How Much is a Pet Monkey? [All Costs Breakdown]

You’ve decided you want a pet monkey. You’re not alone, as there are more than 30 different species of primates that can be kept as pets in the United States.

Monkeys can be a great pet for the right person, but it’s important to consider all of the costs associated with owning one. In this post, we will discuss how much does a monkey cost and what are typical prices? Additionally, where do I buy monkeys from or is there anyone who sells them nearby that you know of?

Let’s start with the important one;

How much is a pet monkey? The lowest you can get a monkey for is $1,500 while you can expect to pay more than $60,000 for Chimpanzees. On average, you can spend $15,000-$20,000 for an adult monkey. The cost of newborn ranges between $30,000 and $50,000 depending on the age, the breed, and where you get the monkey.

As you can see, monkeys are quite expensive to obtain, but the initial cost is only one part of the answer. There are a lot of costs and hidden fees you can expect, so let’s explore all of these together.

Where can you get a pet monkey legally?

pet monkey to show how much is a pet monkey

Monkeys are protected in many parts of the world by the United Nations Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES), but countries have their own rules, whether or not they allow private monkey ownership.

For example, In the United Kingdom, it is lawful to keep a monkey as long as you have a license. This is also true in Spain so long as there are legal paperwork and origins. Private ownership of monkeys as pets is prohibited in Chile and Australia.

In the united states, you can have monkeys legally in these 14 states:

  • Alabama – legal to own with a permit from county/city government
  • Arkansas – legal to own if the animal was obtained before January 1994 and registered with local authorities
  • Florida – legal to own with registration with county/city government
  • Indiana – legal to own if you can prove that your state or country allows it and can provide proof of rabies vaccination
  • Mississippi – legal to own as long as the animal is registered, has a health certificate, etc.
  • Nebraska – requires license from Department of Agriculture
  • Nevada – legal to own as long as your state or country allows it and can provide proof of rabies vaccination
  • North Carolina – requires registration with county/city government
  • North Dakota – can have a pet monkey if from an accredited school for training, scientific institution, etc. but must be accompanied by someone who has experience in keeping primates
  • Ohio – can have a pet monkey if from an accredited school for training, scientific institution, etc. but must be accompanied by someone who has experience in keeping primates
  • Tennessee – legal to own as long as your state or country allows it and can provide proof of rabies vaccination
  • Texas – legal to own with registration with county/city government
  • West Virginia – can have a pet monkey if from an accredited school for training, scientific institution, etc. but must be accompanied by someone who has experience in keeping primates States where it is illegal to keep one as a pet:
  • New York – can only own with a permit and special licenses; fines may also apply

But private ownership of monkeys is completely banned in the following states:

  • New Hampshire
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • New York
  • New Mexico
  • Pennsylvania
  • New Jersey
  • Maine
  • Kentucky
  • Georgia
  • Louisiana
  • Maryland
  • Connecticut
  • Colorado
  • California
  • Wyoming
  • Vermont
  • Rhode Island
  • Utah

A Note on Bringing Monkey into the US

Thanks to the Federal Quarantine Regulations, it has been illegal to import monkeys as pets into the United States since 1975. There’s a chance you’ll be able to bring them into the United States if you buy them overseas for less.

You can only import one pet monkey at a time into the United States. Also, if you already own a pet monkey, you may not travel abroad with them since they will be denied reentry.

Where can you buy a pet monkey in the United States?

Purchasing a monkey as a pet isn’t as simple as going to your local pet shop or contacting one of the many breeders for the kind of dog or cat breed you desire.

