Home Exotic Pets Are Jumping Spiders Friendly? – What To Know

Are Jumping Spiders Friendly? – What To Know

by Lucy

You, just like many other people, might be very surprised to find that you can keep jumping spiders as pets. Forget tarantulas, the most popular spider pet, a jumping spider might just be the companion you need.

When thinking of a pet, we usually lean towards a puppy or kitten, who will form a strong bond and offer you loads of unconditional love. It seems difficult to expect the same from a tiny spider.

Are jumping spiders friendly? Jumping spiders are not necessarily ‘friendly’ until they are domesticated. Once they realize that you aren’t going to eat or harm them, they will stop running away from you each time you open their cage. Overall, they can make an enjoyable pet for the right person.

However, you won’t get much interaction out of your jumping spider, but they are fairly easy to maintain as a pet and are quite cute to look at!

If you are on the fence as to whether or not you should keep your own little jumping spider as a pet, here is a little more about them to help you decide.

Are Jumping Spiders Smart?

Jumping spiders have a brain the size of a poppy seed. One would think this does not offer up much, but jumping spiders are actually pretty smart.

First, it is important to note that jumping spiders are not like other spiders. They do not hunt using a web. Instead, their front-facing eyes help them stalk and hunt their prey.

Jumping spiders have bright colors, display an elaborate mating dance, have extremely sharp vision, and display an amazing awareness of three-dimensional space. Their vision is sharper than most other spiders, and it allows them to hunt.

Their prey? Other spiders. Jumping spiders have adapted over time to hunt efficiently and smartly. They are able to think ahead and sneak up on their prey, and are even capable of finding hidden prey by visualizing its location and then planning a path to get to it.

There are a few species of jumping spiders in the Spartaeinae group, and amazingly, all display this intelligence and problem-solving ability. They all think before they act, they adapt and re-plan if something unexpected happens, and they demonstrate genuine cognition.

They might be small – but jumping spiders are in fact incredibly intelligent. 

Are Jumping Spiders Good Pets?

Jumping spiders can make for an enjoyable pet. They do not mind interacting with their owners if they aren’t too skittish, and as they are so intelligent, they are a joy to watch.

Individual spiders have their very own personalities, just like a dog or cat might. Some are more forward and brave, while others might be more skittish. Others just sit back calmly and observe you. However, they are one of the ‘friendliest’ types of spiders.

You do not need to worry too much about being bitten, as jumping spiders will only bite if they feel threatened or are hurt. If you handle them gently, you should not have much to worry about.

When it comes to care – jumping spiders are fairly easy to care for and do not need much work to keep them happy. Feeding your jumping spider is easy as well, and can be free if you have a good supply of flies or small crickets at home!

Making A Home For Your Jumping Spider

If you are wanting to find a little jumping spider of your own, you will need to give them their own enclosure.

Setting up a home for a jumping spider isn’t too difficult, and they are quite easy to please. You could use a small container, but the more space you offer them, the more they will be able to exercise, and the happier they will be.

If you have some free time and are willing to play with your jumping spider each day, a small container should not matter too much, but if the plan is to leave them in their cage most of the day, a bigger container is better. A cubic foot of space or more is ideal.

A cage that is too small will not give your spider ample space to exercise. This could lead to them becoming weak and dying too young. They need space to jump and run around.

Once you have your container, you need to ensure it has adequate ventilation. However, the holes need to be small enough to ensure that the spider cannot escape.

You can add items like branches and leaves to their home, but this could make it difficult to find your spider as they like to make resting sacs inside curled leaves. These are silken sleeping bags where they spend most of their time.

A crumpled up napkin or paper towel works perfectly, and the jumping spider can make their nesting sac within the napkin, and you are able to see them easily.

If you have chosen a clear or glass enclosure, then you cannot provide too much direct sunlight. This direct sunlight will heat up the cage too much and your spider might end up cooking. Place the enclosure in a location that gets sunlight for only a few hours a day.

Ensure that there is somewhere for them to seek out shade in their cage if necessary, such as a napkin fold.

What To Feed A Jumping Spider

A jumping spider cannot hunt for his own food if kept in a cage, so you will need to provide him with food. 

When picking out food to feed your jumping spider, avoid hard-shelled beetles and pill bugs. Do not feed them ants either, as ants can pinch them and inject them with formic acid.

The best option would be to feed them flies and moths. Flies and moths can’t harm your spider, as they cannot bite them. Do not give them crickets which are more than 1.5x the length of your spider. You will also notice over time that your spider might have a preference when it comes to food.

You could also try out webworms or silverfish!

Feeding your jumping spider gives you an excuse to run around outdoors in the summer with a kid’s butterfly net chasing down some flies. During winter, you might have to take a trip to the pet store to purchase a tub of small crickets.

To feed your spider, all you need to do is drop the insect into the cage and wait for your jumping spider to hunt it. Remove any shells when the spider is done eating, so it doesn’t cause the cage to smell.

Do Jumping Spiders Recognize Their Owners?

Jumping spiders are incredibly intelligent. They are able to plan ahead and hunt down prey they can’t even see. Whether or not they actually recognize their owner is debated on, but they do feel more comfortable around humans if taken care of.

If you raise your jumping spider from young, you will notice that they do not jump away or try to hide when you open up their cage. They will become more comfortable around you, and even let you play with them for a little while.

So, by being gentle with your jumping spider, treating them well, and never making them feel threatened, you’ll earn their trust over time and they will feel comfortable around you, maybe more than they feel comfortable around anyone else.

Related Questions

Do I need to water my spider?

Spiders breathe with book lungs. These are located on their abdomen and the lungs look very much like the pages of a book. Too much water on their abdomen could cause them to suffocate. They only need very small droplets of water.

Use a misting bottle to spray on the side of the cage every few days. Do not do more than this, any puddles could cause your spider to drown.

Do jumping spiders really jump?

Yes, just as their name describes, jumping spiders do really jump. They don’t hop around because they enjoy it, but they use their strong legs and their high jumps to pounce on their prey.

Jumping spiders don’t actually have special leg muscles for jumping, such as what grasshoppers do. Instead, they suddenly change the blood flow in their body to propel them forward.

When they want to jump, they contract special muscles which increase the blood flow to their legs. This extends their legs fully and sends them soaring, up to 50 times the spider’s body length!

Are jumping spiders dangerous to humans?

Jumping spiders are not considered dangerous to humans. They are more likely to run away from a human than to attack them. They do possess fangs and they do produce venom, but this venom is not a medical threat.

They might bite if they feel threatened or injured, but this is usually a warning bite and it is not dangerous to humans. They would rather run and hide than try to fight us.

Up Next: How Much Do Tarantulas Cost?

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