No Good Arguments for the Exotic Pet Trade- Just Good Marketing

Intelligent capuchin monkeys, giant snakes, colorful parrots, and fluffy marmosets are so appealing; it’s easy to see why people want to get close to these beautiful creatures. Some individuals are tempted to purchase wild animals like these as pets or possessions, and sellers are more than eager to assure potential buyers there is nothing wrong with that desire. Despite clever marketing, there is no justification for keeping a wild animal in captivity for purposes of profit and human pleasure.

There are a few types of facilities in which wild animals are held captive in the interest of conservation. Wildlife rehabilitation centers and captive breeding/reintroduction facilities are two examples. These centers are operated by biologists, veterinarians, or licensed professionals; and their ultimate goal is to restore wild animals to their natural habitats. The animals are not socialized to humans or kept as pets. Also, their captivity is temporary. In wildlife rehabilitation centers, animals remain captive for life only when permanent disability makes survival in their natural habitat impossible. These operations are in no way related to the exotic pet trade.

Unfortunately, even well-meaning people can be misled into believing they can make a wild animal as happy in their human home as the animal would have been in nature. Many potential buyers of exotic pets have probably seen at least a few online videos of exotic animals who appear to be healthy and happily int ...


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