It’s best to view photographs of the monkeys before going to get the monkey from the current owner, as it may be difficult to find one. Here are a few websites where you can discover a monkey near your home (other than Craig’s list, of course):

  • Pets4You – This site has contact information for monkey and primate breeders on it from time to time, so that you may locate one who lives near you. You’ll also see classified advertisements with photographs of the monkeys they’re selling.
  • Poggi’s Animal House – This online business sells capuchin and marmosets. They also sell cages and offer information on their website regarding maintenance.
  • Primate Store – You can find monkey listings to include pictures, prices, contact information, and more. In the sidebar, you may discover information on their diet and housing. You’ll also discover a shopping area with suggestions for finding food, toys, and other items that your monkey will enjoy.
  • Wisdomemonkeyshome: This is a small family breeder licensed by US Fish and Wildlife. They raise Capuchin, Squirrel, and Marmoset monkeys, some of the world’s tiniest primates weighing less than a pound when adult. New World Monkeys are creatures from Brazil and Columbia’s Atlantic Coastal Forest.
  • Comfort Exotics: Funded by a couple, Comfort Exotics is a family-owned and operated USDA-licensed ethical breeding Home. Their mission is to provide the highest quality husbandry and care to our animals while sharing their passion for exotics through education and the conservation of endangered and threatened species.

How much does a Monkey cost by breed?

Let’s look at some of the most popular kinds of monkeys kept as pets. Not all monkeys are the same; in fact, there is a small group of monkeys that are frequently sought after by pet lovers more than others. Let’s quickly discuss each of them:


Price Range: $4,500 to $10,000 

Guenons are an Old World monkey species from Africa. There are over 20 different species of Guenons, but the African Green Monkey, Grivet and Vervet varieties are among the most popular as pets. The cost of each species varies. Baby Grivet Monkeys can sell for $4,500 or more while rare kinds of Vervets can cost $12,000 or more.


Price Range:$ 1,500 and $2,500

Tamarins are tiny squirrel-like monkeys that originate from Central and South America. They can reach a length of 5 to 11 inches with a 9 to 17-inch tail and weigh between 10 and 20 ounces.

Tamarins are smaller than Marmosets and have longer lower canine teeth, although they resemble them in other ways. They have a distinctive mustache and diverse colors. In captivity, they have been documented to live up to 18 years old.


Price Range: $3,500 – $10,000

When it comes to pet monkeys, the baboon is among the most unusual. However, certain exotic pet owners prefer them over other breeds. All five species of African Baboons are descended from one another.

The Chacma, for example, is a whopping 47 inches long. The shortest is the Kinda Baboon, which reaches a height of 20 inches.

They have a distinctive dog-like muzzle and naked skin pads that protrude from their rear end in the wild. In the wild, they can survive up to 20 years but in captivity,


Price Range:  $50,000 – $60,000

While most people would advise against acquiring bigger primates like a Chimpanzee, it’s no surprise that so many people are attracted to them. Michael Jackson’s Bubbles was his personal pet Chimpanzee.

Chimpanzees usually range from 100 to 150 cm (3-4 feet) tall and weigh about 55 kg. In captivity, some chimps have grown taller than this.

Depending on their condition, chimps in captivity can live up to 30 years or longer. In the wild, they have been known to survive up to 15 to 20 years.

While they are capable of humanlike emotions, prospective owners should know that jaguars are huge and twice as powerful as humans. When males reach adulthood, like all primates, they become aggressive.


Price Range: $4,000 and $8,000

Macaques are a type of Old World Monkey from Asia. Macaques may reach a maximum height of 16 to 28 inches and weigh roughly 5.3 pounds in adulthood. In captivity, they can live up to 25 years or longer.

Macaques are popular pets among monkey enthusiasts due to their tiny size, which gives the appearance that they may be handled. Despite their tiny stature, macaques, owing to their high activity levels, require large cages.

It’s also worth noting that this monkey is strong and develops a temper easily, which may be too much for some people.

Spider Monkey

Price Range: $6,000 – $14,000

Spider Monkeys are small primates that live in Central and South America’s tropical forests, where they feed on fruits, flowers, insects, and other invertebrates. Their long limbs and prehensile tails (up to 35 inches in length) make them a favorite pet for monkey enthusiasts.

