6 min read

Celebrities and Their Exotic Pets

Here at Jungle Roots, you know we love a good jungle theme–so we thought it may be interesting to share a collection of celebrities and their exotic pets (some straight out of the jungle)!

With so many different kinds of animals out there, it’s amazing to see which ones have become companions for the rich and famous–even living in the home and sleeping in bed with some of them. We hope you enjoy checking out these celebrities and their wild and wonderful pets!

Tippi Hedren’s Lions

Actor, animal rights activist, and fashion model (and Melanie Griffith’s mother), Tippi Hedren loves cats – big ones. While shooting a movie in Africa, Tippi spent time with a lion and enjoyed it so much so decided to buy one of her own, named Neal, who lived peacefully with the family for many years. Later Tippi made a movie based on lions during which she was attacked by a lion, requiring numerous facial stitches. This incident didn’t sway her at all, however – she still has her lion pets.

Ice-T’s Shark

While Ice-T has always had a fascination with sharks, after taking a trip to the Bahamas during which they swam with sharks, the famed rapper and his wife Coco fell in love with the creatures. A long-kept secret, the couple has been revealed to house several pet sharks in a huge aquarium in their home (8 by 3 feet in size). In a recent interview with AllHipHop, he shared, “I’ve always tried to have a spa-like environment… You spend money and go on vacations to have that tranquility so I try to make it in my house – when the dogs aren’t barking and (daughter) Chanel’s not going crazy.”

Tracy Morgan’s Octopus

When Tracy Morgan appeared on the Animal Planet show Tanked in 2013, he needed help with an important transition – Morgan’s giant Pacific octopus, named Bwyadette, was outgrowing her aquarium and needed a new home. Opting for a customized version inspired by the movie JAWS, Morgan ended up spending $400,000 on Bwyadette’s new abode–which requires around 2,700 gallons of water to fill

Mike Tyson’s Tiger

Known for owning several tigers over the years, Mike Tyson’s favorite was a white Bengal tiger named Kenya, which he owned for over 16 years. Tyson recently explained to GQ magazine that Kenya weighed 550 pounds, lived in his home, and even slept in his room with him. He also shared that she tore off the arm of a neighbor who visited his yard unexpectedly one day to play with her. Tyson ended up giving the woman $250,000 and later shared that he regretted having a tiger living in his home after all.

Mike Tyson’s Tiger

Although recently temporarily rehomed, Hailey and Justin Bieber still own two stunning Savannah cats, which are a cross between a domesticated cat and a wild African serval. The cats, named Sushi and Tuna, cost the famous couple $35,000.

The only problem is the couple’s rental home had terms that won’t allow the two stunning cats – so they live elsewhere for the moment.

Leonardo DiCaprio and his African Tortoise

While it only cost him $400, wildlife conservationist Leo’s companion, an African Spurred tortoise, is said to be able to live up to 100 years and ultimately weigh nearly 200 pounds. Leonardo purchased the tortoise from a trade show he attended with co-stars from his movie ‘Inception’ in Anaheim, California.

Kirstie Alley’s Lemurs

Kirstie Alley’s lemurs take the cake when it comes to unusual, exotic pets, especially when it’s revealed that owns *FOURTEEN* of them. “Why?” you ask. Alley has an answer. She recently told People magazine, “I started out [having] lemurs because they are a great animal, and I was very interested in conservation in Madagascar [where they are from] and saving rainforests and forests. It’s actually really easy in Los Angeles because the climate is almost identical. And then I just fell in love with them.”

Nicolas Cage’s Albino Cobras

Long known for his love of reptiles, Nicolas Cage has kept plenty of slithering invertebrates as pals. His live-in buddies have included two albino king cobras, Moby and Sheba, (for which he kept a portion of antidote around in case they bit him – as he would only have around 15 minutes to survive without it), an octopus, a two-headed snake named Harvey, and a five-foot-long speckled Asian water monitor lizard, a talking crow, and numerous turtles, fish, and cats. Cage appears to consistently donate his exotic friends to reputable zoos and wildlife centers once they become too much to handle at home.

