Home Exotic Pets How Much Do Finger Monkeys Cost?

How Much Do Finger Monkeys Cost?

Pocket monkeys are exotic primates that can be domesticated. However, the costs will leave a considerable dent in your bank account. Right from the process of acquiring the three-ounce little lion, to the purchase, additional costs, and permits; they all add up to an insurmountable value.

The average cost of a single baby finger monkey ranges between $1500 to $4000. Besides that, you’ll have extra expenses on food items, habitat needs, medical cover, and special permits and licenses to allow you to even own the pet.

If you’re looking to adopt or buy a pygmy marmoset, following is all the vital information you’ll need. 


Total cost, in this case, means the cost of purchase for the pet, a habitat, food, plenty of toys to keep the pet occupied, medical cover, plus other unforeseen costs. Here’s a rough estimate of this;

Purchase – $1500 to $4000

Food – $700

Habitat – $2000

Medical cover – $200

In total, you will spend an average of $6000 (on the lower side).

Fully grown finger monkey photo
Adult Pygmy marmoset

What Will Determine the Cost

The cost is highly dependent on a number of factors including your location, the state legislature, plus many more factors.

Area of Purchase

You can buy a finger monkey from several places, as you shall read from below. Their prices will definitely vary based on their availability among other variables. What would only cost $2600 at a pet store could easily cost $4000 from a breeder.

Food and Habitat

The pet requires a cage where it can rest up, play, and hang around when it’s not with you. Occasionally, the cost of a cage will range between $150 to $400. However, certain factors can play a hand in this.

For example, the cage could have additional features added during its constructions, more complexity, and different sizing. Henceforth, the price is not standard.

Diet: what do finger monkey eat?

In terms of the diet, finger monkeys feed on a variety of foods from grains, rice cereals and oatmeal, proteins like eggs, fish, and poultry; all these are rather expensive.

Store-bought pet foods like nectars/ sap, miniature reptiles, locusts, and insects are even more costly too as high as $75 a pack.

Choosing to get live insects from the pet store means additional expenses just to keep the pet adequately fed.

Further Reading…

Additional Costs

Several other items add to the total cost of owning the little lion. These factors include;

  • Toys – these primates can play with just about anything but they get easily bored making it quite essential to purchase human toys.
  • Branches and leaves – by now should know to keep the pygmy as comfortable as you’d like, you have to emulate the rain forest. Wood perches cost an extra $15 to $30 apiece.
  • Leash – similar to other pets like dogs and cats, you can opt for a leash that retails at $10.

What to Consider Before Buying

Purchasing your finger monkey is a huge responsibility. Furthermore, it will be taking up your time and money to ensure the pet lives and thrives as long as it can. Therefore, before you take the bold step, here are a few factors you should consider.

Space and Living Requirements

This point can’t be emphasized enough. Pocket monkeys are very meticulous creatures that prefer living in a surrounding that’s more shabby than homey. Yes, it’s your house but they also need the rain forest to feel where you add a few branches and leaves here and there.

They love to jump around, climb, and swing; hence, their cage spacing has to be large enough to accommodate that. Obviously, this also means you need space to accommodate such requirements.

While the cage costs you an average of $250, the branches and perches for customizing the space will expense you and an additional $20 a piece.

Diet and Feeding Habits

The pygmy marmoset enjoys wholesome meals. Some would even go further to claim a balanced diet. Naturally, they are gumivores; meaning they feed off gum, sap, and other exudates from trees. However, what they gain from the exudates is a whole lot of essential minerals like calcium.

Therefore, they have to be feed equal amounts of these vital minerals and vitamins to keep them healthy. In addition, they are also insectivores. You would see them feeding on tiny insects like moths and ants, miniature lizards/ reptiles, butterflies, and the likes.

Since you won’t be going out to forage for your pet, the best thing is to buy them live insects from the pet store. A 250gram bag will cost anywhere between $60 to $75. Not only is it another cost to bear, but also another hustle to actually look for stores to sell you. Worse off, you may need to order online.