Their tails aid in their mobility. They can live up to 20 to 25 years in the wild, but this may be shorter because they are frequently hunted as food. Spider monkeys, on the other hand, can live up to 35 years in captivity.


Price Range: $5,000 and $7,500

The Capuchin is a tiny monkey breed that’s well-known for its two-toned coat and small stature. It’s small, quick, clever, and protective of its territory.

The tiny capuchin monkey has a tail that measures between 12 and 22 inches long, with tails that are often nearly as long as its body. They have a mischievous disposition and can live for many years in captivity. So, if you decide to go with this breed, make sure you’re ready to keep them for the long haul.

Squirrel Monkey

Price Range: $9,000 – $20,000

Squirrel monkeys are among the most popular of all monkey species, and they need a lot of care and attention just like other monkeys.

They might reach 9.8 to 13.8 inches long with a tail length of 14 to 17 inches more. In captivity, they have a lifespan of up to 20 years, but only 15 years in the wild.

Price Range: $6,000 – $14,000


Price Range: Between $1,500 and $2,500

Pygmy marmosets, also known as finger monkeys in the pet monkey business, are tiny, adorable creatures that many people adore as a potential pet. Marmosets come from Central America and spend their lives in the upper canopy of trees eating sap and gum.

The marmoset is a South American monkey that grows to be 4-6 inches tall and has a tail that’s at least as long. Adults weigh only 3.5 oz., so you can see how tiny and light these monkeys are. Marmosets, when maintained well, may live up to 18 years in captivity.

Marmosets are a very social and interactive species, so it’s ideal to keep them together with other marmosets so that they don’t get lonely for lengthy periods of time.

The Costs of Owning a Pet Monkey

Other than the initial cost of buying a pet monkey, there are the running costs of taking care of one. Caring for a pet monkey – cost-wise – is closer to having a baby than it is to having a pet dog or cat.

Let’s break it down.

The cost of Food

Cost: $25 to $35 per week.

Monkeys require fruits and vegetables exclusively, but they may also eat small insects or snacks to stay healthy and happy. They’ll enjoy oranges, grapes, apples, pears, cantaloupe, bananas, potatoes, corn, and broccoli.

Certain species will consume insects like crickets, mealworms, and wax worms. insectivorous breeds will eat unsalted almonds as well as lizards. A marmoset’s diet is considerably different from that of other monkeys.

You can expect to pay roughly $25 to $35 every week.

The cost of cages

Cost: starting at $200

You may purchase ready-made monkey cages and enclosures from a variety of providers. Indoor cages can cost anywhere from $200 to $900 depending on their size and quality. If you want an outdoor enclosure, expect to pay anything from $1600 to $3000.

There are custom-made enclosures available for all sizes and requirements. These will be more costly. The cheapest cage you can get is the Amazon Basics large kennel, which is not made specifically for monkeys but will do the job in the beginning.

You can check the Amazon basics large kennel here.

Costs of Vet Care

Cost: $50 – $200 for regular checkups and  $500 – $2,000 (or more) for serious issues and surgeries – the cost will depend on your area.

Vet care for an exotic pet like a monkey might be more expensive than human veterinary services. The cost of spaying and neutering your pet may vary widely based on the sort of treatment required. Initial vaccinations and tests can cost anywhere from $350 to over $1,000.

It can range from $50 to $200 for regular checkups, depending on the veterinarian or location. It can rapidly increase for serious diseases or operations that require surgery, starting at around $500 and going up from there.

The time and effort needed to care for a monkey

While this isn’t considered a financial expenditure, the time commitment and responsibilities that come with having a pet monkey are definitely worth considering.

Monkeys live a long time, between 15 and 40 years on average. This means that owners must make a deliberate and lengthy commitment to caring for them.

Monkeys are high maintenance pets that require a lot of attention. Taking care of a toddler full-time is similar to it.