Salma Hayek’s Owl

Salma Hayek’s pet southern white-faced owl, Kering, was originally a Valentine’s gift to her husband two years ago. Before she decided upon the bird as a gift, Hayek saw an ad discussing rescue owls and did a bit of research, responsibly learning what kind of care they require. Since having the owl, Hayek shares they’ve become very close, with the bird even sleeping with her when her husband goes out of town. "She comes and snuggles... sometimes in the middle of the night. She lands on my head. It's a little bit jarring, but I'm kind of used to it," she said.

Vanilla Ice’s Kangaroo

You may have heard about Vanilla Ice’s love for exotic pets, especially his kangaroo of 14 years. Technically a wallaroo (a cross between a wallaby and a kangaroo), the 80’s rapper’s pet was named Bucky Buckaroo and became infamous for escaping. The animal lived in Ice’s home, wore a diaper, and hopped around playing with the musician’s children until he eventually got too big. Once he reached five feet in height, he went to live on a farm.

Justin Bieber’s Capuchin Monkey

When Justin Bieber got a pet capuchin monkey as a birthday gift from a relative and decided to take him along on a trip to Germany, things got ugly. The monkey, named OG Mally, turned out to be an endangered animal in Germany and was confiscated by the authorities during the trip. Bieber was also fined $8000 in the incident. After being in quarantine for a short time, OG Mally was moved to a zoo in the German city of Hodenhagan.

Paris Hilton’s Kinkajou

Although it did bite her, Paris Hilton refused to allow veterinarians to euthanize her pet kinkajou (a small rainforest mammal) Baby Luv in order to find out if it had rabies. She instead visited an emergency room for a tetanus shot and kept the animal – even getting another kinkajou to live on her ranch during the following years.

Slash’s Snakes

Another snake fan, Guns and Roses’ lead guitarist Slash has also kept numerous snakes, reptiles, and exotic animals as pets. Slash’s menagerie has included such creatures as boa constrictors (one named Pandora was featured in the band’s 1989 music video for the song ‘Patience’), anacondas, a Burmese python, a chameleon, a mountain lion, and a rat. In addition to enjoying exotic animals as pets, Slash also supports zoos, wildlife, and environmental protection efforts worldwide. Says the rocker, "Basically I am a self-taught zookeeper and I definitely relate to the animals I've lived with better than to most of the humans I've known."

Kristen Stewart’s Wolf-Hybrids

Kristen Stewart has four wolf-dog hybrids named Lily, Jack, Tommy, and Lola, who are kept on her mother’s land in California, where she frequently visits them. While legally owned, the family has had trouble with neighbors who believed the dogs were wild animals and should not be kept as pets. However, the animals are actually rescues, brought in by Stewart's mother a few years back, which are licensed, well-socialized, and kept on plenty of acreage within a natural environment.

Elvis Presley’s Chimpanzee

One of many pets The King of Rock and Roll enjoyed spending time with, Scatter the chimpanzee was the second monkey purchased for Graceland (the first was a spider monkey), the grounds upon which Elvis at first hoped to create a zoo. There are numerous stories about Scatter’s antics, starting with his pulling women’s skirts up, to destroying the dressing rooms on Elvis’ film sets when he visited, to guzzling whiskey when not supervised. Sadly, one of the star’s cleaning ladies allegedly poisoned Scatter after he bit her viciously one day.

So, what are your thoughts after seeing these folks and their unusual companion animals? Does it make you want to get an exotic pet yourself? As always, we advise education, i.e. researching the topic/animals to see what kind of care they’ll require before bringing them home. We’d love to hear your opinion on the subject at your next visit – and bring a picture of your own pets, whether they’re from the jungle or the animal shelter, so we can see them!

At Jungle Roots Children’s Dentistry & Orthodontics, we strive to provide the highest comprehensive pediatric and orthodontic dental care in a unique, fun-filled environment staffed by a team of caring, energetic professionals. We believe the establishment of a “dental home” at an early age is the key to a lifetime of positive visits to the dentist.

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