Muntjac Deer
Small Pets

Muntjac Deer

Muntjac Deer information

Muntjac deer make wonderful little pets. They are very easily house trained and their waste products do not smell much. Other benefits with Muntjac deer as pets are that they don't need to be walked and that they don't jump on furniture. They become very familiar and rub against their keeper’s legs in a similar fashion to cats. They love playing games such as tag and hide-and-seek with their keepers. They can be thought to learn their own name and come when called.

There exist a number of different species of the Muntjac deer (see the list under taxonomy) and different species grows to different sizes. It is therefore recommended to take special care to choose the right species. The smallest species weigh around 10 lbs as an adult while the largest species can weigh close to 90 pounds. Leaf Muntjac and Reeves Muntjac deer are the two smallest species and both of them are being bred for the pet trade in the United States. The various species also look quite differently and have different fur. They also have different gestation periods. Muntjac deer have both antlers and tusks that are used in territorial fights.

Muntjac Deer taxonomy

Kingdom:      Animalia
Phylum:         Chordata
Class:            Mammalia
Order:           Artiodactyla
Suborder:      Ruminantia
Family:          Cervidae
Subfamily:    Muntiacinae
Genus:           Muntiacus

Known muntjac deer species:
Elaphodus cephalophus      Tufted Deer
Muntiacus atherodes          Bornean Yellow Muntjac
Muntiacus crinifrons           Hairy Fronted Muntjac or Black Muntjac
Muntiacus feae                   Fea’s Muntjac
Muntiacus gongshanensis   Gongshan Muntjac
Muntiacus muntjac             Indian Muntjac or Common Muntjac
Muntiacus puntoensis         Leaf Muntjac
Muntiacus reevesi               Reeve’s Muntjac or Chinese Muntjac
Muntiacus rooseveltorum   Roosevelt’s Muntjac
Muntiacus truongsonensis Troung Son Muntjac
Muntiacus vuquanhgensis Giant Muntjac

Muntjac Deer care

Muntjac deer are easy to care for and can be kept both indoors and outdoors. They are best kept indoors during the winter if you live in an area with cold winters. If kept indoors they can be allowed to roam free as they are easily trained to use a litter box and don't gnaw or jump on furniture. Place rugs as bridges for them to walk on if you have tiled floors.

If kept outside they need to be provided with a shelter and a large enough fenced in area. Remember that they can jump several times their own height when designing the fence. They can also be trained to use a suitable sized cat door to live both indoors and in a fenced area outdoors.

Muntjac deer are of a cautious nature and you can usually see what they are going to do before they’re doing it as it often isn't hard to figure out what they are contemplating by looking at what they are examining.

Muntjac deer should be provided with a suitably sized bed. The bed should be cleaned regularly but you should always leave something in the bed smelling like the deer so that they feel at home in the bed.

You will need to clean the litter box and change the substrate every four days.

Buying a Muntjac deer

You should never buy Muntjac deer that is less than five days old. The deer should ideally have been bottle fed for a couple of days when you buy them. Muntjac deer can be found from about 500 USD. The baby Muntjac deer need to feel safe in your home. Give it a small bed and a quilt to hide in. The bed and quilt should ideally have your scent. The deer will become more secure in your home and venture out more as times go by.

Muntjac Deer feeding

Muntjac deer need to be provided with fresh water and a salt stone. They are easy to feed and will eat almost any vegetables and almost all other types of plant matter as well. If you have a garden you can allow them to feed on grass and other plants but make sure to fence in any flowers or bushed you care about or they might get eaten. Muntjac deer also love bread and other carbohydrate rich food. They can be fed leftovers from the dinner table. Feeding them at the table will however teach them to beg.

Baby muntjac deer should be fed formula until they are about 8-10 weeks old.

Muntjac Deer breeding

Muntjac deer have no breeding season and can enter rut any time of the year. This is true even in populations that have been introduced to temperate areas. There is however some information saying that leaf Muntjac deer primarily (if not exclusively) mate during spring. All species get one (seldom two) young each year. The males can be aggressive toward other males and anything else that enter their territory when females in rut are near. It is recommended to stay out of the holding pen during this period.

Muntjac Deer health

Muntjac deer are hardy animals that aren’t prone to any particular health problems, but they can of course get sick just like any other animal. They seldom get ill if they are given proper care and a proper diet and there aren’t any special diseases that they are especially susceptible to.

Smaller Muntjac species need to be handled with gentle hands as they might get injured otherwise.

Muntjac Deer Facts

Muntjac deer fact 1
The Indian muntjac is the mammal with the lowest recorded chromosome number. The female deer has no more than 6 chromosomes.

Muntjac deer facts 2
Indian muntjac was introduced to the United States in 1997, while the Leaf Muntjac was introduced to the U.S. in 1999 by the Bronx Zoo Wildlife Conservation Society.

Muntjac deer fact 3
Indian muntjac was introduced to England in the late 1800s and can today be found throughout England and Scotland.

Muntjac deer fact 4
Female muntjac deer are more expensive than males and one female can cost many times the price of a male.

Muntjac Deer lifespan and different subspecies are

The exact lifespan of the various species of muntjac deer is not known, but males usually live between 15 and 20 years.


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