Jack the kangaroo had an early morning stop on Friday at the Animal Health Clinic, 231 E. Rich Ln., Blackfoot, where he was neutered.
Veterinarian Jason Moulton, D.V.M. said, "Because he is neutered, he won't become aggressive nor will he grow as tall [as a regular kangaroo]."
When full grown, Moulton estimates Jack will stand about five feet tall. A regular kangaroo can grow to seven and one-half feet tall.
"The kangaroo was my husband's Christmas present," said Sherril, who asked that her family not be identified further to protect the kangaroo. "We got him off the Internet. He came from Texas."
The family has had the 8-month old kangaroo for about one month. Presently, Jack weighs 12 pounds and stands about two feet tall from the tip of his nose to his rump, excluding his tail.
Jack sleeps in a pouch. When presented his pouch, Jack jumped in head first.
"At this age, he would still be sleeping in his mother's pouch," said Sherril.
"We feed him milk—like goat's milk—and kangaroo feed," she said.
The dry marsupial food is ordered from Howard's Feed and Equipment in Shelley.
"It's the same place the [Tauphaus Park] Zoo gets its kangaroo food," Sherril said.
Jack's favorite snacks are sweet potatoes.
"Sweet potatoes have the best vitamins," she said.
The kangaroo lives in their house. He goes out on a leash and wears T-shirts and sweaters.
"When the temperature gets around 60 degrees, he will go out more," Sherril said. "They are fine in extreme hot but not in extreme cold."
"Jack is so sweet," she said. "When my husband comes home, Jack will sit by him on the coach and put his arms around his neck."
"It's like having a baby,"
The internet is where the couple gained their information about raising, feeding and caring for a kangaroo.
This is not the first marsupial this family has raised. Over the past 10 years, they have raised four wallaroos as well as yaks and elk.
"I just love animals," said Sherril.
Dr. Moulton said his practice has seen some unusual animals recently. Molly, the teacup potbelly pig, was visiting the clinic Friday morning. People have also brought in hunting falcons and a declawed bobcat.
"I think people want a pet that sets them apart," said Moulton. "Everyone loves to have something unusual."