AN exotic animal owner is hoping to expand a pet rescue charity she created in her Lostock Gralam home.

Sam’s Scales ‘n’ Tails Exotic Rescue was started by Warren Avenue resident Sam Smith, after her exotic pet business became overrun with recovered pets.

Sam has kept exotic pets for many years but, with only one designated RSCPA centre exotic animals in the country, there are many in need of help and a home.

"I offer dog daycare, exotic pet sitting and educational packages for schools and groups," she said. "As part of that I also offer exotic pet rescue and rehoming services.

"Due to the financial climate and the fashion over the past decade for unusual pets the need for rescue services for exotics has grown .

"In the last week alone I've taken in a corn snake and eight terrapins of different breeds. The RSPCA only have one reptile rescue in the country and it's in Brighton and is nearly always full.

“I made friends with an officer, who brings me animals to look after like the bearded dragons and terrapins.

“Other times it’s people asking me to take them as they can’t look after them. I got the snakes from a guy who had to move out and couldn’t find a property where he was able to keep them.

“Home’s not home unless it’s full of animals, though, I’ve always had exotic animals around.”

The ideal situation for Sam would be to have a charity shop for animals, somewhere she can home and look after the exotic pets while giving advice to owners.

“Because everything has been on a small scale there are unfortunately a lot of animals I can’t help in a lot of situations,” added Sam.

“People message me regularly asking if I can take animals but I’m limited as I haven’t got the room, that’s why I’d like to be able to expand.

“I’d like a place to have the rescue animals on site, unless they need 24-hour care and then they’d be at home.

“People can come for advice or if they’re looking for an animal they can do it without the sales pitch.

“A pet shop is a shop and they are trying to sell you something, they are not going to prepare you for 20, 50, 70 years of commitment to one of these animals.

"I'm looking for trustees to help set up the charity itself, foster homes for reptiles until we get premises sorted out and people to help fund raising.

"I have plenty of ideas but can't do it all alone. I know that lots of people in the North West have a love of animals and I'm sure someone out there can help me help these poor creatures find loving new homes!"

If you would like more information on exotic animals, or would like to become involved in Sam’s charity, visit her Facebook page at or email