At home, however, you will have to provide for your pet plenty of proteins such as chicken, meat, and fish, fruits and vegetables, as well as grains and cereals. Let’s not forget water. They need clean, fresh and non-fluoride ‘spring’ water, which can only be supplemented with diluted organic fruit juices and goat milk.

Additional Expenses

As if the costs above aren’t enough, you have to think about the additional costs of taking the pocket money to a licensed and certified veterinarian who can do checkups on your pet. You may need to get a medical insurance policy to safeguard its health.

Pet Breed

There are two pygmy marmoset breeds that people often love to buy or adopt. From the two, there are breeders who would ask for greater compensation in terms of payment that the actual cost of the pet would be. This is because they nurtured the monkey plus are willing to offer shipping and handling advice. This would then mean more costs for you.

Legal Issues

You already know finger monkeys are exotic choices for a pet. Therefore some states may not support having them as pets your home These tiny adorable creatures aren’t considered as endangered; they should be left in the wild.

Therefore before buying, get acquainted with whether your state allows for import and export of the pet and if there are laws against it. More on this in the next section.

Another legal issue is on getting special permits to own the pet. These permits have to be authenticated to ensure that in fact you can comfortable own the pet primate and that you have access to all its needs including proximity to a knowledgeable veterinarian.


From the presented text above, it’s clear that there are certain rules and regulations that guide different states on whether they can lawfully adopt or own this pet. As popular as it is to buy a primate as a pet, 20 of the 50 states in the USA don’t support it. In fact, it’s illegal to keep any form of a primate home as a pet.

Some of these states include;

  • New York
  • Alaska
  • California
  • Maryland
  • Lowa
  • North Carolina
  • Georgia
  • Illinois
  • Arizona
  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • Massachusetts
  • Pennsylvania
  • New Jersey

For these states, the outright ban prohibits its citizens from owning primates as pets. More information can be found at your local state office.

Where to Buy

As people embrace exotic choices when it comes to pets, buying them is now easier. As for the finger monkey, there are three viable options you can choose to buy from. They are;

  • Pet store
  • Finger monkey breeder
  • Animal rescue center

Local Pet Store

Your first stop should be at the pet store; the one-stop-shop for all your pet needs. Especially for major cities and towns, their local pet stores offer the best services for sale and advice you may need for your pet. Furthermore, the store can also inform you of any legal issues there may be about owning or shipping for a pocket monkey.

The price of the pet will vary since different stores source for their pets differently. But given the work hunters do getting the pet from its native land and shipping them in; it could be a quite expensive affair. The average retail price will be between $1500 to $4000.

Local and Online Breeders of Finger Monkeys

There are several online breeders who have the license to sell and breed pocket monkeys. They are knowledgeable individuals who can educate you on all you need to know about this pet. With their experience in this field, they are the perfect people to approach if you’re looking to buy.

Depending on where you live transacting guidelines or buying processes will be different.

Legitimate online sellers have great customer service which includes inclusive package deals with legal documents, health certificates, cages (though small), and notes on the care and well being of the pet. Just ensure you purchase from a trusted source.

Be wary of online scammers and peddlers who want to make a fool out of you.

Animal Rescue Centre

This is a universal space where vulnerable animals are kept safe. Some finger monkeys are actually mistreated and even abandoned by their owners.

Fortunately or unfortunately, the center then comes in a refuge for them. Various people visit the center to see the animals as well as buy, but it mostly serves as a refuge and adoption center. Hence, more on this WL be on the next segment.

Where to Find for Adoption

Adoption, in this case, serves to rebuild the lives of finger monkeys that were previously living in unbecoming situations. Therefore, the Animal Rescue Center works to offer pets to new homes. The process of adoption begins when you spot the finger monkey you’d like.

After that, paperwork has to be presented to ascertain that you are a plausible candidate to own the pet. The permits will give the center and overview of who you are after which the responsibility of caring for the pet is handed over to you.

Unfortunately in such cases, there’s no way to find out about the history of the pet hence, you work with what is there. Otherwise, it’s a fulfilling experience for those who have done it before.

Unlike purchasing from the store, you may not have to pay the $3000 to $4000 in costs. And occasional nominal fee can be requested, but that’s all.  


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