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Big Cat Attacks Spike Due to Growing Exotic Pet Trade

Of course, the best way to end the big cat attacks whether at a sanctuary or private residence is to curtail the exotic pet trade. There is absolutely no reason for Joe or Jane citizen to need a lion, tiger, cougar or other big cat as a pet (see video below on the top ten reasons why big cats make bad pets). Fortunately, in recent years, some states are restricting the ownership, sale and breeding of exotic pets, while other states are implementing bans on transporting big cats across state lines. Other states are taking a more regulatory approach requiring permits, inspections and liability insurance. Even better would be national legislation that would ban all private possession and breeding of big cats. Such a national ban would reduce the need for sanctuaries, reduce the number of big cats forced into unnatural circumstances, and ultimately nearly eliminate the deadly attacks on their human caretakers.

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Cherise Udell

Cherise Udell is a mom, clean air advocate, anthropologist and feline aficionado with the nomadic habit of taking spontaneous sojourns to unusual destinations. Before her adventures in motherhood, she was an intrepid Amazon jungle guide equipped with a pair of sturdy wellingtons and a 24-inch machete, as well as a volunteer at a rainforest animal rescue center.

219 comments

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11:18AM PDT on Mar 20, 2014

I don't believe any animal not native to one's own country needs to be imported any more. 100 years ago, when it was the only way for people to become aware of a variety of species, at least then zoos made sense. Now, you can see every species on the planet on the internet, so there's absolutely NO reason for people to keep abusing animals by taking out of their natural habitat.

7:35PM PST on Feb 1, 2014

It is beyond me how legislators have allowed this trade to continue.

6:50PM PST on Feb 1, 2014

Thank you

4:58AM PST on Jan 27, 2014

Thank you for this information.

4:16AM PST on Jan 13, 2014

Maybe we should put people in pens and allow the cats to hunt them.. Really? Folks need to understand that big cats are wild, need to be wild and need to be left alone!

3:26AM PST on Jan 2, 2014

wow. I hadnt imagined that in America such animals would be able to be kept unregulated.

Im in Australia and keeping an exotic animal would come with a lot of rules (and not really a pet thing but more of what a private zoo may have, but even then things like big cats wouldnt be common at all).

10:42AM PST on Jan 1, 2014

Change the laws that regulates this.

11:09PM PST on Dec 29, 2013

We really need to find out how to implement legal regulating oversight for private sanctuaries.

3:57PM PST on Dec 14, 2013

These beautiful animals were not put on this earth to be trophy pets for the simple minded, selfish idiots who continue to fund this horrible trade. If these owners get attacked, so be it...the animal is only doing what comes natural... "Animals of the word exist for their own reasons. They were not made for humans any more than blacks were made for whites or women for men."
Walker, Alice author, The Color Purple


7:45AM PST on Dec 11, 2013

These animals are NOT pets - petition signed!

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