Can You Keep Lobster as a Pet? [Type, Diet, and Care Guide]

Do you love lobster? Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have a lobster as a pet?

There are different types of lobster, and some can make great pets. In this blog post, we will answer the question, “Can you keep a lobster as a pet?”

We’ll also discuss what they eat, how long they can live, and what kind of care they need. So if you’re interested in learning more about keeping a lobster as a pet, read on!

Can you keep a lobster as a pet?

There is no problem with keeping lobsters as pets. Lobsters come in many varieties, and some of them are excellent pets. As long as you provide the right environment for them, they will thrive in your aquarium.

Most of them are easy to care for and can live for a long time. Consider the lobster’s food, longevity, and care requirements before purchasing a lobster as a pet.

We’ll discuss some of the best lobsters you can keep as pets in your home aquarium and the living conditions you need to create to raise them.

Why choose a lobster as a pet?

Lobsters can be a great addition to your home aquarium for a few reasons.

First, they are unique animals that not everyone has as a pet. If you appreciate surprising features, you should give it a try to raise lobsters.

Second, they are low-maintenance and can live for a long time with the proper care. So, they can be your long-term friend.

Types and Species of Lobster That You Can Keep As a Pet

Lobsters are many kinds of but are not suitable to keep as pets. However, below are some species that can be your new pet.

Freshwater Lobster (Crayfish)

Freshwater lobster, also known as crayfish, is a popular type of pet lobster. 

They are small and can be easily kept in a home aquarium. Freshwater lobsters are native to North America and can be found in various colors, including red, blue, pink, and white.

Neon red lobster

One of the benefits of keeping a freshwater lobster as a pet is that they are relatively low-maintenance. They also make great additions to a home aquarium because they are interesting to watch and can help keep the tank clean.

Among freshwater lobsters, electric blue lobster, white specter lobster, and neon red lobster are all equally popular, and they belong to the same species. These crayfish are among the hardiest residents of freshwater aquariums.

Electric Blue Lobster

They can survive in practically any kind of freshwater tank. These incredibly active animals get a thrill out of venturing into new territory.

They can grow rather large (5-6 inches). Therefore, you should not house them in aquariums with less than 30 gallons.

When given the appropriate care, these freshwater lobsters have the potential to survive for up to 5 or 6 years. 

White Specter Lobster

However, you should provide plenty of hiding places in the form of rocks, driftwood, and caves if you have other big fish or invertebrates in the tank.

This is because freshwater lobsters are vulnerable when they go through molting and shedding their exoskeleton.

Spiny Lobster

Spiny lobster, also known as langouste or rock lobster, is a type of lobster found in warm oceans worldwide. 

They get their name from the long, thick, and spiny antennae. They are easily recognizable as they don’t have claws like other lobsters.

Spiny Lobster

Spiny lobsters can grow quite large, up to 24 inches long! And you need to provide the tank considering its adult size. 

You can buy spiny lobster from aquarium traders. However, some pet shops label them as painted spiny lobsters or painted crayfish.

Spiny lobsters make great pets because they are unique and beautiful (especially the blue spiny lobster). In addition, they are reasonably easy species to keep if you have a large enough system.

They can live for up to 15 years or more in captivity, so you’ll need to provide them with a long-term home. 

Spiny lobsters also need a lot of space to move around, so you’ll need a large tank. You’ll also need to provide them with rocks, as they like to lurk in the rock gaps, as they are timid creatures. 

They are omnivores and will eat pretty much everything. They prefer meaty food. However, they also eat pellets and flakes.

Feather Star Squat Lobster

Feather star squat lobster, also known as fire crab or Hawaiian red crab, is a type of lobster found in the Indo-Pacific region. 

Feather star squat lobsters, which reach a maximum length of two inches, are a popular choice for home aquariums. In a reef tank, they’re an excellent addition since they’re so easy to care for.

Feather Star Squat Lobster

This lobster’s coloration may vary from orange to brown to dark purple. A longitudinal stripe is present in almost all of these species despite varying thicknesses as well as the number of stripes.

When it comes to caring for a feather star squat lobster, you’ll need to provide them with a tank that has plenty of live rock for them to hide in. This shy crustacean may lurk in the cracks and crevices around the rocks.

Softened food is preferred by the Feather Star Squat Lobster, however, it may take tiny freeze-dried items.

Debelius Lobster

Debelius Lobster, also known as Debel’s lobster or painted lobster, is a type of lobster found in the Indo-Pacific region. 