So it’s critical for your health and, in particular, the monkey’s safety that potential owners be aware that adopting a pet monkey will be a significant responsibility and commitment on their part.

Conclusion: The Total costs of owning a pet monkey

In conclusion; Monkeys are expensive to get and expensive to care for.

The initial purchase price of acquiring a pet monkey might be steep. Depending on the species of monkey you choose, the initial purchase price may range from $1,500 to $50,000.

There are many more demands, such as constructing their habitat and providing for their food. It’s easy to build up a large sum of money over time, both emotionally and financially. Having a monkey as a pet is both an emotional and financial commitment.

If you’re ready for the commitment and have the resources to care for and acquire one, having a pet monkey might be a lot of fun.

Monkeys and primates will astonish and amaze you. They are quite similar to humans. When you’re hurting, they can sense your feelings and will go out of their way to comfort you. They also serve as guardians for their owners, sometimes at the expense of themselves.

Related Questions

Are Monkeys Dangerous as pets?

Pet Monkeys are dangerous indeed. Monkeys are wild animals, and while they may appear cute and cuddly as infants, their behavior will change once they become sexually mature. Monkeys can become violent towards other monkeys and their keepers when they mature sexually.

Furthermore, some species of monkeys carry deadly diseases like the herpes B virus, which can be transmitted to humans via a scratch or bite. If you’re looking for information about specific monkey breeds, check out CDC’s articles on them.

Can I adopt a Pet Monkey?

Most people who are looking for a pet monkey will not be able to adopt one. This is because there aren’t many monkeys in the world that can be adopted and it’s also illegal to own Pet Monkeys in some countries such as the US., Canada, UK, and Australia.

For those lucky enough to live somewhere where owning a pet monkey is legal, they will still need to go through a rigorous application process and meet several requirements before they can become the owner of a Pet Monkey.

What is the cheapest monkey?

Marmoset or finger monkeys are the cheapest pet monkeys you can get as they can cost you as low as $1,500 to $2,000 to get one. Monkeys can be expensive to own and care for. For owners of Pet Monkeys, they will need to pay a large amount of money on regular basis.

What is the most expensive pet monkey?

The costliest pet monkey you can get your hands on is Baboons that range from $15,000 and above depending on their breed. They are also known for being dangerous animals as some species have been

Can I Get a Pet Monkey for Free?

You can get a free pet monkey but not the way you are expecting. It will take time and patience for you to find one that is being given away by someone who does not want it anymore.

There are lots of Pet Monkeys out there already in rescue centers or zoos where they offer them for adoption at no cost so if you’re looking to get a free pet monkey this might be the easiest way.

 Can you buy a monkey in the US?

Yes, you can buy a monkey in the US as Monkeys are legal pets in some states (but this is not the case everywhere). Pet monkeys can be acquired by private owners or licensed exhibitors who have permission to sell them.

How long do monkeys live as pets?

Monkeys can live for long periods of time as pets, depending on their breed and how well they are taken care of. There have been numerous reports where monkeys lived up to 40 years in captivity with the proper food, shelter, exercise, enrichment activities which is most likely what you’ll have when you plan on owning a pet monkey at some point

Is it legal to have a marmoset monkey as a pet?

Yes, it is legal to get a marmoset monkey as your pet if you live in one of the countries where they are legal. The US has several states where having Marmosets for pets are allowed so check out this map which will show you all 50 states and what animals can be kept legally within them.

How much is a marmoset monkey?

Marmoset monkeys can cost you anything around $1,500 to $3000 and above depending on the breeder. Marmoset monkeys are some of the least expensive monkeys to buy upfront, but they can still be expensive to own and care for.

Helpful Resources

Legislation Affecting Exotic Pet Species in the United Kingdom

Exotic Animals Laws By State

The Care Of Monkey Handbook: Expert Advice On – Housing, Feeding And Health

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