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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

92 Comments on How to Keep Spiders as Pets

  1. My jumping spider eggs jus hatched wat will they eat

  2. My jumping spider eggs jus hatched wat will they eat

    • My little sis found a male black widow and we can’t feed it. We have tried: crickets, beetles, and flys (basically the smallest bugs we can find) Do you know what we can feed it?

    • JustCallMeXy // July 7, 2022 at 10:45 pm // Reply

      My little sis found a male black widow and we can’t feed it. We have tried: crickets, beetles, and flys (basically the smallest bugs we can find) Do you know what we can feed it?

  3. Tree spiders (spiders that climb) can live in a tall jar with sticks. Ground spiders can live in a critter keeper with dirt. They would both like mealworms. For water a bottle cap will do. You can add bark, twigs,or any other places to hide or decorations

  4. Spider queen // January 5, 2015 at 10:45 pm // Reply

    I have a spider that looks like a jumping spider but it doesn’t jump. Even if it’s not a jumping spider, I still don’t know what to feed it. It’s in the middle of winter and I don’t know where to find small bug. And ants are too big, so I’m worried the ant will eat it! 😓 What do I do? Is there some kind of spider food at a store?

  5. Spiders are gross scary,well turantchullas and black widows and cave dwelling spiders.

  6. BlueKnight97 // November 10, 2014 at 3:45 pm // Reply

    my jumping spider lives in a fishbowl nd just moulted.. he/she eats daily.. its pedipalps are not swollen so I think its a female

  7. spiders are good but s

  8. Jumping spiders probably shouldn’t be kept in jars- unless you’re going to be taking them out and playing with them every day. If you prefer to keep your jumper as a display spider I recommend getting a larger plastic cage for it to run around in. If jumping spiders don’t get enough exercise, they can die!

  9. I’ve kept spiders… But praying mantises are more fun!

  10. camel spider // October 18, 2014 at 8:32 pm // Reply

    that might be the best ideas tried but my camel spiders name is killer Bryan David, he bite me and he was really fast. 🙂

  11. All i can say is yuck. My skin crawled just from reading it. I just hoped that if i learned more about them maybe they wouldn’t creep me out as much. Nope still horrified and just have to put up with being mortified by my hebejeebees.

  12. So I have a wolf spider in a jar it’s not a huge jar but it’s a good size jar do I need bigger

    • Yes

    • Pet stores have crickets of all sizes. The spider should eat prey no larger than 3/4 the size of its abdomen. If it’s a very small spider, you can try pinhead crickets or small crickets.

    • if you don’t know what to feed small spiders try mealworms they are cheap at pet stores just keep them in the fridge so they don’t become beetles!!!😲

  13. lovers mixo // August 23, 2014 at 2:04 am // Reply

    my spider is a good pet cause every week i give him or her five or six flies and its easy to get a fly or flies it can even make weds and its living a good live i can wait for it to grow

  14. jumping spiders // July 13, 2014 at 4:29 am // Reply

    I found abandoned baby jumping spiders and I kept it in a container . Its a new hatched baby spider , should I feed it or something.

  15. spiders are funny and thrilling l almost lost mine when our aunty just threw my container in the bin awwwwww anwae got it before it had been collected

  16. recovering arachnaphobe // July 2, 2014 at 5:45 pm // Reply

    Im getting over my fear of spiders and im thinking of getting one. Probably just a daddy long legs from my work what do I feed it ?

    • careforapet? // August 4, 2014 at 3:22 pm // Reply

      1. Daddy long legs are NOT spiders!
      2.they can eat decomposing bugs and flys ect.
      3. Don’t feed it anything that bites such as ants, bees,and wasps. Also nothing that has a shell.

      • Ive been watching these daddy long legs in my bathroom for a month now they stay out of the way and have taken care of our ant problem

  17. I am doing a great job with catching spiders but my dog wants to eat it aww

  18. One question…do you guys ever consider the fact that you could be accidentally be bitten. I’m fascinated by them but the fact that it bites is my set back…how in the world do you get over that.

