The danger of private citizens keeping wild animals received nationwide attention in 2005 when 17-year old student in Altamont Kansas, Haley Hildrebrand, was mauled to death while having her picture taken with a "tame" tiger. The 2006 Legislature responded appropriately by restricting the possession of “dangerous regulated animals.” Unfortunately, there have been recent efforts to weaken exotic animal legislation that keep both the animals and our Kansas communities safe.
An exotic animal, even when born and raised in captivity, retain their basic instinct. An exotic or wild animal kept us a pet, such as a lion, tiger, leopard, jaguar, cheetah, mountain lion, bear, or venomous snake, can cause serious injury or death. Tigers are 360 to 620 times more likely to be involved in a fatal attack than a dog. Since 1990, 4 children and 16 adults have been killed and dozens have been mauled. In the same time frame, 5 adults have been killed and over 40 seriously injured from captive bears. Sadly, the animal itself often suffer at the hands of their owner who lack the knowledge and/or resources to safely house them and meet their specialized needs. In the past 30 years, more than 100 tigers have been killed following am attack or escape from a private owner.
The HSLFKS work to strengthen the Dangerous Regulated Animals Act to limit the private ownership of dangerous exotic animals to better protect the welfare of the animal and the safety of our Kansas community. Unfortunately, we still see an effort in our state to de-regulate exotic animal ownership and trade. We wish to continue the standard and provide ongoing improvement of this act and one day see the private ownership and trade of exotic animals completely banned in our state.
As we continue to fight for this issue, help us have a larger impact and voice by donating today. Your gift will ensure we have the resources we need to fight exotic animal ownership in Kansas.