Can You Own A Pet Panther?

Can you own a pet panther? The short answer is no! Black panthers are aggressive and wild animals. For most people, it won’t be possible to keep them safe let even meet their needs in captivity. Additionally, the endangered wild cats are illegal in many countries around the world. Not to mention all the costs that would come along with it.

Pet Black Panther - Featured Image

I know owning a wild exotic animal can be tempting. Especially big wild cats like black panthers, lions and tigers are extremely fascinating.

It’s totally understandable that people ask if they can own one when they see famous persons with their wild and exotic pets. But in this article, I will show you why it isn’t a good idea to own a black panther yourself.

#1 Pet Panthers Are Illegal

The ownership of wild animals is highly regulated this is especially for those who can be dangerous for neighbors and other people around. No wonder that black panthers are prohibited.

Of course, there is a way around and you can get a special permit for keeping panthers but for most people, this is out of reach. You would have to meet all the requirements the government wants you to fulfill.

In the case of panthers, this means that you will have to show that you can both, properly care for this species and make sure that there is no danger for anyone.

It is not only that the permit itself is expensive. All the things you need for an habitat will take into account too. A large habitat with shelter, fences and everything else will cost a fortune.

As a private person regulators will take an intensive look at you.

While there are some exceptions you can’t own a panther in the US. Only zoos and rescue shelters can get a permit relatively easy.

#2 Panthers Are Aggressive Predators

Pet panthers are not like other cats many people keep at home. They are aggressive predators that like to be on their own.

You can’t keep them together with other pets as they are very territorial and won’t accept any other being in their habitat.

That said, it is dangerous to keep a panther as a pet as they will likely attack you and your visitors. Even if panthers don’t attack humans in the wild they are unpredictable when they feel threatened.

#3 Panthers Need A Huge Amount Of Meat

As I mentioned before, we are dealing with predators here. It would be difficult to fulfill their nutritional needs and you would have to cater a lot of meat.

I bet it won’t be in your budget to buy several kilos of fresh meat every day. Additionally, not everyone wants to deal with and a thing like processed panther food doesn’t exist so you wouldn’t have a choice.

If you want to learn more about the panthers’ diet, I recommend reading my detailed article.

#4 Black Panthers Are Really Big

Black panthers are no small cats! A full-grown male can measure up to 8 feet and weigh anything between 100 and 160 lbs. According to Bigcat Rescue females are smaller but too big nonetheless.

If you see a cute panther cub you should remember that it won’t stay so small. And I bet you can’t keep, neither want such a gigantic cat in your rooms.

#5 Panthers Need A Large Outside Run

Panther in its habitat

As you can imagine large animals need a lot of space. Of course, this is also true for black panthers and have already mentioned it.

Think about that: Black panthers can run up to 35 mph. How large has a habitat to be to ensure that they can run and roam enough? Of course, these cats want to climb a lot too, so you would have to ensure that there are enough big trees that can carry their weight too. 

Depending on where you live the climate can be another problem. In many regions, only an outside run won’t meet the needs. So you would need to offer at least a heated shelter during the winter. And remember everything has to be 100 % escape-proof.

#6 It’s Hard To Find A Vet

Every pet needs to visit the vet from time to time. While there is no problem with finding a good one for cats and dogs it’s a whole different thing with wild and dangerous animals.

It’s not only that vets might refuse to treat a black pet panther because they have feel threatened. They simply can’t implement such animals into their office routine and would have to make a visit every time when an health issue occurs. Even the regular checkups imply an enormous effort.

Apart from that, there are only a few veterinarians that have the knowledge and experience to treat a pet panther. All that do are specialized and work at zoos or rescue shelters.

#7 Panthers Aren’t Domesticated

You might already get the point, but black panthers aren’t domesticated. 

There is a huge difference between domestication and taming. While panthers can be tamed by experts, it needs many generations of selective breeding to domesticate an animal.

Don’t get blinded by tamed pet panthers that might know their owner since they were little cubs.

The instincts of a wild animal exist still in them and you never know when they get out of control.

#8 Panthers Are A Endangered Species

Black panthers are endangered. It would be highly unethical to own a panther of any kind as a pet.

Habitat loss, collisions with cars and hunters that want them as a trophy are some of the reasons why these animals are threatened.

The Florida panther is listed as endangered since 1967 and once there were only 25 individuals living in the wild. While the population is now growing again we still must protect the species.

The status of black panthers was lately updated to critically endangered.

#9 There Are No Pet Panthers For Sale

There are no pet panthers for sale in the US. It’s that simple. But how much would a black panther be?

Some breeders in Africa and Asia offer black panthers for prices from 900 to 2000$. However, it would be difficult to ship the cubs to the US as the local laws still prohibit them in the states.

But that’s only the amount for the animal itself. Costs for food, shelter and veterinary care can add up quite easily.

If you love this species and would like to have a panther I would recommend adopting one in a rescue shelter instead of buying a pet panther.

I know you can’t get one at your place this way but you do something good for a beautiful endangered wild species.

Pet Black Panther Alternatives

If you still love the idea of owning a black pet panther I have an alternative for you: Bombay cats.

This cat breed looks like a cute black panther cub and you can keep them in your house or apartment without problems. In fact, there are many advantages in keeping cats as pets over wild animals that are not domesticated.

Cats love to play with you and most of them like to be petted.

If you want to learn more about Bombay cats, read the article at

But don’t forget the work that is involved with owning a cat.

Wrapping Things Up

Now you learned more about panthers and why they make terrible pets. It’s not only that they are illegal in the US you won’t also be able to take proper care.

Additionally, the species is highly endangered and it is better to let the few ones that are left in the wild.

If you still want a pet that looks like a black panther consider a Bombay cat. They are domesticated and make good pets.