Humane Society Calls For Stricter Laws Against Owning Exotic Pets


POSTED: Friday, October 21, 2011 - 9:10am

UPDATED: Thursday, February 9, 2012 - 11:16pm

Organization says Texas has weak laws

The Humane Society of the United States is calling on lawmakers to adopt tougher laws against owning exotic pets.The request comes days after the escape and death of 48 exotic animals in Ohio.
A number of lions, bears and wolves were released into the public by their owner before he committed suicide. The Humane Society says the laws are too laxed especially here in Texas.

"It could happen at any time where there's a situation where a state allows private animals to be kept in common hands," said Nicole Paquepte, Texas State Director for the Humane Society.

Just last week, a 4 year old boy in west Odessa was mauled by a pet cougar. The organization says this may happen again. They say a lot of times people don't know how to properly care for these animals and like in Ohio it could end up killing hundreds of these exotic creatures.

"We want stronger laws on the books," said Paquepte. "Both to protect both the public and the animals. Not only is the general public, from a safety stand point at risk but also the basic welfare of these animals is at risk."

According to the Humane Society Texas has one of the weakest laws in the nation. They say the threat is real and if the laws don't change more lives will be at risk.

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Contrary to speculative claims by animal rights organizations that Texans own 2,000 to 4,000 "backyard" tigers, a Feline Conservation Federation (FCF) study of tigers in Texas revealed the population is much closer to 300, and almost none of them are pets.
"I am disappointed at these organizations, but not surprised," says FCF executive director Lynn Culver. "The backyard tiger is a hoax, fabricated by animal rights groups to inflame public hysteria for fund raising purposes."

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