  19. Hiram Wolf pider // June 4, 2014 at 3:07 pm // Reply

    Just caught a wolf spider and i have it living in a plastic container it has being acting strange waiting and when i open the lib goes crazy and when i try to add tgings to its plastic cage it stays away from what ever i put in the cage what should i do

  20. ok so my dog attacked a little house spider it lost 1 leg fell in water went into what i can only call a coma woke up made it a nest put it in very lively then suddly just went into a ball its legs are still moving. what should i do i consider letting it go but it wont come out the nest i dont want to pick it up as it may get more fragile

    • That’s too bad…don’t release him/her they are dying. The best you can do is just keep them in a small cage, don’t feed them. If they live for more than a day or two feed them fruit flys. Good luck 🙁

  21. Did you know spiders eat any insex insep for Other daddy long legs

  22. seen a 4-inch wolf spider and a 2-inch black widdow, i ain’t keeping any spiders.

  23. red back spider // April 29, 2014 at 11:54 pm // Reply

    I’ve got red back spider with her 3 eggs balls and one of them hatch how can I feed the babies?

    • phantomwarlord // May 2, 2014 at 12:52 am // Reply

      dude when it comes to baby spiders you just got to let them go.

      • Yeah usually they eat their mothers hahaha nature works this way baby. But sometimes they just go adventure for themselves anyway…

    • any spider likes to eat insects like little flies they like dark places and to be left alone most of the time if you are keeping your spider inside you should make the home look like outside to make it feel safe. they drink water or blood from other insects. if you keep your spider in a tin or pastic box make sure there are holes but not to big because they might escape !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  24. I wouldn’t mind keeping a spider if I haven’t already seen a 4-inch wolf spider.

  25. Why would you want to catch a spider? These spiders come from the wild. How would you like it if someone removed you from your home and trapped you in a jar? If you want a spider that badly, buy one. That way, you know you won’t be causing the spider any stress.

  26. Iron squirrel // April 25, 2014 at 7:35 am // Reply

    I would like a pet spider and I keep seeing them in my basement but my twin bro is SCARED of spiders and can’t stand being on the same planet as them. Any suggestions?

    • phantomwarlord // May 2, 2014 at 12:55 am // Reply

      just cach a spider set it on your dresser and have your bro look at it for a bit tell some fassinating stuff about them

  27. me and blackie // April 15, 2014 at 12:32 am // Reply

    I have a jumping spider named Blackie. He lived in my house for several months before I captured him and made a habitat for him.I was afraid if I let him continue roaming the house someone would surly step on him. I have enjoyed the little rascal. He loves baby crickets and moths. He shed his skin once and has made a large resting sac. He spent 14 days in his resting sac and I worried about him but he is okay.he was shedding his skin.

  28. i got a tegenaria duellica. called her Doris.
    Shes already build an awesome web

  29. I’m planning to catch a black widow. Where can I mostly find them?

    • They like dark damp places. If you have an outside shed you probably have one or two under something in there. Under washer machines, or any appliance that hasn’t been moved for a while is a good place to look too.

    • I would advise you to take caution & wear gloves when catching, feeding, and holding a black widow. Their bite = an emergency room trip.

    • phantomwarlord // May 2, 2014 at 12:57 am // Reply

      ok first of all dont cach black widows there very poisinos and you can find them under rocks or under damp things

    • You can either buy one or if you live around the u.s. North area go in the deep forest and you could find one. They are not harmless unless you pinch a leg or mess with it. I hope this information helps you. Be safe.


  31. just caught fishing spider 🙂 have b.w too!!!!


  33. Hello guys, can you help me? I just found a spider. It has a brown yellow and white combination color on its back. I found it in my garden here in Australia. What kind of spider is it?

