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How to Keep Spiders as Pets

Spiders can make fascinating pets. Here are a few steps to get you started keeping spiders.


Step 1: Catch a spider

Spiders are all around us, indoors and out, so they’re not hard to find. Some species can bite and a few are venomous. Learn about dangerous spiders in your area before heading out. It’s easy to safely catch a spider by using a small jar. Gently coax it into the jar using the lid. Spiders will eat each other, so keep only one per jar.

Step 2: Prepare a cage

Large spiders do well in the inexpensive plastic terrariums available from pet stores. Smaller ones can be kept in jars or plastic containers if air holes are drilled into the lid or sides. Be sure the holes are small enough to prevent escape.

Potting soil makes good cover for the cage bottom. Sticks, dead leaves or artificial plants provide structure for hiding, climbing and webbing.

Step 3: Water

Depending on the size of the spider, anything from a plastic bottle cap to a small bowl can serve as a water dish. Spiders also drink water sprayed on webbing, but you should never allow the cage to become damp.

Step 4: Feeding

Offer insect prey once or twice a week. Crickets are available from pet shops, or you can collect insects outdoors if no insecticides have been sprayed in the area.

Step 5: Observing

Watch your spider and take notes on its behavior. You won’t believe what happens in the spider’s web until you’ve visited it yourself!


Not all spiders do well in captivity. Active hunters are usually easier to keep than web builders. Here are a few that make good pets.

Tarantulas: Some species exceed 10 inches in legspan. They’re by far the most popular pet spiders and can be bought in pet stores.

Wolf Spiders: Some can be more than three inches in legspan. Large specimens do best in terrariums with lots of floor space.

Jumping Spiders: Although small and rarely exceeding half an inch, their jumping ability is amazing. Many species are brightly colored and can easily be kept in jars.

Fishing Spiders: In captivity, these large spiders appreciate vertically arranged pieces of bark for climbing. They’re very fast, so use caution when capturing them.

Grass Spiders: These spiders build funnel-shaped webs in grass, bushes and on buildings. In captivity, they will build extensive webs inside their cage.

LEARN MORE: Click here to see photos of a spider expert’s seven favorite spiders

12 Comments on How to Keep Spiders as Pets

  1. aalibrandi29 // July 30, 2015 at 12:28 am // Reply

    I have orb spiders there doing great together

  2. i want to catch a jumping spider cause theres some at my home but they are so tiny, i dont know how to drill a hole for something so so small. like 1/4 cm.
    what do i do?

  3. Venom_collector // July 16, 2015 at 7:48 pm // Reply

    I found and now keeping a brown widow spider (female) and her a cage but the prefers the top of it, which is hard throw insects in without damaging her web, any ideas on how to have make a web down below?

    • put petroleum jelly / vaseline around the top of the container this should prevent her from getting on the ceiling of said container.

      • i also have a brown widow spider and I love her I named her killer coz she is really day at killing…..

  4. I have a jumping spider and we put it in the critter cage which it likes to hang upside down from the ceiling of its cage… I’m studying it to see how it fairs.

  5. Is a trantula or green grass spider better

  6. My spider just died only had em afew days… Fed it a fly and it died.

  7. i just got a grown grass spider i need a biger cage tho lol

  8. I just starting to keep cellar spider as my pet

  9. i just got a grown grass spider i need a biger cage tho lol

  10. TurtleMan000 // June 18, 2015 at 7:05 am // Reply

    I have a crab spider that I hang out with a lot! (In the container.)

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