They are a beautiful species of lobster that can have a variety of colors, such as orange, purple, or white.

Debelius Lobster

This type of lobster can grow to be about five inches long, and they are a popular type of pet lobster. They’re an excellent addition to a reef tank since they’re so easy to care for and vibrant in color.

When caring for a Debelius Lobster, you’ll need to provide them with a tank consisting of thick gravel layers, rocks, caves for hiding, and live rock to hunt.

After molting, as it waits for its new exoskeleton to develop, the Reef Lobster will need a safe hiding spot.

Take note that they are semi-aggressive & territorial, so care must be taken before introducing them into the reef aquarium as they may harm small fish & invertebrates.

What Do Pet Lobsters eat?

Now that we know what types of lobsters can be kept as pets let’s discuss what they eat. Lobsters are primarily carnivores, and they prefer meaty food. However, they will also eat pellets and flakes.

You can give them live foods, such as brine shrimp, or frozen foods, such as krill or bloodworms. You can also provide them with seafood, such as shrimp, crab, or fish. Some of them are scavengers and feast on almost everything.

What Is The Pet Lobster Lifespan?

The lifespan of a pet lobster can vary depending on the type. Debelius Lobsters can live for 12 years, whereas Feather Star Squat Lobsters may live for 20 years.

In general, however, most lobsters can live for several years in captivity. So, with proper care and diet, you can expect your pet lobster to have a long and healthy life.

What’s the Requirement of A Lobster Tank?

Now that we know what types of lobsters can be kept as pets and what they eat, let’s discuss the requirements of a lobster tank.

The care requirements & tank setup mainly depend on the species you want to keep as a pet.

For example, if you want to keep freshwater lobster or crayfish, you’ll need a freshwater tank set up. For the rest of the species mentioned in this article, you’ll require saltwater or reef aquariums.

  • First and foremost, whatever the species, you’ll need a large enough tank, in general, at least 20-30 gallons. However, some lobsters may require much more extensive work than that considering their maximum size.
  • The tank should also have plenty of rocks, caves, live plants, driftwood, etc., for hiding spots.
  • A thick layer of suitable substrates (sand or gravel) should be provided as they love to burrow. The substrates should not be too large, or else the lobster can get stuck while trying to burrow
  • You’ll also need to have a filter & protein skimmer as they help keep the water quality high and an aquarium heater to maintain the required water temperature.
  • Most of the lobsters are nocturnal, so you won’t need any special lighting for them; instead, turn the light off at night to help out hunting for food.
  • Lobsters have the habit of climbing up, so make sure the aquarium lid is secure & escape-proof.
  • Lobsters can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, pH, and alkalinity. However, they are susceptible to harmful substances, including metals, herbicides, pesticides, and lampricides. Therefore, you need to use stainless steel or PVC pipe in their tank.

Related Resource: How To Set Up A Freshwater Lobster (Crayfish) Tank (Things to Consider)

What Are the Suitable Tank Mates For Lobster?

As we know, most lobster species are semi-aggressive in nature. They can harm & even kill small fish or invertebrates. Therefore, it’s essential to choose suitable tank mates for them.

The best tank mates for lobster are large enough fish not to be eaten & defend themselves, but not so large that they can endanger the lobster while molting.

Another criterion should be how fast they move. Faster-moving fish is recommended as lobsters will try to swipe on any fish, including bottom feeders, if they are slow movers.

In fact, you can keep lobster alone in the tank; they won’t mind but rather will happily accept the loneliness. However, if you want to keep multiple lobsters, try to put a mesh screen or tank divider to prevent fights between inhabitants.

Can you keep a grocery store lobster as a pet?

The species of grocery store lobster are pretty different from the ones we’ve discussed so far. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t keep a pet. Yes, you can, but you have to make proper tank setup & arrangements for their diet.

See the below video of how one guy has successfully kept one grocery store lobster as a pet.

Wrapping Up

Lobsters can make an excellent pets if you provide them with the proper care & tank setup. They are fascinating to watch and have a long lifespan.

With the proper diet and tank mates, you can enjoy having a pet lobster for many years to come.

If you’re interested in keeping a lobster as a pet, be sure to do your research so that you can provide them with the best possible care.

Do you have a pet lobster? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.

If you have any questions feel free to ask in the comment section below, and I’ll be happy to answer.

Don’t forget to share this article with anyone who might be interested in keeping a pet lobster. Until next time, take care & happy fish keeping.

Sujit Modak

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