Capuchin monkeys belong to the New World group of monkeys native to the rainforests of South and Central America. They are round-headed and stockily built. They can be very light weighing only 3-9 pounds on average.
The body is 12-22 inches long with a tail of about the same length. They have tails that can easily wrap around branches and opposable thumbs that can grasp or hold objects.
Their hair color varies according to species but normally have cream-colored fur around the shoulders, neck, and face.
The rest of the hair is dark brown while their face can be white or pink in color.
Capuchin Monkey Price
If you’re fond of watching movies, then chances are you have seen a Capuchin monkey in action. Crystal, a Capuchin monkey, has been on several feature films like “George of the Jungle” and “Night at the Museum”.
She earned a whopping $12,000 per episode when she appeared on the TV show “Animal Practice”.
Capuchin monkeys are prolific in TV and movies because they are smart and social animals. No wonder they don’t come cheap. A baby black cap is being sold at a price tag of $13,500 at Capuchin Monkey for Sale in Florida.
On the other hand, Exotic Animal for Sale offers a male Capuchin from from Florida for $6,500.
Other cheaper option can be found at Ryan’s Pet House in Delaware which costs $750 (from $1,500) inclusive of the following:
- Health guarantee
- Current vaccinations
- Vet checked 2x
- USDA registered
- Premium food
- Manual Book Guide
- Permit License
- Free lifetime veterinary consultation
- Monkey College 101 Course
Where Do You Live?
While there are many states that prohibit monkeys as pets because of the inherent danger and health concerns that come with owning one, there are also states that allow them, subject to getting a permit.
Before buying a Capuchin monkey, please check the laws of ownership with the local office of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service where you live.
Are You Willing to Undergo Training?
They are highly intelligent, thus, a frequent subject in laboratory experiments. They are able to use tools like sticks and rocks in order to open shells, nuts, and seeds.
Primates as pets have always been a sensitive topic. Animal groups are passionate about protecting monkeys in their natural habitat. Can you deal with that?
They are not your typical house pets and you need to have a special training to be able to handle and take care of them properly; not only for their own safety but for yours, your family, and your community.
Permit applicants are required to accumulate 500-1000 hours of pet training. Training can cost $2 per hour.
Applicants are also subjected to home inspection in some cases.
Do You Feel Safe Living with a Wild Animal?
They may look adorable with their lean and agile bodies but in truth, they are far from being domestic animals. In short, they are different from raising a dog or a cat.
As babies, they look so calm and helpless but may become unpredictable and unruly pets as they grow older. They would display signs of aggression like biting which could be dangerous as they do have sharp teeth.
How Big is Your Property?
If their natural habitat can be replicated in your own backyard without fear of them escaping and potentially causing harm to the public, that would be an ideal set-up.
Here are some guidelines when organizing a home for your Capuchin.
- A monkey cage can never be too big. The bigger, the better.
You can get a pre-fabricated cage at $3,000. If you have a cage design in mind, Cagemasters custom builds them.
- For smaller cages, use a drip tray, peat, sawdust, dried leaves or wood chips as flooring. For bigger cages, a cement floor is good though you can also have linoleum, kitchen or bathroom floors.
- Being cooped in a cage can get boring so create a different environment from time to time. For indoor cages, you can place alternately some branches, dry leaves, swings, tires, coconut shells, plastic pipes, monkey toys.
For outdoor cages, you can place leaves, trees, bushes, platforms, rocks.
- An outdoor cage should have an element to protect the animal from heat, wind, and rain. Double entry doors are recommended for safety.
- Do not use chicken wire; a chain link of about 12-gauge strength should be used.
- For indoor cages, you may have to install Vita-lite to replicate sunlight. Capuchins need vitamin D3 to avoid poor bone conditions. A 15-watt fluorescent bulb costs less than $20.
- Use non-toxic plants like bamboo, palm, willow, elm, hibiscus, pine, etc.
- Clean indoor cages at least every week. Excess foods and droppings should be cleaned daily. Use only a mild disinfectant when cleaning.
Can You Handle the Mess?
Capuchin monkeys are active during the day. In the wild, they search for food instinctively and hang out amongst the trees. As night falls, they sleep wedged between tree branches.
As they like to forage for food and swing from tree to tree, imagine what happens if they get loose in the house.
They urinate to mark their territory and throw feces. It’s not surprising they wear diapers for most of their life.
What About the Noise?
As they’re very social animals, you can often see them in groups of up to 40 members consisting of males, females, and their children.
They are an animated bunch during these get-togethers. We can’t expect a Capuchin to stay quiet even in captivity. Besides, it communicates by way of calls and vocalizations so prepare to be entertained…or not.
Are You Keen on Providing a Balanced Diet?
Food can include commercial primate diet like Mazuri® Monkey Crunch 20 Biscuit ($30 for 20-lb. pack), fresh fruit like mango and apple, fresh vegetables like carrot and cucumber, cooked vegetables like green beans and peas, baby cereal, rice, seeds and nuts, insects like mealworms and grasshoppers.
You can also feed Capuchins with cooked meat like chicken and turkey, cooked fish and vegetables, and hard-boiled eggs.
Do not feed them raw meat, baby mice, and cockroaches and always have clean water on hand.
Are You in Contact with a Veterinarian Who Treats Monkeys?
A veterinarian that treats monkeys in your area may be difficult to find. It’s likely that you have to travel for several miles to visit one.
Your pet needs an annual health check-up. Capuchins can transmit diseases like hepatitis and rabies. They are also carriers of Herpes B virus.
Do You Have Sufficient Funds?
Capuchins’ lifespan in captivity is 40 years or more. That means a lifelong commitment of care and handling which includes food and nutrition, health care, pet sitting, and yes, diapers.
If after all these scenarios you still want a Capuchin, then we suggest you volunteer at a wildlife sanctuary. This shows you the reality of how much effort it takes to care for them. Observe their behavior with other animals and with humans.
You can also donate to Helping Hands, a non-profit organization that pair up a trained Capuchin monkey with physically challenged people to help them with household chores and daily tasks.
Either way, it takes an amazing sense of responsibility, genuine concern, and resources to go through it.