Can You Have a Pet Raven? 9 Factors to Consider

man feeding raven

Ravens are mysterious creatures, and many people are drawn to them because of their uniqueness. But don’t underestimate the level of care that is needed to have one as a pet! 

Yes, You can have a raven as a pet as long as you have a permit to do so. However, it is illegal to keep a raven without the necessary legal documents. So, if you want a pet raven, you need to apply for the special licensing in order to keep it at your home.

Because of their habits and range, the common raven is protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (1918). Most permits are granted only for rehabilitation purposes.   

They can speak much better than any parrot when properly trained. However, they can be pretty rambunctious, throwing fits like a toddler and screaming at the top of their lungs.  

Below we will dive into some of the factors that make these birds incredibly unique and things you should consider before deciding to get one as a pet. 

Can You Have a Raven as a Pet?

man carrying baby pet raven

Before you get all excited about applying for the permit to have a raven as your pet, you need to take the following things into consideration. Below are the top nine factors to consider before making your final decision. 

Keep in mind that ravens are notoriously known for needing a lot of attention. If you don’t work from home, or perhaps you travel often, it might not be the best idea to get one of these fascinating creatures as your new best friend.

It is also important to consider how close your neighbors are because ravens are extremely loud birds and frequently express themselves through high-pitched noises!  

# 1 – Ravens Diet Might Freak You Out 

You have to consider what a raven will be eating in order to keep the bird in good health. Ravens are omnivores who are primarily scavengers and partly opportunistic predators. The primary source of food comes from eating meat.

This could include the following:

  • Mice
  • Rats
  • Chicken Eggs (Boiled) 
  • Chicken (Cooked)
  • Beef (raw)
  • Chicken Hearts
  • Gizzards
  • Livers
  • Guts
  • Cat Food

If you have a weak stomach, you might want to think twice about having a raven as a pet. 

# 2 – Ravens Are Not Small Birds 

Ravens are larger than crows and many other birds that people tend to keep as pets.

One of the most common ravens that is bought for a pet is the exotic white-necked raven, which is one of the biggest in the breed. 

# 3 – Ravens Need Room to Fly 

If you are looking to get a raven as a pet, you are going to need to have space for it to fly around regularly. This is one of the main reasons that most raven owners have special aviaries outdoors. 

Their wingspan can easily reach three to four feet in total, which means the space they have to spread their wings and fly needs to be adequate for them to take flight.

If they feel contained, they will begin to become depressed and very hostile. You don’t want to make a raven angry! 

# 4 – Ravens are Temperamental  

If you’ve ever been around a toddler who isn’t happy, you’ll have a pretty good idea how a raven will act when they feel ignored. Ravens do things on their own schedule and nobody else’s. So they need to be social with lots of interaction. 

If a raven feels neglected, be prepared to have things thrown at you! Seriously, these birds are wicked when it comes to getting their way. So you either play by their rules or be prepared to defend yourself. 

# 5 – Ravens Need Constant Attention

You need to dedicate a good amount of your time each day to your raven in order to make them happy. They need to be fed regularly and want to play often. However, you shouldn’t compare them to anything like a parrot, who just sits around all day and looks pretty on a perch. 

Ravens react according to the attention they get. If they feel deprived, they will let you know in more than one way. They have no problem expressing their anger through loud and rowdy temper tantrums. 

They are also routine birds, which means they have a schedule of how things must happen each day, and if you don’t follow it, there will be some anger issues to deal with. 

# 6 – The Gender of a Raven Matters 

Male ravens are dominant within the breed and are the most likely to give a human a run for their money. This is why female birds are usually the most popular among pet owners. The female raven is considered to be more mellow; however, they can still be quite obnoxious. 

If you are a female who brings a male raven into your home, you will need to spend some serious time trying to bond with them and get their acceptance before any type of relationship can be established. 

# 7 – Ravens are Pushy 

Everybody is always in a hurry to teach their raven to speak, but what they aren’t prepared for is what happens after the bird knows the meaning of the words being taught. 

For example, if you teach a raven what an apple is, it will associate that word with the food. Then every time you walk in the room, the raven will scream apple at you until you give it one. 

If you think you can trick them by giving them some other fruit, be prepared to duck. Not only will the raven throw that fruit at you, but it will also scream and spawn its wings to warn you it is not happy with your behavior or humor, for that matter.  

# 8 – Ravens Can Hurt You 

If you are not careful, a raven will use its 6” bill to show you they mean business. That ‘weapon’ is as sharp as a knife, and they will use it to teach you a lesson. It kind of goes along with the other factors above, ravens get what they want when they want it or else! 

# 9 – Ravens Have Long Life Spans 

When you get a raven at a very young age, you need to plan on raising him or her for the next 40 years. But, with that being said, they also have incredible memories. So, if you harm them or make them upset, chances are you will be paying for it for a very long time! 

Ravens get attached to their owners quite quickly, and then they become jealous when other people are around.

So you need to consider if having small children and a raven in the same household is actually a good idea. 


Ravens are incredibly interesting and can make a good pet for somebody who has the time and devotion to dedicate to their existence.

However, you also need to be available at all times and follow the routine that the raven established as their lifeline. 

Remember, in order to have a raven as a pet; you need to have a permit. It is illegal to keep a raven without the proper documentation. You should also check for any local or state regulations pertaining to having ravens as domesticated pets.  


Donald Bergeson

I have always been fascinated by the skill, strength, and beauty of birds.They help in maintaining a balance of ecological environment. At Best Bird Guide, I share all of my experiences and discoveries that I have got so far and inspire more devoted fans.

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