Such An Unusual Choice Of Pets: 9-Year-Old Girl Loves Cockroaches So Much She Let's Them Crawl On Her Bed

Family & Kids

April 16, 2019 12:14 By Mambee

Many of us are part of the millions of people out there who can't stand cockroaches. While some of us merely detest them, others are outrightly scared of these insects.

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However, little Shelby isn’t one of us. In fact, her love for this brown crawling creature is not of this world.

Shelby Counterman is a nine-year-old girl from Tulsa, Oklahoma. She has been housing Madagascar hissing cockroaches in her room for five long years!

The little girl started with male roaches but then decided she wanted them to breed and started collecting female ones.

TLC / YouTube

The African insects have no wings, but do boast of a single pair of antennae and are widely known for their hissing sounds. 

The insects survive mainly on vegetables and fruits and can live up to 5 years.

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Shelby’s mother, Meg, said that her daughter first became interested in the insects at 18-months. Although Meg isn't in love with the cockroaches, she has learned to deal with them for her daughter's sake.

TLC / YouTube

Shelby keeps her beloved pets in plastic lined containers and aquariums with vaseline lines around to edges to prevent the bugs from moving out.  

The family also has a bearded dragon lizard named Toothless in case any member of the colony decided to escape. Shelby wants to spread the word to everyone that cockroaches aren't harmful. She said:

”They don’t bite, they’re not harmful at all except they may be a little stinky every once in a while.”

TLC / YouTube

Her favorite roach, Blackie, passed away in 2017 and she had a grave made for him, where she often goes to sit. She is in love with cockroaches, and goes as far as letting them crawl on her bed!

Shelby received shocking news when the local news anchor, LeAnne Taylor, said she detested the hissing bugs.

Shelby couldn't have anyone hating the prized insects she kept so dear to her heart, so she decided to invite Taylor to her home, to meet her pets and get over her fears. In total, Shelby has eight tankers of cockroaches in her house.

”When I started collecting cockroaches I had five - now I have thousands!”

TLC / YouTube

Many internet users were displeased at Shelby’s love for cockroaches, commenting on how dangerous the insects are. Others made a joke about her situation.

“Does this girl not know that cockroach is a living Virus. It can literally cause a wide range of diseases.”

“You just know she accidentally swallows at least 10 in her sleep.”

“When I was nine I saw a spider on my wall, screamed, and didn’t sleep in my room for a whole week. This girl, however, is chilling with thousands of roaches.”

Is Shelby’s choice of pets disturbing? Or you can relate to her love for her pets?

It is important to note that cockroaches are vectors of several diseases. While Shelby can decide what pets to have, her parents should ensure that her health isn’t at risk because of them.

Positive emotions make a good impact on everyone’s health! So here is a fun idea to entertain yourself.


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