The Ohio Senate voted 30-1 this week in favor of restrictions on the private ownership of potentially dangerous exotic animals. This is a positive first step towards bringing common sense and respect for all creatures back to the table in Ohio and around the nation.
Many argue “bans” on private ownership will do nothing to prevent another incident like the one last October in Zanesville, OH when 49 tigers, lions, bears, and others had to be killed after their owner, Terry Thompson, allegedly released them, then committed suicide. Thompson was a convicted felon with a history of animal abuse charges, so it’s a tragedy no laws existed to prevent him from keeping such animals after even the first violation. This bill, when passed, will establish common sense standards that will improve the lives of animals that remain in private hands, and help reduce the risks they pose to the public. As a result of those who have rallied in favor of restrictions, people are learning that not every Jungle Jack we see on television is WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get). There is often much more to the story.
As Ohio’s legislation now moves to the House chamber, we hope it moves swiftly, without further dilution. We hope all who are about animals and public safety will tell federal legislators to support H.R. 4122, the Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act that proposes to further restrict private ownership and breeding of big cats, for profit and exploitation, across the nation. We urge you, greater Fort Wayne, to get behind these bills, and to support our efforts locally to provide refuge to displaced, captive-raised exotic animals so they may enjoy peace and solitude for the rest of their lives. This week is just the beginning. We will be counting on you to help us, and other “true” sanctuaries. Help us pick up the pieces for those animals sure to be displaced, ready for their second chances. Thank you for your support.
Black Pine Animal Sanctuary