An animal rights organization says it’s time Missouri bans private possession of wild and dangerous animals.
Tiger attacks on two people in separate incidents within the last week prompt People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals to ask Governor Blunt to advocate the statewide ban. PETA charges Predator World at Branson West also has seen a volunteer bitten by a leopard and escapes by three wolves and a bear. PETA ssays the private facility in Warren County lost its federal license and since then, says PETA, has been "larely unregulated."
Specialist Lisa Wathne (WAT-knee) of PETA’s Captive Exotic Animal program has mobilized Missouri members. She says the legisalture has been considering exotic animal regulation for several yuears. But she says PETA members are being urged to advocate an outright ban, not regulation.
She says PETA also will contacat the new Governor and ask him to back the ban.
Wathne says the federal agriculture department lists more than 100 "exhibitor licenses" issued in Missouri for people to have wild and dangerous animals. But she says state law that requires only registration by those with those animals is ineffective.