Image Taken From Whiplash Rides
I have always wanted to own a monkey. They are are ridiculously awesome and having one as a pet would be even more awesome. I recently saw some videos about a sheep dog riding cowboy monkey named Whiplash that got me pretty pumped about the idea again. Since this is a blog about money, I wanted to see how owning a monkey would affect the bottom line of my family.
Did you know that you can buy a monkey on the internet? I didn’t either until the all powerful Google told that you could. After a quick trip over to the Primate Store I discovered that you can purchase a monkey at the rock bottom price of $1,200 – but that was for a Fat Tailed Dwarf Lemur, a minuscule monkey that looks like it has little training potential. But it also seems to have little pooh throwing potential, so I guess that is okay. I guess if I had a choice between a Yorkshire Terrier and Fat Tailed Dwarf Lemur I would definitely take the Lemur. The highest price I saw at the primate store was $9,800 for a baby Female Miniature Crested Celebes Ape. I’ll split the difference and figure that a quality, trainable monkey would cost me $5,500.
Running Total: $(5,500)
From what I have read, it may be difficult to find someone to take care of your monkey. Since a monkey it about 10 times better than a dog, I figure that a monkey will run about 8.5 times the price of a dog’s vet bill and food expense considering the coolness factor of inflation. That would up my monkey bill between $2,550 and $4,250 a year. Since monkeys can live 15-20 years that would bring the expenses of owning a monkey up by about $59,500, give or take several thousand.
Running Total: $(65,000)
Time Lost to Cleaning and Cage Maintenance:
Monkeys are really, really, really dirty. It takes time to clean a cage and I doubt you’ll be able to teach a monkey the wonders of indoor plumbing. Unless you already regularly clean stinky, dirty animals this could be a full time maintenance mess. Using the same coolness factor of inflation I figure it will take 8.5 times more work to clean up after a monkey than it does a dog. That means it takes 2 hours a week worth of cleaning. That is about $30 dollars worth of time a week given my current wage. That is an additional $1,560 a year for a total of $27,300 for the life of the monkey, not taking into account the increasing value of my time.
Running Total: $(92,300)
Monkeys can be dangerous. Once they reach sexual maturity they can become aggressive and pound for pound are very strong. It is also very possible for humans to get diseases from monkeys. That could turn Junior’s birthday party into a hepatitis B party – I love party favors. I’ll figure that nothing terrible happens, but I have to pay a lawyer for 2 hours just to cover my butt. Price paid: $300.
Running Total: $(92,600)
Monkey Revenue and the Intangibles:
The only reason you have a monkey as a pet is to train it to do cool things. These cool things can also earn you money, if you know how to crack the competitive birthday party/rodeo market. Lets assume that my monkey isn’t smart enough to be a public spectacle until he is 5 years old and I put him out to stud for the last two years of his life. That leaves me about 10 years of use out of the monkey. Then lets say that I earn $125 per birthday gig, speaking engagement, rodeo, or old west reenactment. I would only have to do one event a week for a ten year period in order to recuperate all of my monkey expenses – and that doesn’t even include all the paid sex my monkey will be having with other monkeys.
There are also the intangibles of owning a monkey. You probably couldn’t put a price on what it would do for my family. My house would be the house that all my kids’ friends would want to hang out at simply because we had a monkey. They would have the best show and tell presentations this side of the Reformation, making them at least the second most popular person at their school. Until they were in the fifth grade they could always scare bullies by telling them that they would bring their pet monkey to school to whip their butt if they didn’t stop. I mean I could make about 50 Priceless commercials just off the top of my head if I wanted to. You can’t put a dollar amount on intangibles, but I am going to any way – $100,000.
Clearly owning a monkey is not only a strong personal and family move, but it is also a sound financial investment. You will earn $100,000 worth of money and enjoyment out of your monkey if you play your cards right.
Buy a monkey once I have a place to keep one and sufficient funds to care for it.