  34. There is a tiny brown spider living on my light in my room and has made a web accross it. What shall i keep it in as i dont want it to live there. What shall i feed it and what is its natural habitat? Also what type of spider is it? It is around the size of my big toes nail (including legs) and is brown.
    I really want to keep it as a pet!!!;):-):-D:-P

    • me,myself and I // August 25, 2014 at 11:10 am // Reply

      I have six jumping spiders and there all very beautiful I have 2 boys and 4 girls and planning on finding more I love them very girl made a egg sack! Yay!!!!!!:-)

  35. I also got a spider in my bedroom I want to kill it but I also think it harmless because it been in my room for a month now

  36. Me and my siblings catched 2 little spiders today how do we take care of them properly? Like, how can we make a suitable home for them in a container?

    • well you can keep them in two separate containers because if you keep them both in one container they will eat each other. Put some mud in the containers, make sure the containers have holes in them.put some twigs, grass and dead leaves. Make sure they have a little bit of water and feed them small insects like aphids or small bugs like aphids 2 times a week. Don’t kill the bugs just put them in and let the spider kill the bugs.

  37. To who ever has a black widow it is never a good idea to have one of them asa pet if you ever get bitten you should always get medical help because it is only a matter of time before you fall over and die

    • If you find or have a black widow then don’t worry because they rarely bite even if they do it’s rarely fatal🐜😲

  38. I I’m geting a tarantulla this give me a plan to coleckt al the spiders you get you must do it jus be careful for poison spiders

  39. I I’m geting a tarantulla this give me a plan to coleckt al the spiders you get you must do it jus be careful for poison spiders

  40. I have a big rain spider that came into my room. She is in a glass cage with soil and leaves. She built a nest and two days ago her babies emerged. What can I give them to eat and also, will she lbe likely to eat them?

  41. what do i feed my tiny little spider

  42. nightwing101 // December 1, 2013 at 3:04 pm // Reply

    You may keep a spider as a pet and speaking from experience with many captive spiders a small spider can eat large things such as a jumping spider will eat crickets just make sure its in there diet . I mean I have made the mistake of feeding jumpy( my jumping spider) a worm not knowing jumpy needs to hunt in order to eat.

  43. I have a black widow in a jar and I dont want to let it go but I dont want it to die. What should I do?

  44. i find a spider from the wild whith my bare hads

  45. I have an extremely large pet wolf spider. She is amazing to watch and to see her eat. She built a network of webs in her habitat, which is a plastic container about a foot long and 8 inches wide. I have had her for almost 7 months now and she has shed several times. The exoskeleton is pretty awesome. I would love to get a Mexican Red Knee tarantula but my mother would kill it, me, or both if I brought one home.

  46. where do i get a pet spider

  47. we bought a pink toe tarantula for my sons birthday gift, she is very beautiful. We live in Nebraska in the north part and I was wondering how to keep her warm . What would be the best way . Thanks for any advice you can give me. Sincerely Pinktoes

    • pinktoes, you can buy heat mats that you place under terrariums and viv’s. You plug them into the wall and set the temperature to what ever the animal being kept prefers, and place the mat directly under the terrarium or viv. They’re not too expensive neither, should be able to find them in a good pet or reptile store. Hope this helps 🙂

  48. I have a black widow in a reptile cage is it ok?

    • NO!!! These are the most deadly spiders in America. Get rid of it quickly. Btw, They are master escape artist and can squeeze through extra small spaces so be careful. Let it go far from your house

      • Yall gon'make me loose my mind // October 23, 2014 at 9:27 pm //

        Do not listen to night wing they can only be dangerous if you pinch a leg or mess with it and yes it is okay .

    • nightwing101 // December 1, 2013 at 2:58 pm // Reply

      Yes it is okay to keep small spiders in a medium cage but be sure not to keep it in a big cage or it won`t be able to find its food and a black widow just in case wear thick gloves when you feed it because it has a venomous bite

  49. I have a wolf spider he’s AWSOME

  50. I love how tiny spiders look I just put my hand over one and it jumped up to it

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