, it’s much easier to tailor the enclosure depending on your sloth’s needs.

You can also allow your animals, ideally baby sloths, to wander inside your home. Keep in mind, nevertheless, that these animals will end up being depressed if they will not be able to see trees for a long period of time.


Most likely among the most challenging things to do if you’re looking after sloths is feeding them. That’s due to the fact that they need a specialized diet plan of veggies. We call it “specialized” as you shouldn’t give it your typical greens. They should, rather, consume something with a similar fiber material and bitterness of leaves in the wild. They also consume tree buds, branches, fruits, and leaves.

You must set aside around $20 to $40 a month for the food of your sloth.

Keep in mind that sloths have a low metabolic process so they will not eat all that much. That being said, you ought to take excellent care of what to feed them or they will not get enough nutrition.

Extra Expenses to Consider

Aside from the purchase rate, there are some additional expenses particularly if you can’t easily get your hands on a sloth in your geographical area. Buying online, for example, will indicate that your animal will be shipped by the seller. It may be through an airline company or by ground.

The rate for delivering your sloth might vary from $200 to $400.

Then, when you’re looking after your sloth, you need to also focus on looking after its health. It will be a little difficult to come across a veterinarian that will deal with an exotic animal, though. For this reason, you will likely spend more for transport (if your veterinarian is located at a location miles away from you). Or, you will need to pay more if the vet visits you in the house.

To reduce the trouble, try to find a veterinarian who really knows how to look after sloths before you purchase the exotic animal.

Factors to Consider Before You Purchase A Sloth

Adult SlothIt’s not really enough to know just how much does a baby sloth cost. Similarly important is knowing what to take into consideration before you adopt such an exotic animal. Here are some things to consider:

Sloths can usually be found in tropical areas.
Sloths are comfy in a tropical environment because of their low body temperature level. Putting them in cold locations can get them ill and is essentially a kind of abuse.

Keep in mind that these wild animals live in a rainforest environment. So, try to simulate that temperature level for sloths in captivity.

You may be purchasing a sloth that was obtained through unlawful trade.
Sloths are expected to be living in the wild. Nonetheless, some sellers who are working unlawfully will pluck out the animal from their environment and put them up for sale.

Some will even go further and try to kill the adult sloth and get the baby from its back. They will then sell the baby sloth, which is more costly than the older one.

You do not wish to be a contributor to the prohibited wild trade, right? Well, it would be much better if you’ll support captive-breeding efforts to be able to look after a sloth. Try at all costs to avoid purchasing the exotic family pet from brokers, animal shops, and auctions as much as possible.

You need to look after your pet sloth with a “zoological” approach.
Sloths will not make it through in captivity if you do not know the right zoological approach to looking after them. The animals are extremely delicate. So delicate, that an individual error will likely lead to them getting ill or worse. Keeping this sort of exotic family pet is so tough that even specialists can’t take it easy.

Sloths are adorable, yes. However, they need commitment and knowledge from their pet owners. They are in no other way a low-maintenance animal. If by anyway, you change your mind about owning one, you can rather go with periodic visits or encounters. The National Aviary, for example, will let you engage with the pets for about $150.

However, if you’re really set on your decision to own a sloth, ensure that you’re purchasing it lawfully. And most important, bear in mind that having a family pet is a responsibility. Give your animal the love and care it should have!

Alec Pow
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